Bill Leslie's Carolina Conversations

It's me! It's me!

Posted April 30, 2009

Do you know what happened on television 46 years ago this week? It was a memorable moment in the history of The Andy Griffith Show on CBS. A rascal in the truest sense rocked America’s funny bone.

You remember the incorrigible Ernest T. Bass, don’t you? This week in 1963 Ernest T. hurled his first rock through a window on The Andy Griffith Show. 20 more rocks would follow over the course of the highly popular television series. Five of those rocks had notes attached.

Ernest T. was a fictional character played by Howard Morris who died five years ago. Do you remember what he called Barney Fife? Do you recall Ernest T.’s catchphrase?  Who did he want to marry?  How many shows did he appear in on the series?  Please discuss.

The question for the day is: who is your favorite rascal of all time?  Please answer.

By the way, I apologize for the delay on the New Zealand series.  It will run all of next week beginning with a slide show.


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  • thecatsmeow May 1, 2009

    He talked about a girl named Rowena too. I also remember him playing the 'tv repairman' who comes out with Barney to the lake in 'Andy and Helen Have Their Day.'

  • wilfhh29 May 1, 2009

    I only had to read the title of this blog post to know the subject.

  • TheDude abides... May 1, 2009

    Old Aunt Mariah, jump in the fi-ah,
    Fire too hot, jump in the pot,
    Pot too black, jump in the crack,
    Crack too high, jump in the sky,
    Sky too blue, jump in canoe,
    Canoe too shallow, jump in the tallow,
    Tallow too soft, jump in the loft, Loft too rotten, jump in the cotton, Cotton so white she stay there all night.

  • tjdebord May 1, 2009

    "How do you do, Mrs. Wiley?"

  • fishnett5977 May 1, 2009

    His "It's me, It's me, It's Ernest T.!!! always made me laugh! The love of his life - Charlene. I loved the one where he thought he had her in a wedding gown and was fixing to get married! When he raised the veil it as BARNEY!!!lol I also loved to see Charlene's brothers. They NEVER smiled!!!lol
    My favorite rascal - Gilligan of Gillians Island. He wasnt into being mean but he could cause trouble by just being there!!!lol

  • khoggard May 1, 2009

    My favorite rascal of all time would have to be Ernest T. I love the Andy Griffith Show & now my 7 year old son does too. He likes it when he throws the rocks. I think my favorite episode with him in it was the one where he kept escaping from the jail & Andy & Barney couldn't figure out how he was doing it. Or maybe the one where he was trying to get an education - I love the borders he added - "Old Man Kelsey's Ocean & Old Man Kelsey's Woods." I cannot remember what he called Barney but I know he also said "It's me! It's me! It's Ernest T.!!!"

  • thefensk May 1, 2009

    Oh, I forgot, Grandma Ida on Malcolm in the Middle. Cloris Leachman was brilliant in that role. She didn't throw rocks but she did throw brownies at Christmas Carolers. "Don't eat those, they are for the carolers ..."

  • thefensk May 1, 2009

    Ernest T. Bass certainly set the standard. The Coyote is another good one. Other comedic foils came close, even if they maybe don't qualify as "rascals" ... Bill Daily did a pretty good job on both I Dream of Jeannie and The Bob Newhart Show as Roger Healey and Howard Borden.
    Who can forget Ted Baxter on Mary Tyler Moore!
    Kramer on Seinfeld ... there's a rascal!
    Grandpa on The Munsters was the rascal of the cast, always getting them all into trouble.

    One can not forget that Ernest T. Bass also played a prominent role in the Andy Griffith reunion movie as well.

  • EasyGoer May 1, 2009

    She called me a "creachture"—I ain't no "creachture"!!!

  • davidpmcknight Apr 30, 2009

    "Back Bay Boston"

    Take heart, Hurricane fans! Ernest T. Bass did such a good job saying politely: "No coffee, tea or punch for me, thank you," that Mrs. Wiley approached Andy saying something like: "Sheriff, you can't fool me," going on to add that she figured Ernest T. was not from anywhere around Mayberry but instead:

    "Strictly Back Bay Boston!"

    Just think if all Caniacs visiting Boston for the Canes-Bruins series could go around Boston Commons and Harvard Yard this weekend and leave the people of Beantown thinking that they must be natives of Back Bay Boston or anywhere else in Old New England for that matter!

    If this were to happen, we could say as Andy would phrase it: "Well, I'll be dog. If that don't beat anything I ever saw."

    It's a good thing Ernest T. didn't go to a hockey game. He would have really riled the refs--unless of course, the Hurricanes would "just give me a uniform" like in the show when he wanted to join the Army.

    David McKnight




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