Household Hack #23 – Homemade Dust

Last week I got a surprise phone call from my nephew, informing me that he and his teenage friends were in the neighbourhood and wanted to stop by. For a split second I thought that maybe they wanted to “chill down” with a loose dude who owns two guitars and at least ten officially licensed NHL hockey jerseys, but it turns out they just wanted to borrow some throw pillows to do flips over. I’m embarrassed to admit that I worried they’d view our apartment as severely un-radical so I spent the five minutes before they arrived making the place as dope as possible. After putting some bottles of hot sauce on top of the toilet and scrawling “Food?” on the fridge using magic marker, I thought I was ready to go. But as I was pulling on my bathing suit as a final touch, I noticed our carefully curated and well-maintained bookshelf staring back at me, causing my stomach to lurch. There’s no way those hippers would think I was cool with so many fresh tomes in the house, but thankfully, while in the throes of desperation, my brain came up with a simple solution.

First, I clipped my fingernails and collected them into my shirt pocket that already had a piece of licorice hanging out, which I thought the boys would really dig. I then headed to the kitchen and replaced the pepper in my pepper grinder with the fingernails and a dash of all-purpose flour. I brought the pepper grinder to the book shelf and started grinding the fresh homemade dust all over the bookshelf and the books themselves. I probably could’ve used flour alone but since dust is made of old skin, I wanted to give mine an authentic human touch, knowing full well a teenager’s propensity toward “realness”.

I cracked the last of the concoction right as Jacobthy and his buddies barged in. It was a good thing I figured out this simple household hack because the first thing Jacobthy said to me was “Oh peace on Uncle G, those are some slick old books. My parents have some shiny ones in the study and me and the boys are gonna piss on them.com”. They only stayed for three minutes but they gave me a shout out on the fake LinkedIn profile they run and it made me feel young again. Try making your own dust at home!

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This year’s schedule (2015)

If it were up to me I wouldn’t publicly disclose my 2015 schedule, but if I don’t my parole officer can legally withdraw all smoothie privileges, so I don’t have much of a choice. Whatever man, laws are laws and I’ve come to terms with my punishment. I shouldn’t have forced that orphan to act as living doorbell no matter how many babes I was trying to impress.

Here you go Officer David, I’ll see you tomorrow for our check-in and don’t bother wearing sunglasses this time, Janice told me about your dread lock eyelashes and I don’t care.

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January

4th –  Take “dong mitten” invention to CES  ✓
18th –  Make sure radar still works. If it does, start tracking the McDonalds employee who complemented my watch by saying “Nice time, dude”.  ✓
29th –  Sing the national anthem in the shower WITHOUT musical accompaniment for once

Baby-Time-Clock-1

February

2nd – Start planning Pig Out // Wig Out 2015
4th – Write blog about how Back To The Future 2 took place in 2015 and how that’s pretty nuts when you think about it
22nd – Go to mattress store and see if they sell big nets

March

12th – Tie dye toilet paper in advance of the equinox
13th – Throw a pizza party that celebrates the oven for once
29th – Plan my birthday party but don’t rent anything until Cousin Theo gets back to you about the availability of his underwear show

April

1st – Assure mom that I can handle my own debit card
6th – Knock on every yellow door I see. If someone answers say “Is Mr. Piss in?”
18th – Go to the optometrist and arrange for a condom to fall out of my pocket during eye exam then say joke “gonna need to be able to see so I can use one of these”

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May

3rd – Allow a weirdo taste my blood
7th – Learn braille so I can read my wife’s goosebumps, which that psychic said held secrets
11th – Write a play,  a novel, a movie, a video or SOMETHING called Freckles Are Planets

June

1st – Run the sound of someone walking in flip flops through an oscilloscope to prove theory that resulting sound wave will resemble sun with shades on
8th – Write think piece about how we need couch potatoes more now than ever
20th – Learn a new word but don’t use it until you’re confident for heaven’s sake!

