CategoryPop Culture Stuff

8 Things You’ve Never Noticed in Frosty the Snowman

Frosty the Snowman.

We all know the song and have probably seen the 50 year old classic TV special.

In case you don’t know or remember, some kids build a snowman and put a magicians’ hat on its head. The snowman comes to life. It plays and sings songs with the kids. When it starts to melt, they all realize that it’s too warm in the town for it and they need to get it to the North Pole where it can live forever — so they take off on an adventure.

The magician, realizing his hat is magical and could be worth money, follows them. He locks Frosty in a greenhouse full of tropical plants, where Frosty melts. But Santa shows up, threatens the magician with a lifetime sentence on the naughty list and gets the hat back. A strong wind blows and Frosty is back!

Santa takes the kid who was traveling with Frosty home and rides off with Frosty to live with him, the Mrs, the elves and reindeer in Christmas village. Happily ever after.

I noticed a lot of interesting things watching Frosty in preparation for this post:

  • None of the kids are wearing appropriate winter gear, except Karen. Who let them out the house like that?? Where are their parents?? What is the school doing??

  • Frosty is addressed with male pronouns but has no genitalia so how does anyone know what Frosty’s gender identity even is?? Address Frosty as either it (since Frosty is technically inanimate and genderless) or as they to acknowledge Frosty’s neutral gender identity until Frosty makes a decision. Frosty is a snowperson.
  • When it comes to life, Frosty is shocked to learn it can speak and move. Its first move? A twerk. Yes, Frosty dropped it like it was hotttt — and looked back at it!!

  • As Frosty is walking thru the town with the children, it gets stopped by the police. The officer really gets up in its face and talks like he’s going to arrest Frosty, until Karen shows up and explains what’s going on … Combined with the twerking, it kinda looks like Frosty was being profiled and was only allowed to continue on its because a real White person spoke up. Stay woke

  • The train ticket to the North Pole cost over $3000 — and this was nearly 50 years ago!! Can you imagine what a ticket would cost now??? I was tempted to google this — but I didn’t … Tell me if you do cuz I still lowkey wanna know.
  • When the kids couldn’t afford the ticket, they decided to stowaway on an ice cream car on the train. They legit thought they could get to the North Pole and back by dinner time … I repeat: Where are their parents?? And what are they learning at school?? Nothing about appropriate dress for winter, geography or stealing, obvs.
  • Frosty was a simple, sensitive soul. It really looked out for Karen on their trip. When she was cold, it got Hocus the rabbit to get the woodland creatures to build a fire for her. It went in the greenhouse so Karen wouldn’t feel scared in there alone. And it knew only Santa could get them both out the mess they were in.
  • Santa is gangsta! When he found out the magician had deliberately hurt Frosty and Karen, he quickly got him alllllllll the way together in epic fashion. He let that magician know that meanness wouldn’t be tolerated in his presence or with his presents. Santa is the realist. He plays no games in this naughty/nice list life.

I know you all were hoping for profound, practical management lessons. I was, too. But I just didn’t find them.

I found fun instead.

So that’s the lesson. Not everything is all that deep. Sometimes things are just there for fun, foolish entertainment.

It’s rare but it’s real.

And the truth is, we need that … The fun and lightness of Frosty’s story is just as important to our existence as anything with a clear, inspirational message. Because we need balance in our lives.

It took a twerking Snowman to remind me of that.

What will it take for you?

3 Management Lessons from A Charlie Brown Christmas

A Charlie Brown Christmas is far and away my all-time favorite Christmas classic.

The show opens with Charlie Brown not feeling any holiday cheer. He thinks Christmas has become too commercialized and focused on all the wrong things. He speaks with his friend/psychiatrist, Lucy, about it and she suggests he take over directing the local Christmas pageant to lift his spirits and give meaning back to the holiday.

Charlie arrives the rehearsal space to find the cast not doing anything that looked like rehearsing. They were dancing and didn’t have their costumes or scripts. Charlie stopped their shenanigans to bring order and process to the session. He began sharing with them his vision for the production. He let them know what his off-stage hand signals would mean. He let them know how honored he was to lead them. It was a lovely introductory speech!

No one listened. They just whispered among themselves — then Schroeder started playing the piano and they all went back to dancing, just as they’d been doing before Charlie arrived.

