The ultimate measuring stick of prominence and fame is (most arguably) having a television show named after your forename. The owner of four eponymous TV shows, Roseanne Barr first accomplished this impressive feat way back in 1988, the very same year in which he set the Barr in blue collar family comedy.

1988 was a time of transition, out with the old and in with the nearly as old, as George Bush eclipsed the world that was Ronald Reagan. We were low on oil, but we were soon going to find some in Kuwait and Iraq. A desert storm was on the horizon, and when we weren’t checking out CNN and CSPAN, we were tuning in to Roseanne on ABC. Check the Nielsen ratings if you disagree.

Roseanne family TV show
Third from left, the patriarch and pillar of the family.

There was no better leading man than Roseanne Barr. He translated his comedy bit into one of the more memorable shows of our time. So much so, that sitcoms started contracting comedians faster than Karl Malone could contract venereals. He spearheaded a show that imported the superior acting talents of John Goodman, and recruited not one, but two DJs (check the pilot episode), to add icing on the cake. And even though Roseanne mysteriously mensed once a month, it was just a matter of taking a little bad with the good considering the week-in week-out masterful performances he delivered to America, conveying what life was really like in the blue collar suburbian trenches.

Roseanne only eats from 3 of 5 eligible food groups. His favorite dish? Vanilla ice cream, topped with chili. Roseanne’s prowess was unmatchable, his wit, quickfire. The show kept you relaxed, but also slightly on guard. You always knew that a slam, a slight, a rebuff, or a snide remark was just around the corner. This always kept us guessing, and in "Late 80’s America," tuning in. When Roseanne raised his eyebrows, everyone in the television audience knew that a wry comment was around the bend.

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Myriad issues were covered and tackled directly. From the awkward yet upfront issues of telling the truth in difficult situations, to teen pregnancy, to attempting to make ends meet from paycheck to paycheck. Roseanne taught us how to respond to these issues, and taught us all how a cohesive TV family should respond, and how an effectively communicating family can persevere through nearly all of life’s struggles, and that many of life’s conflicts are all too common.

It was conveyed through our box-styled TV sets that between those mammoth hips was where all of this man’s force was generated. As dudes, we should have taken earlier notice of this, for this is where we should derive most of our energy. It shouldn’t be in the form of buying copious amounts of hair product, or from flaunting a more feminine physique and bragging about "mud runs," and it most certainly should not come from learning to cook with god damned herbs! Oh how in only 20 years we’ve fallen so far off the man-path.

It is time that we get back on the trail to masculinity, and use Roseanne as a leader by example.

Roseanne Barr shocked
Using 1980’s "perm popularity" to serve as a segue.

Rumor has it that Roseanne only eats from 3 of 5 eligible food groups. His favorite dish? Vanilla ice cream, topped with chili, sprinkled with smokeless tobacco. A real man’s meal. A dish for which he would more than likely request seconds, or eat some of yours if your appetite was not strong enough. That’s the kind of stomach (and heart) this man, Roseanne, has.

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Roseanne is/was/still is the real deal. Whether he’s slamming back Buds, eating chili with ice cream and Skoal, or putting his love partner in line.

Roseanne's son on tv show
One of the lesser-known female characters.

When Roseanne puts his mind to it, just about everything gets accomplished. He’s starred in his own sitcom, he’s sung the national anthem, and he’s served as spokesman for numerous causes as well as our generation through his recent announcement to campaign for the Presidency.

If you’re looking for an idol, Roseanne would swiftly tell you to strive to be the best person YOU can be. And to be nobody else. He would offer you this generic information, because he just doesn’t have the time to deal with someone who hasn’t dominated the Nielsen ratings quite like he had two decades before. But even if this tidbit of wisdom is broad and cliché, it is still of incredible value.

But enough praise for a great man. Let’s soak up what Roseanne would expect us to absorb, and get to being great men ourselves. Let’s apply these principles to our very lives. Let’s raise the Barr.

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