Thursday, June 13, 2013

Making Pop Culture Work

When you talk about pop culture to someone, more often than not, that person either rolls their eyes or gives you the "uh-huh" response. You know, the "I'm pretending to agree with you 'cause I really don't care what the hell you're talking about" response that we give to people when we're trying to leave a conversation as quickly as possible.

In my world, I try to make my pop culture references relatable to the issue at hand, because there ain't nothing worse than having a pop culture reference not make sense. So the other day, when the weather outside was a bit overcast, I happen to mention to my co-worker that Bob Ross was sad.

After a brief explanation of who Bob Ross was, they got it and went along with it.

For those of you who don't know who Bob Ross is, you can either check out this video, or read my ten second explanation.

Bob Ross was a well know extremely laid back painter who for decades had his own do-it-yourself painting show. He specialized in painting landscapes and one of his catch phrases was "happy white clouds".

Thus, when it was overcast, I would say that Bob Ross is sad. When the sun poked through a couple of times, I would say that Bob Ross is starting to smile. When it looked like the clouds were about to open up, I would say that Bob Ross is angry.

Anyways, once we got that out of the way, it opened up a whole new line of conversation about old children's  shows (Mr. Rogers, The Electric Company and Sesame Street), and children's shows from the 90's.

I showed off my knowledge of voice actors and musicians/bands who did theme songs/incidental music.

Example, music:

The B-52's did the theme song for "Rocko's Modern Life"; Heavy D & The Boys did the theme song for "Police Academy: The Series" cartoon.

Example, voice actors:

Cree Summer (actress who was in the show "A Different World") did the voice of Suzie in Rugrats and All Grown Up and the voice of Elmira in Tiny Toon Adventures; Bill Fagerbakke (actor in "Coach" and "Oz") does the voice of Patrick from SpongeBob Squarepants.

Ultimately, a good afternoon was had by all tripping down memory lane.

I leave you with this final thought:

On the local radio station they have a contest called "Google or Genius" and on one show they were giving away tickets to see a local off-off Broadway musical, and in order to win the tickets you had to answer the following question:

What is the address of the brownstone building that Oscar the Grouch lives in front of?

The first caller actually got it wrong. The 2nd caller got it right.


  1. Big fan of Bob Ross here, even though I can't paint a lick.

  2. I never knew about Bob Ross until someone sent me a link regarding ASMR, which I had also never heard of. The two are now irreversibly linked in my mind.

  3. Charles: I can't paint a lick either, but I've always enjoyed watching his t.v. shows.

    S.R.: I will have to check that out. Never heard of ASMR.

  4. The Electric Company! No one remembers that show...I also loved Vegetable Soup.

  5. M: No one remembers the original version anymore and apparently no one really cares about the rebooted version that came out either in the late 90's or early 2000's.

  6. I loved the Electric Company and Captain Kangaroo.

  7. Mama Z: Ahh...Captain Kangaroo.

    Loved that show. They tried doing a reboot of that using a CT based actor, but the company that was doing had it coming on when the kids weren't up yet (like at 6 and/or 7 in the monring), thus shooting themselves in the foot.


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