May 16th, 2011


Song Info (from Beatlesongs):”Piggies” is on the White Album, and was 85% written by George Harrison, 10% by John Lennon, and 5% by George’s mom.  This song is most famous for Charles Manson’s interpretation of it as a description of the people who would be the victims in the revolution/war he believed was imminent.  Bummer, that.

Twenty-one years ago today, the world lost a great and unique talent.  Jim Henson wasn’t just the voice of several of The Muppets, he, in many ways, was The Muppets. His love for storytelling and puppetry combined in ways no one had seen before.  He had guest appearances on The Ed Sullivan Show and created many shorts, commercials, and movies.  The success of Sesame Street led to The Muppet Show and a whole bunch of other stuff (wiki).

As anyone who has been following me long enough knows, my nickname comes from a guy in high school saying I looked like a Muppet, and The Muppet Show was one of the few TV shows our family watched together when I was a kid. I have great memories associated with the Muppets.  Every once in a while even now I’ll hear a song somewhere and say, “Hey, the Muppets did that!”  When I was a kid, of course, I thought all the songs were Muppet songs. I had no idea the variety of sources those songs actually had.  Jim Henson had gentle humor about him, but he also had a subversive side.  What other show ostensibly for kids would have had Alice Cooper as a guest star? (Note: I distinctly remember not being allowed to watch that episode when it came on. My brother and I were majorly bummed – not because we had any idea who Alice Cooper was, but because we looked forward to the Muppets every week and were sad to not get to see them that week.)

I was a few weeks shy of graduating from high school when he died.  I honestly don’t remember the specifics of how I felt then, though I know it was shocking.   Over time it seems to have affected me more and more.  I didn’t see his memorial service as it happened, but usually take the time to watch part of it every year on this day.  If you have any connections to or feelings for The Muppets and Jim Henson, this video of a song from his memorial service will affect you deeply.


There are few celebrity deaths that affect me much, but if I’d ever had the chance to meet Jim Henson, I would have thanked him for all the smiles and songs and silly creatures.

3 Comments on “Piggies”

  1. Wahooty says:

    There is something truly magical about the Muppets. It’s the sort of magic that makes you, as a grown adult, wonder how you can hear Scooter when he’s that far from the microphone.

  2. YoBro says:

    In honor of the occasion, I got out the DVD with Alice Cooper. And didn’t watch it.
    Good stuff and loved the Kermit and Henson photo above. For the record, it’s sorta sad to see the stuff that the Jim Henson Workshop has its name on these days, but on the whole, I’d say Brian is trying to protect the name.
    Now, if we could just get them to release the next season… since the Star Wars guys are on it, I blame George Lucas.

  3. daniel says:

    There are few celebrities that are missed. A true hole in humanity is left behind with the passing of Jim Henson, Jim Rogers and Steve Irwin. The world is a darker place for their loss, and I have a heavy heart every time I think of how much they are missed.

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