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Saturday, May 28, 2011

Saturday Morning Cartoons: Elmer Fudd from Looney Tunes

Today's blog feature has to do with some of our favourite Saturday morning cartoons.  It will be a feature on this and every Saturday.  Because, let's face it.  Sometimes, some of the best lessons one can learn about ourselves can be learned from cartoon characters.

Today's featured character happens to be that wonderfully incompetent hunter, Elmer Fudd.

I have to say, picking Elmer as the topic of discussion for this blog was an inspired choice.  A couple of days ago when I posted the entry about Ralph Wiggum, there was a bit of discussion on my Facebook page about it, and a couple of my friends in particular were making all sorts of funny comments regarding Elmer Fudd.  I joked that I would make Elmer a featured character in my blog as a result of the comments, and I am now doing exactly that.  So, thank you Cathy and Brian for the inspiration for today's blog.

I was first introduced to Elmer Fudd probably the same way that a lot of kids in my generation were.  The Bugs Bunny and Tweety show.  Back in the good old days of the late 1980's when Saturday morning cartoons would air on some channels until six in the evening, we would have two different opportunities to watch this show.  I think ABC aired it at 11:00am, and then Global-TV here in Canada would air it at 5:00pm.  Ah...memories.

This entry's going to be a little bit shorter than what I would normally write (mainly because my entry for tomorrow is a little bit more detailed), but I will say that Elmer and I shared one common trait...especially when I was a child.

First, let's get the obvious out of the way.  No, I did not shoot bunnies in my spare time (though come to think of it, neither did Elmer Fudd, since Bugs Bunny always found a way to elude him and his traps over the years).  I've never been a type of person who wants to go hunting.  I won't go into my personal feelings on hunting...just that it's never really been my thing. 

For that matter, Elmer Fudd is portrayed as kind of a bumbling idiot at times.  I hope that I never come across that way to anyone I know, although I am certain that maybe a couple have thought that way about me.  You definitely have to give him credit for his persistence though.

Despite getting blown up, run over, pushed off cliffs, crashing cars, getting torched, having his belongings destroyed, he never gives up in his quest to kill the wabbit,  kill the wabbit,  kill the wabbit...

Most men would have given up the fight after the first ten minutes when dealing with Bugs Bunny.  Not Elmer.

I guess in some ways, I'm kind of like Elmer in that we can be quite stubborn about things when we want to be.  But, not even I'm as persistent as Elmer...not to the point where I risk losing my home, my clothes, and my sanity to get goals accomplished.

No, here's the way I'm most like Elmer...or at least used to be like Elmer.

Yep...Mr. Geico guy said it best.  Elmer and I shared a speech impediment.

From about the age of four to age six, I could not make the "R" sound.  It always came out as the "W" sound.

So, basicawwy, when I was wittle, I would always sound like Elmer Fudd.  It proved to be vewy, vewy annoying to evewyone who I met.  My pawents, my teachers, my classmates.  Evewyone.

It was something that I really didn't like either.  But, try as I might, I could not really master the sound.

Of course, my speech impediment only lasted a couple of years.  By second grade, it had pretty much evaporated like water on a hot August morning.  Poor Elmer...he's had it for thirty, forty years now?  Just how old is Mr. Fudd anyway?

The point is...did the speech impediment really stop me from contributing in school?  Not really.  I couldn't say "R" sounds, but I could write the letter R in my schoolwork.  It also didn't really stop people from talking to me.  Most people I knew could accept the fact that my speech was kind of odd.  Of course, I was a little kid back then who didn't say his first word until he was three years old.  I was a late talker.  I think that could explain why my speech wasn't quite as advanced as some of the kids in my class who said their first word at one or two.  However, just because it took me a while to master talking, it didn't mean I was incapable of other things.  I could read extremely well for a first grader, and I had so many kids crowding around my desk asking me to help them spell words for their first grade journals that my teacher had to move me to a segregated corner of the room because I was a "distraction".

Yeah, you'll have to remind me to go into more detail about her in a future posting.

And, I think that's how I'm also similar to Elmer Fudd.  Elmer didn't let his speech impedement get the best of him either.  He continued on with his day-to-day life, and seemed mostly happy about everything too (well, provided that Bugs Bunny was out of the picture).  If anything unfortunate did happen to Elmer, it wasn't because of the way he talked.  His ideas were just horrible.  No speech therapy could have changed that.

But, hey...Elmer Fudd has his own Chia Pet, so what can I say?

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