charlotte-olympia-on-time-clock-face-suede-boots

July

5th – follow a bee around for a few hours but don’t give it a name in case I fall in love with it
9th – Throw another book in the lake but don’t bother trying to skip it this time to avoid fine
10th – Admit to my landlord that I’m not Kevin Nealon’s son
31st – Ask bank teller if it’s a good deal to trade Bill my two gold bricks for his surfboard that Antonio Banderas spat on

August

2nd – Autograph every crab at the beach
6th – Go to The Keg restaurant and dress like beer so I can say “the beer is in the keg” then have wife snap photo of hostess’ reaction then go bananas with it, social-media wise.
11th – Go to someone’s funeral and nose around a bit

carp

September

9th – Make sure Pig Out // Wig Out 2014 is much better than Pig Out // Wig Out 2014 (need more ACTIVITIES)
22nd – Find the guy who uploaded the video of me licking a Playboy magazine to Tumblr and thank him
30th – Finally learn how to play Mortal Kombat and passively let my book club know

October

2nd – Use the year’s hair clippings to create convincing Burton Cummings Halloween costume
4th – Pay for a stranger’s lunch then demand something in return
13th – Investigate the runes that appeared on my bathroom mirror last Easter and don’t be disappointed if they don’t specifically reference me.
27th – Visit childhood elementary school and see if semen stain is still on the clock

November

1st – design mouse trap that looks like wallet, take photo of dead mouse/rat in trap, send to TIME Magazine
10th – Watch Forrest Gump backwards and start podcast about the experience called The Gump Forest.
19th – Ask busker with the electric guitar that has snot all over it to create theme song for Gump Forest podcast

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December

6th – Keep chipping away at  new noodle design and stop being so close minded!
11th – Learn Italian and finally find out what the hell grandpa is talking about
21st – Sleep in pile of resumes so that potential employers catch my scent early on
25th – Go out and fuck shit up, no cops around today

Famous movies scenes without FX

Computers are the most popular machines in the world right now and they’ve make every aspect of life easier from booking a vacation to learning trumpet. The movie industry has loved computers since day one and has utilized them to make their films bigger and better, taking us to new worlds and introducing us to fantastical creatures who if real would make us shit our pants.

Here are some rare images of cinema’s most iconic scenes with their computer effects removed. You won’t believe your eyes, I’m so serious.

The Return of the Jedi (1983)

By the time the third film in the effects-heavy Star Wars trilogy was released, George Lucas really knew his way around a mouse. In a famous scene toward the end of the film, our hero Luke Skywalker fences his brother Darth while the Old Master watches. After they shot the scene, Lucas realized his actors didn’t look old enough so he tinkered with it until he got to this:

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Unbelievably, this is what the scene originally looked like:

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Reservoir Dogs (1992)

Director Quentin Tarantino is a real purist, often sleeping on piles of film and using a clapperboard to cut his fresh pasta. He was vehemently against tinkering with the famous slow walk scene in Reservoir Dogs but when renowned street artist BARF threatened to sue Tarantino unless his signature tag was removed from the background, the director was forced to use computer effects to cover it up. Here’s a still from the original scene, as shot:

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Tarantino and BARF eventually became friends and even though it didn’t make it into the movie, the tag was seen by millions of people when MoMA in New York featured it in its “St. Paint” exhibition:

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The Lion King (1994)

Disney struck gold with the release of its animated tale about a lion trying not to die, but production of the film wasn’t all cuddles and heirloom tomatoes. The use of a brand new technology where live action footage could be easily transformed into animation proved time-consuming and very expensive, causing then Disney CEO Michael Eisner to call the production “a fuckin’ tit tumor”. Here’s the final version of one of the film’s most iconic images:

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Now compare that to the same scene before digital artists went to work:

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You may recognize the young actor as Foxcatcher’s Mark Ruffalo, who had been interning at Disney at the time.

North by Northwest (1959)

Director Alfred Hitchcock bought the world’s first movie computer prior to shooting this classic film starring Cary Grant, hoping to use it in a key scene where the hero is chased by an airplane:

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Unfortunately, the invention of the airplane was a still a few months away but Hitchcock had heard about the technology through Wired Magazine and simply had to include it in the film. To motivate the famously fickle Grant to act like he was actually scared, Hitchcock had the three things the actor feared most and had them chase him only to be replaced digitally with the plane during post-production. Here’s that same iconic shot with its effects removed:

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CG’s greatest fears — mallards, grizzlies and his nephew Barney.