Charlie got frustrated and yelled at them to stop. He asks Lucy to pass out the scripts and costumes for each of the roles. Once everyone has their items, Charlie is ready to start rehearsing — but the cast declares it’s time to break for lunch.

Charlie goes AWFFFF on the cast and crew for their lack of dedication. They argue back with him, saying he doesn’t know what he’s doing and it’s all his fault the production is a mess and so much time was wasted. Somehow, they convince him to go buy a Christmas tree to make amends with them.

So Charlie heads off with Linus to the Christmas tree lot, where they pick out the tiniest, most pathetic looking tree in the whole lot. The cast and crew berate him again when he returns with the tree. They call him stupid and hopeless and say he can’t ever do anything right.

Completely dejected, Charlie takes his pathetic little tree and leaves. He makes his way home, where he decides to try to decorate the tree using ornaments and lights from his dog, Snoopy’s, house.

He puts one ornament on the tree … and it tips over.

Charlie’s demoralized. He’s done with people and Christmas. He leaves the tipped over tree in the yard and goes to his house to sulk alone.

Strangely, the cast and crew shows up in Charlie’s back yard a few moments later. They had followed him home.  They see the tree tipped over and decide it isn’t such a terrible tree after all. Together, the cast decorates the tree — and it turns out beautiful! They burst into a chorus of Hark the Herald Angels Sing around the tree.

Charlie comes back outside and sees the tree and the cast singing around it. He smiles and joins the chorus. All is merry and bright. The end.

Charlie is a great example of the struggles new leaders face when taking on an existing team.

  • Existing teams want to do what they’ve always done. That’s why Charlie’s friends were dancing when he arrived at rehearsal and kept dancing despite his instructions.
  • Existing teams don’t like change. That’s why Charlie’s friends argued with him about his casting and costume choices during rehearsal. That’s why they initially rejected the tree Charlie bought for them. They wanted everything to be and look like they were used to.
  • Existing teams will try to change — then blame the new leader when it doesn’t work immediately. That’s why Charlie’s friends doubted him and called him terrible names.

So what’s a new leader to do when their existing team treats them this way?

Do what Charlie did!

  1. Charlie anticipated resistance. He came armed to rehearsal with a clipboard full of notes and observations to share with the cast and crew. He was ready to overcome their objections to his ideas and changes with facts and flattery.
  2. Charlie kept pushing his positive agenda.  He started by reminding them of the mission of the group and the importance of the work they were doing. He focused on the positive and didn’t get caught up in everyone else’s egos and ulterior motives. When necessary, he took a break to regroup and remind himself of what really mattered. He stayed on message for the duration.
  3. Charlie forgave and joined the chorus. He got angry and let the group have it! He briefly walked away. But when the group finally embraced his message and mission, he came back to them with the same positive spirit. He didn’t hold a grudge. He forgave them and joined the chorus. He celebrated their progress together, like none of the bad stuff happened.

It isn’t easy taking over as a new leader of an existing group. Not everyone is going to be happy for your arrival or want to see you succeed or immediately buy into your vision of the way forward.

Don’t give up. Eventually, the group will follow you and together you’ll build something beautiful.

 

********************************************

One additional notable from A Charlie Brown Christmas: Charlie’s mental health. 

As the show starts, he’s admittedly depressed and seems to be crying out for help to his family and friends. They generally miss those signs. 

The holiday season and winter months are really tough on people for a variety of reasons. Please remember to look for signs of distress and regularly check on your loved ones. Your words and presence could be the thing that help them make it one more day and/or get the help they need to overcome. 

Click HERE to learn more about seasonal depression and resources for help. 

I’m Bringing Decking Back – The Return of the Christmas Classics Series

I love Christmas movies.

The joy of the simple, feel-good stories and the sweet nostalgia of watching the same shows and movies year after year just can’t be beat.

For the few years on this blog, I dedicated several posts in December to Christmas classic movies.  Each posts was full of fun, practical inspiration from me and an amazing line-up of guest contributors.

So I decided to revive my Holiday Classics Series with 3 fresh, new posts this year. The fun will start on December 19th.

Until then, relive the magic of yesteryear by reading these throwbacks:

Deck the halls, yo! It’s the most wonderful time of the year

 

Dear Pepsi, Your Apology Sucks

Pepsi released a commercial ad this week featuring model and Kardashian sister Kendall Jenner wandering into a protest and resolving the tensions by handing out Pepsi drinks.

