October 23, 2003
Q+A of the Moment
Answers to Questions Kids Might Ask GE Mascot Reddy Kilowatt During His Tour of American Elementary Schools.
Q: Is that light-bulb head supposed to be cute?
A: You'll have to ask my designers, but I believe it's supposed to be indirectly educational.
Q: What, as if we never saw a light bulb before?
A: Not everyone has had your advantages.
Q: Why are your arms all crooked?
A: They're bolts of energy.
Q: Do you have a penis?
Q: So, are you from outer space or what?
A: No, I'm just a drawing.
Q: Can I get a suit like yours?
A: You wouldn't be skinny or zigzag enough to wear it.
Q: I know fire isn't exactly electric, but what about flame throwers? Or bazookas? How about bombs? Are they electric? Or are you just to help Mom's blender make yogurt shakes for babies?
A: All the things you mention have electric components.
Q: What about those giant robots that Godzilla fights? Are they alive?
A: As a form of brute nature, I'm unqualified to comment on the dramatic arts.
Q: Is it satisfying to flow through the body of a condemned killer?
A: No, I'm emotionless. As lightning, I strike innocent forest rangers and prairie housewives, too.
Q: What happens if you touch water? Do you die?
A: Electricity does not conceive of its own cessation.
Q: What about "sexual electricity"? Is it really electricity?
A: I'm answering children's questions only, sir.
Q: They always show atomic energy with big muscles. You must be jealous, huh?
A: I don't get a chance to look at other drawings.
Q: Why is it we get wax in our ears and snot in our nose? Why not snot in the ears and wax in the nose? Why not the same thing in both places?
A: That's a biological matter, to which I'm indifferent. I only seem to live.
Q: So if I waste electricity, like, by leaving the lights on all night, do you go lie down somewhere and weep?
A: No. You're thinking of Christ.
Q: I don't think you're neat. I think you're queer.
A: That's not a question.
Q: Let me get this straight. Does it mean your nose and your stomach and your gloves and all of you are made of nothing but energy?
A: Believe it or not, kid, so are you.
--Not sure where I originally saw this, maybe Spy Magazine. "Electricity does not conceive of its own cessation", heh. Here's the Toonpedia entry on Reddy.
Link of the Moment
That Reddy Kilowatt logo, along with many other industrial logos (I think they were all companies that made radio tubes) can be found at The People's Logo Page. I love that old-school styling.
Prose of the Moment
I'm really not sure I understand the what and wherefore of The Previous Adventures of Popeye the Sailor but I really like reading it...the way it turns the cartoon character into an almost elemental-force archetype, grounded in both kiddy popculture and the reality of life as a sailor.