The Goonies (1985)

The Goonies was the result of George Lucas daring his friend Stephen Spielberg to make a movie about “a group of destitute kids and their mongoloid”. After completing the dare and looking at the footage, Spielberg thought the kids didn’t look shitty enough, so he shot fresh footage with new actors and digitally added them to existing scenes using USC’s then brand-new computer lab. Here’s a famous shot of the Goonies team that America fell in love with:

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And here’s the original group in the same shot before they were digitally replaced:

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The Shining (1980)

Stanley Kubrick is known for shooting take after take of the same scene, often frustrating actors and crew. When shooting the scene where Jack Nicholson goes crazy and tries to eat his wife, Kubrick has the actor break through the door 900 times before calling it a day. As the day wore on Jack would sip on a potent combination of castor oil and dark rum causing him to lose his concentration. It got so bad that he would forget his lines mid-take so Kubrick was forced to find creative ways to have him remember what to say. In the take that was ultimately used in the film, Nicholson was 27 Oil Drums deep and couldn’t tell the camera from the little boy who played Donnie, so Kubrick scribbled the famous line on the door frame for Jack’s reference. Here is what the scene looks like without digital editing where you can see Jack looking over and reading the text, that gave the scene an extra level of creepiness once it was removed:

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**Bonus** The Matrix (1999) Original Test Footage:

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Move Review — The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies

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Hobbit-Heads worldwide got an extra special Christmas orange this year in the form of The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, the third and final Hobbit film. This new Hobbit movie is the perfect dessert after a satisfying meal of two other Hobbit movies. If you’re confused it’s because there were three Rings movies that featured more way more Hobbits than The Hobbit and to top that off, the Lord of the Rings of the Rings movies isn’t even a Hobbit.

This baby girl picked up right where we left off with the dragon burning the water city and the dwarves and the Hobbit waiting around. Then a dad kills the dragon and you think “oh the adventure is over, the gold is won”, but rather than worry where their next turnip is going to come from, beings from all over the country want some gold for themselves or maybe as a present for their sweeties so they walk to the mountain for some war.

There are supposed to be five armies fighting for the gold — the pretty elves, the funny dwarves, the boring humans, the outrageous orcs and I guess the Hobbit who manages to survive even though he’s from a town full of pussies.

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The orcs were extra scary but still managed to be killed by the hobos and children from the burned town, little dwarves wearing very heavy hats and a Hobbit who doesn’t even wear boots. This was making me mad but then I realized that the reason the orcs don’t fight well is because they don’t train! They sit around and accuse each other of being gay and wait until their big boss says “run”. Meanwhile, the little guys who kill them drape themselves in magic clothes and train all day, no joking around until after supper, that kind of thing. And where’s the motivation? If the orcs win a battle they still have to go back to the dungeon and sleep in their armour, it’s not like they have pajamas. It’s like a goth on Christmas–even if they want to get into their jammies they can’t or else they won’t be goth anymore despite how pure the flannel is. You think there are post-battle treats in the dungeons? Yeah right. Maybe a clean rat will wander in and they can split it but even still, no one would share because they feel too much pressure to be rude.

We know that everything works out fine because this movie happens before the Rings movies that we’ve all already seen. That’s cool though, it’s about the journey not the destination and if there’s one little boy who knows that all too well it’s Bilbo Baggins of the Shire, the title Hobbit of the film.

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I saw The Hobbit for free because Uncle Dave was running the IMAX projector and snuck me in. I got to press “play” in the control booth and that kind of power made me feel like Gandalf, my favourite wizard. I ate no snacks but got to leave my jacket in the booth so that I felt very free and comfortable in my seat, not worrying about any opportunists looking to pinch the jackets of Hobbit fans whose eyes were glued to the screen full of creatures. I’d give this movie a “I might as well finish the trilogy” out of 10 and would recommend it to someone who wants to annoy a friend who hates modern filmmaking.

