August 21, 2002

Childhood cartoons

Category: Personal — Biella @ 9:00 am

I came across one of my long lost favorite cartoons while following some random links this morning. It is the amorphous but lovable Barbapapa. I recall very little about the cartoon itself except that it was one of the more “magical” ones to me. I had this hierarchy of cartoons and shows, some of which were like really, really special (maybe because I could only see them in the states, like Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood) or very “real” (like Sesame street, because, well, look, they lived in a real neighborhood in NYC and Oscar the grouch was my bedside companion till I ruined him by pouring an entire bottle of dishwashing detergent on him), or just ones that were with me as a daily fact of life till I was 17 years old, like the Muppet Show. I must have only watched Barbapapa a couple of times but the blobs of color obviously left a mark on me as I was in total glee this morning when I found those sites.

The other day one of my friends asked me for my definition of “muppetational” as I had invented the word and definition as a sinister ploy, to get rejected from my father’s alma mater, a school that I did not want to attend (and he would have never forced me to go but it would have been like tense in the house for a couple of months). So the college application asked for your favorite word and I put muppetational and provided my own definition. Although I don’t remember it exactly, it was something along the lines of:

it is the essence of each muppet character and the means by
which this essence is brought out in interaction with life and others
brining smiles, gusto, and joy to our world. This can thus be extended out
“the muppet show” to signify the act of brining forth
the essense of ones self to the plate of life with sincerity,
love, and enthusiasm…. It might be Monster playing away at the
drums, Gonzo flirting with the chickens, Kermit philosophizing about
life, or Sato, roaming.

Needless to say, my tactic worked. (Biella wonders if her father is now learning of this deep, dark secret as he reads her blog: Sorry Papi, I just had to do it).

These cartoons really used to effect my day-to-day emotional state, which is probably why I was in such a good mood as a kid. But I remember being really sad about the fact that no one believed in Big Bird’s imaginary friend, Snufalufagus. I was always wanting to run into the show, and let the truth be told. And I think it has.

Yesterday, during an OPG meeting about the Online Community Forumwhich we are trying to develop, when I heard for like the millionth time, that “zope” which is a programming platform, “is supposed to be really great, powerful, robust, blah, blah, blah…” but “I have never used it…” I realized it was the Snufalufagus of programming, existing out there as some mythical technology. Has anyone actually used it : )

And btw, this little excursion into my childhood has really been a shameless pitch to give a certain someone some birthday present ideas. Aheemmm, I would love to see to see some of Barbapapa again : )

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