Mr. Snuffleupagus is a full-bodied Muppet character who lives with his family in a cave, just off of Sesame Street. He is a snuffleupagus.
— from the Muppet wiki

Mr. SnuffleupagusObviously I knew that. Though I didn’t know he had a first name. I just always referred to him as Snuffleupagus. I loved Sesame Street when I was a kid. Who didn’t? I only very rarely ever think about Snuffleupagus these days. To be honest with you, I can’t remember the last time I thought about Snuffleupagus. It’s been a while.

I was shocked to learn that in 1985 Mr. Snuffleupagus became “visible” to all the rest of the denizens of ‘the Street’. I had long since stopped watching Sesame Street by ’85. But all of the characters — and everyone from the Muppet Show — have always been a part of my daily life in one way or another. My little sister and I pretty much have an entire secret language based on late 70s television.

Mr. Snuffleupagus became real to the entire cast for a few reasons. One was because the writers were running out of new ways to have Snuffy just barely miss meeting others. Another factor was increased concerns that children would be afraid to tell things to their parents and risk being disbelieved.

This really has me bothered. On the one hand I can totally understand the whole “trust” issue that an invisible Mr. Snuffleupagus presented. But on the other hand I don’t know if I can come to terms with everyone being able to see Snuffy. See, here’s the thing: He wasn’t invisible. Everyone could see him, they just kept barely missing him! The fact that Big Bird was on the verge of just losing his mind several times was what made Mr. Snuffleupagus so much fun. Well, that and his incredibly deep voice and the fact that he was a really big super hairy elephant. I think that — assuming I get to be a dad someday — I am going to just never catch sight of him in front of my kids.

There is one comment on this post

  1. […] Its equally faulty to treat the vast hordes of bloggers who neither write, nor care, about the latest tech meme, political scandal or gadget as if they were on an equal footing with the pundits and pontificators endemic to the blogosphere. The much ballyhooed digital democracy of the blogosphere, where everyone has a voice and every voice is heard, is about as real as Mr. Snuffleupagus. […]

Add to the discussion:

I'll never share your email address and it won't be published.

What Is This? is the personal weblog of me, David Vincent Gagne. I've been publishing here since 1999, which makes this one of the oldest continuously-updated websites on the Internet.

A few years ago I was trying to determine what cocktails I could make with the alcohol I had at home. I searched the App Store but couldn't find an app that would let me do that, so I built one.


You can read dozens of essays and articles and find hundreds of links to other sites with stories and information about Ernest Hemingway in The Hemingway Collection.