August 13, 2006

What television, music, movie or book from my childhood
am I excited about sharing with Arun?

The Lovely Mrs. Davis has started a Blogosphere-wide meme of sorts. In celebration of Sesame Street’s 37th anniversary, she asks “What television, music, movie or book from your childhood are you excited about sharing with your own children? (you can find the complete post here.) As usual, this Rancid Sheep is jumping on the Memed Bandwagon.....

Television: I don’t remember watching a ton of TV as a kid. We were able to receive 3 channels on a cloudy day, maybe 4-5 on a clear day (I didn’t know the glory of cable until my sophomore year of college). However, like most, I grew up on a healthy diet of Schoohouse Rock, Sesame Street and Electric Company (I have bought the Sesame Street Beginnings DVDs, the Schoolhouse Rock DVDs and they rock HARD. I haven't invested YET in Electric Company, but definitely will be). Like many other Heathen Families of yore, Rocky and Bullwinkle were the saving grace of my Depraved Soul on Sundays (sorry ‘bout that, Jesus). Cartoon-wise, I am freakishly CRAZY about the Loony Tunes , Woody Woodpecker, Jetsons, Pink Panther, Tom & Jerry and my Secret 2nd Grade Lover, Jonny HubbaHubba Quest. Of all TV, I am most insanely excited about sharing cartoons and animation with Arun. Don't even get me started on the cheesy stop-motion animated Christmas specials - I own ALL of those as well (Mr. Heat Miser was a crazy kind of HOT, eh?). (Rancid Tangent: I have never understood where the Disney fascination comes from - am I the only kid who never watched Disney as a kid? Furthermore, WHERE did you find Mickey anyway? He wasn’t coming through OUR airwaves. Did he come through yours?)

Music: ...blink...blink....crickets in the distance..... I don't remember any kiddie music from my youth! When Arun was born, I could eek out Row, Row, Row Your Boat and Baa Baa Black Sheep (his favorite one, even now), but I was quickly reduced to singing Happy Birthday in English AND Spanish in order to my shower fully completed (GOD HELP ME when I needed to shave my legs because that repertoire just wasn't enough, believeyoume.... Eventually, we got a Baby Tad and the little green toadie helped me out with learning some new ones.) SO, when I was a kid, I listened to what my parents listened to, which was the Eagles, Led Zeppelin, Linda Ronstadt, Herman's Hermits, the Doobie Brothers, etc. I specifically remember crooning to Ronstadt's "It's so easy to fall in love" at a tender age, not knowing the full, heart-breaking ramifications that would come in my college years. Anyway, I will probably do what my parents did, so I can confess that I do look forward to sharing my adult music tastes with Arun (...cough..Pink Floyd...cough..). And he may hate my blogging about this later, but I can report that he already LOVES dancing to Madonna.

Movie: Since I am trying to keep this to things from MY childhood (hence, the Huge Gaping Black Hole that swallowed Everything Pixar and Harry Potter along with Wallace and Gromit), I am drawing a blank. We lived in the country and simply did not see many movies. What I remember most is The Wizard of Oz and Gone With the Wind being the HUGE television events, but I don't really remember liking the Wizard that much because the book was far superior. And honestly? I can see how racist Gone With the Wind is now, so I wouldn't want Arun seeing that until he is a bit older. Also, don’t laugh, but I DO remember seeing Grease when it was originally released in the theatre. However, that doesn’t really seem appropriate Childhood Fare, either.

Book: This, by far is the hardest to pare down - I could write an entire post just on books alone. First, I have a boy and well, last I checked, I am a girl, of sorts. So, this leaves out many, many of my favorite "girl books" such as Trixie Belden, Nancy Drew, the Katie John Series, Rosamund du Jardin, Dana Girls, Laura Ingalls Wilder. One of my favorite gender neutral series was the ValueTales line. They were a lovely set of books that had different character traits attributed to an historical figure and the book would be a shortened version of their life story. My grandma bought these books for me and I would read them everytime I visited her. I have them now and have been anticipating sharing them with my children ever since I lovingly unpacked them and stored them on my very own bookshelf. I did read Hardy Boys so hopefully, Arun will be interested in those. Beverly Cleary has some great gender-neutral books, too. Another favorite is a 1962 book called Silly Mother by Lois Duncan - I still have my copy and still like to read it. I also still have both of my Amazing Facts books - they are well worn and I certainly hope that Arun wears them out even further. And finally, Wizard of Oz. I read this over and over as a kid - what a lovely, fantastical book that really stretches the imagination. Also, do NOT mistake me for the sort to push "boy vs. girl" stuff. If Arun shows the slightest interest in Trixie or Nancy, I think I will have died and headed straight up to St. Peter. I will be ALL OVER THAT SHIT because the Trixie Belden series has some awesome boy role models. But Nancy Drew? Not so much, let's face it, Ned was utterly whipped and Nancy was totally running THAT show. Not that there's anything wrong with that.