Advent Calendar 2014 — DECEMBER 25

Well, this is it, the end of the fuckin’ rainbow. Enjoy your last treat but make sure you’ve consumed all these other ones first. Merry Christmas! 

December 1               December 9               December 17
December 2              December 10             December 18
December 3              December 11              December 19
December 4              December 12             December 20
December 5              December 13             December 21
December 6              December 14             December 22
December 7              December 15             December 23
December 8              December 16            December 24


You regain consciousness in the conference room of your office where you work a boring job. This is the last place you remember being before starting your adventure. The improv troupe is finishing its pitch with a fun little game called “guess the penis”. Was it all a dream? Doubtful. You can’t fall asleep unless you plug your nose and you’ve been snot-free all month.

The troupe finishes and exits the conference room, but not before stopping at the coffee table and stuffing their pockets with sugar and used tea bags. You’re not sure if it’s another bit or if they’re full of shit but that’s the least of your concerns. Your co-workers start muttering to each other about how they’d rather the company spend money to hire a graffiti artist to paint new male/female signs on the bathroom doors than on improv lessons from a bunch of giddy fuckers. Normally you’d jump at the chance to gab with the gang but you find yourself utterly confused.

Your head is swimming and you don’t notice your friend Gina waving in your face.

Gina Bioffo, your work friend

Gina Bioffo, your work friend

“Hello? Hello?! Snap out of it. What’s wrong with you?”

You do indeed “snap out”, rub your eyes and look down to see you’re wearing your regular office clothes. You’re definitely back for real this time and a flood of relief passes over you as well as an urge to go shopping. You smile at Gina.

“I think I had a crazy dream or something. Sorry, I’m totally out of it,” you say.

“Were you in that Jesus thing too?” Gina asks.

“What? Uh, maybe. You mean the Advent calendar adventure?”

“Yeah it happened to me too. I asked the glow straight up what was going on and it told me I was auditioning to be the new Jesus. Pretty weird. I didn’t get the job, obviously, and I guess you didn’t either. I saw you in line there. Fucked up, eh?”

You don’t understand why she’s being so nonchalant and you also don’t understand how any of what you did could be about Jesus, save for the Advent part. You tell this to Gina and she says:

“I thought it was pretty obvious, I mean you had to practice a lot of patience, co-exist with Santa Claus, perform some magic, meet tons of people, kiss people you’d rather not kiss, help out the less fortunate, talk to animals, do a bit of farming, meet with aliens, not eat a whole lot, be focused on your hair, that sort of thing. Sounds like Jesus to me. As for me being so calm? They don’t call me ‘Chill Gates’ for nothing. Come on, lets go draw.”

You’re not entirely satisfied and still wonder why you, Gina and those others were chosen to audition but some things in life are best left unanswered. Ho ho ho, it’s over.


DVD COMMENTARY

Thanks for reading this year’s Advent calendar. It got tough toward the end because I had to do Christmas shopping and all sorts of other shit so maybe I rushed it a bit but not bad for making it up as I went along. I hope you weren’t let down. I was going to make the ending about the improv troupe being the best in the world and the entire adventure was you improvising with them or something, but the Jesus angle is more wholesome I think. Thanks again and Happy Holidays! I’ll be back in the new year with jokes, gags, spoofs and essays that will tickle your groan zone.

Highlights

I liked the alien part a lot, the social media brainstorm and the kid who showed you what garbage can to throw up in.

Lowlights

The part in the movie theatre and chevy chase on the street were my least favourite I think.


POST CREDITS SCENE

It’s a few days later and you walk by a church. Because you have full-on proof that at least some of what church loves is real, you pop in. A choir is practicing a song about not stealing. You freeze when you gaze about the altar to where the cross usually hangs. Instead, there’s a painting that looks like this:

elf

Oh no! The elf known as Phandor must be the new Jesus. That sucks.

