The first year that I really remember Easter baskets I remember that my brother got the Sammy Davis, Jr. “Now” album in his basket, and boy, was that a great album. “MacArthur Park,” “Theme from ‘Shaft’,” “The Candy Man”… just hit after hit.

This old ABC special probably doesn’t qualify as an Easter cartoon if you’re being strict about it, but it does have a rabbit and an egg and Sammy Davis, Jr. so that’s good enough for me.

Etiquette & superstition: noodles

Rick's Drive In & Out sign reading "SPAGHETTI IS BACK" amongst many other street signs

I didn’t do a good job of preparing for any Lunar New Year feast this year. I guess I never do, but for some reason this year I’m feeling sort of dumb about not preparing for it. I have some spaghetti and baking soda. Maybe I can… oh, this is going to be a disaster.

ETIQUETTE: This would probably be easier as a spreadsheet, noting which utensils should be used with noodles in which country, whether you should slurp the noodles, cut them into smaller pieces, lift the bowl to drink the sauce/broth, etc. Let’s proceed.

Of course, there are caveats to all of these (don’t slurp out of big bowls even in places where it’s noted as okay to slurp, for instance) and somebody online is always going to tell you you’re doing it wrong, so as with many things food etiquette-related, the best thing to do is look around you and see what most of the other diners are doing.

*Also, “sop up” may mean different things depending on whether you’re in the US or Italy and the level of formality for the meal

SUPERSTITION: While a number of foods eaten for Lunar New Year celebrations are chosen for their names being homophonic in relation to something desired, noodles are eaten for their shape. That is, a long noodle slurped up unbroken predicts a long life. Add more baking soda if you’re worried your noodles might snap.

Wring out the old

Saying, “It can’t be any worse than last year” is kind of like naming a puppy Lucky, isn’t it? I guess I’ll just wish you all hope and strength for 2022. Try to cut yourselves and others some slack and see what happens.

Popeye the Sailor – Let’s Celebrake – 1938 from te-media on Vimeo.

Published in: on January 1, 2022 at 12:37 pm  Leave a Comment  

Multipurpose tools

For Christmas, we’re staying in a cabin with some very nice owl andirons . Benny had to tell me what andirons are for, and then he put the andirons where they’re supposed to go in the fireplace. When the fire is going, the owls’ glass eyes glow very nicely. They do not, however, play little trumpets as far as I can tell.

What the dickens

A Christmas Carol has never been my favorite Dickens story; it seems so basic in comparison to his other works. I decided to read a couple of Wikipedia entries to see if there was something missing from my understanding of it, but no, I have it covered. I did learn, however, that Tiny Tim was initially named Little Fred, and when that didn’t fit, Tiny Mick. And that was making me wonder if any of those names would have changed the career trajectory of Herbert Khaury: it seems that he also tried out a number of names before settling on Tiny Tim: Texarkana Tex, Judas K. Foxglove, Vernon Castle, and Emmett Swink.

I seem to have gotten off track here. If you need a Christmas Carol fix, this is really one of the finer ones out there.

Magic Mike it’s not

Every time I think I’ve seen all the vintage Halloween cartoons, someone proves me wrong. Thanks to @bittycar, I think I have two spooky bits to post this weekend. Try not to get too scared.

Snowy mountain breakdown

Yesterday I stumbled across a – shall we say – rather thorough shot-by-shot analysis of Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining, and I have to say that it nagged at me a bit. Yes, it reminded me that I would never cut it if I wanted to go and get a film critical studies degree, but on the other hand I kept noticing a blind spot.

If you thought the theories in Room 237 were wild, your mind will boggle at the sheer volume of references noted by this author. The Roadrunner, kitchen safety posters, Nietzsche, Playgirl magazine, Alex Colville, Shakespeare, French doors, the four seasons, Edomite kings, legs of lamb, blackboards, dart boards, lightbulbs, Clint Eastwood, The Flying Dutchman… and yet she misses one.

When talking to the pediatrician early in the movie, Wendy Torrance is wearing not one but two union suits. Two union suits. You know who else wore two union suits? Farmer Al Falfa in this cartoon, that’s who. And I hardly have to tell you what that signifies, right?

