This morning, I’ve learned that Stephen Hillenberg, the creator of SpongeBob Squarepants, has been diagnosed with ALS or Lou Gehrig’s disease.
This is incredibly sad because “ALS, or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, is a rare terminal illness that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord.”
But also, Stephen Hillenberg was a facilitator of silliness. I don’t know him personally, but I’ve lived with his works for much of my adolescence and to know that he might not be able to continue writing and animating is very sad. As I wrote in my previous post on Richard Simmons, which you all should read if you have not already, I am a big fan of The Silly.
Knowing that I am deathly afraid of fish, you would be surprised and frankly at wit’s end to discover that I would fall in love with a show that takes place under the sea, which, if you didn’t know, is where fish reside. I always responded in defense that none of the main characters of the show are fish. That is odd, isn’t it? Ask yourself this question. I think deep down inside even the show’s creator had issues with fish, even though he was a marine biologist. (BTW:I don’t consider Patrick Star, who is a starfish, a real fish, because starfish are more like stars than fish.)
I loved SpongeBob so much, the show was the theme of my Sweet 16 birthday party… that was only attended by my immediate family because I had no friends. But I didn’t care, because my sister and mother decorated the entire dining room with Spongebob decor. I even saved the decorations and unused plates and cups for years in my closet. I got a huge SpongeBob stuffed toy, a Patrick pillow, and an inflatable Sandy (Butt)Cheeks that my then 4-year-old nephew (he’s now 18) was so jealous of he made us take a photo of him with her, hoping that February 4th would all of a sudden turn into his birthday. Doesn’t work like that, Medster!
I’ve stopped watching SpongeBob, as I did think after it became popular the quality of the writing went downhill. I think this was intentional though. The show in its first few seasons was definitely written for older fans. But somewhere along the line, kids realized it was a cartoon their older brother or sister was watching and wanted in. So I think the writers began catering to a new and more devoted legion of fans. I probably was one of the few 17 year olds buying SpongeBob toys.
But even so, those first few seasons? PURE COMEDY GOLD.
Mr. Rafia thinks SpongeBob is stupid and doesn’t find it funny. Well, the boy got no taste (other than his choice for whom he married ;)
I’ll let you all decide though.
PURE JOY! I can go on and on and on….