Word Art & Wallpaper: Exploring 1996 Campaign Websites

We’re about one year away from electing the next President of the United States – I know. It feels like it’s already been going on forever. With the debates and daily late night TV jokes and everything that is going on with Trump, it seems like we’ve been trying to narrow down the candidates from 100 to 2, but we’re still in the thick of it and have a long way to go.

If you’re still undecided about who to throw your support behind, following them on social media or looking up their interviews is a way to go, but tooling around the candidates’ websites is always a safe bet. For the most part, these sites are sleek and user friendly, easy when you want to look up issues important to the politicians.

Flashback to the mid-1990s, when America was deciding between a Clinton/Gore ticket and Dole/Kemp presidency in 1996. The Internet was barely a thing then, so subsequently, so were websites. Legit this was the year before I got my first email address on AOL, so one could only imagine the level of high technology on these sites. Actually, you don’t have to imagine. These sites are still active, and I’m bringing you the best of each Dem and Republican website from 20 years ago. Hop in my time machine *time machine noises* and hit play on your Spice Girls CD because we goin’ way way back.

The Homepage

Clinton/Gore

Photo Oct 31, 2 17 40 PM

You guys need to go to these websites (click on the image above and below for respective sites) because I can’t accurately show the animated images of the flashing modem on Willy C’s homepage. He has a lot of information available on his site, so the flashing modem is just the beginning. Thanks, Al Gore.

Dole/KempPhoto Oct 31, 2 17 29 PM

Seriously, the prehistoric GIFs on here are outstanding. The Dole/Kemp website doesn’t have much information available, and that’s partly because we’re on the site 20 years after they lost the election, but partly because they just didn’t have as much on the site as their opponents. I also appreciate that they put “http:// http://www.dolekemp96. org” on the homepage, just in case you forgot what site you were on.

About The Candidates

Clinton/Gore

Photo Oct 31, 2 17 49 PM

REMEMBER WORD ART??? THEY ACTUALLY UTILIZED IT FOR A PRESIDENTIAL CAMPAIGN WEBSITE.

Dole/Kemp

Photo Oct 31, 2 17 57 PM

You can’t even click on Jack Kemp’s page, so if you wanted to know more about him, S.O.L. Or like, go to Wikipedia or something.

The Issues

Clinton/Gore

Photo Oct 31, 2 18 29 PM

The 3D shadow was up another 40% on the immigration page, which obviously indicates he means business. The list of Clinton/Gore’s issues are easy to navigate and not too comprehensive, yet to the point.

Dole/Kemp

Photo Oct 31, 2 18 20 PM

Meanwhile, Bob Dole’s issue pages state his own vision, but then the reason why Bill Clinton is wrong.

Commercials

Clinton/Gore

Photo Oct 31, 2 18 44 PM

One of my favorite things about these sites, especially the Clinton/Gore camp, have specific instructions for early Internet users to use the multimedia on the site. Stuff like explaining how to save campaign posters or view videos. *right click save*

Dole/Kemp

Photo Oct 31, 2 18 36 PM

These commercials were not available to download anymore, but these summaries are sufficient enough. “Bob Dole is a plain-spoken man” (someone we want as Pres…?) . Also he talks about how his grandmother cleaned his mouth out with a bar of soap, so…

Wallpaper

Clinton/Gore

Photo Oct 31, 2 18 57 PM

Y’all, why don’t we use wallpaper anymore??? The idea of going to your favorite celeb or artist’s site and downloading one of the pre-made images is an art we don’t use in 2015! Let’s bring back wallpaper!

Dole/Kemp

Photo Oct 31, 2 18 50 PM

Guys, what’s a .pict??

Site Highlight

Clinton/Gore
Photo Oct 31, 2 29 42 PM

I’m gonna need everyone to read this entire email and enjoy the photo of Bill at his latptop in full.

Dole/Kemp
Photo Oct 31, 2 19 08 PM

 

TBH, this cookie reciepe doesn’t sound any more exciting than the Keebler Pecan Sandies.

 

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Educational Shows That Should Get Kickstarted

Last week, one of our Man Crush Monday honorees, LeVar Burton, launched a Kickstarter campaign to bring beloved program Reading Rainbow to classrooms for free and to more platforms than just iPads/tablets, helping kids learn to read and build a love for books. In about 10 hours, the initial goal of $2 million was reached, and almost $3.5 MILLION  has been donated since it launched less than a week ago – and it doesn’t even end until July 2nd.

When Veronica Mars made history last year by raising $2 million in about 10 hours as well, we thought shows like Gilmore Girls and Buffy would be prime candidates for a Kickstarter campaign. Now with Reading Rainbow making strides, I thought about the other educational shows from our childhood that could possibly make a comeback and return to help a whole other generation of kids too. Here are some of my picks, do you have any that you don’t see on the list?

