September 12th in nerd history: Smurfing awesome

Happy National Video Games Day! Parents everywhere now have an excuse to let their kids rot their damn brains. As for me, it’s an excuse to rot my own damn brain.

Video Games 80S GIF

Not only that, it’s also National Ants on a Log Day. Looks like I’m going to be busy, but well-fed.

This is The Reset Button from Classic Nerd, resetting your day.

September 12 in Nerd History

Here are five things that happened on September 12th for those who know that it’s up, up, down, down, left, right, left, right, B, A, Start.


Birthdays of honor: Paul Walker (1973), Hans Zimmer (1957), Yao Ming (1980), Jesse Owens (1913), Barry White (1944), Neil Peart (1952), Ian Holm (1931), Road Warrior Animal (1960), Ben Folds (1966).


In 1981 a certain theme song got in your head and still hasn’t left when The Smurfs cartoon was broadcast for the first time, bringing this strange Belgian comic to North American audiences — and with great success.

Running until 1989 and spawning an entertainment franchise that’s still churning out new content, Hanna-Barbera’s production was a Saturday morning staple for nearly a decade. It also taught a generation of kids how to curse without actually cursing. Smurfing incredible.


Another TV milestone happened today, this time in 1959, when Bonanza premiered on NBC.

The Western series, in which we got to see star Michael Landon grow up, is one of the longest-running live-action series ever, going for 14 seasons and 431 episodes. It was also the first regularly scheduled TV show to be broadcast in color.

And, not unlike The Smurfs, it had quite a memorable theme song.

For the curious, the title comes from a term miners used for a large and valuable mineral deposit.


Oh, you thought we were done with TV history? You fool!

It’s clear fall premieres are in full swing this time of year, as another iconic show with another extremely memorable theme song premiered today with The Monkees in 1966.

The artificially created band’s TV show only lasted for two years but went on to long-term success and cross-generational exposure with Saturday morning syndication. They also saw very real musical success, with three number one songs and over 75 million records sold worldwide.


In one of the few non-TV things that happened on September 12th, today sadly marks the passing of an icon.

Johnny Cash passed away today in 2003, 20 years ago, at the age of 71 from complications due to diabetes in Nashville, Tennessee.

It was less than four months after his wife, June Carter Cash, had passed away. In those four months, he added 60 songs to his canon of work, cementing Johnny’s legacy as one of the greatest musicians and songwriters in American history.