By Heather Taylor
Every year on April 6th, the hippest tuna under the sea joins the world in celebrating Sorry Charlie Day. However, while the untrained eye might just see this holiday as a tribute to Charlie’s catchphrase, what they may not realize is that the day really honors how it feels to be rejected and rise above it.
Since his commercial debut in 1961, Charlie the Tuna has long been on a mission to show StarKist that he’s full of good taste. And who wouldn’t trust such a hip and cultured fish? As it turns out, Charlie’s ideas haven’t always caught on swimmingly with their team. In this 1962 spot, Charlie is heading to the surface to impress a tuna scout. He’s pretty confident he can reel ‘em in — after all, StarKist took in his brother-in-law last month! As it turns out, StarKist prefers tunas that taste good over tunas with good taste, but at least they’re polite in their refusal by attaching a note that says, “Sorry Charlie” to a fish hook.
Since then, the tagline has gone on to make waves as one of the most recognized catchphrases in the pop culture landscape. Charlie has faced his own ups and downs since as well, but goes through his rejections big and small with a smile.
If you’ve ever been rejected, come on over and sit next to Charlie today. He’ll be the first to tell ya that rejection is something we can all learn and grow from. Don’t let it stop you from fulfilling your dreams — after all, some of Charlie’s biggest accomplishments since the 1960s have included ringing the bell at the Wall Street Stock Exchange, swimming down the red carpet at the TV Land Awards®, being inducted into our Madison Avenue Walk of Fame, and even tossing his red beret into the Presidential race last year!
And how does the tuna of the hour feel about getting his own day to celebrate? We got the chance to speak to Charlie candidly who loves everything that this holiday represents, “Who wouldn’t love having their own day? For me, the best part of Sorry Charlie day is celebrating the success I’ve had! I could have said ‘go fish’ but instead, I’ve outlasted a 50+ year career with StarKist. I hope to inspire everyone to raise a fin to overcoming hurdles!”