The Manhattan Project--2016 A to Z Theme

Always a work in progress--welcome to my blog...

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

My Life As A Televison Show

            Today I'm taking a break from music and movies, but I'm not straying far.   Jennee Thompson at Cheap Therapy has offered up a little blog challenge that makes an interesting proposal:

           ".... Compare your life to one of your favorite TV shows growing up. Is it anything like your life then or now? Are you a main character? If the show was still on would you watch it."

            I like this challenge.  As I child I did tend to watch a goodly amount of television.  I grew up in the 1950s and 60s so my television choices may be dated, but I think most people will be familiar with them since they have been in such wide syndication.

            Overall my favorite TV show when I was young was The Twilight Zone.  There may have been some times of my life when it seemed like I was in The Twilight Zone, but overall I guess my life wasn't that weird.  The great writing of Twilight Zone episodes probably had as much influence on my own aspirations as a writer as anything else.  Since its original run, The Twilight Zone has reappeared in other incarnations, but I've never really gotten interested in those.  Nothing has taken the place of those old black and white original installments.

           Another favorite program that I did identify with in many ways was Leave It To Beaver.  Part of the great popularity of this show in its day was the way it effectively captured the lifestyle of many typical American families.  I easily identified with Beaver Cleaver since I was about his age.  I didn't have an older brother, but when my father came home from work each evening he was wearing a suit and tie and my mother was always at home with me and my siblings.  The events depicted in the show were not rip-roaring ridiculous, but very real in a humorous way.  The parents were kindly and wise, and the kids were mostly obedient and faced the music when they weren't.  In the end a lesson was always learned.

          Leave It To Beaver still shows up in syndication and whenever I happen across it I usually watch it.  The show still holds its charm for me.  In the 90s the show was revived with Jerry Mathers, the original Beaver Cleaver, as a grown man with kids of his own.  I anxiously tuned in when it first came on and I still enjoyed the updated version.  The show still had some of the original characters and Jerry Mathers was still the Beaver except older.  However, not being much of a TV watcher I didn't keep up religiously with the program, but I watched and enjoyed it when I did turn it on.

           The favorite show that I would most compare my life to is The Ed Sullivan Show.   This was a variety show that came on every Sunday evening.  All sorts of entertainers were showcased in this one hour throwback to vaudeville.  Ed Sullivan's show showcased singers, comedians, and variety acts.  Through the show American audiences were introduced to Elvis Presley, The Beatles, and many other huge stars of the rock and pop era.  You can still see reruns of Ed Sullivan episodes on television and I'll always stop to watch when I run across one.  I even have some of the Ed Sullivan DVDs that have been put out.

           In the movie musical Bye Bye Birdie the family's dream is to be on the Ed Sullivan Show, which becomes the denouement of the story.  The Ed Sullivan Show was a cultural touchstone for the era.  Since my family did a professional juggling act, an appearance on The Ed Sullivan Show was one of my father's biggest dreams. It never happened.  Back then my role on the show would have been an appearance as a performer.

            Throughout my life the Ed Sullivan Show influence has been felt as I pursued my own show business career in the late 70s and 80s.  Now I feel like Ed Sullivan on my blog.  Every week I feel like I'm trying to present a blog version of Ed Sullivan's variety show as I present topics of a wide range.  I'm not content to stick to one single subject.  It's not over til the fat lady sings, and even then it's not really over.  Next week I might have puppets, circus acts, an up and coming comedian, or a scene from the latest Broadway musical. 

          Ed Sullivan used to say, "Tonight we have a really big shoe."   When he said "show" it sounded like "shoe".    That's what I try to envision on my blog--"a really big shoe".  If I'm trying to follow in Ed Sullivan's footsteps then I've got some really big shoes to fill.

           I have one more scheduled mini blog fest which will be happening next Monday July 5th.  I don't think I'll get much participation on this one since it has to do with music influenced by Spanish and Latin American culture.  But don't just dismiss it thinking you don't know enough about it.   Don't forget about artists like Santana, Shakira, Richie Valens, and Julio Iglesias.  The Spanish / Latin influence in music goes way back and covers many fads and styles.  There is the dance music like tango, cha cha, salsa, and rumba.  Cuban and Brazilian (okay Portuguese is okay) music have been staples to many of our ears.  This might be more fun than you think so I hope you'll join us.   Linky list should be going up tomorrow.




24 comments:

  1. Most interesting aspect for a blog, something I have never thought of before. I didn't watch much TV as I was growing up but lately seem to watch more reality shows, Wish I had the audacity to be able to speak my mind like Simon Cowell. Imagine a female Simon......dosen't bear thinking about....lol

    Yvonne,

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  2. Lee I forgot to mention if you go to my blog there is an award awaiting you, Your challenges have given me soething to do over the past few weeks , also I have learned alot into the bargain.
    Yvonne,

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  3. Interesting show choice. My life wouldn't be Twilight Zone either. I was too normal.

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  4. My son loves the Twilight Zone. Has complete collection of episodes, books etc. He's 17. That was an awesome show. I watched it in syndication growing up. Made me smile today Lee.

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  5. You know I love the Twilight Zone now but as a kid it scared me. I would have to say Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom fits my personality better.

    http://fragilemouse.blogspot.com/

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  6. Now you got me thinking....I totally could have compared my life to SNL! You did a great job with this post. Thanks for joining in!

    And I can't wait for the Latin music day! I love latin music!

