It’s been many years since I’ve spent Saturday morning watching cartoons. I’m not sure what I’d encounter today, but I do know that I’ve actually morphed into the Looney Tunes character – Granny.
Oh for those carefree Saturdays. In fact, I recall watching cartoons on the Saturday of my wedding day. I guess the thought of marriage and responsibility caused me to tune in that morning. It was my last chance before forever tuning out.
After a morning of cartoons, the neighborhood kids would head over to the local movie theater and spend a quarter on a full day of movies – watching the same one over and over. They were great movies too. Musical films that made no sense, but they had great costumes. I never could figure out why folks would just automatically burst into song for no apparent reason, but I kind of liked it. Nothing like that ever happened in my real world.
There were the westerns with politically incorrect cowboys and Indians shooting each other – gangster films with their “crime doesn’t pay” message – love stories which never ended up in the bedroom, but left a lot to the imagination. Then there were the newsreels. These films were often of far off places we’d never heard of, with lots of propeller type airplanes dropping bombs, or poverty stricken people scrapping around for food. We couldn’t possibly relate as we sat there devouring our second box of popcorn in the front row of a movie theater.
I remember loving cartoons. I learned a lot about good and evil from Sylvester, the cat. He even had a conscience – something you don’t hear much about these days. The one on his left shoulder was dressed in a devil suit, complete with horns, tail and pitchfork. The one on the right was a preachy, angelic type with a high pitched voice that tried to convince poor Sylvester not to eat poor Tweety bird. That guy was a little weird to me, but the alternative wasn’t too great either.
There’s a lot to be said for the good old days. Today it costs almost ten bucks to see a movie and by the time you’ve purchased snacks, you’ve spent half of your weekly food budget. Our parents could give us a quarter and have us entertained for the day, while they did their own thing. OK, maybe it was a ploy to get rid of us kids for the day, but we did learn a lot from our experience watching funny stuff.