PBS Kids, the last refuge for sheltered children. If your parents were anything like mine, they may have been convinced that cable television would minimize your ability to focus on a task, increase your chances of violence, introduce impossible beauty standards, all while making you eat unhealthy foods, through the power of commercials.
Fortunately, PBS Kids offered the perfect solution, educational programming that was still entertaining, and free of the violence and commercials that ran in abundance on Nickelodeon, Disney and Cartoon Network. Looking back on it, PBS taught us a lot of a valuable lessons. Over the years it became a universal part of our childhoods. Here's a list of some of the many essential memories we gained from PBS.
1. You know the best way to have fun.
2. You always knew the zip code in Boston, Mass.
3. The "Liberty's Kids" theme song will forever hold a special place in your heart.
Sing to me, Aaron Carter.
(Revolutionary rapping before Hamilton.)
4. You will always know how to say "thank you" in Mandarin.
Xie xie, Sagwa. Xie xie.
5. You still picture a Jack Russel Terrier when you read classic literature.
O Wishbone, Wishbone! Wherefore art thou Wishbone?
6. You were always a little jealous of the "Cyberchase" kids and their technology.
The things I would have done for a Skwak Pad.
7. At the same time, the show gave you a bit of an irrational fear of computer viruses.
8. You will forever remember that Juicy Juice is 100 percent juice for 100 percent kids.
9. You know sweaters will always be in fashion.
Between Mr. Roger's cardigans, Bert's turtlenecks and Arthur's pullover, the men of PBS could certainly rock a sweater.
10. You always wondered how the Howards were able to feed Clifford.
Did they have to order specialty food for him? How did they afford to have that much food shipped to Birdwell Island? That can't have been cheap. How is Emily Elizabeth lifting a bone that big?
Come to think of it, "Clifford" raised a lot of questions. If it was Emily Elizabeth's love that made Clifford grow so big, why aren't there more giant dogs? Does it mean that Cleo, T-Bone and Mack weren't loved?
11. You would have done anything for your school to be featured on "A Word From Us Kids."
12. You always wanted to know what happened to Cliff Hanger.
[Shrug.] I guess that's why he's called Cliff Hanger.
13. Your real-life teachers were a little bit of a letdown compared to the ones on TV.
No one could ever compete against Ms. Frizzle, Bill Nye or LeVar Burton, but you were always a little glad not to have Mr. Ratburn.
14. You had a favorite "Zoom" cast member.
15. You always wanted to go to the Sugar Bowl.
Or just eat any of the desserts in that show. Between the Brain's ice cream, the chocolate cake that was always in Arthur's fridge and the shakes at the Sugar Bowl, everything looked so good!
16. You still know the song to get to Dragonland.
17. You were devastated when Spanky died.
He may have only been in one episode, but his death was heartbreaking, regardless.
18. You wished Bianca was your babysitter.
19. You felt a little betrayed whenever they changed voice actors.
Most of the shows ran for a while, obviously they would have to change voice actors eventually. Even so, adjusting to a new Arthur, Clifford or puppeteer on Sesame Street was always a bit of a shock.
20. The opening to "Reading Rainbow" made you feel unstoppable.
I will always take your word for it, LeVar. Always.