Popular Culture



Sometimes I wish I had majored
in popular culture. Bowling Green
State University had this major in
the 70’s. Their pop culture center is
still well respected for its collection.

My Alma Mater has a national
reputation in the area of business

My college sweetheart and first
husband’s major was this.
He chose wisely to focus on
computers as a minor.

My elementary degree was
also considered a desirable area
of study. BG still has a reputable
thrust for Education.

Only now, do I see the true value in
“pop culture.”
The current popular culture is
described by the program as,

“Expressive practices of everyday
life (including mass media products
such as television shows and video
games) but also, individualized forms
of expression like food and holidays.”
This was found on the BGSU
popular culture webpage.

The bachelor’s and Master’s
degree programs have ten
professors, their areas of
expertise are in:
American Culture,
Asian Studies,
Ethnic Studies,
Folklore and
Women’s Studies.

I am going to ‘coin’ an expression,
describing how I feel pop culture
could be defined as,

“It measures the ‘pulse’ of our times.”
(Robin O. Cochran)

In the past, “Howdy Doody,” “Betty
Boop,” “The Lone Ranger ” and “Shirley
Temple,” were not only icons children
sought out; but adults also collected
or respected these items.

Today’s pop culture holds almost a
generation of “still popular” subject
matters. We still see “Captain America”
and “Star Wars” along with “Spiderman.”

I was grabbing my coat off my oldest
daughter’s wall rack today. I could
not resist taking a photo of how
Micah had placed his jacket,
backpack, lunch box and
gym shoe bag on his
heavy duty

Isn’t the “Ohio State University Minion”
a clever arrangement?
He looks like he has
an orange bag
slung over
his “arm.”

The brand Nike, along with its logo,
the “swish,” goes well with the
sporting phrase, “Just do it.”

What are one or two of your favorite
pop culture items you still hold onto,
as filled with memories?

Or~ instead let us know a special
Christmas or birthday gift which
has sentimental value.
* * * Thanks! πŸ™‚ * * *


47 responses »

      • This was a really sweet pist, Derrick with little Malachi (Who accidentally bit his funger, played with battery remote car and your various great garden details. Two questions~ Did you ever identigy.whst to me reminds me more of a fancy moth? What did they decide for Malachi brother’s name? Your father and popular movie legend Shane were nicely tucked into that lovely post, too. πŸ™‚

    • Yes! They never seem to be boring commercials either, April! I thought the mama bear and her baby polar bear(s) was so cute. They were highly entertaining.
      One of my favorite songs from a commercial was, “I’d like to teach the world to sing in perfect harmony. . .” πŸ™‚

    • Oh, wow! That song is definitely a sign of advertising mixing with the Peace of the Season!
      I love the Glade song from last year (I would maybe be able to find the post but a young man sang it so beautifully, April. This year, a woman sings one catchy and sweet tume.
      I also like a preschool song we sang, but cannot remember if it is the post office or UPS who sings it:
      “I’m going to wrap myself with paper, I’m going to wrap myself with string (or we used “glue”) and put some stamps all over my head and send myself to YOU!” MY grandies like it a lot. There are hand movements, too. β™‘

  1. i think you’d be great in this area. you are – as for me, i have a fond memory for my easy bake oven, and planned to have a bakery with the treats i would create within it.

    • Beth, thanks for saying I might have been good at this subject or degree. I wrote a post under your nane but was meant for April.
      Sometimes, I need to learn how to turn the phone off and relax before going to bed. Otherwise I make little errors like this, Beth.

  2. You didn’t need to major in it Robin, your blog shows you already dominate this area. I am coming to believe that Ohio (through your voice) is the epicenter of America and our current culture. You are the pulse, as you say, right there. Keep writing — I love it all.

    • Beth, you are too kind! πŸ™‚ I think I find things that cross people’s minds and elaborate them in a post. Thanks for reading and saying such lovely compliments, too. xo

  3. I would think majoring in pop culture would be useful if you paired it with a marketing degree. You would be great at targeting markets in advertising.
    Looking through the comments, I see so many things that were popular when I was a child. Most of my pop culture is marked by the music that was popular when I was growing up…new wave and heavy metal.

  4. You seem to excel in the area Robin, with or without the degree. I love the backpack. I don’t know if it counts, but I still have my well-worn Kurt Vonnegut books. I was buying them as soon as I could while in college (i.e. when first released in paperback).

    • Dan, I really liked the books, Cat’s Cradle and Slaughterhouse Five. I read them for a high school English course. I found the nitty gritty atmosphere of the film to be interesting techniques to contemplate.
      Definitely, Vonnegut was a major influence of the times. This was a great addition.

      • It would always be great to listen and be in the presence of such a legendary author as Kurt Vonnegut. I have only met R.L. Stine while waiting to get his autograph (for my oldest daughter’s book copy) I said one and a half sentences to him. πŸ™‚
        I would have liked to hear him speak. My grandsons, Carrie and I enjoyed the Goosebumps movie and felt Jack Black did a fine acting job.

