I admitted to my friend Ingrid last night that I’ve always had a bit of a crush on Rowlf the Dog from the Muppets. Hey, the heart wants what heart wants. Don't judge me!
Not many people know that Rowlf was the first Muppet created by Jim Henson for a dog food commercial in the early 1960s. He even had a weekly spot on 'The Jimmy Dean Show', gaining national recognition. Like all good entertainers he was a diverse performer and joined the Muppet Show as the resident pianist.
I said to Ingrid that I loved how the guests on the Muppet Show were absolutely into the idea that the Muppets were real and treated them as peers.
Ingrid’s response was swift. “What do you mean 'the idea' that the Muppets 'were' real?...”
The conversation has sent me down memory lane and I remembered being at an Edinburgh Fringe Festival Party a few years ago and having a ‘close encounter ‘ with a Muppet. Yes felt up by felt, that’s my life.
Here’s the email I sent at the time…
It's time to play the music
It's time to light the lights
Because Heather was out partying
With the Muppets Thursday night
I did think of titling this, "I was felt up by a Muppet" but thought that could be a bit too disturbing.
How did this happen?
Well Thursday night saw the Film Festival staff invited to the biggest party around, hosted by The List Magazine. It was a huge party for Festival staff and performers, I arrived just behind Alan Cummings who is headlining the International Festival with his play The Bacchae (he arrives on stage, upside down on a wire, attired in a gold lame mini-dress. The dress is over his head. Let’s just say I saw more than his Thespian credentials!).
I wasn't particularly interested in trying to hob nob with Al though as I spotted much more interesting guest...the Muppets. Okay it wasn't Kermit and Miss Piggy, these were lesser-known Muppets, performing a show the Henson Workshop has taken around the world. It’s an 'adult' Muppet' show, they don't use the well-known kids characters.
So how did a Muppet and I get physical? I was wearing a sparkly, sequined top with beaded fringes and one of the Muppets who looks like a green Ernie, suddenly bought out his little Muppet hand and started playing with the fringes around my chest. Things that make you go hmmmmm...
It was a fantastic night and the first of the Festival parties. Our Festival starts in a week and we won't have time to go to other shows around town so we're all making the most of it now.
Our first night party should be good though, I convinced our events coordinator to send an invitation to Anthony Stewart Head, who is in one of the film in the Festival. I just 'happened' to have his publicist's contact numbers after that time I pretended I was an arts journalist...Here's hoping he comes and his good friend James Marsters will come too. My life would be complete.
If not, at least I have the Muppets...