Forgetful Jones, You Are Not Forgotten

Awhile back I saw this image macro floating around on the Intertron:

Aside from the fact that the comparison of Mitt Romney to Guy Smiley seems a tad bit forced, this picture bummed me out. It reminded me that there was a time when Guy Smiley – a character from the Sesame Street of my 1980’s upbringing – was part of my everyday life. Now it’s Mitt Romney who I hear about every day, and I have publicly-funded broadcasting to thank for both. It’s a mixed bag, this up-growing. I miss Guy as I miss all those old characters. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not hating on Elmo. I think he’s cute and Wee Cee likes him, so we are kosher.

So what do you do when you think of old friends and decide to troll them? You friend them on Facebook. Then, if you think that your eons-old relationship with them was as magical for them as it was for you, you message them and hope for a response.

Here are those messages.

Dear Forgetful Jones,

Hi. Remember me? Haha. Sorry, that was kind of douchey of me. (Did I just say “douchey” in an email to an old Sesame Street character? Cue self loathing.) I was watching the Gangnam Style horse dance the other day and I thought of you. Random, eh? So, what are you up to nowadays? I never learned to ride a horse, but I did learn that my own forgetful tendencies were due to moderate ADD. Maybe you should get that checked out too. You are probably now thinking “Who is this person and why is she messaging me with a diagnosis of my forgetfulness?” Good question. I was that little girl wearing cowgirl boots and a hat whenever you came one. I loved you. Still do.

Dear Captain Vegetable,

Wassup, homefry? It’s been awhile. I can’t believe I have finally found you! While I was making some kale chips yesterday I thought of you and realized I always liked you more than Cookie Monster. This is likely because I felt kind of bad for you and your little costume with a picture of a carrot Scotch taped to the front. Still keep in touch with Eddie Spaghetti? You will be happy to know that my baby likes squash. I will be happy to know if you ever attacked that unibrow. Please let me know!

Dear Prairie Dawn,

Hey, Prairie Dawn! What’s up?! OMG, you were THE BEST. I don’t know how you were able to deflect Cookie Monster’s tomfoolery all those times, but your sass and exasperation always packed a whollup. So how are things? Do you still live on Sesame Street or did you leave for college? Did you go to Vassar and study music like we all expected? Can’t wait to hear from you, homegirl.


Dear Two-Headed Monster,

I hope you are the same two-headed monster I knew back in the day. Since there were several “Two-Headed Monsters” listed on Facebook, I had to make my best guess that this is you. Otherwise, please disregard this message! I can’t imagine why you didn’t make the cut of the monster-heavy Sesame Street cast of today (yet claymation Ernie and Bert somehow did), but your presence is missed. What are y’all doing these days? Ever thought of staging a comeback by performing The Odd Couple? I know, dumb idea. Put your heads together and I’m sure you’ll come up with something better.

Dear Sherlock Hemlock,

I saw a puppet of you at a flea market this past weekend and just had to look you up. ‘Member how you were the world’s greatest detective? I do, and that’s why I’m surprised you never showed up on CSI, Law and Order, Criminal Minds, or that show with LL Cool J and the principal from Kindergarten Cop. No worries. I’m sure that if half a chicken salad sandwich gets eaten by you goes missing, you will be called in as a first responder. Miss you much, friend.

 *All images Copyright Children’s Television Workshop. Except the one of Mitt Romney. I don’t think CTW would lay claim to that one.

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69 comments

  1. This is way too cute and clever. It actually made me sad to think of my old pals, especially Forgetful Jones. Maybe I’ll have to start watching Sesame street again.
    Prairie Dawn at Vassar! haha!

    1. The Sesame Street of today is OK, but I can’t help but compare it to the old days which I get really sentimental about. YouTube has soooo many old clips; whenever I’m in a less than stellar mood, I just watch a few and it picks me right up. Plus, C loves them too!

      1. Sesame Street would be much-improved if they removed Abby Cadabby and her stupid flying fairy school. So much toilet humor, so little time. Wow. Children’s programming sends me into a rage. Maybe I should have that looked into.

        The best SS video ever is the 25th anniversary. LOTS of classic characters and sketches. I highly recommend it.

        1. Is that the one with “Put Down the Duckie” and People in Your Neighborhood with Barbara Walters and Martina Navratilova? My parents taped that on VHS for us when it originally aired and my brother and I wore. it. out. Good stuff.

          I’m not a fan of Abby and her cohorts, either. I would gladly banish her to the scorned land of Daniel Tiger and Caillou. Murray and his little lamb are another story, though. I oddly think he’s pretty funny and spastic.

