My childhood was changed forever by a simple slogan from a breakfast cereal commercial.
You see, when I was a kid, I went by my middle name, which is Michael, but everyone called me Mikey. And for those of you who are of a certain age, as soon as I said that name, you know exactly what commercial and product I am talking about.
And if you don't, here is a shorter version of that particular Life Cereal ad.
Yes, that kid robbed me of a little bit of the joy that I may have had as a child.
I was a little bit chubby then, Rubenesque even, and well, at first being told every time you eat something that "Mikey Likes it!" is funny a couple of times, but trust me, it becomes damn near soul-destroying after about week 3 when people say it about everything... and then it just keeps going year upon year.
I mean, I hated that kid, and I had never even met him. And by the time I was 10, there was another Mikey commercial on, and the whole thing started all over.
And at the time, I thought it was weird that some of the other kids wanted me to eat some Pop Rocks and then drink a Coke, but now I know. For shame, for shame.
Why couldn't that character have been named Petey, Sven or Abdul huh? Why Mikey? And why couldn't the Mikey stigma have changed into a post-Goonies thing... who wouldn't have wanted to be Mikey Walsh?
So to the good people at the Quaker Oats Company who, through their advertisement took a little more of the joy out of my young life, and only left me with one little anecdote for that pain: I hate you, though I will still eat your oatmeal, but that's only because of Wilford Brimley.