The imagery was an homage to a popular #BlackLivesMatter photo.

And the world went awwwwwffffff!!

Pepsi faced immediate criticism and was violently, mercilessly and deservedly dragged on social media for launching this insensitive, racist campaign.

On Wednesday, Pepsi pulled the commercial and cancelled the remainder of the associated campaign. They issued the following statement:

Clearly, we missed the mark, and we apologize. We did not intend to make light of any serious issue. We are pulling the content and halting any further rollout. We also apologize for putting Kendall Jenner in this position.

Worst. Apology. Ever.

Let’s break this down.

Clearly we missed the mark and we apologize

  1.  “Clearly” is passive-aggressive AF. Much like “basically” and “accordingly”, it is a rude word masking as authority and sincerity.
  2. You apologize? Or are you sorry? Cuz there is a difference. Apologies are usually for people who are mad that they were called out. Sorrys are for people who have actual remorse.

We did not intend to make light of any serious issue

  1.  You didn’t??? Cuz it sure AF looks like you did.
  2. You didn’t make light of ANY serious issues, you made light of a very specific serious issue. And that issue is the murders of unarmed people of color by the police without appropriate review and justice. That is the very serious issue the carefully selected imagery you likely spent tens of thousands of dollars analyzing before you filmed, edited and launched this campaign very much made light of.
  3. If you weren’t intending to make light of the issue, what was your intention??? Inquiring minds really want to know. Cuz it looks like your for real were saying everything would be better if people would just drink more Pepsi and chill.

We are pulling the content and halting any further rollout

  1. That’s probably the only good thing you said … but the internet lasts foreverrrrrr tho. This isn’t going away just because the commercial stops airing.
  2. I can’t believe y’all admitted there was actually going to be more of this fuckery.

We also apologize to Kendall Jenner for putting her in this position

  1.  Kendall Jenner and her family have been profiting from the cultural appropriation of Black people for DECADES now. I used to really luh the Kardashians so I know this is true. The “position” that she was in is one she and her peoples are quite comfortable with. And I’m guessing y’all won’t be taking back the money you paid her so she gon’ be aight.
  2. Kendall Jenner is NOT the one you offended. She willingly performed work that you paid her for. Apologizing to her with more specificity than to the victims of police brutality or to their families or to the people who are on the front lines fighting for justice shows that you still don’t get it and likely never will.

Woosssaaahhh!! This is why we cannot have nice things!!

There are lots of people out there who think Black people and other people of color are too sensitive on these issues.

Ffff that bull$#%&, yo!

We have been too tolerant for too long. And we’re long overdue to speak up and speak out on the foolishness we see.

It is time for people and companies to stop giving lip-service to diversity, inclusion, sensitivity, caring, support and consciousness — only to turn around and do stuff like this then issue half-azzed apologies.

If you’re going to do stuff, use your whole azz! And if you don’t have an azz, get some padding or an implant or something. There’s all kinds of help out there if your azz is lacking.

Kendall Jenner and her peoples can help you out with that if you need it. They know a lot about using their azz and padding it as needed.

I digress. Woosah!

Just do better … Do better. DO BETTER!!

What does better look like??

Well, in Pepsi’s case, it would have been using all that brilliant market research not to do this in the first place. It would have been better to know that imagery associated with injustice and oppression should never be white-washed to peddle soft drinks.

But once Pepsi failed at that, it would have better to give a full explanation of their thinking and a sincere apology to the actual people who were hurt by police brutality and whose images were re-purposed for their narrow agenda … It would have been better to offer donations to the related causes …  It would have been better for Kendall Jenner to donate some if not all of her salary as well … It would have been better if Pepsi publicly committed to joining the fight for justice because of their error and used money from their sales to feed, bail out and defend protesters … It would have been better if Pepsi committed to working with organizations focused  increasing socially responsible behavior and understanding.

That’s what doing better looks like.

So the next time you find yourself making an egregious error in judgment along these lines, don’t just issue a half-azzed apology and move on.

Use your whole azz. And do better.

There’s still time, Pepsi. I hope you do better … cuz we’d hate to have to give up the sugary, bubbly deliciousness of your beverage and subsidiaries.

Do better, Pepsi. Do better, everyone. The streets are watching.

© 2018 The Buzz on HR

Theme by Anders NorénUp ↑