  2. Emily,
    Dude, your stepping your blogging game lately, kudos to you! I never watched Sesame Street, it was not a big part of French Canadian culture. We had our own shows (Passe-Partout). But most anglos I know, my wife included, have very loving memories of the show…
    Le Clown
    PS: I did watch a few episodes of Electric Company, though…

    1. Was the Electric Company a Canadian show? I remember seeing that during my childhood days of double-wide trailer on the Saskatchewan prairie.

      1. Carrie,
        Oh no… It was American alright, and it had Morgan Freeman in it…And Spider-Man.
        Le Clown

        1. Cool. Don’t remember any of that. Which isn’t cool.

      2. I seem to recall that it was also produced by Joan Rivers. That’s so outlandish that I can’t possibly be making it up.

    2. Thanks! I never really watched a lot of Electric Company because I don’t think our local PBS station when I was a kid picked it up, but they are making new episodes now! Can’t wait to share those with C too. I just love Sesame Street. Can you tell?

  3. Touching & HILARIOUS !!! Sherlock Hemlock one of my faves !!
    You ROCK Emily ~~~

    1. He was secretly my inspiration for this entire post. Loved him ;D

  4. You just made me think, I can’t wait to have a kid so I can watch Sesame Street again! I just visited their website and looked at all the muppets!

    1. They’re the best, right?! And I was watching these clips waaaaay before I had a baby. I used to work the front desk at a small inn and whenever I had the late shift, pretty much all I’d do was watch Sesame Street clips.

  5. and oh my gosh! Has Guy Smiley been turned into Prince Charming?? http://www.sesamestreet.org/muppets/prince-charming

    1. OMG they are, like, the EXACT SAME! Talk about recycling!

    1. Ha! I was thisclose to including him in this post! I had to scrap the bit I had written about him though because all I could come up with was how I always got him confused with the Count when I was a kid.

      1. The count is gone now too…I called my mom “Mummy” for years b/c of the Amazing Mumford.

        1. I know! It’s so sad! He was on up until a couple years ago, right? Boo. I’m not a huge fan of Abby Kadazzy or whatever. They could have kept her.

          1. Agree – sesame workshop is one of my clients.

            1. I am now officially jealous of your life.

              1. Ha ha – I crunch ratings for them – it’s not as sexy as it sounds. But I did get a whole box of excellent Electric Company swag from a woman I do analysis for. That was awesome – I love The Electric Co and Shock – he’s a cutie pie.

                1. Still. I think I’d put Big Bird down as a reference if I were you. BTW never, ever take any of my advice.

                  1. Note to self: The Waiting Woman might be someone to avoid taking advice from…

                    For some pledge data crunching I do, when clients are learning to use our software, they will often attribute Big Bird pledging thousands of dollars to Sesame Street :)

                    1. He’s so generous.

                    2. Ain’t it the truth?
                      Ever stuffed animal on my son’s bed when he was young was from a PBS convention.

  6. The only entity Mitt Romney can properly be compared to is Don Draper. Pretend you don’t know all about Don’s personal life and affairs, and you’ll see it too.

    And they’re definitely both members of the 53%…

    P.S. I eat things and then pretend they just went missing too, when I’m not pretending I’m a Sesame Street homegirl.

    1. And still, somehow, even if you count the lack of scruples, his infidelities, and his womanizing ways, Don Draper is a million times more likable.

      And that is as political as you will likely ever see me get. ;)

  7. Fish Out of Water · · Reply

    I swear I only had children so I could watch Sesame Street over and over. I love this post.

    1. ME TOO. I knew I liked you. Thank God C was born in the time of YouTube and we can just watch those clips all day.

  8. Loved Sesame Street — it crossed all boundaries — bringing such nice messages to the masses. Great post Emily. Just wonderful.

    1. I agree! I am incapable of watching a lot of the older stuff without getting a little bleary-eyed. And don’t even get me started on Mr. Rogers or I will just cry you a river. Such good stuff.

  9. But the Count! And Grover! We love Grover here at our house. You must get Miss C the book, Monster at the End of The Book, featuring your friend lovable old Grover. It’s a classic at our house and my husband, whose every other impersonation sounds like Ross Perot, does an impressive Grover. And we will miss the Count. ah, ah, ah.

    1. Ah yes! But I still remember them! Grover is still on Sesame Street and the Count only made his exit a couple years ago (pffft.) Grover was my favorite growing up. Also, I TOTALLY know what book you’re talking about! ;D We had it and I loved the illustrations. I also had this other book about Grover going to the hospital to get his tonsils out; I think my parents got it for me to prepare me for my trip to the hospital to have tubes put in my ears when I was 4. You and I are Sesame Street kindred spirits.