Wishbone

{Ran from 1995 to 1998}

Kids love a talking animal, so when Jack Russell Terrier Wishbone is a sharp-talking pooch, it’s easy to forget that he’s retelling stories from classic literature. Wishbone takes on the role of the titular character in each story as he plays it out in his daydream, while his owner Joe faces some kind of similar situation IRL. If a crowdfunding campaign was launched for the show, maybe the show could just get a revamp and come back to TV. Is there even a show like this on right now? I’ve lost touch with my children’s programming.

Magic School Bus

{Ran from 1994 to 1997}

So this ‘Inside Ralphie’ episode is, for some reason, the most prominent one stuck in my head, even after all these years. Like, Ms. Frizzle just straight up took the class & their Magic School Bus into his body to figure out why he’s sick. Teacher of the year, y’all. Anyways, I feel like Magic School Bus would be a great app for kids, especially with an episode in this vein (pun intended), where it takes them on a journey into the body.

Bill Nye the Science Guy

{Ran from 1993 to 1998}

It depresses me that there are probably kids out there who only know Bill Nye from his time on Dancing with the Stars. Who do kids have to look up to in the media now if they want to be scientists? Bill Nye focused on a certain subject in science each episode, and if he successfully funded a Kickstarter campaign, he should bring his science show to schools all over the world, making it one of those interactive assemblies where the students get out of class but are really just going into another one.

Mr. Wizard’s World

{Ran from 1983 to 1990}

Please tell me I’m not the only one who remembers this show? I feel like it was part of my morning TV programming, in addition to Saved by the Bell (gotta balance it out). Mr. Wizard’s real name was Don Herbert, and he invited kids to his ‘house’ to show them science experiments and it’s definitely not as creepy as it sounds. Apparently Don died in 2007, but if there’s a Mr. Wizard Jr. out there, a Kickstarter campaign would be a perfect way to maybe fund a web series – or perhaps just find a new Mr. Wizard.

Ghostwriter

{Ran from 1992 to 1995}

Confession: I pretended that Ghostwriter was real and used to write messages to him/her in my composition notebook. Alas, Ghostwriter never came.  Maybe it’s because I didn’t have a circle of friends who needed to solve mysteries that the real police couldn’t solve. The whole point of the show was to help kids improve their reading and writing skills, and how awesome would this be as an app? Let’s be real – I would totally download it for myself.*

Name Your Adventure

{Ran from 1992 to 1995}

If you watched TNBC on Saturday mornings like I did, you remember this show, which made kids’ dreams come true. I thought Name Your Adventure was like THE show to be on, since you could literally name your adventure, and it would come to fruition. Kids were able to meet the likes of President Bill Clinton, Tori Amos, and in the video above, the late Jonathan Brandis who starred in the show SeaQuest. The girl wanted to become a director or movie something or other, so host Mario Lopez took her to set and let her hang out. How cool is that? This series showed me that anything is possible and there are so many jobs and things to accomplish out in the world, so I can only imagine what this could provide for kids who only know the life inside their little bubbles. Again, with a crowdfunded campaign, a web series would be perfect for this, and maybe Mario Lopez would even come back to host it.

* HOLY CRAP GUYS – APPARENTLY GHOSTWRITER WAS INTENDED TO BE THE GHOST OF A RUNAWAY SLAVE FROM THE CIVIL WAR HELLO

 

Bill Clinton Converses with Celebrities

Yesterday was the 42nd President’s 66th birthday, and it’s not just because I like the guy, but I always remember his birthday because he shares it with my dad. So I mean, you could consider me as the Asian Chelsea Clinton. We have a lot of similarities.

Anyways, Billy C has had a storied life, bringing him all over the world and meeting hundreds of thousands of people of every walk of life. I recently came across this pic of a young William Jefferson Clinton meeting then President John F. Kennedy at The White House in 1963.

bill clinton jfk

He was just a teen in this iconic pic but can you even imagine their conversation?! ‘Oh hey Mr. President. I’m going to be the President one day and have an affair with an intern and my wife’s gonna forgive me and so will America and people will still like me. How’s Marilyn?’ (not verbatim)

Throughout the years of his Presidency, Billy has met a plethora of famous people, and if only we could hear what they were saying …

Billy C: Hey, that goatee looks great on you. I should grow one out too, don’t you think?
Brad Pitt: … No offense sir, but I was sexiest man alive 1995. I can pull anything off. You? Not so much.

Billy C: Great job tonight son. Nice hair.
Justin Bieber: Thanks man. Who are you again?

Billy C: Hilary and I listen to your slow jamz all the time. If you know what I mean *wink*
Usher: Yeah, I got you, sir. No need to wink.

Billy C: Y’all want to start a supergroup?!
Bono & Jon Bon Jovi: … No.