Advent Calendar 2014 — December 24

There’s no going back when you use a real Advent calendar. That’s why this fake one that’s all about adventure is so good. Here are all the treats, laid out the way you like:

December 1               December 9               December 17
December 2              December 10             December 18
December 3              December 11              December 19
December 4              December 12             December 20
December 5              December 13             December 21
December 6              December 14             December 22
December 7              December 15             December 23
December 8              December 16


According to the last date gate, you’ve finally reached Christmas Eve. Congratulations! You’re starting to get nervous about the end because you forgot to throw out the raw pork you let your little nephew play with the night before you vanished into this adventure and it’s still sitting on the kitchen counter. Oh well, the spiders will probably get it before it rots anyway.

You’re at the front of a long line in some sort of infinite white space. You look over your shoulder and see that everyone in line is dressed exactly the same as you — white cotton pants and shirt and red canvas shoes. Haircuts have been a big part of your journey and same goes for everyone else, apparently. You’re seeing styles that defy all logic and hope that yours is impressing them as much as they’re impressing you.

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It’s kinda like this, I guess

Up ahead in the nothingness, a light glows as if to urge you forward. You take two steps and everyone behind you vanishes, leaving you and the glow. It reminds you of when you got knee surgery and they gave you way too much morphine because you lied and said you weighed 400 pounds.

“What have you learned, child?” booms the glow. It sounds like a cartoon Hippo voiced by Christian Slater.

I’m not sure how old you are but you probably aren’t a kid so you get pissed that this thing more or less called you a small fry.

“On this fucked up trip? Geez I don’t know — always look around for dates in December, don’t mess with Gary Oldman, Santa sucks but his elves are even worse, aliens are nicer than most of my friends, that new Chevy Chase joint probably isn’t worth seeing… um, I’m still no good at puking, I have a high tolerance for Adderall, I’m pretty good at brainstorms, I don’t know, stuff like that.”

Saying it out loud makes you realize that you’ve covered a lot of ground on this adventure, and that your resume is going to look great once you update it with these new experiences.

“One final question: do you get bored easily?”

“Yeah, it’s one of my biggest issues,” you respond without thinking. Maybe you should’ve lied.

“It is good that you did not lie but you still do not have what it will take. Thank you for your time.”

The glow gets brighter and brighter until you have to shield your eyes. Then everything goes black. Then blue, then a colour you’ve never seen before that makes green look like fuckin’ grey. Then “December 24″ flashes in your face like, a million times.

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What did that thing mean about not having what it takes? I think you’ll find out tomorrow and hopefully you won’t be too disappointed.

Advent Calendar 2014 — December 23

First time on the Internet? These blue words are links to the other Advent calendar entries. You sort of have to read them first. Can’t get these in book stores.

December 1               December 9               December 17
December 2              December 10             December 18
December 3              December 11              December 19
December 4              December 12             December 20
December 5              December 13             December 21
December 6              December 14             December 22
December 7              December 15
December 8              December 16


You materialize into a large church, finding yourself standing at the back, gazing up at the amazing stained glass:

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You thought the autograph on the church flyer might bring to you another film set or maybe a memorabilia shop, but whatever, in the words of your father, “church can be fun if you imagine it being a playground for people who don’t watch TV.”

At the front of the church a guy in robes is talking about Christmas.

“On that cold night, Jesus was born and the angels sang and Santa was not there. The wise men presented the babe with gold, frankincense, myrrh and a little hat that one of their wives knit that has a cute rhino on it. Let us now sing today’s feature hymn. For those of you who cannot sing, please find a pair of corduroy pants underneath the pews which you may use to make fun scraping sounds to the beat.”

The congregation pulls out their hymn books and a few people grab the pants. You look up at the hymn board and see this:

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Nice, you’ll only have to stay here a few minutes.

