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My first introduction to American culture…

November 11, 2009

didn’t begin with the gleam of golden arches, nor the jovial smile of a Kentuckian Colonel dressed in white. It began at an earlier age — four — with a yellow bird, a crazed cross-eyed monster and a green frog named Kermit; and a friendly song that chased the clouds away. I think you all know what I’m talking about.

Yesterday Sesame Street turned fourty. Who would have thought that a kids programme could do so much besides educating small minds on the basics. It taught me a lot about culture long before I knew what that word meant.

From inside my living room, playing on a fuzzy black and white TV (yep I’m that old),  I learnt that my world was different to others. That milk came in different containers to the glass pint bottles I used and that eggs were packed in cardboard cartons – ours came fresh in paper bags.  Through the sexy voice of the Count, I learnt to mimic accents and familiarise my ear to various falls and rises in pitch. Did he teach me to count? Of course, I love to count.

Most importantly, Sesame Street unconsciously taught me about multiculturalism and tolerance.  It has to be one of the few TV programmes without borders.

Perhaps one of the G8 leaders should bring Sesame Street to the UN next time they meet.

Caffeinated Traveller

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7 Comments
  1. November 11, 2009 7:28 pm

    Sesame Street turned fourty, and it must have accompanied you all the time during your childhood.

    It must then be a good memory to be shared with with kids when you are on your rocking chair.

  2. Bear permalink
    November 11, 2009 9:48 pm

    “I vant to bite somebody on zee neck!”

  3. November 12, 2009 2:37 am

    Sesame Street is a great show!

  4. November 12, 2009 1:49 pm

    Rainfield – I hope Sesame Street will still be going when I’m in a rocking chair, possibly in another fourty years time.

    Bear – not sure of the Count was a bloodsucker 😛

    Liz – Agree!!

  5. November 20, 2009 2:44 pm

    Kermit’s catchphrase still applies today – It’s not easy being green…;)

  6. November 21, 2009 1:08 pm

    Sesame Street holds a special place in my heart. Looking back now I realize how profound the show is and ambitious it’s messages are (considering the international versions) especially compared to similar programs for children.

    I must admit if I ever catch the show online or on a TV I find myself watching for a few minutes. I type this right after watching the video above…

  7. November 24, 2009 11:31 am

    Anil – I think Sesame Street has found memories for most of us – I’m sure – but some of us don’t want to admit it. I can always hang around and watch some of while it’s airing on TV or online. A little addicitive but good for the soul 🙂

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