G is for Green

When I give out my name on the phone, I usually spell out R-O-G-E-R and say, “Green, like the color”. As often as not, the reply is, “Is that with an E?” I thought, since my last name is Green (not Greene), that I’d reflect on the color green. Of course, no analysis is more clear than the late Joe Raposo’s meditation, Bein’ green.

It’s not that easy bein’ green

Green is a secondary color, comprised of blue and yellow

Having to spend each day
The color of the leaves

JEOPARDY! clue, 5 Feb 09 in Basic Science: “The name of this green pigment found in plants is partly from the Greek for ‘green’

When I think it could be nicer
Bein’ red or yellow or gold
Or something much more colorful like that


Of course, autumn leaves ARE those colors; they are also dying.

It’s not easy bein’ green
One of the most popular children’s songs in MY neighborhood was “Great Green Gobs of Greasy Grimy Gopher Guts”; heard THAT a lot.

It seems you blend in
With so many other ordinary things

Of course, kids tease, as they do. the one name I was called the most, which actually didn’t much bother me, is Mr. Green Jeans, the sidekick on the long-running, CBS-TV weekday morning show, Captain Kangaroo. He was played by the late Hugh “Lumpy” Brannum.

And people tend to pass you over
One of the definitions of green is inexperienced, like a greenhorn rookie

‘Cause you’re not standing out
Like flashy sparkles in the water
Or stars in the sky

Though in fact, many animals either are green or can turn green as protection from predators, using it as camouflage.

But green’s the color of spring
(Will spring ever arrive?)

And green can be cool
Green Tambourine – the Lemon Pipers

(and here’s a cover version)

and friendly like
The persistent Sam I Am in Green Eggs and Ham (Dr. Seuss’ birthday was Monday)

And green can be big like an ocean
Or important like a mountain

Green means go. And speaking of which, Garrett Augustus Morgan (1877-1963) developed several commercial products, many of which are still in use today. Morgan is probably best known for inventing the gas mask and the traffic light.

Or tall like a tree
I must admit unwarranted joy when the conversation comes around to going green, meaning being environmental.

When green is all there is to be

When i was in college, I’d occasionally hear the punchline to the movie Soylent Green,, starring Charlton Heston, directed at me, long before I got around actually seeing the film; talk about a spoiler!

It could make you wonder why
But why wonder, why wonder?

About the only time I ever read either Green Lantern or Green Arrow comic books is when they appeared together in that Denny O’Neil/Neal Adams series

I am green and it’ll do fine
It’s beautiful and I think it’s what I want to be

The song has been performed by a number of folks including Frank Sinatra, and that guy born on the Emerald Isle, Van Morrison. still the best version starts off like this from the star of Sesame Street and the Muppet Show:

Greetings, Kermit the Frog here
And today I’d like to tell you a little bit
About the color green
Do you know what’s green?
Well I am for one thing
You see frogs are green, and I’m a frog
And that means I’m green, you see

JEOPARDY! question: What is chlorop
hyll?

ROG

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