Billy C: Kobe, you and I have a lot in common.
Kobe: Don’t I know it, sir!
Kobe’s Wife: *flashes diamond ring*

Mick Jagger: Let’s go team-m, let’s go!
Billy C: You’re clapping off beat.

Betty White: Oh! Mr. President!!
Billy C: This is the most action I’ve gotten in 2 years. Let this happen.

Billy C: Jennifer, thanks so much for my award. Such a pleasure to meet you!
Jennifer Lawrence: HAHAHA I’m such a big fan I loved you in the White House I mean as the President not like ‘IN the White House’ like I’m a fan of you when you were the leader of the free world not like I was stalking you in the White House… you’re from Arkansas and I’m from Kentucky, we’re both from the south, isn’t that great?! *falls flat on her face*

Billy C: Charlize! Have you met Matt Bomer? He’s convinced me to do Magic Mike 2!
Matt: It’s true! I didn’t convince him to wear that fedora though…
Charlize: Are you sure you’re gay??

Bill Cosby: Now sir…. have you heard the joke about the penguin and the spaghetti…
Jerry Seinfeld: What’s the deal with the spaghetti?
Billy C: I honestly have no idea what either of you are saying right now.

Billy C: Hey Mikey, how’s that monkey of yours doing?
Michael Jackson: Not here, Mr. President. Not here.

Michael Jordan: I love you man, thanks so much for coming out to play golf with me.
Billy C: This picture is going to be framed and hung up in my Harlem office.

Billy C: Bruuuce! Can I bring out my saxophone now?
Bruce Springsteen: Alright man, but only on Born to Run.

Lyle Lovett: *mumbles*
Willie Nelson: Hey Pres, I got some realllly nice pot backstage if you wanna take a few hits before we go back out there.
Billy C: I don’t trust your pot, Willie… Let’s use mine.
Whoopi Goldberg: Child, this is NOT The View that I signed up for.
Eric Clapton: WTF am I doing here, I’m not even American.

Billy C: I can’t believe I’m hugging THE Meryl Streep!
Meryl Streep: Someone take this peasant off of me.

Tom Cruise: So now that you’re not the President anymore, how are your stress levels? Can I interest you in a free test? All the celebrities are doing it…
Billy C: Nice try, Tommy.

Billy C: *thumbs up*

Roger Sterling, Silver Fox: My Top Old Man Crushes

Mad Men is back on the air, and with it, is one of my favorite grey-haired characters, Roger Sterling. I’d like to say this is outside the norm for me, this attraction to a mature gent, but truth be told it isn’t. Even though I’m young-ish, most of the time I’m into a celebrity, it begins with the phrase “I have this weird crush on…”.

If, like me, you think that Roger Sterling is pure platinum, then maybe you will understand the following weird crushes:

Bill Clinton

Bill Clinton was my first weird crush, probably. This dates back, embarrassingly enough, to his sex scandal days. However, I probably didn’t fully understand that at the time, because I was a pint-sized 11-year-old at Catholic school. In hindsight, I don’t know if my crush began with Slick Willy himself or with Clinton as played by Darrell Hammond, because I was really into SNL at the time. Actually, the latter is probably more embarrassing, so let’s just say not that. Really, I like Bill in spite of the Lewinsky thing, not because of it. He’s so smart and charismatic! Babies love him, as do some old people. Bill’s a charmer. Besides, if anything or anyone is Hillary Clinton-endorsed, they can’t be half bad.

Friedrich Bhaer

Friedrich Bhaer is a fictional character. He’s not what you’d call real, exactly.  He is a  much-older German professor who takes up with Jo March at the end of Little Women, but he’s exactly the right match for her. She and Laurie wouldn’t have worked out, long-term. Anyway, in Little Men, they open up a boarding school for boys and it’s pretty much the cutest. In the 1994 film adaptation, Bhaer was played by a dapper, gray-tinted Gabriel Byrne, and it really worked. Or, it really worked if you were the world’s creepiest third-grader, anyway.

Christoph Waltz

As I sort of suddenly discovered during the Oscar liveblog, I have a weird crush on Christoph Waltz. I don’t know. I guess my type is middle aged, kindly, intelligent German nationals. But he is kind of appealing, right? No? All the more aging Bavarian men for me, then.

This One Professor I Had In Law School

This guy taught… I don’t know, civil procedure? Criminal procedure? He taught a class in law school that I definitely attended. We called him the Silver Fox and he was, he really was. I wish I still worked in his legal market so I could run my hands through his glimmering locks… or, I mean, attend one of his CLEs.

The Late Paul Newman, Circa 1980s

I’m not even sorry about it.

The Gracefully Aging Matt LeBlanc And Matthew Perry

In normal cases, I’d list these two without reservations. The only problem is that their greying hair also carries with it the demise of my youth. I don’t like that reminder. But still…

Roger Sterling

Obviously.