I’m a kid at heart. In fact, it can be argued that I have “Peter Pan Syndrome” — I may grow older but possibly never grow up. That said, I never really appreciated SpongeBob SquarePants until my lovely children showed up.
From watching that greatness on Nickelodeon every morning to listening to the CD “Best Day Ever” in the car on the way to daycare…well, wait. The CD was a skosh much. It actually caused me to run off the road a couple of time out of sheer delirium, watery eyes and bouts with insanity, but that’s a different story pending a court case with my insurance company.
Anywhoo, I am familiar with the lovable
kitchen sponge, his meowing snail and imbecilic starfish BFF (voiced by the great Bill Fagerbakke of “Coach” fame). As the ‘Jeopardy’ connoisseur that I am, I even know ‘Bikini Bottom’ is real. No really. Suffice to say, if a proud papa can see the reality of a cartoon, it is easy to understand how fandom could get a little askew for SpongeBob, right?
Take this tragic story from CNN about U.S. Army Sergeant Kimberly Walker, who survived two tours in Iraq but could not escape the malevolent ire of an abusive boyfriend. One of the only sources of happiness Sgt. Walker had in life was watching SpongeBob SquarePants.
“Every year, my sister had a SpongeBob birthday party,” Walker’s twin sister Kara said. “Everything she had was SpongeBob.”
Aside from a SpongeBob pillow in her casket, the family invested $26,000 on two massive SpongeBob monuments (6′ tall and 7,000 pounds each) at Walker’s gravesite — one in an Army uniform for Walker and another in a Navy uniform to honor her twin sister Kara, an IT specialist for the Navy.
They were ready to install the monuments at Spring Grove Cemetery in Cincinnati—but it seems the head mortician thought the thing was a joke, because he calmly told the family, “Eh, not so much.”
“The family chose a design with the guidance of a Spring Grove employee who unfortunately made an error in judgment,” the cemetery’s president told CNN. “The monument does not fit within Spring Grove Cemetery guidelines, was not approved by senior management and cannot remain here.”
Ya’ think? What flippin’ guidelines would have a “SpongeBob” clause, nitwit? However, it’s a cemetery where memories are supposed to live in peace. I get the media may have a little fun on your precious grounds but even journos have couth. I know, because many of them are good friends of mine.
So trust me when I tell you a good portion of the press think this story blows. And when Nickelodeon capitalizes on some free PR at your expense, you heard it here first.