Remember when watching cartoons was a Saturday morning-only treat? When there weren’t 36 channels offering nothing but animated programming 24 hours a day? Remember when we couldn’t wait for school to end on Fridays because the next morning we could have Count Chocula for breakfast and watch cartoons for as long as it took our mom to roll her cigarettes for the whole week?
Ah…I miss the seventies.
This year marks the 40th birthday of one of the 1970′s biggest contributions to our generation, and I’m not talking about halter tops or the macrame owl wall-hangings we’re going to find cleaning our parent’s attics when they move to Florida in a few years. That “thing” is ABC‘s Schoolhouse Rock, only the best kid’s show/informative device/ear-worm/commercial programming EVER. Who among us in the 30+ set doesn’t use their fingers to multiply by nines, just like School Rock crew taught?
Now our kids have things like “calculators” and “parents who care about self-esteem” to help them with their homework. We didn’t. We didn’t need them, ‘cuz we had THE ROCK.
But that was a long time ago, friends. Sadly, our own kids won’t know what it’s like to have to wait to watch a show. They don’t have to wait because “something” is always on. (Well, at least until the Zombie Apocalypse; then we’ll all have to wait our turn to watch salvaged “Dave’s World” DVDs on a hand-crank player, but there’s like, months before that happens.)
Some of the best programming of our youth came from the powerhouse known as Schoolhouse Rock. Admit it – there’s no shame in confessing that every time someone mentions the electoral college your internal response is:
“E! C! E! L! TOR! AL!
Electoral College! We’ve got a tale to tell!”
Or that perennial sad-sack, “I’m Just a Bill,” who’s likely “just gonna die in committee.”
So join us in wishing Schoolhouse Rock a wonderful 40th birthday. I hope she gets drunk and makes crank phone calls to all of the “Superfriends.” My neck also turns 40 this year, but I think we’ll all agree that Schoolhouse Rock is the far more celebratory aspect of 2013.
How did Schoolhouse Rock help you? (Advice on neck wrinkles is also appreciated.)