The organist starts ticklin’ and everyone starts singing and scraping pants. You pick up a hymnbook and find a page labelled “December 23″. You figure you might as well belt a few bars before getting out. The song goes like this:

Bethlehem Snow

I was there, I saw the birth, the new King brought to this Earth
The little town of Bethlehem was radiating mirth

But I sold rugs and had to split, my camel packed and ready
I said “goodbye!”, ate some figs and rode on, fast and steady

Before the gates, the sky went dark and a chill filled the air
I looked up to the stars above and white shit fell on my hair

“What the hell?” I asked Denis, my brown camel strong and true
But he just smiled, licked his lips and dropped some sandy poo

Chorus:
Snow in Bethlehem is bullshit even on Christmas Day
You get real cold, your feet get wet and cows eat frozen hay
Women wear more and beer ain’t refreshing and I don’t own a hat
I had to kill my camel Denis and wrap myself in his fat

Now I’d seen a lot of things, including bearded chicks
But it never snows in Bethlehem so I assumed dirty tricks

I punched a man who walked on by because he looked real dumb
By then the snow was four feet deep and my balls were getting numb

I ate some snow because it was free and all the world went black
It wasn’t snow but instead was bleach that had fallen from my sack

Chorus:
Snow in Bethlehem is bullshit even on Christmas Day
You get real cold, your feet get wet and cows eat frozen hay
Women wear more and beer ain’t refreshing and I don’t own a hat
I had to kill my camel Denis and wrap myself in his fat

You’ve been to a lot of Christmas services and once sold personalized, old timey Bibles at an amusement park but you’ve never heard this song before. You especially like the kicking beat that sounded more or less like this:

As soon as you sing the last words loud and proud, you start to disappear and feel good knowing that you spent at least a bit of time in church around Christmas. Two more days until you either die or go back home, who knows? Find out more tomorrow!

Last minute gift ideas

Yeah right! You should be done by now. Why should I help you? The whole point of a gift is to thoughtfully acknowledge one’s existence by providing them with a material item or experience relevant to their interests, hopes or dreams. I shouldn’t have even had to explain that, you idiot. Since you’ve once again neglected to come up with your own gift ideas, I’m going to help the people who have to put up with you.

Hey friends of last minute shopping buttholes, when faced with someone looking for last minute gift tips, retort with one of more of the following smart-ass quips:

“Who doesn’t love nutrients?”

“Give them the gift of life”

“Last year’s calendar had some really cute Wednesdays”

“Feel free to grind up parts of my Christmas tree. It will sort of look like weed, man”

“Does she like lingerie? It’s easy to make your own out of J-Cloths”

“A can of soup can easily double as fake vomit”

“A single cigarette may start a love affair that will last a lifetime”

“Two words — onions”

“Give her a new name. I thought of a good one — Bist”

“I always go with something authentic from planet Earth”

“Sticks and stones may break my bones but gravel is all over the place and is free”

“Make some ice and pretend it’s a beautiful crystal. Then get the hell out of there”

Above all, Christmas is about roast birds and shiny balls hanging from a fat, sappy tree so don’t sweat the gifts too much. HA. Not true. Christmas is 90% gifts, 10% visits.

If you’re currently hiding in your closet to avoid Uncle Stewart’s famous penis noogies, enjoy this collection of past holiday writings courtesy of this website and the man who tried to make it look good.

Advent Calendar 2014 — December 22

Stop, drop and roll, then sit, logon and surf. Then read the previous Advent adventure entries, roll, drop, then read today’s. 

December 1               December 9               December 17
December 2              December 10             December 18
December 3              December 11              December 19
December 4              December 12             December 20
December 5              December 13             December 21
December 6              December 14
December 7              December 15
December 8              December 16


You’re walking down a decrepit downtown street in a city that looks a lot like Jackson, Mississippi. You won a trip there through the famous “Win a Trip to Jackson” contest that Pringles ran a few years ago. Remember those commercials?

Anyway, up ahead a beggar is seeking change or maybe something else like food or juice. When you get closer you recognize the man as actor Chevy Chase. Looks like you’ve been transported into the movie you were hoping to see the preview for. Pretty cool that you get to meet another celebrity on this journey, the first being Gary Oldman back on December 2. Your career number of celeb encounters has now doubled, the first two being Cheri Oteri and Stone Cold Steve Austin who you saw on a date once when you used to valet cars during university.

“Spare any treats?” Chevy asks with that classic wide-eyed face he sometimes uses.

