Not sure why this popped into my head today, but for some reason the old cartoons and after-school TV shows I used to watch when I was a kid came to mind today, and I realized that there’s a surprising amount of stuff I picked up from those characters and shows. I’m sure I’m not the only one, and I doubt that my generation’s cartoons have any monopoly on that sort of thing. Here’s just a sampler:
- Schoolhouse Rock tricked me into memorizing the preamble to the US Constitution without my even realizing it.
- Mister Peabody taught me that history isn’t necessarily what you read in the history books.
- Rocky & Bullwinkle taught me to appreciate the absurd. And that puns are the lowest form of humor, unless you think of them yourself.
- The Flintstones, Captain Caveman, Magilla Gorilla and Grape Ape sparked an interest in physical anthropology. Seriously.
- Snagglepuss taught me that nobody should treat the flamboyant, effeminate guy any differently than they treat anyone else. (Of course, I learned this more from the way other characters behaved around him, but you get the idea.)
- Scooby-Doo taught me that whenever something weird is going on, if you take the time to figure it out you’ll inevitably find some fraud at the bottom of the whole thing, trying to make a buck by deceiving people.
How did cartoons warp your mind?