sábado, 13 de octubre de 2012

Is it different this time? (I)

Big Bird has recently appeared on the presidential campaign in the USA. An op-ed columnist wrote an article in defense of the big yellow bird: Don’t Mess With Big Bird. Rick Santorum's comment on the Yellow Giant, also called my attention: ‘You can kill things and still like them’.
  Today I did a google search on Big Bird. I discoverd that the bird I once watch on TV was a mexican version. It was called Abelardo Montoya. He was a green, full-bodied Muppet parrot. Plaza Sésamo was a Mexican co-production (1981) of Sesame Street.

  However, the name Big Bird was foreign to me. I barely recalled Sesame Street. What I really remember are my childhood days in the coffee plantation. The place where we grew up as campesinos. Working for the land lord who sponsored our school.
At school, In 1983, when I started Tercer Ciclo, Junior High, we had a TV. I barely can remember us using it. The TV was an inherited from a fifteen years old project. The project was called Televisión Educativa and it was run by the ministry of education.

I do not have any memory of the lectures they made us to watch. But I remember one thing. My aunt, the woman who raised me, and I climbed up San Salvador Volcano. We were looking for second hand books. The ones that support  the TV programs. In the coffee plantation we did not use the concept of going to  a book store to buy books. We asked neighbors through the plantation and through others coffee plantations who had previously used the books. Each neighbor we asked for made us to go up and up through the volcano. I do not remember if that day we had success. But,  I remember that we got the books.

By 1983, Televisión Educativa probably was dying. Years later, I remeber myself browsing through Televisión Educativa books. Sadly, finding that we covered barely half of the material.

Television Educativa started as a project sponsored by Lyndon Johnson's administration. It was a very aggressive project which involved Stanford scientists. Even Big Bird played a part on that iniciative.

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