Thursday, February 02, 2006

We'll go dancing in the dark, walking through the park and reminiscing

Today's bit of stupidity is the march of progress, or maybe it is the mourning of the march of progress. Every so often I think of what used to be and wonder why it isn't anymore. Never mind the people and situations that have been left behind, albeit those are the things which mean the most; here are some things that have gone away that I do not think should have but I suppose they all had a reason:

Places I miss:
The Crossroads 1955Valu-Mart - taken over by Fred Meyers or something
Pay-n-Save later Payless Drugs - lost all cred when purchased by Rite-Aid
Pay-n-Pak and Ernst - nice little home improvement chains
Prairie Market - quaint little supermarket chain
C&R Market - the neighborhood store I spent my youth in, they kept their adult magazines on the checkout endcaps for easy access
Ed's BBQ - the neighborhood burger-n-coffee joint I spent my youth in, with the U-shaped counter, bar stools, pinball machines, and the town regulars; it's back in business but under another name and without the late Ed Ramsey
The Crossroads Cafe - my grandparents' business, which burned down several years before I was born
VIPS - the diner chain with Vippy Bunny, faded into the sunset and the buildings mostly became Denny's locations.
Sambo's - the diner chain with the little Indian boy and the tiger, which changed its name to Seasons (because some stupid people had never read the children's books by Helen Bannerman) then also faded into the twilight.

Products I miss:
Mother's Little HelperMug-O-Lunch - instant cheesy noodles, just put in a cup and add hot water; 'twas awesome
Nervine - the original Mother's Little Helper; created 1890 by Miles Labs, demoted from sedative to sleep aid by the FDA in the 1960's, discontinued in 1999
Funny Face - Kool-Aid's cute competition, the source of kiddie nickname "Goofy Grape"
Puddinheads - some mighty awesome pudding cups with crusty chocolate shells on top
Crazy magazine - Marvel's competition to Mad and Cracked, starring Irving Nebbish and/or Obnoxio The Clown
Dixies - chicken drumstick-shaped snack crackers (or as we said in school, "they're shaped like little boners to give you a nice juicy taste of piss!")
Fruity Yummy Mummy and Fruit Brute - you forgot that Count Chocula, Frankenberry, and Boo-Berry had other coworkers? Fruit cereals, other than Fruity Pebbles and Froot Loops, don't really do so well... and if you never tasted Urkle-O's (yes, for real; very artificial strawberry & banana flavor) you didn't miss anything.

TV shows I miss:
The Ropers promoHello, Larry - MacLean Stevenson as the precursor to Frasier Crane
Too Close For Comfort - Ted Knight as a cartoonist with mismatched hottie daughters
Holmes & Yoyo - humorous cop show with a cyborg as the partner
The Ropers - what Stanley and Helen did after leaving Jack, Janet, and [ditzy third roomie of the season]
Wacko - pointless Saturday live-action skit show, featured Larry Storch and a wind-up kangaroo
Hot Hero Sandwich - Saturday live action show with hidden meanings (teaching early teens about life); featured a hairy man in a dress called The Puberty Fairy
The Ghostbusters (released on video as The Original Ghostbusters) - Two men and a gorilla take out ghosts; no relation to the movie or that "Real" cartoon, and more Larry Storch lovin'
Fridays - Saturday Night Live had some day-before competition at one time, but it (like The New Show) didn't survive; the only people you have heard of from that show wound up on Seinfeld: Michael Richards ('Kramer') and Larry David (series creator).
The Ernie Kovacs Show - don't drink and drive, that's what ended this genius' television odyssey (and his life); inventor of the music video

What's trapped in the backwaters of your mind?

I am shocked! We must be different generations or something. I don't remember anything on your list. They must all be after 1987.

Correction: I remember Fruit Loops (they're gone!?!?!) and Ernie Kovacs (which is from the 50's). Is that out on dvd yet?
Actually, we are nearly the same generation, you have a few years on me but you lived through everything I speak of. And actually, most of what I listed is pre-1986.

Froot Loops aren't gone, I used that as an example of successful fruit cereal... Toucan Sam will not be defeated so easily. Just the two fruity Monster cereals are gone. I've watched the Ernie Kovacs Collection on VHS, so I presume/hope that the individual episodes or collectives should be on DVD.
I'm not any surprised that a fellow Hungarian of mine invented music video!
FYI, the video was for a couple songs by Esquivel!. From the record company's biography: "Fans of pioneering TV visionary Ernie Kovacs will note that Jalousie and Sentimental Journey (both from the latter album and included on the Bar/None compilation) were used in a famous video sketch, in which Kovacs synchronized the music to remote-controlled office furniture and secretarial equipment." Before that, he was spinning kaleidascopes in front of zoom lenses as music played.
I remember Sambo's too.
I like Woolworth's store. I remember they always had a person following people around and acting like a fellow shopper. It was always an obvious plant to make sure teens weren't shoplifting.
I miss Farrell's Ice Cream parlor where I had a birthday party. They had great ice cream and I always ordered soda water to drink.
I miss taco flavored Doritos. I certainly don't need them, but I miss them anyway.
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