February 21, 2007

Two Quick Questions: "Computer Ate My Email" and Mr. Rogers

Question the first: If someone emails you saying, "I wrote you this whole super-long email but then my computer ate it, oh I am so mad!," do you tend to believe that this is true, or do you tend to believe they want credit for doing something they didn't in fact do, plus an excuse for now being too discouraged to write a good email?

Question the second: I find Mr. Rogers very appealing, and I have affectionate childhood memory feelings for him and for his whole show. I was talking to another girl about it, and she said, "Eeee, he's kind of creepy." She's about 10 years younger than me, in her early-to-mid 20s. My theory is this: people who were watching PBS as children in the '70s feel affection for Mr. Rogers; people who weren't even born until the '80s think he's creepy. The question is not so much a question as a survey: If you are in one of those two groups, say which one and say whether you like Mr. Rogers or think he's creepy.

30 comments:

Anonymous said...

1) I'd believe it once from a given person. If it happened more than that then even if it is true they are still morally at fault for not getting more reliable software. Like, would you accept a "I was *just about* to write a long letter but all my pens are out of ink!" excuse more than once from someone? Just buy some pens! (It's even worse if you realize that if they lost two emails just to you alone, they must be losing dozens, if not hundreds, to all the people they ever email.)

2) This other girl is crazy--nobody finds Mr Rogers creepy. Also, I am in the same age group as all right-thinking, rational people: Just about to turn 34.

Mimi said...

I was born in 1981 and I don't find Mr Rogers creepy at all. He's just a nice guy.

jen said...

1. I may or may not believe.. but you know what? I hate when someone tells me that, because then I feel like I'm missing out on something! I want to yell at them to go sit down and type it all back up again.

2. It's trendy with the younger crowd to say that perfectly innocent things are "creepy." It's kind of annoying, my 20 something sister does it all the time. Not all people, obviously, but some of them. Mr. Rogers is creepy, Elmo is creepy, Blue's Clues is boring, Joe is a pedophile, Teletubbies are freaky, boobahs are an acid trip.. har har har you so funny! Why you watching so many little kids' shows anyhow? :)

But, I was born in 1973 and I enjoyed his show when I was a kid. I do not think he is 'creepy' but I think he's kinda cheesy. But in the good way. :)

Penny said...

I'm 32 and while I don't think Mr Rogers is creepy, I don't like him because I remember him being painstakingly slow. Even as a child I was impatient and wanted all the information NOW.

About the email, I think it depends on the friend. Most friends I tend to believe as far as the computer ate my email excuse goes.

Sarah said...

Oh, shoot! I was just about to send an email to theflyingmum because my husband and sister never received emails I sent them yesterday, and I wanted to see if she got hers. Now she'll think I made it up!

As for Mr. Rogers, I watched him in the late 70s and early 80s, and I love him. When I was in college, I interned at Family Communications (his production company) during one summer and a winter break. I worked for his director of communications, David Newell, better known as Mr. McFeely. Anyway, they are all just the loveliest people, and I find myself periodically defending them. Luckily, my daughter loves "Pappy" too, so I've been able to enjoy his show with her. She's not at all impressed when I point out the episode with my name in the credits, though.

Swistle said...

Jen-- Blue's Clues...boring? I don't know what she could be talking about. That show is so mesmerizing. Or perhaps I could stand to get a little more sleep.

Sarah-- That. Is. So. Cool.

Trina said...

I have very fond memories of Mr. Rodgers and I have never met anyone ever who has said that he was creepy. I am a little bummed that they don't have his program on anymore so my daughter won't be able to watch it while she is growing up.

Sarah said...

Thanks! I plan to leave that line on my resume till I die. So what if I was only 20 years old at the time? Anytime you want Mr. Rogers trivia, I'm here for you.

Annie said...

70's, Love, love, love Mr. Rogers.
Little Bear on the other hand....

4andcounting said...

2) I have no problem with Mr. Rogers. His puppets creeped me out though. Especially the king (I think). 1979, by the way.