Magazines: I added my own category - hope that doesn't break the rules. I LOVED the magazine "Jack & Jill". It had the added benefit of coming in the MAIL with MY name on it - I remember how much fun it was to go and check the mail and find something FOR ME in there for a change. I also can't wait to share comic books with Arun - some of my favorites were Archie (a guilty pleasure I still buy occasionally), Spiderman, and Richie Rich. And when he's old enough to appreciate the fine mix of Cynicism, Satire and Sarcasm that is Mad Magazine, I will definitely be cracking out those along with Cracked.

Ah, the memories.

How about you? If you have children, what are you Sharing? If you don't have children, what are you excited about Sharing? If you don't have kids, never plan on having kids and/or actively Hate Other People's Kids, what are you Sharing with your cat? Anyway, if you blog about it, feel free to Share the link in the Comments.

Happy Birthday, Sesame Street.
Thanks for all the past memories and the future ones yet to be had.




A cautionary tale of how little Michael’s mother was so stressed out that she was putting Michael's fire engine in the refrigerator and the baby’s bottle away in the toy box. Michael’s father suggests that he start helping out around the house which he does to full effect because Mother all of sudden has time to bake a chocolate cake. Perhaps, her "nerve" pills started to kick in? How much you wanna bet that Michael grows up to be an emotional eater?

Growing up, I didn’t just love Katie John, I wanted to BE Katie John (when I was pregant, Katie was in the running for girls' names, but now I have TWO friends who have claimed that name and now Curious Katie will be nevermore.) Katie John was so fearless, spunky, obnoxious and just plain COOL. I was so jealous that she got to live in a big, spooky house.

This set of books (there are two) started me on a path towards a Lifelong Fascination with all things Trivia. I read both books over and over and over and over - the other book has no cover now, hence the reason for scanning the 2nd one, as opposed to 1st. Over the years, I have gathered quite a collection of "facts" books and these two were the genesis.

I just ADORED the 60s teen romance books - they rode around in jalopies in their dungarees! How daddio was THAT? Although, I was always wondering why they couldn’t go on dates because they had to stay home to “wash their hair” - what boy would believe a lame excuse like that? How long could it possibly take to WASH YOUR HAIR? It wasn't until years later that I would unravel the mystery of the Shampoo n’ Set.

9 comments:

Jenny said...

Yes, yes, yes to everything. You are my long-lost cousin. Seriously, if you'd added Archie to your list of comics and Ruth Chew to your book list I would have thought that you had read my mind completely.

Also? Mickey Mouse was only on records when I was growing up (Mousercize and Disco Mouse specifically.) Of course I lived out in the country and only had 3 channels so I'm not the best person to ask.

Cagey said...

Jenny,
Maybe I am your "half" long-lost cousin - Archie is most certainly on the comics list. I still even buy them occasionally. :-)

Modern Day Hermit said...

I sure hope my boy enjoys reading, I must admit that I've even bought a few books that might be more oriented towards various ages just because I started reading my Mom's books in elementary school.

Her books were by such authors as Stephen King, John Saul, Dean Koontz (when he was Dean R. Koontz) and other inappropriate subject matter for a person of such age, haha.

I loved looking through my Mom's books as a kid and I hope Alex picks up that same interest.

Diana said...

We (I) love Schoolhouse Rock in our house. One of the 10,000 best things about having kids is getting to relive some of your favorite stuff from your own childhood.

callistawolf said...

Great great great post. :)

I loved Underdog, Sesame Street (natch), Mister Rogers, Scooby Doo and The Muppet Show when I was little. My son has watched a few of these (Sesame Street and Scooby Doo) but he was less than impressed, sadly. It's hard to compete with some of the shows out there for kids nowadays. I'd love to get some Muppet Show DVDs to share though.

I'm with you on the music thing. Though I did have the soundtrack to The Muppet Movie and my older siblings were often kind enough to let me play it on their stereos. I LOVED "Rainbow Connection".

I remember going to see "Annie" in the theater and it was the single, coolest moment in my life up until that point. I was so impressed, my parents took me to see it on stage a couple years later.

Hey, I got Jack and Jill too!

I could go on and on and on about books too. Oh lordy. But I won't hog your comments any more than I already have. ;)

Shawn said...

Dude, it's a Dell desktop. I need a laptop myself.

I loved books so very much in childhood. I had forgotten Katie John. Did you read The Velvet Room? That is still the place I want to go to when I die.

Lisa said...

Loved Electric Company too. DIdn't even know it was on DVD! How COOL!

I just bought "The Boxcar Children". I remember my mom reading those books to us years ago. Can't wait to read it to my little guy.

Monkey McWearingChaps said...

Great post! I'm going to steal this meme for this Friday if you don't mind...like what am I excited about sharing with my hypothetical children. LOL. You don't mind do you? I love remembering books and stuff from my childhood.

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