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  7. Yvonne -- Simon does have a direct way of expressing himself. Thank you for the award. I'll acknowledge it on my Saturday post.

    Alex -- I guess we would be concerned about anyone who had a "Twilight Zone" life.

    Buffy -- I've watched episodes over and over. Haven't bought the DVD set yet, but I wouldn't mind having it.

    Jules -- Yes! "Wild Kingdom"-- I used to watch that show every Sunday afternoon.

    Jennee-- Sometimes I can see my SNL life when things get really absurd. Hope you'll join me with your list for the Latin Music Favorites so I won't be the only one.

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  8. But they tend to cancel boring TV shows... LOL

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  9. Lee, just clicked over to your blog from Raquel's and I love your Ed Sullivan-type format. OMG, there's the Twilight Zone sound trailer, it just now popped up. Ooooo, I've got chills. Loved that show, too. I still have many of those episodes etched on my psyche.

    Not sure what show my homelife would've fit in to, definitely NOT Beaver. I'll have to think about that, thanks for the brain candy!

    ~Olivia
    P.S. I followed so I can keep up with your variety show. :D

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  10. I was born in the 70s and raised on the 80s, but I LOVED Leave it the Beaver, and the Twilight Zone. I never really had the pleasure of watching Ed Sullivan, though I've seen some of the more infamous clips here and there.

    And I might just participate in your blog fest next week. I have a perfect artist for your Latin theme!

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  11. Interesting idea...

    I think my life would probably be more like "Let's Make A Deal", only not quite as high brow as the show was....

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  12. I wish I could compare my life to STAR TREK :))

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  13. Lee-what a fun challenge! My favorite shows growing up were Gilligan's Island and the Brady Bunch, though growing up and only child in northern Idaho, neither represented my reality much. Probably, at least for a while there, we would have been closer to the Gilmore Girls... only not so hip.

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  14. I love this post; Mine is "Lost in Space"..not that I was, but my Dad did take us on many random journeys... I can remember guitar parties starting at 7pm and ending at 8am. Life was never dull and there we many different characters that frequented our world!

    Love this~

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  15. I watched all of those shows Arlee. Twilight Zone was one of my favorites, I still enjoy the reruns. Also the Andy Griffith show, Bewitched. They were all good. I don't think that my life was at all like any of them! Love Di ♥

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  16. I wish we had something like the Ed Sullivan show on nowadays. Something with good talent, a wide variety and a gentleness at heart.

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  17. i LOVE THIS IDEA FOR A BLOG.... FEST..YOUR LIFE LIKE A MOVIE.. NOT SURE WHAT i WOULD PICK.. BUT MY MOM ALWAYS MADE ME WATCH THE TWILIGHT MOVIE WITH HER AND SHE WOULD. HUMM THE WORDSS TO THE SONG .... i AM SORRY i HAVE NOT RETURNED YOUR EMAIL i AM TRYING TO STAY A FLOAT.. so MUCH GOING ON... AND i HAVE A NEW JOB.. SO I WILL FINISH OUR CONVERSATION AND i WILL BE READING IT....

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  18. Well, I have to say that is a very wonderful and interesting foundational purpose for a blog - to be the Ed Sullivan Show! I think that is fantastic! You have done a good job of putting on a variety show since I have been reading - keep up the good work.

    By the way, Rod Serling's brother, Robert was a very good author. His genre seemed to be the aviation field. Robert Serling has written some fantastic books that I love - The President's Plan is Missing, The Left Seat, one about the development of airline stewards and much more.

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  19. L Diane -- I hope my show doesn't get cancelled.

    Olivia -- Glad to have you in the audience.

    Karen-- Hope to see you Monday with 10 Hot Latin Favorites.

    Larry -- Low budget, crass Let's Make a Deal? I'll watch.

    Dez-- I'd love to get beamed where I want to go.

    WT -- Gilligan's Island was always a favorite of mine.

    Ellie -- Okay sounds like Lost In Space to me.

    Diana -- Oh yes, Andy Griffith. I guess I'd want to be Sheriff Taylor, but Barney might be fun too.

    Jemi -- TV is in dire need of another great variety show like Ed Sullivan.

    Lisa-- Thanks for letting me know and Congratulations on the job-- Hope you're lovin' it.

    Gregg-- Wasn't familiar with Robert Serling.

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  20. Such a fun post Lee! I loved all of these shows as well, though have only watched reruns of Ed Sullivan. I very much enjoyed his show. My husband and I still love to watch episodes of The Twilight Zone and the music still creeps me out. What a wild and inventive show.

    By the way, I think the analogy of your blog and the Ed Sullivan show is more than just that...you do show a wonderful variety and I love it!

    God's blessings to you!
    Trudy

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  21. I'm having trouble remembering what I watched growing up. I am getting old. Maybe "I Love Lucy." I have days like that.

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  22. Trudy--Thank you for the kind compliment.

    Patricia -- Maybe you were too busy reading, playing outside, and doing constructive things to watch TV when you were growing up. It would be sad if most of a person's childhood memories revolved around what they watched on TV.

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  23. This is a very fun idea! I'm glad you linked up. Thank you!

    I loved Leave It to Beaver, too. I miss that kid :)

    Bye Bye Birdie was a cute story. My daughter played a mom in that musical at our middle school last year. I can still here the "Ed Sullivan" song. Thanks for the reminder :)

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  24. Not sure which TV show my life would compare to. I grew up wishing we were the Waltons but we weren't. :)

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