Thursday, February 2, 2017


From Wikipedia:
Meadow Lemon (April 25, 1932 – December 27, 2015) was an American basketball player, actor, and Christian minister (ordained in 1986). From 1994, he served Meadowlark Lemon Ministries in Scottsdale, Arizona. For 22 years, he was known as the "Clown Prince" of the touring Harlem Globetrotters basketball team. He played in more than 16,000 games for the Globetrotters and was a 2003 inductee into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. When basketball legend Wilt Chamberlain was asked his opinion on the best player of all time, he responded, "For me it would be Meadowlark Lemon." Fellow Wilmington great Michael Jordan called Lemon a "true national treasure" and a personal inspiration in Jordan's youth.

Athough he played a few fictional roles as himself, Meadowlark was best known for playing himself.  Like George Burns, Jack Benny, and others, everybody always saw the real man as the character.

Here are the shows in which he touted his membership in the League of Themselves:

Diff'rent Strokes
- Feudin' and Fussin': Part 1 


At Arnold's suggestion, a TV producer gives Larry Alder an audition for a TV hosting job.  Part One of this crossover episode aired on 'Diff'rent Strokes' (1978) and Part Two aired on 'Hello, Larry' (1979). The 'Diff'rent Strokes' Season 2 DVD contains both episodes as a single, hour-long 'Diff'rent Strokes' episode, dropping the title and credit sequences from 'Hello, Larry'.

Hello, Larry 

Larry Alder is a 44-year-old divorcee in Portland, Oregon, raising his two teenage daughters and hosting a call-in psychology radio show.  Larry also hung out with legendary Harlem Globetrotter Meadowlark Lemon, who owned a Portland sporting goods store.

Crash Island 
(1981 TV Movie)
A plane full of children and young teens on the way to a swim meet, crashes into the ocean, leaving them and the crew stranded on an unknown island.

Here's Boomer
- Boomer and the Bucketeers 

Boomer meets a young man who was a rising basketball player who is now bitter that he is confined to a wheelchair. Boomer then gets Meadowlark Lemon who is in town with his team the Bucketeers to help him.

- Tommy Fouls Out 

Tommy gives up and quits the basketball team.

O'BSERVATION: What a coincidence that Meadowlark was in the area.  He was probably en route back to Portland from some gig.

There are a few other shows, like 'The Hollywood Squares' and 'The Merv Griffin Show', which don't carry much weight in being credits for his tally.  But they were incorporated into other TV shows so that it could be said that his fictional televersion was appearing on the fictional televersions of those TV shows.  So they do add flavor.

But when the rest of the Globetrotters flew out to help save the Gilligan's Island getaway retreat from a greedy billionaire (well, greedier than Mr. Howell), Meadowlark elected to stay behind in Portland.

Meanwhile, he does have a counterpart in the Tooniverse along with the rest of the Globetrotters.  They starred their own animated series and also crossed over with Scooby-Doo!

He also appeared as himself in plenty of blipverts, showing off his serlinguistic skills.  These would include: Footlocker, Burger King, Pepsi Cola, Dr. Pepper, Band-Aid, Safeway Food Stores, Boeing Aircraft, Revlon, Quencher Gum, the U.S. Postal Service and the Yellow Pages, Amoco, Delta, Ford Motor Credit, Gillette, Hydromatics, Pentair, Salvation Army, Boys and Girls Clubs, Sears, Teen Challenge, and Tropicana.  Best of all, he was also featured alongside Dick “Mr. Whipple” Wilson in Charmin’s famous “Please Don’t Squeeze The Charmin” Ads.

It's been over a year since Meadowlark Lemon passed away, but I held off so that I always have enough candidates in February to O'Bserve Black History Month.  Next year, per my brother's suggestion, I will induct Little Richard.  I'm just trusting it won't have to be a memorial tribute.

Welcome to yet another Hall of Fame, Meadowlark!

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