Monday, July 25, 2011

The Pizzaroo Was Here and I Missed It?

Vintage Ads LJ
 Yes, let's all miss the Pizzaroo! While Biff is spinning some platters, we can sneak out the back door and go to the drive-in for burgers and malteds.

Missing the Polkaroo was another matter, back in the day. If you happened to be a Canadian kid, that is. I will explain that in a minute. First: the platter party.

A platter party was a social event centered around listening to records, which were called "platters" by wannabe hepcats (or perhaps by the non-hepcats, from the look of things on the left) because they were flat and round like, well, platters.

This looks like the early to mid 1960s but I've seen the term "platter party" in some 1940s magazines so this had been going  on for some time. Well, not this particular party. It only felt that way, maybe because of the Pizzaroo. Pizzaroo is not Polkaroo's long lost cousin from Italy, but is unfortunately a Spam-based pizza. Ugh, does that not look terrible? I don't even know what to say about this. But the olive slices are not helping.

Now, on to matters Polkaroovian: For those of you who missed out on pre-21st-century Canadian children's television, Polkaroo was a tall, strange what-is-it with a polka-dotted body, the neck of a giraffe and the head of a slightly addled dinosaur - a comical version of the creature envisioned by Yeats in "The Second Coming." 

Polkaroo was on a show called Polka Dot Door, that had two hosts - a guy and a girl. Polkaroo - who was mute, probably from boredom - would make fly-by visits, but only when the girl host was there. Then the guy would come in and act like he cared, as you can see in the clip below: "Oh NO! You mean the Polkaroo was here and I missed him?" This happened - and whatever guy was host  would say this line - every single episode. Yeah, you did miss the Polkaroo, because you were inside the Polkaroo costume.

Now sometime in the 1990s there was great excitement because Polkaroo was going to be un-Harpo-Marxified. Hence Polka Dot Shorts, the show which gave Polkaroo a voice! Yes, a voice! Only he never said anything very exciting. This was because Polkaroo, his pet Bibble (a large trilling pompom) and their friends lived in a forest and spent their time eating snacks and bickering. Just like life with toddlers.


Barbara said...

I must say that Spam and Pizza are two words that never went together.

And what's with the perfectly cut triangles of Spam? Like a teen would really give a crap about shapes...

vanilla said...

Perhaps Canadian children were more easily entertained back in the dark ages of the last century.

AA said... very sophisticated taste buds there, right?

Looks like Bisquick crust, tomato sauce out of the can (aka "battery acid"), Spam, and those pimiento olives. Yum.

No wonder Europe thinks we're barbarians. "They couldn't have just cut up a loaf of stale bread, drizzled on a little olive oil, some basil, maybe some Roma tomatoes, and toasted it in a paper bag? No, Americans Put SPAM on their PIZZA."

Heidilynn said...

My kids were addicted to Polkaroooo and Polka-Doo-Shorts. They waited for his sneaky arrival and instant departure with baited breath. "I missed him?" Yes, you missed him! He was right there"(my kids pointing and screaming). They had to yell "Polkaroooo, Polkarooo." And sing the "Polka-dot, polka-dot, polka-dot shorts" song. And say hi to Bear, Marigold and Bibbles. Ah, those were the days when they were easily entertained!! Thanks for the memories!

Kath Lockett said...

Drugs. That's the only explanation for Pizzaroo Platter Parties *and* Polkaroo. Drugs (shakes head in confusion).....

Lidian said...

Barbara - Oh, but the triangles are REALLY important (I don't know why, exactly but they are).

vanilla - Maybe so...I have to say, there were some excellent shows back then though. Art Attack, Bill Nye, Arthur - they were great.

And Polka Dot Shorts actually was written by folks with a really dry sense of humor so it had fun moments for the adults.

AA - No, no! They could never do something like that ;)

Heidilynn - Oh, yes, I remember those days too! And I sang my own version of the theme song entitled 'Polka Dot Bore.' It amused me to sing this out of earshot. We even had a video of Polkaroo Goes to Summer Camp - that was quite the epic adventure.

Kath - Sort of like the Teletubbies and their drug connection, right? I disliked those guys, especially at 7 am (caffeine is not a strong enough substance to neutralize that sort of thing)