Yeah, actually I got nothing either.

Motel Heck

Earlier today a friend of Benny’s asked him for some ideas for a fun kids’ Halloween party. Now, you may recall that some time ago I consulted a card file of activities for just such an event. Unfortunately, back then I couldn’t find the master table of contents for the activity instructions and was left somewhat confused about what this one game Peanut Lag was supposed to be, so I wound up giving up on the whole party idea.

Well, at some point later today I finally found the table of contents for the card file, and there are a whole bunch of games here that sound pretty good that weren’t even listed on the plan for Halloween.

By the time I found the table of contents, however, Benny had already come up with his own ideas for activities/refreshments for a fun kids’ Halloween party. This is kind of a PG-rated blog so I might have to edit some of these descriptions from the original, but hopefully you’ll get the idea:

  • Tie a turkey neck to the oldest boy’s bathing suit area. Call him Carl and have him serve drinks to the ladies
  • Cover the hallway floor in ground beef. Cover that with clear plastic and dish soap. Slip-n-Slide!
  • DO NOT HAVE ANY CLOWNS. Enough people already think they need to pretend to be afraid of clowns. Hire a terrifying pony instead
  • Get a bounce house. Write “ORGY DOME” on the side in “fake blood”. (Fake blood is any real blood that isn’t “technically” human)
  • Fear Pong
  • Closet Goose
  • Difficult Cheese. Difficult Cheese is just new labels on cans of orange spray paint. They go next to the “crackers”
  • Lunch Creep
  • Pin The Tail On Heather’s Hot Mom
  • Chicken Bone Challenge
  • Barebottom Hayride
  • Facepainting

Benny’s friend wrote back “thanks” but we haven’t heard anything further. Maybe we need to have our own party.

O, U R an American

I either read or heard in passing recently something about American spellings of words being adopted after our independence as a way to further distinguish the US and its inhabitants’ writings from the British. Of course, now that I’m trying to find out more I’m only finding brief mentions of this theory.

This led me to think about British accents vs. American accents. I know that there are a number of regional dialects in various countries, but we can all probably categorize whether a native English speaker is from Great Britain or one of its current or former territories. For the most part, at least. And that started me wondering about when and how these various accents sprouted up. I could spend a lot of time researching this, I guess.

But it’s Saturday, and I’m feeling lazy, and all of this is really just a long way of saying I don’t think the accents in this cartoon are historically accurate.

Thanks to Animation Scoop for reminding me of this and other patriotic oddities.


Oh my lord. I don’t know what hole I’ve fallen into this morning. I was going to post a lighthearted thing in the vein of “what’s the Saturday between Good Friday and Easter Sunday called?” when I decided to just Google it. That led me to the whole thing about Jesus supposedly lying dead in the cave for three days before being resurrected, but for the life of me I can only count that period as only two days.

Then I read about what Jesus was doing in the cave. He didn’t stay there, but he went down into Hell and freed all the souls and then I guess he went back in the cave so he could go and surprise everybody back on Earth. So maybe this two day vs. three day thing is resolved by thinking that the cave is like the wardrobe from The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe where time doesn’t work normally when you’re in the place the cave/wardrobe takes you.

And then I starting thinking about how all of this would have been fun to ask in Sunday School if I had gone to Sunday School, which I didn’t. Then I figured this line of questioning might have gotten me kicked out of Sunday School. Then I remembered that I kind of went to a form of Sunday School for a while, but then quit because the guy in charge wanted us kids to memorize the Ten Commandments and I couldn’t get them right for the life of me, and my mom was inclined to yank me out of things that I wasn’t perfect at. At least that’s how I remember it.

Then I Googled the group that ran the sort-of Sunday School, and… uh. I remember it as being a sort of innocuous group that preached the common thread that tied all major religions together, and also a place that let me draw as many unicorns as I wanted on this homework scroll we had to work on, but apparently it was an elitist sect at best and at worst maybe a cult that never went full doomsday. So I guess it’s a good thing that I could never get those Ten Commandments under my belt.

Anyway, happy Harrowing Of Hell, everyone!

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