  5. I agree with Dan, Robin, you excel in the area with or without a degree. Oh I still have things from before James and I were married over 50 years ago. Some treasures I just can’t part with. Hugs, N πŸ™‚ ❀

    • I am so glad you have reached the 50 year + plus mark with your husband, Natalie. β™‘β™‘
      I like how you said this: “Some treasures I just can’t part with!” Exactly what I was thinking as I saw Micah’s school items on a hook together, as well as pop culture coming into mind. The kids love their special toys, while I loved Snoopy, Winnie the Pooh and my Thumbelina baby doll. I kept some but sold others.Toys which seem to still be popular are Barbies for the girls and Hot Wheels or Match Box cars for either. πŸ™‚

  6. Well I love the music and TV shows of the 70s…Happy Days is a good example. I liked Madonna ‘ s 1980s music, but now I feel she has gone to the low point in pop culture by selling out and trying to reach the hip hop crowd. These days I also adore the Minions, some reality TV shows, but I deplore rap and hip hop music and the messages it sends to young people. Excellent post, Robin.

    • Lana, I like how you expressed how you truly feel about music, Madonna, hip hop and rap. One of my kids carried a Happy Days lunch box to school before someone offered them $10 (a lunch lady) and the daughter came home with money but no more cool lunch box. I sure think she should have held out for more! πŸ™‚
      I like the “beat” of rap, though not the words usually. My youngest daughter has friends who are graduates of local high school in 2004 or so. They have put out at least 3 Cd’s. I feel they have talent but hope they will expand their genre once they get farther into their 30’s. I have been know to pay a cover charge to see Team KNYCE. It is pronounced like “nice.” There is rhythm and blues as well as other styles but swearing is included. Musicians should not swear so much as they are role models for younger people. I understand how you feel, Lana.

    • Yes, this was not created by me, Brenda. It literally was how the order of Micah’s supplies went. A huge metal hook screwed into wall, coat, orange gym shoe bag, backpack then Minion lunch box. Interesting that when I took a picture of it, they said in unison,”Oh, I get why you took the picture!” Micah thought it was cool he made it into another blog post. πŸ™‚

  7. I agree with the lady who said Coke. I have a room of Coke memorabilia and Life magazines. But also this time of year, the Peanuts really hold up. Charlie Brown keeps on rolling…

    • Oh, I love Coke products and had the glasses, wooden crate that said Coca Cola, etc. Used to have a finished nasement full of memorabilia but sold nearly sll of it. I still have a small stuffed polar bear in a striped red and white jacket and he is holding tiny plastic brown coke bottle.
      Kerbey, I love Charlie Brown and the Peanuts gang. I have a post scheduled with my Christmas apaetment decorations. There is a Coke bear sitting on my bench, right next to a little stuffed Snoopy.
      If you like the Peanuts Gang, you may like to go and purchase the cutest toys at McD’s. I have bought 8 of the 10 (12?) and haven’t decided if I want to take them out of their packaging. Without having to buy the kid’s meals, they are $1.25 apiece. Let me know if you get any of them! I took 4 of my 7 grandies to see the film, “Dream Big.” Kohl’s sold this large book and another Peanuts book last Christmas for $5 apiece, the money goes to nonprofit local charities.

      • How did you like the movie? That is so funny that you have a Coke bear next to a Snoopy. I never go to McD’s so I didn’t know that. Pretty neat.

      • I liked the movie, Kerbey! The movie was overall more cheerful than the usual ones where poor Charlie Brown isn’t successful with his kite or kicking the football. I loved his sister giving tours of his room when he was really good at something! I also wondered whether or not Snoopy in his WWII gear, fighting the Red Baron makes sense to my grandkids but I really like this part, anyway. Woodstock and he have lots of fun in this one, Kerbey. There are always couple’s and elderly childless people at our local theater, laughing and enjoying listening to children giggling. I actually took some photos on my cell phone but probably better not post them! Usually I would not do this but we were in a theater full of children getting up and dancing. The screen was very bright, conducive to taking still photos.

    • Kerbey, I just took “stock” of the Peanuts gang and I still need Lucy and Pig Pen! Wonder if they still have any left?
      Here are the 8 I have still not opened:
      Sally and Snoopy on a rolling sled, the French pink poodle(“Fifi”) Snoopy falls for in a car, Charlie Brown holding a small Snoopy in his arms (bobble toy), Linus with his blanket, Woodstock on a zamboni, statue of Woodstock (bobble toy), **a spinning Snoopy, tree holding him up on “ice” with Woodstock and Peppermint Patty lying on a sled. ** This one is rather elaborate.

  8. You nailed the current pop culture with your photo. My 3 year old grandson,Casey, was a Minion for Halloween this year.

    I have lived through so many pop culture eras: Westerns (I had a Matter Fanner 50 sixshooter when I was a boy.) Star Trek, The British Invasion (rock ‘n’ roll), long hair, disco, Star Wars, video games (starting with Pong, Atari, Sega and Nintendo). But I would have to say my favorite pop culture era was with The Beach Boys with their hot rod and surfer music. – Mike

  9. Not being a collector of dolls, I think it interesting that I bought an Alice in Wonderland doll at a craft fair just hours before I found out my dad died (of suicide). I was in the middle of reading the book I loved so much as a child–it’s on my shelf in my bedroom. That metaphor for life: a rabbit hole, is kind of perfect in so many ways. We have a key but can’t seem to reach the key hole. The Garden is on the other side. I guess that’s going to be my personal pop culture for a very long time…..

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