Miss Milwaukee 1959

Joanie Cunningham All Grown UpFirst of all, thanks to those of you who continue to vote in my idiotic polls. They usually start off as stupid ideas that pop into my head. They later graduate to stupid ideas that show up on my blog. I then spend a week or more trying to figure out if there are any real conclusions I can draw about my readers from the answers. For this past poll, I think I was pretty successful in doing just that.

When asked the question “which one?” of the women from Happy Days, 33% of respondents chose Jenny Piccolo, which was one of two correct answers. Why Jenny Piccolo? She was a minor character, right? She didn’t contribute much to the show until long after Fonzie jumped the shark and Marcy’s second husband (Married With Children reference) showed up, right?

Good point. But savvy male viewers, even in their early childhood, could infer quite a bit about Jenny Piccolo. One thing was certainly implied by every reference to her–she was bad. Not crackwhore bad. Naughty bad. Bad influence on Joanie bad. Break curfew bad. Willing to kiss on the first date bad. I guess in the 50s you’d take whatever you could get as far as naughty goes. Either way, guys knew that Jenny Piccolo was down. Not only that, but she was the hottest of the available choices. Jenny Piccolo is the only acceptable choice for the type of guy who’d be looking to hook up while on vacation for a week in Milwaukee.

The only other acceptable answer was Lori Beth, but only 17% of respondents chose her. How does she qualify as an acceptable answer? Well, Ritchie Cunningham picked her didn’t he? Lori Beth was a nice girl, at least on the surface. She was the anti-Jenny Piccolo. She had Ritchie p-whipped (the “p” stand for “prude” of course). Mr. and Mrs. Cunningham loved her, The Fonz respected her, and Potsy and Ralph were on a never ending quest to find a girl just like her. I have a theory that Lori Beth and Potsy actually hooked up in the bathroom at Arnold’s one night after getting all hopped up on root beer floats. I also suspect that Rick Ocasek wrote “My Best Friend’s Girl” about Lori Beth from Potsy’s perspective. But that’s here nor there.

Lori Beth is the long term girl. She’s the type of girl you want to date for years. If you play your cards right, you can build up her hopes that you’ll one day marry her and have a couple of kids in your middle class house. She’ll stay home and bake cookies while you get up every morning and head off to your dad’s hardware store. Of course, you have no intention of ever following through, but still. Her hopes will finally be dashed one steamy night at Inspiration Point when you accidentally call her…

Leather Tuscadero? Someone actually chose Leather Tuscadero? Uh, not sure if you were aware, but Leather Tuscadero doesn’t even like dudes. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. I don’t like dudes either–at least not in that way. Is that the attraction to her? Some kind of psychological thing that makes you want what you can’t have? Are you that much of a masochist? Oh wait, maybe the “leather” part of the name ties in there somewhere. If that weren’t enough, she looks like Joan Jett on a 12 day meth binge. She was only included on the list as a trick answer, and you fell for it. I’d never even have considered her if I hadn’t been thinking about…

Pinky Tuscadero. Those of you who chose her, I get it. Sort of. I was just as worried as you were when the Malachi brothers gave her the Malachi crunch in the demolition derby. But please, let’s think this through. She’s a carny–a sideshow act. She’s just one step above the usual crowd of groupies that follow Fonzie around. She’s always leaving to go out on the road and jump her motorcycle through a hoop of fire or something. I half expected her to turn up on an episode of The Dukes of Hazzard playing a middle aged woman who comes back and reveals to Bo and Luke that they are actually her sons whom she left with her brother Jesse in order to keep them from finding out that Roscoe was their real father. That would explain where they got their daredevil genes wouldn’t it?

The obvious wrong choice out of this list, Joanie, was chosen by 25% of respondents. Who picked Joanie? Identify yourselves! How can you do that to your boy Chachi? And that’s nothing compared to the fact that she’s Ritchie’s sister! His little baby sister! Is nothing sacred anymore? I’m more disappointed in those of you who selected Joanie than I am in those who selected Leather.

I’ve learned a lot about my readers from this poll. Now how can I top it?

  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Digg
  • StumbleUpon
  • del.icio.us
  • Tumblr
  • LinkedIn
  • Google Bookmarks
  • Print
  • email