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Happy St. Patrick’s day.
Seriously, don’t watch this. Scott McLemee sent it along so of course I watched it and now it’s going to give me bad dreams.
Even the Muppets root for the Steelers!
Brad DeLong pwns us with the ultimate Muppet show clip.
Look at this screen-shot of the OED today and tell me if you see him:
No? Let me blow him up for you:
Balmy California, with year-round outdoor swimming. (AKA, “this morning at 6:55 AM or so, air temperature around freezing….”)
Sometimes working papers are better, Ezra, because they have the raw data that journal publishers deem too bulky to publish, but which is of the highest value.
Last night was the brand-new Muppet Christmas special. I haven’t watched it yet, but if you want to, it’s on Hulu.
… good luck to all of you on the various academic job markets this year. This sums it up nicely, except on the academic markets, there are fewer coins.
It is not generally true that one is required to dance at the interviews, however, if that comes up, stay in unison.
Also, for those of you following the parliamentary dust-up in the True North Strong and Free, a helpful guide to Canadian politics.
Because we haven’t had any Muppets in a while, is why.
Title and video via McLemee:
This Times story on the Muppets, by Brooks Barnes, is depressing enough that I’m considering re-subscribing to the paper just so that I can cancel again.
First, there’s news that elicits mixed emotions — at best. Disney, which gobbled up the Muppets four years ago, is hoping to reinvigorate the franchise. But it’s Disney. And I’ve just used the word “franchise” in conjunction with the Muppets. Like I said, mixed emotions. Second, Barnes reports that, “recent focus groups indicated that some children could not even identify Kermit and Miss Piggy, much less ancillary characters like Fozzie Bear and Gonzo the Great.” “Some” is doing a lot of work there, isn’t it? What percentage of children in focus groups couldn’t identify Kermit and Miss Piggy? 10%? 20%? 30%? Or an End-is-Nigh 40% or more? I need hard data so I can decide whether it’s time to begin digging my End Times shelter. Also, Fozzie Bear is not an “ancillary character”. Seriously, how dare Barnes? Imagine what this will do to Fozzie’s already fragile ego. Third, of the Muppets hold on the culture, Barnes writes: “…those glory days are long gone.” Um, somebody doesn’t read the Edge of the American West very often.
All of that said, there is some good news about Disney’s stewardship:
At the same time maintaining the core DNA of the characters is crucial, so as not to alienate an older generation with warm memories from their own childhoods. Miss Piggy, as a result, does not suddenly become a vegan; she communicates about exercise by talking about how she hates to exercise. Kermit does not pontificate on going green; he listens to others talk about it in his humble, unassuming way.
Wait, did Barnes just say that I’m part of an “older generation”? Well, at least Disney’s allowing Miss Piggy to be Miss Piggy. In the end, though, there’s not much here to cheer about. Disney, we learn, is creating a “Muppets’ war room”, and that’s just wrong. Oh, and it turns out that I got played. Those new Muppets videos I blogged about a while back? Part of a “viral” marketing campaign. Sigh.
Rest assured, Sarah Palin won’t entirely crowd out the Muppets*. At least not on my watch, she won’t. Because in the end, a blog has to stand for something.
* Though she’d like to. Because Sarah Palin hates Muppets. Pass it on.