A few years back a vicious rumor started spreading that the producers of Sesame Street were renaming the Cookie Monster "Veggie Monster" in order to send healthier messages about nutrition to kids.Â As snopes.com points out, this rumor is FALSE.
It is true that back in 2005, Sesame Street made a conscious decision to start including more programming dedicated to better health and nutrition.Â So while they didn't rename Cookie Monster "Veggie Monster," they did have him develop a liking for fruits and veggies.Â A Cookie is a Sometime Food was added to his repertoire of songs.
Sesame Street had a really funny bit with the Cookie Monster and Matt Lauer in August 2006:
I think part of the reason the rumor caught fire is how touchy many of us are about perceived encroaching political correctness.Â I think Sesame Street did the right thing here - morphing a cultural icon into "Veggie Monster" would've ruined it, but it makes absolute sense to use Cookie Monster as a teacher of junk food moderation.
Also check out Google's front page logo today, in honor of Sesame Street's 40th!