Most everyone is familiar with the term “six degrees of separation,” the notion that any two people can be connected to one another in no more than six steps. It was a concept created by Hungarian playwright Frigyes Karinthy in 1929, but most recently popularized by the game “Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon.”
But now Facebook would have us believe that thanks to social media, we can make that connection in just 3½ steps; each person on Earth is connected to every other person by an average of 3½ people. (As to what constitutes ½ a person, you’ll have to ask Facebook.)
So we decided to put the theory to the test. But instead of using a person, we’re using Martha’s Vineyard. And why be limited to just connecting to people — we want to see how many steps it takes to connect the Vineyard to just about anyone or anything you can think of.
We also thought it would only be fitting to start with Kevin Bacon. The only problem was, that turned out to be too easy: In 1996, Bacon made his directorial debut in a film called “Losing Chase,” which was set — you guessed it, on Martha’s VIneyard.
Instead we decided to look for something a little more challenging, and we tasked our crack research department with finding the degrees of separation between Martha’s Vineyard and – Snap, Crackle, and Pop.
Here’s how it works.
Snap, Crackle, and Pop
In the 1950s, advertising art director Clarence “Clare” Barnes worked on Madison Avenue on the Rice Krispies account. The Rice Krispies elves, Snap, Crackle, and Pop, have been the faces of the Rice Krispies brand since the 1930s, and while Clare didn’t create the elves, the ads he created helped make them household words. The Vineyard connection: When not living in New York, Clare and his family spent most of their time living in a rambling old house on Chappaquiddick.
First degree once removed:
Clare’s son, Clarence “Trip” Barnes, went to school in Manhattan, but spent almost every other waking moment on the Vineyard, and is today an Island institution. The only things more prolific than Black Dog T shirts on the Vineyard are Clarence A. Barnes Moving trucks.
Bonus: Here’s how you say Snap, Crackle, Pop in
Denmark — Pif, Paf, Puf
Finland — Riks, Raks, Poks
France — Cric, Crac, Croc
Germany — Knisper, Knasper, Knusper
Italy — Pif, Pof, Paf
Mexico — Pim, Pum, Pam
If you have any interesting Vineyard connections you’d like us to explore or you’d like to share with us, let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.