Wednesday, August 30, 2006


Hey You Guuuuuuuuuyyyyyyyys!

Does that ring any bells?

We're gonna turn it on!
We're gonna bring in the power!
We're gonna light up the darkest night like the brightest day in a whole new way . . .

You know it's in the back of your mind somewhere . . .

We're gonna turn it on! (do do do!)
We're gonna bring in the power! (You can do it!)
We're gonna tell you the truest word that you ever heard anybody say . . .

Come on, think . . . Rita Moreno . . . Morgan Freeman . . . Irene Cara in the Short Circus . . .

Movin' out in a new way!
Movin' out in a new way!

If you recognize these words, and can hum along the tune, then you are a true child of the 70's. Not a teen of the 70's, a child, say, between the ages of 4-8. Someone who was born between, oh, 1966 and 1976.

We're gonna turn it on!
We're gonna bring in the power!
It's comin' down the line, strong as it can be, through the courtesy . . . .

sing it with me now!

Of The Electric Company!
Of The Electric Company!
Of The Electric Company!

Ah, The Electric Company. Sometime after one outgrew Mister Rogers and Sesame Street, there was The Electric Company to help one learn to read. Who can forget Jennifer of the Jungle? The Adventures of Letterman? Those silhouetted figures saying ch . . . alk . . . chalk while softshoe music played?

Watching the Electric Company segments which have been posted to YouTube, I can even now sing along with many of the sketches, and I really believe that one of the reasons I immerse myself in the English language is that Electric Company was so much fun to watch. The pung-pung-pung-punctuation song has been running through my head on and off for, well, 30 years, which may explain why I'm one of the few people left who understands when to use a colon, and when to use a semi-colon.

This week, I appreciate the producers, writers and actors (and all the crew members) of The Electric Company, who educated a generation and helped us learn to read. And I really appreciate the people who took the time to upload these segments onto the internet. It's not just a time-waster . . . it's a treasured trip down memory lane. To whoever did this: Thank You!

And now, my favorite Electric Company segments from YouTube. Sit back, relax, and enjoy the ride.

Show intro most seasons

Billy Lick a Lolly (has been in my head for 30 years)

Punctuation (in my head for 30 years)

Monolith (freaked me out as a kid)

There's a Hole in the Bottom of the Sea (in my sister's head for 30 years, and now for the next 30 it will be in mine)

T-I-O-N (in my head for 30 years)

Softshoe (starts at about :37)

Freeze (oh, God! I remember this! Hey! It's Veruca Salt!)

Hot Shot (Oh! I remember this! God, that wallpaper is . . . interesting . . .)

It's a word . . . it's a plan . . . it's Letterman!

No comments:

Post a Comment