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Barney's Army was interactive television. Kids could write a letter (remember those?) with their birthday to have it read on the air. Once all of the names were read, there would be a text scroll of all the names with either The Beatles' Birthday or Stevie Wonder's Happy Birthday providing the soundtrack. In the days before email, it was exciting to see your name on the screen. It was like being famous for a brief, shining moment.

They called it "The Birthday Thing"...