Mommy Daisy said...

1) Hmm, let it go this once maybe. Guess it depends on the person. Plus, if they wanted you to get the e-mail so badly, why don't they try again? I've had that happen, but I always redo the e-mail. Seems funny.

2) I'm a 20-something (born in the 80's) and I loved Mr. Rogers. And if I'm not mistaken his show IS still on. I saw it just the other day when flipping through channels.

Side note to Sarah: how luck are you! I always thought as a kid that visiting "The Neighborhood" would be the neatest thing ever!

MonkeyBusiness said...

I was born at the end of 79 and find Mr. Rogers to not be creepy at all. He was great.

Guwi said...

I am 36, and I love Mr. Rogers. I used to love him so much when i was a wee tot that I wanted to marry him. Also, Walter Cronkite. (I'm sure you could read a lot into this, a la obsessing with father figures, I say, go for it).

Now that I'm a mother, I think we need more people like Mr. Rogers in our kids' lives, gentle, patient, endlessly kind. Tells the truth but not in a harsh way. If I could emulate anyone as a parent, I think it would be him.

Which is why, upon entering my house, I immediately change into keds and a cardigan. I'm channeling Fred.

Swistle said...

4andcounting-- I thought the puppets were a little weird, too. The animal ones were so mangy. I was most creeped by Lady Elaine Fairchilde, who had a really long nose with a dark red tip, and matching dark red cheeks. Why so dark red? But I still liked the Neighborhood of Make Believe.

Trina-- Here it's still on, just once a day but it's on.

desperate housewife said...

Okay, I am a twenty-something, 22 in fact, and I had an ongoing love affair with Mr. Roger's patient, mesmerizing voice that lasted until I was, I think, nine years old. So much of a love affair that for Addy's first birthday, my mom ordered some episodes of Mr. Roger's off the Internet for her. I think I enjoy them more than she does though. :(
As far as the puppets being creepy, I have to agree with that. (Sorry, but creepy is the only word that does them justice.) I endured the Neighborhood of Make Believe junk in order to enjoy the soothing visits to the pretzel factory and the crayon plant, all with sweet Mr. Rogers as my guide.

Shelly said...

I'm 35 and have very fond memories of Mr. Rogers. Not creepy at all. Now, Mr. McFeeley (Speedy Delivery, Speedy Delivery) is another story...

el-e-e said...

(To #1 I'd say, believe them.)

#2: watched in the '70s-80s (born '74) and have warm affection for him. Good guy. Grandpa. Pastor. Gentle. What's not to like? :)

Anonymous said...

1) Forgiveable once - but why come up with the lame side story, just write it up again.

2) Born in 1974 (32) and I would say Mr Rogers is "charmingly bizarre" in a fascinating way. He can almost put you into a trance - "Can you say trance, boys and girls?"

Kelsey said...

My sister and I (born mid-to-late 70s) both loved Mr. Rogers. He is on very early in the morning here, and we rarely wake in time to see him. But I am amazed at how much Harper enjoys the show. I would think it's a little slow for a two-year-old, but she is mesmerized. So there must be something good there, you know? I have very distinct memories of three things: the time he built a fountain, the time he made orange juice, and the "operas." Anyone else? (Is it fair to ask questions in other people's comments?)

Bunny said...

1. I usually believe people, I never thought to question the "computer ate my homework" explanation.
2. Love Mr. Roger's, loved his neighborhood, loved the land of make-believe.

orangepeacock said...

I was born in 1986 and have an abiding love of Mr. Rogers AND old-school (like originally aired before my birth) Sesame Street. I feel like both of those shows were a lot more substantive *and* genuinely nicer than the stuff on today. It wasn't about marketing, it was about presenting necessary things (like death and anger) in a safe, healthy way, with fun things like learning how crayons are made or all about numbers. I've watched modern kids' shows with younger relatives, and been disappointed. Part of that might be that Sesame Street and Mr. Rogers were originally produced for public television, whereas Blue's Clues and such are produced with a commercial bent, on cable TV with mass product sales schemes behind them. Not saying that Dora is going to hurt anybody's development, just that I'd prefer that tearjerker Sesame Street episode with Big Bird learning what death was because of Mr. Hooper any day of the week.

