For most kids in the 1970s and 80s, childhood and Muppets walked hand in hand. My childhood was no different.
As a preschooler I was a regular viewer of Sesame Street. All the characters became fast friends that I adored. After I became streetwise and knew how to say the word water in Spanish, I graduated to The Muppet Show. Now this was my show! Every Friday or Saturday night at 6:30, I was parked in front of the Zenith in my favorite TV watching chair. The same orange plaid chair that Kermit is sitting on in the photo above. Most of the time I would have my Kermit Muppet and Cookie Monster Muppet in the chair with me. It was a Muppet party!
It seems that the Muppets were always there during my childhood. They popped up on awards shows, in commercials, magazine covers and in the toy aisles. Heck, one even showed up in that Star Wars sequel that I was so crazy about. My felt and furry friends were everywhere and I’m thankful for it.
In my stack of saved kid drawings, I found three drawings I made of my favorite Muppets.
Gonzo has always been my favorite Muppet. His odd looks and weirdness clicked with my own off the wall humor. I bet you didn’t know that Gonzo is my personal friend in Hollywood.
Yep, I have the written proof!
Gonzo and his pal Dave Goelz sent me this neato cool autograph several years ago. I wrote Dave and he was super nice to send out this signed card. It has a special place in my collection.
Back in ’05, I met two Muppet celebrities, Kermit the Frog and Oscar the Grouch!
They were hanging out at the Smithsonian. I guess I was too starstruck to ask for an autograph. Maybe next time.
I’ve been an admirer of many celebrities through the years and I’m always saddened when a great talent passes away. When Jim Henson passed in 1990, I felt like a close friend had died. I’d never felt that way for any celebrity before. I was in college when I heard the news and I felt that I lost a piece of my childhood that day. I’m happy to see the Jim Henson Company keep his legacy alive. Check out this fantastic video tribute that played during this year’s D23 Legends ceremony when Jim was honored in Disney’s version of a Hall of Fame.
The Muppets will always be a fond memory from childhood and I’m happy for all the joy they have given me. Thanks to Jim Henson and all of his crew for creating so many wonderful friends for so many.