Timer, the "I hanker fer a hunk o' cheese" guy, was originally from a 1973 afterschool special

I have just learned that "Timer," the bulbous yellow character from those old animated Saturday morning healthy-eating PSAs, first appeared in a 1973 afterschool special called The Incredible, Indelible, Magical, Physical, Mystery Trip. Um, WHAT?! How did I not know this?

This mind-blowing discovery came about after I shared with friends an amusing conversation between me and my 15-year-old:

Just had an issue with my bank and SJ asked what was going on. I mumbled, "I'm steaming mad at dirt!" She was like… "Uh, what?" So I had to look this video up. Her response, "You're OLD!"

I included the appropriate Rug Doctor commercial:

That prompted a vigorous back and forth in the comments. People started sharing sayings from old ads, ones that they still quote. Things like "Calgon, take me away," "Move over, bacon," and "Pretty sneaky, sis!" Then "I hanker fer a hunk o' cheese" was posted and that's when my pal Kevin shared Timer's origin.

The Incredible, Indelible, Magical, Physical, Mystery Trip is described as an "animated special about two youngsters who are miniaturized and travel through their Uncle's body, to understand more about his health." Makes sense that Timer got the break-out role that he did.

But it didn't end there. In my zine this week, I shared the afterschool special and one of my readers wrote to tell me that the girl in it is Kim Richards, the childstar from Disney flicks (she played Tia in Escape to Witch Mountain, for example). The same Kim Richards who was in Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.