I was looking at the pictures of Eric Jacobson with Super Grover that both Lara and I posted today, and it really got me to thinking.
If I had been at Comic Con 2012 and if I had gotten my picture taken with Grover, I think I would’ve asked Grover if it was all right if I got my picture taken with his friend Eric as well. A part of me thinks I would’ve just run up and gotten down on the ground next to Eric right away, but that would have disrupted his performance and thrown everything off, and I would never want that. I know that later in the Con Eric was at a table for signings and pictures, but I have a feeling that upon seeing Grover there I would’ve been instantly overwhelmed and would’ve wanted to share my appreciation immediately. But not for Grover. For Eric Jacobson. You see, I know that Grover’s the name and the face everyone knows, but man, I wish Muppeteers got just as much publicity and recognition for the work they do as any other performer out there. Sure, you could argue that maybe if they did it’d all go to their heads, as it does with so many entertainers nowadays, but I don’t think so. I believe the material they work with keeps them grounded, humble, and human. It certainly did for Jim. These people though. They’re such amazing, talented people. They are able to portray so much emotion, brevity, and heart in their performances, all while keeping themselves out of sight of the camera. They have to be precise in their movements, able to shape their voices to fit a multitude of characters, and they’re able to sing their ever long hearts out. They are the most under appreciated people in all of Hollywood. Yes, Jim truly got the recognition he deserved, as Frank still does as well, but if you walk up to someone on the street and ask them if they know who Dave Goelz, Fran Brill, Karen Prell, or David Rudman are, they wouldn’t be able to give you an answer. However, if you ask them about Gonzo, Zoe, Red Fraggle, and Cookie Monster? Of course they’re going to know.
These performers have touched so many people’s lives with the work that they’ve done, and they deserve all the praise and adoration in the world.
So no. Maybe I wouldn’t have gotten down on the ground with Eric, as not to disrupt his performance, but I certainly would have turned to Grover and told him, “I just want you to know, your friend Eric? I really respect everything that he’s done and he is, truly, one of the most talented people alive today. He’s one of the many people that’s changed my life for the better these past couple years, and I just want him to know that.” And I’d hope that’d be enough to get my point across to Eric down below, and I hope someday I do get the opportunity to tell this to, not just Eric, but any Muppet performer I might meet. They have taken the last two years of my life and made it so much grander, so much more wonderful, and I will never, not ever, stop being grateful to this amazing group of people. They’ve made life a thing of beauty for me, and that is something to be truly thankful for.
(That turned into… I don’t even know. I guess today is Julia-has-a-lot-of-feels day.)