You are currently browsing the monthly archive for October 2009.
Ah pranks. I do love me a good prank.
Maybe I’m old fashioned but I think they’ve lost something lately.
Practical jokes used to be about finding the very edge of what someone is willing to believe and then convincing them into being just gullible enough to jump off that edge of belief with dramatic and comic results.
“Jackass” and the like changed all of that. The psychology is less important now – it’s all about extremes.
Here’s an example from Japan (with thanks to Epstein) where a guy thinks he’s part of a documentary on telephone scammers and then this happens:
Better or worse than the old practical jokes they’d do on “T.V. Bloopers and Practical Jokes”? I dunno but I do know this:
Putting dog shit in your girlfriend’s face? Never a good idea – prank or not.
Be kind to your girlfriend. Show some respect. Otherwise…
Ok, enough with the monkey funny.
You know what is really funny that you didn’t know was funny and didn’t probably want to know was funny because you didn’t need to see it?
Turtles having sex:
You know what’s funnier?
Turtles with poor eyesight/mate selection skills:
I would like to present the awesome prank funniness that is: MAN BAT!
Always looking for the cutting edge in saving you from boredom, I recently discovered this little gem.
This guy is so bored that he comes up with the ingenious idea to add a little sparkle to his life.
Vodpod videos no longer available.
No, he’s not dead. Just knocked out.
Curiosity claims yet another victim.
I don’t recommend this as a way to cure your boredom but hopefully the laugh you got from this video helped.
It’s been a while since the electric pickle so here are some more goodies courtesy the science of awesome.
Back in high school, before I dropped all my science courses, I learned that all matter doesn’t just come in the form of solids, liquids, and gases.
And then I was all like, “Who cares, man? I don’t need to learn this crap. What’s it gonna matter? Lets skip class and smoke butts.”
Skipping class and smoking butts was a far more important discipline to master than chemistry.
If only I had stuck around for the stuff about non-Newtonian fluids.
Here’s the really short explanation: Non-Newtonian fluids aren’t quite liquids and they aren’t quite solids (blood is one of them).
I know, I know. “Who cares, man?”
You will once you watch this dude basically walk on water:
Cool – but when are you going to have half a ton of cornstarch to dump in your neighbor’s pool while they’re away on vacation?
It also has useful applications. A material called D3O (created by a company with the same name) has been introduced with practical applications that include everything from ballet shoes to body armor.
More info (and throw-your-iPod-against-a-wall-and-then-off-a-building-goodness) in this video:
It’s funny, the things you forget.
Time’s never been of very much interest to my brain. Not in a traditional way at least. Somewhere along the line I started counting time in shows instead of years, episodes instead of months, script drafts instead of weeks and pages instead of days…
It’s an odd thing when someone asks you what you were doing five years ago and you count back shows to figure it out. Even more odd is the fact that, despite the obvious personal importance I put on my work, I don’t remember it sometimes. Not a word of it.
There are these inexplicable gaps. Sometimes whole story lines of episodes I wrote wander out of my mind and I find myself at imdb.com looking up my own stuff to piece together my personal narrative.
And no, it isn’t the bad episodes that I forget – often those are the most memorable. It seems to be completely random. They wink in and out of my memory on any given day as they feel like it.
Maybe I’m just losing my shit.
But it’s funny, the things you remember.
Equally inexplicably, I can remember specific lines of specific scripts clear as the day I saw them oxed by the xerox onto 20lb. letter paper in the production office.
Most of those lines aren’t mine.
Here’s one of my favorites that’s almost a decade old:
“Sometimes the place you go when you run away turns out to be the place where you belong.”
Nice turn of a phrase, that. I like it because it’s true. Take it from these guys:
These are the dwarves of Kunming, China. Tired of being mistreated by big people, they turned their collective backs on the world and created their own place to call home. More on that story here.
Here’s another story that embodies that quote above.
Meet one of the, “Asgarda”, – a tribe of women 150 strong who have carved out a home for themselves in the Carpathian Mountains of Ukraine. Story goes that, tired of the mistreatment by men (abuse, sex trade, etc.), they banded together to form their own society.
No, they aren’t into knitting and needle point – they practice traditional martial arts, boxing and train with battle axes.
They are so cool.
I don’t know if it’s a hoax or not but I don’t care. Because they are that cool.
Full story here
And, if you’re wondering, Derek Schreyer is the guy I quoted up above. It was a line he dropped into an ep. of 15/Love. He’s a great writer and, more importantly, he’s good people. If you’re curious you can check out his rap sheet here
He’s been working his ass off on a new show, “18 to Life”. It’s out January on CBC and, from what I’ve seen, it’s well worth checking out.
If you’re reading this, break a leg, sir.
There are few certainties in life but there is one thing that I know for sure: monkey = funny.
Like gravity, it is a law of the universe and as important as E=mc2.
Another rule of comedy is that drunk equals funny (but drunk comedy has to be a specific kind to work).
The drunk equation is: real drunk + social distance + nonviolence = funny. (incidentally, fake drunk never seems to be funny).
I know you’re busy so, instead of forcing you to take the time to type the five letters “d-r-u-n-k” into the YouTube search box, I offer you a recent viral video to illustrate my point.
You many have already seen this smashed dude on a quest to get even more smashed but you might not have seen it edited to appear like a silent film:
Good times. Good, good times.
Now, because you’re smart, you’re already ahead of me thinking, “If drunk is funny and monkey is funny then ergo drunk + alcoholic Vervet monkeys = apex of comedy”
Bingo. You should be writing in a comedy room (but I’d drop that “ergo” shit, nobody says that without sounding pretentious).
To illustrate that point, here is a cool vid via dellanew (the other contributer/editor on wakkanew):
It’s no secret that there are scads of things angling to capture and subvert your attention and perception. Go for a walk down the street and the point’s proven.
The good news is that we’re equipped with fantastic brains that continuously adjusts, growing more and more adept at filtering the every growing bombardment of stimuli we receive. Most interesting (to me at least) is that brains don’t just DEAL with change, there are scores of studies that show they THRIVE on it.
Here’s an interesting example. Watch this video and see if you have the concentration and focus to see all the passes. Takes one minute and 9 seconds but I promise it will likely blow your mind.
Nope, I didn’t see it either.
It’s an amazing spot but what it demonstrates isn’t anything new. It’s an example of cognitive dissonance which, in very basic terms, works like this: your brain gets conflicting stimulus that makes no sense given all the rules/filters it has established (like a bear on a basketball court), gets annoyed and, before you’re ever conscious of it, terms the stimulus irrelevant and deletes it – before you even have a chance to spot it with your conscious mind.
Now you gotta wonder how many things you’ve seen that you haven’t.
Wiki aricle (which focuses more on behavioral psychology) is here
Proof positive that we’re still apes gaping in wonder at the world around us. Which I think is as good as it is bad.
Here’s another spot by the same company which demonstrates the very severe limits of the very amazing human brain:
This last bonus track isn’t cognitive dissonace but it shows some examples of things your brain saw but you never saw when you were watching the classic, “Fight Club”:
Don’t trust your brain. It doesn’t trust you.
I’m currently on a train to Montreal – possibly with wi-fi, possibly without – but would I fail you? Leave you clicking here to find no new joy?
No. I could never do that do you.
Here’s an amazing use of stop motion animation – with bonus points for gratuitous comedy violence.
It’s like the best finishing move on Mortal Kombat but with pencil crayons and a lot of post-its check it out full screen:
Vodpod videos no longer available.