Happy 40th Birthday, Big Bird and friends!


Today was the beginning of the 40th season of Sesame Street.

My daughter and I were watching Sesame Street together today.  This show, after 40 years, remains far and away my favorite kids show.  I loved it when I was a kid, and I actually enjoy watching it with my daughter now.

My strongest memory from the Street as a kid was when the grownups finally saw Snuffy.  I felt so bad for Big Bird for years as no one took him seriously.  He knew that snuffleupagus was real.  I knew he was real, and I felt Big Bird’s pain when no one believed him.  Today my daughter and I watched as Big Bird decided he was going to migrate to the rain forest.  As he was walking down the street, he started saying goodbye to everyone.  All of his friends were shocked that he was leaving, but he decided that the rain forest would be the perfect place for him to live.  As the “goodbyes” continued, I felt myself getting a little sad. Saying goodbye to Big Bird is like saying goodbye to a longtime friend.  Wondering if this was effecting Ellie like it was effecting me, I called her name.  She turned around, and the tears were streaked down her face.  I called her to me, and she crawled up on my lap.   “Are you sad?” I asked her. “No,” she said through her tears. “It will be okay,” she said and forced out a chuckle that sounded a lot like a sob.In the end Big Bird decided to stay.  He decided that the rain forest would be a neat place to visit, but he hadn’t realized that moving there would mean he couldn’t have playdates with Elmo, or have Cream of Birdseed soup at Hoopers whenever he wanted.  When he announced that he would stay, Ellie burried her head in my chest and gave me a huge hug.  Her hug left a wet spot on my shirt. I doubt that episode will be Ellie’s lasting memory of Sesame Street, but so many have one (the death of Mr. Hooper, the marriage of Luis and Maria are a couple – I’d love to hear yours). For forty years Sesame Street has educated kids about numbers, letters, friendship, vocabulary, shapes, and many other things while never talking down to them.  It has been entertaining and, with the possible exception of Elmo’s World, never annoying.  It is a show I loved when I was little, and a show I continue to love as an adult. Happy Birthday Sesame Street.  Share with me your memories – favorite characters – favorite sketches – favorite songs.

Here is a video of Snuffy being discovered by the adults:

And here is why this show is still great:


Filed under Media

8 responses to “Happy 40th Birthday, Big Bird and friends!

  1. My top three memories from the street.

    1) Mr. Hooper dies
    2) 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-11-12..do, do , do , do …do..something

    I should go and post one of those videos. stay blessed…john

  2. Kim

    Great post Robb! Quinn and I were watching today as well, and while I know he is still to young to understand, I found myself feeling a little sad when Big Bird decided to migrate. It is such a fun and funny show, and it makes learning enjoyable, which can’t be said about a lot of things these days.

    I will also say I was very glad to see the new season start, as my Elmo-obsessed son watches almost daily and I think I’ve seen some of those episodes way too many times!

    My memories of Sesame Street:
    1. Mr. Hooper dies – my mom had to explain death to me that day
    2. Me and My Llama
    3. Ladybug Picnic

  3. Sarah

    Top 3 from the Street

    1. Grover being a waiter -http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aZE3ZCKn8yk&feature=PlayList&p=8E0C090B5EED2E25&playnext=1&playnext_from=PL&index=21

    2. Near and Far – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-FZN-vpWKOc

    3. Kermit THE Frog reporting Live from a fairy tale or other noteworthy news. – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LlUY-yFdC2E

    Gotta love the street!!!

  4. Mom

    My top three memories of Sesame Street, as on DWTS – “in no particular order” :

    1. Watching my daughter Michelle curled up in the big green chair in our family room…learning so much and having so much fun.

    2. Watching my son Ryan curled up in the big green chair in our family room…learning so much and having so much fun.

    3. Watching my son Robb curled up in the big green chair in our family room…learning so much and having so much fun.

    Happy Birthday Sesame Street and many, many more.


  5. Nina

    Sesame street always has a special place in my heart. When we moved to the states from Sweden, I was too young to go to school and stayed home with my mom. My mom didn’t know English, so I watched a lot of Sesame street. My mom always jokes around that I learned English by watching sesame street. I have so many memories as a child watching the show everyday and soaking in all that it had to offer. Who knows, it may have contributed in some small way to my love of language and my passion of teaching it to others….Sesame Street rules!

  6. Lisa

    My favorite memories of sesame street are:

    1. Of course The Count..1…2….3…….4…..aaaa…aaaaa..aaaaaaaa…..5

    2. The Grouch’s friend Slimey… I remember wanting a slimey of my very own.

    3. And of course Snuffy….

    Also, don’t know if Sarah has same food memory, but I can remember snuggling up with Mom on the couch eathing Balogna & Butter sandwiches & watching sesame street. (now the thought of the sandwich grosses me out), but still a fond memory.

  7. Meaghan

    Oh, I’m sad we missed that 40th birthday episode! How sweet that you and Ellie got all emotional over Big Bird.

    Here are my favorite memories of “The Street” as you guys are calling it:

    1. The water song (water to wash the dishes…water to wash your hands…).
    2. 1 2 3 4 5.. 6 7 8 9 10..11 twel-el-el-el-el-el-el-elve! song
    4. It is I, SUPer Grover!
    5. Al-a-peanut-butter-sandwiches! magician (don’t remember his name)
    6. The Twiddle Bugs were my favorite. When they came on I got all excited.
    7. Me and my llama…goin’ to the dentist! song/sketch

    Gosh, I could go on and on!

  8. @Meaghan – Mumfred was the magician’s name. We don’t see him very much anymore.

    Grover was my favorite monster: Super Grover, Near and Far, Waiter…

    I also loved the 12 song and the full version of the pinball cartoon.

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