CGDD pic

You move to check your pockets and realize that the outfit you’ve been wearing doesn’t have any. Had you noticed this earlier you would’ve totally had those aliens sew you some.

“How about a joke instead?” you respond.

“I can’t eat one of those but jokes are the candy of the soul,” Chevy says.

You kind of expected him to say “no” and scowl at you, so now you have to come up with a joke. You kind of wish you hadn’t thrown out that “Big Book of Common Gags” that your niece gave you last Halloween. You rely on your natural wit instead.

“How many… uh… how many Thomas Edisons does it take to… screw… I mean invent a lightbulb?”

“Well just one I would suppose,” Chevy says with a smirk. “That’s pretty funny actually.”

“No, wrong. It’s uh… two. Two Thomas Edisons. One to invent the lightbulb and another to… umm… another to market it and… test it?” you stumble. Man, that sucked.

“Sounds like you’re in more trouble than I am and I’m in big trouble. If I don’t get to St. Louis by noon tomorrow my kids are going to explode.”

You had read about the movie’s plot on a small-time Hollywood blog run by a guy who calls himself “Philm” and thought it sounded pretty cool but now you’re not so sure.

Chevy produces a flyer from the breast pocket of the burlap duster he’s got on.

12-december-22-2013-luke-126-27-celebrate-jesus-at-christmas-1-638

“Take this. Father Ben helped me realize the true meaning of Christmas and taught me enough piano to win the jazz contest, which I’ll need to do to be able afford to buy my wife back from the hackers. After I get my kids back of course.”

BINGO. The Advent date gate that should lead to your next, stupid adventure. You wish he hadn’t further ruined the plot of the movie but it sounds like dog shit so you’ll probably skip it anyway.

“Thanks a lot mister. Can you autograph it for me?” you ask.

“Of course, of course.”

Chevy takes a lump of coal out from under his hat and scribbles something on the flyer. He hands it back.

auto

You were hoping he’d sign it “C. Chase” but since you’re actually in a movie you suppose it makes sense. Weird name for a character though.

The autograph starts to glow and you realize that it represents this phase’s Advent treat. You start to disappear and smile knowing this thing is almost over because you’re tired of doing it every day.

Advent Calendar 2014 — December 21

Unlike a night out at Red Lobster, these previous Advent entries are totally FREE.

December 1               December 9               December 17
December 2              December 10             December 18
December 3              December 11              December 19
December 4              December 12             December 20
December 5              December 13
December 6              December 14
December 7              December 15
December 8              December 16


Bet you thought you were going to end up in a chocolate factory! Instead, you’re seated in the middle row of an empty movie theatre. Did you know that chocolate accounts for 56% of all concession stand sales across major American theatre chains? If you didn’t that’s fine because it’s probably not true, but the fact remains that chocolate is a major piece of the movie going experience, which is why the Advent chocolate that the aliens gave you, brought you here.

Speaking of which, you give your head a stroke, checking to see if the hairstyle that E.T. gave you survived the trip. It feels like strands of denim, so yep, it’s still there. You hope it survives all the way home because you’re sure your cousins will get jealous at the annual family Christmas party and it’s definitely their turn. Last year they showed up wearing elbow pads and everyone went nuts. The only other time you felt that jealous was when your local library got Blu-rays before you.

You wouldn’t mind catching a flick right now and hope that in this dimension they got The Hobbit because you like any story where smaller guys don’t complain.

The house lights start to dim, the curtain rises and the projector fires up.

Empty Movie Theater and Screen --- Image by © Corbis

Fuckin’ typical. You don’t even get to see the previews. You were really hoping to catch a glimpse of that new Chevy Chase movie where he plays against type and portrays a poor guy who isn’t cool.

You reluctantly approach the screen and decide to cause a little mischief by punching a hole through it. If you’re not going to be able to see The Hobbit, no one will. Instead of making a perfect, fist-sized puncture, you hand goes through the screen without making as much as a scratch. You quickly understand that this is a Last Action Hero type situation, take a deep breath and walk through the screen into nothingness. Lights, camera, acting!