      1. Someone mentioned Put Down The Ducky. Jeremy Irons! singing about duckies! One of our favorite CDs for the car was Sesame Street hits. I can still sing “I Love Trash.” If my students behave, I sing it at the end of our lesson.

  10. Nothing compares to Sesame Street. Loved seeing all these guys. And Prairie Dawn! My fave. My brothers used to tell me that I WAS Prairie Dawn growing up, I even looked like her.

    1. That’s a really awesome compliment! My brother just told me I was Oscar the Grouch. ;/

  11. I miss the two headed monster! Elmo is cute yes but a little too goodie two shoes. Oscar and the monsters are more interesting. A little of that bad boy appeal.

    1. We were just watching Elmo the other day and his was playing Hot Potato with Abby the Fairy and he kept whining when he lost and being a jerk when he won. It was a side of him I had never seen before.

      And I have to admit it was oddly refreshing. ;)

  12. You. Rock.

    My favorite thing about this post is that you made me remember things I haven’t thought about in YEARS.

    1. That’s one of the best things about Sesame Street. It teases little things out of my mind that I completely forgot existed. My friend recently put up a clip on FB of an old SS segment that shows you how crayons are made. It literally had me in tears near the end because it evoked such a strong memory.

  13. krugthethinker · · Reply

    Yes! Sherlock Hemlock! That is all. :)

    1. He’s kinda adorable, right?

  14. I love those guys. I totally forgot about Forgetful Jones (go figure).
    I bet all those characters ARE on Facebook. I know Ernie and Bert (and his doppelganger Evil Bert) are ;)

    1. You better believe that I checked them out on Facebook. Prairie Dawn definitely has the most complete profile. There are lots of Forgetful Jones copycats, strangely enough.

  15. Sesame Street is the post-Lame Adventures generation so my source of educational TV was The Three Stooges … that probably explains a lot about me.

    1. Hahahaha! My brother is a big Three Stooges fan. It’s good stuff! I really like the Little Rascals myself.

  16. James Melbin · · Reply

    <3 <3

  17. Oh sesame street, how you have been replaced by crap on a stick. Why oh why has kids tv gotten so craptastic?

    1. Sid the Science Kid makes me want to stab myself repeatedly. It is BAD.

      1. My son was so lucky to be a kid in the Cartoon Network hey-day. Cow and Chicken is pure cartoon perfection. Dexter’s Lab totally rocks and I Am Weasel. . . well, just check them out.

        1. Have you ever seen this cartoon called Home Movies? It used to come on Adult Swim on CN. It is hilarious! I think most of the episodes are on Netflix.

          1. I’ll do that! Thanks.

  18. These characters are so foggy to me. Like, I know them, but I also don’t. I wasn’t a full 80’s baby. Only the last 3 years of the 80’s. But I do remember Prairie Dawn and the Two Headed Monster. I’m glad you’re keeping tabs on all these guys. But honestly, I hate claymation Ernie and Bert :/

    1. I know! I really don’t understand the point of putting them in claymation. Maybe it’s just because I’m lazy and it seems like a lot more work than just using puppets.

      1. I don’t get the clamationed B&E either. And I’m with Lily (although I lay claim to ALL of the eighties) that I have the foggiest memory of a lot of these guys. You just unlocked something next to the memory of learning to tie my shoes.

    1. They were the best! I was a skittish kid, though, and I’m surprised the two headed monster didn’t scare me.

  19. Oh, I love this! Forgetful Jones and Prairie Dawn, yes! Also, I would like to give a shout out to The Beetles and their hit song, “Letter B” :)

    1. Oh man, that was a good one! Sesame Street was so clever.

      It’s been awhile, Soundhippy. Welcome back! ;D

  20. Wow you totally ripped out the B-Side Sesame Street characters here. I don’t remember a single one of these.

    Very funny post however.

    1. Thanks. I am a wannabe hipster through and through and must only talk about characters that are not mainstream.

  21. That’s so smart and funny. I almost forgot all the characters and almost certainly never knew half their names even though I watched them on a daily basis as a kid! Sophia loves the sesame street podcasts though she was completely freaked out by the snake in letter “S”.

    1. Snakes used to freak me out too! It’s so funny the things little kids are afraid of. C is terrified whenever I put a new garbage bag in the garbage can. When I fluff it out before I put it in, I have to go into another room or she will see it and panic.

  22. While I recognize and remember all these characters, I didn’t know many of their names.

    But I think Guy Smiley should moderate a debate. He’d add an intellectual component that is sadly missing…

    1. Now that is some great thinking, Guap! Maybe he can help moderate a debate with a PBS anchor like Gwen Eiffel. Hope you’re doing well, my friend. Been thinking of you.

Now you can hold the magic talking stick.

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