Erm. Is that weird?

Anonymous said...

I find Mr. Rogers comforting...as in a well worn pair of shoes.....cozy almost. I am 37 and wonder what is creepy about Mr. Rogers. Have you seen the Booh Bahs? Those things are creepy...Teletubbies I can tolerate, but now those things are creepy.

Erica said...

I was born in 76 and I liked Mr Rogers. Lady Elaine scared the buhjezus outta me. I like the cat puppet, tho. I think his name was Daniel.

theflyingmum said...

I will give people the benefit of the doubt and assume that they always tell me the truth. As for Mr. Rogers, I watched the show when I was probably "too old" to be watching him (born in the early 60's), but he was just so *relaxing* to watch, almost hypnotic. And that little lion, or cat or whatever 'Daniel' (OK, my 5 year old just told me "he's a cat" - he IS the resident authority) would just bliss me out. I must've needed to de-stress after school. And I didn't watch him every day, just when the mood hit me. I still enjoy watching him with my son.
Note to Sarah, I did get your email, and will get the pie recipe to you asap.
(PS - sorry , I deleted due to bad punctuation)

gabby said...

1) It totally depends on the person. I usually say - I had a long email, I'll try to remember everything and go from there, or just rewrite what I can remember.

2) Born in 1974; just turned 33. I'm 33 and Mr. Rogers TOTALLY creeps me out. My hubby finds it amusing.

gabby said...

Sorry. Saying I'm 33 twice clearly makes it look like I'm trying to come to terms. Really it's just not editing!

(and I'm certainly in the minority and will be shrinking back to my corner, now. should have read the comments first and then lied to fit in!)

alienbea said...

1. I would believe them. It's happened to me, and occasionally I don't even bother with the re-write because the passion is gone, just gone, went POOF with the crashing computer, and blah blah blah.

corollary to 1: yes, I write emails in a passion, at least the long wordy ones. Is that too weird? Should I have kept it to myself?

2. 1976 here. I love Mr. Rogers and always have, especially when he'd do Picture-Picture and we'd see how tennis shoes were made. Slow-paced and gentle. As a mom, I now also appreciate the way he teaches children. My son, who is five, used to hate Mr. Rogers but has turned into a huge Mr. Rogers fan. His favorite part is also Picture-Picture. :)

Tessie said...

I watched in the late 70s-early 80s and I ADORE Mr. Rogers. He is like the calm, rational, patient parent none of us actually had!

Also, WORD on Lady Elaine Fairchild (creepy shiver)...

ccr in MA said...

Okay, late to the party but I'm catching up on your archives, and I must weigh in on Mr. Rogers. I don't find him creepy, but as a kid I thought he was boring!

When my brother and I (born in 64 and 68) were little and only allowed to watch PBS, we'd watch Sesame Street, turn the TV off for half an hour, then turn it back on for Electric Company. We just didn't like Mr. Rogers.

I did gain more respect for him during the years I babysat, if that helps.

Becky said...

I'm REALLY late to this party, but I've been wanting to comment for a while on different archives (my husband and I just decided to start trying to have a baby so I'm looking for lots of advice. Also I love your blog so figured I should get all caught up). ANYWAY...God, where was I?
1)I would believe them, but if it happened more than once I would ask why they haven't switched to gmail, which saves your drafts periodically automatically. Duh. ;-)

2)I grew up within a couple miles of the Canadian border, so we watched a lot of Canadian TV. Which is why I am NOT a fan of Mr Rogers, but I LOVE Mr Dressup. He had a tickle trunk full of dress up clothes! It was AWESOME. Also, everyone I talk to thinks I'm insane for not liking Mr Rogers, but I tell them all - at least I had a choice! Oh, and I was born in 80.

PS - sorry for the book of a comment! I never have known when to just SHUT UP.