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  • Writer's pictureDeric Hollings

Kermy-Kerm

Updated: Apr 5, 2023



When I was young, I enjoyed watching The Muppet Show, as my favorite Muppet was Kermit the Frog. Now that I think about it, originator Jim Henson’s puppet mastery was the impetus for my fascination with puppeteering.


In high school, I performed various skits at Vacation Bible School (VBS) within my church congregation and enjoyed making McGruff the Crime Dog come alive around the home. Paradoxically, at the same time I performed those actions I was also running the streets with knuckleheads.



Later, when in the Marine Corps, a friend of mine had a Kermit stuffed animal toy that I used to animate when visiting her barracks room. Because of the devious things I made her toy do, she nicknamed him “Kermy-Kerm,” as though he was from the hood.



It was a fitting name, as the correlation between my military police (MP) status and legal woes in the Corps were personified through a frog that was largely considered to be “good,” while Kermy-Kerm embodied “bad” behavior. Was life imitating art, or art imitating life?


At any rate, a number of years later, the “evil Kermit” meme was popularized. Per one source, “Evil Kermit is a captioned image series featuring a screenshot of the Muppet character Kermit the Frog talking with his nemesis Constantine, dressed as a Sith Lord from Star Wars, who instructs him to perform various indulgent, lazy, selfish and unethical acts.”


Constantine was featured in Muppets Most Wanted, as Kermit’s criminal doppelgänger—sometimes referred to as “dark Kermit”—wreaks havoc on Kermit’s life. Though Kermit and Constantine aren’t the same entity, I think of how identity is conceptualized within each of us.


In a blogpost entitled Was Freud Right? I expanded upon Sigmund Freud’s idea of an id, ego, and superego. Regarding a separate post, Remembering Shadows, I addressed Carl Jung’s concept of the shadow.


Reflecting upon those entries, I reject the dichotomous proposal of a good, bad, light, dark, righteous, or evil identity. To me, there is no “evil” or “dark” Kermit. For each of us who are fallible human beings, there appears to be a combination of moral and ethical conundrums.


I’m not convinced that anyone I’ve ever known, currently know, or may ever know fits into neat categories such as all “good” or all “bad.” Considering my own example, I wasn’t all good when conducting puppeteering for VBS or when serving as an MP.


Similarly, I wasn’t all bad when running the streets as a teen or when wearing matching bracelets (handcuffs) as a Marine. Summarizing my stance, in a blogpost entitled Good Man, I stated, “In all honesty, I don’t think I get to say whether or not I’m a good man. After all, others would certainly disagree with me either way.”


Working with clients, practicing Rational Emotive Behavior Therapy (REBT), I invite people to consider the imperfection inherent within each of us, others, and life as a whole. Starting from this perspective, we can practice rational compassion with ourselves, others, and the world during periods of self-disturbance.


In this way, it wasn’t that Kermy-Kerm was an “evil” or “dark” being when causing chaos in my friend’s barrack’s room—as his puppeteer wasn’t a “bad” individual to begin with. Rather, Kermy-Kerm represented the flawed individual who animated him.


This fact isn’t worthy of guilt, shame, or banishment. Needlessly rigid terms of service function as little more than inevitable traps with which we irrationally demand perfection and punish violators of our unreasonable standards.


Do you find that labeling others as “bad,” “dark,” or in other unhelpful ways is leading to undesirable and unpleasant outcomes? Would you like to know more about how to practice unconditional acceptance as a method of improving the quality of your life?


If you’re looking for a provider who works to help you understand how thinking impacts physical, mental, emotional, and behavioral elements of your life, I invite you to reach out today by using the contact widget on my website.


As a psychotherapist, I’m pleased to help people with an assortment of issues ranging from anger (hostility, rage, and aggression) to relational issues, adjustment matters, trauma experience, justice involvement, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, anxiety and depression, and other mood or personality-related matters.


At Hollings Therapy, LLC, serving all of Texas, I aim to treat clients with dignity and respect while offering a multi-lensed approach to the practice of psychotherapy and life coaching. My mission includes: Prioritizing the cognitive and emotive needs of clients, an overall reduction in client suffering, and supporting sustainable growth for the clients I serve. Rather than simply helping you to feel better, I want to help you get better!



Deric Hollings, LPC, LCSW



References:


Bailey, B. (2016, November 18). Kermit vs. Constantine (dark Kermit) [Video]. YouTube. Retrieved from https://youtu.be/Biv_TKkvzC4

Don. (2017). Evil Kermit. Know Your Meme. Retrieved from https://knowyourmeme.com/memes/evil-kermit

Enriquez, A. (2021, October 25). Q. How does fair use work for book covers, album covers, and movie posters? Penn State. Retrieved from https://psu.libanswers.com/faq/336502

Hollings, D. (2022, October 31). Demandingness. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/demandingness

Hollings, D. (2022, March 15). Disclaimer. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/disclaimer

Hollings, D. (2022, November 22). Good man. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/good-man

Hollings, D. (n.d.). Hollings Therapy, LLC [Official website]. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/

Hollings, D. (2022, November 4). Human fallibility. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/human-fallibility

Hollings, D. (2022, November 10). Labeling. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/labeling

Hollings, D. (2023, March 21). Matching bracelets. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/matching-bracelets

Hollings, D. (2023, March 4). M-E-T-H-O-D, man. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/m-e-t-h-o-d-man

Hollings, D. (2022, October 22). On empathy. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/on-empathy

Hollings, D. (2022, March 25). Rational emotive behavior therapy (REBT). Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/rational-emotive-behavior-therapy-rebt

Hollings, D. (2022, July 7). Remembering shadows. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/remembering-shadows

Hollings, D. (2022, June 27). Rigid terms of service. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/rigid-terms-of-service

Hollings, D. (2022, November 1). Self-disturbance. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/self-disturbance

Hollings, D. (2022, November 14). Touching a false dichotomy. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/touching-a-false-dichotomy

Hollings, D. (2022, July 11). Unconditional acceptance. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/unconditional-acceptance

Hollings, D. (2023, March 11). Unconditional life-acceptance. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/unconditional-life-acceptance

Hollings, D. (2023, February 25). Unconditional other-acceptance. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/unconditional-other-acceptance

Hollings, D. (2023, March 1). Unconditional self-acceptance. Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/unconditional-self-acceptance

Hollings, D. (2022, August 8). Was Freud right? Hollings Therapy, LLC. Retrieved from https://www.hollingstherapy.com/post/was-freud-right

Muppet Wiki. (n.d.). Constantine. Retrieved from https://muppet.fandom.com/wiki/Constantine

The wise one. (2003, October 14). Hood. Urban Dictionary. Retrieved from https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=hood

Wikipedia. (n.d.). Carl Jung. Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carl_Jung

Wikipedia. (n.d.). Jim Henson. Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jim_Henson

Wikipedia. (n.d.). Kermit the Frog. Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kermit_the_Frog

Wikipedia. (n.d.). McGruff the Crime Dog. Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/McGruff_the_Crime_Dog

Wikipedia. (n.d.). Muppets Most Wanted. Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muppets_Most_Wanted

Wikipedia. (n.d.). Sigmund Freud. Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sigmund_Freud

Wikipedia. (n.d.). The Muppets. Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Muppets

Wikipedia. (n.d.). The Muppet Show. Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Muppet_Show

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