I resolve to be nerdier than ever in 2010. Put your thinking caps on, there are quizzes to be answered and perhaps more prizes to be won.
Thursday, December 31, 2009
I resolve to be nerdier than ever in 2010. Put your thinking caps on, there are quizzes to be answered and perhaps more prizes to be won.
Monday, December 28, 2009
Saturday, December 26, 2009
Elsewhere, though, the burgeoning crowds line up to return their gifts, along with an assortment of used roasters and mysteriously stained tablecloths that they're certain were that way when they bought them.
Two seasons working retail the day after Christmas have hardened me. What can I say?
Enough of that, though, as we now move on to last week's winners! I could have hoped for more competition (since that would have meant more followers as well), but how could I go wrong with three strong respondents?
In first place, scoring 80% PLUS answering the Bonus Question, Nej is the Winner Most Exalted of the Mo's Bacon Chocolate bar by Vosges. Merry Christmas!!
2) Which American actor starred in one of those films after playing a supporting role with him one year earlier? Macaulay Culkin (Uncle Buck before Home Alone)
3) What does 'Mele Kalikimaka' mean, and what film brought the Bing Crosby version of this song to a new generation of listeners? It's Hawaii's way to say 'Merry Christmas' to you! The song featured in National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation
4) Far more well-known, White Christmas is nearly synonymous with Bing Crosby. In which two films did he perform this song? Holiday Inn (1942), and the eponymous White Christmas (1954)
5) Name two other films where the song is used in its recorded form. Mother Night (based on the Kurt Vonnegut book) and Bye Bye Brasil
6) Identify the actor who played Adolf Eichman in one of those films, in addition to playing another Nazi in an earlier movie. (Check previous 'RAoT' posts for a hint...) Henry Gibson played the voice of Adolf Eichman in Mother Night, in addition to being an Illinois Nazi in the Blues Brothers (also starring John Candy, by the way.)
7) How many bottles of Frooney Green Eye Wash would one need in one's medicine cabinet to qualify for the beautiful silver tea service and a night on the town with Alfred Hitchcock? One would need ten bottles of eye wash, in addition to answering a simple question, which I believe may have involved rugby.
8) After playing the Devil (hereinafter known as George Spiggot), in what 1987 film did Peter Cook play a far holier character? The Princess Bride, wherein Cook played the minister.
9) In which 1985 film did Dudley Moore, Cook's frequent collaborator, play one of Santa's elves? Santa Claus - the movie
10) As if playing Santa Claus in that film wasn't a big enough role, what 'big' character did David Huddleston go on to play? Jeffrey 'The Big' Lebowski
Thursday, December 24, 2009
This time of year, we're all accustomed to seeing psuedo-Clauses everywhere, unless you manage to avoid ever leaving your house or turning on the television. I even had one following me on my way home from work one day, and the Jeep may have thrown off lesser people, but if you have a fluffy white beard, wire-rim glasses, and you're driving in a red velvet coat and hat accented by white gloves, you're ass is getting spotted. You're watching me? Yeah, I'm watching you too, fat man....
Oops...got off-topic there a tad. That's okay, I can find dozens of uses for coal.
Anyway, many of our beloved Santa Claus memories don't stem from sitting on a creepy alcoholic's lap just to be rewarded with a sticky, previously opened candy cane (or is that just me?), but from the American film industry. With that in mind, listed below are some beloved film characters who have, among the more than 700 other actors listed on IMDB, portrayed Santa Claus at one point in their illustrious careers.
Your task is to identify 1) the actor and 2) the film where they donned red velvet for the enjoyment of young and old. For your benefit, the year(s) they played Santa are listed next to their other character name.
Waring Hudsucker (1989, 1996x2, 2002)
Capt. Albert Wiles (1947)
Albert Blossom (1994)
Jeffrey Lebowski (1985)
Buzz Lightyear (1994)
Harvey Pekar (2007)
Frank Bass (1996, 2003)
I'd love to give you a bonus question, but since it's likely going to revolve around the Coen Brothers (WI natives and creators of two characters listed above), I figure you'll probably want a pass on that, anyway.
Wednesday, December 23, 2009
Sadly, in this day of reality-driven shows where today's hot new topic is tomorrow's Justin Guarini (and no, I'm not going to spell-check that, because I don't want it in my browser history.) There's no curve of inevitable disappointment to follow, because there's no public committment to a progressive storyline. Would anyone care if suddenly Jeff Probst were joined by a Cousin Oliver, because Neilsen ratings showed ratings slipping in the 18-24 single mother demographic? He'd be like Tattoo to Probst's Mr. Rourke.
And ultimately, did Fonzie really kill Happy Days? He's Fonzie, dammit! I think the real harbinger of doom is Ted McGinley. Happy Days? Ted McGinley in a Wisconsin sweater. Love Boat? Ted McGinley in white shorts. Married...With Children? Ted McGinley. As such, I will only accept two options henceforth to describe the death of a previously beloved television series: either it's been McGinleyed, or they pulled a Cousin Oliver.
Monday, December 21, 2009
Voici la quote de la semaine de Noel! Remember the rules. First person to guess correctly the original source of the quote wins a prize - no movie characters quoting other movies. No Googling or asking Santa, either you know the quote or you don't. The prize is a Major Award and consists of the people's ovation and fame forever (and the title of Iron Quote-Guesser):
Some children wish for things they couldn't possibly use.
And yes, I know this posted Sunday night. There was an incident. Just pretend you didn't notice, okay?
Thursday, December 17, 2009
I mentioned in my last post that there might be a contest. This is open to any of my subscribed readers, since I want to make sure I'm giving credit where credit is due. And nobody likes a stalker. Singapore, I'm looking in your direction...
I considered making the contest about sharing, in a self-serving attempt to get you to bring your friends to my blog. However, we're all a happy little family here, and begging for favors from your loved ones is bad precedent.
Therefore, it's quiz time! Get out your number two pencils, kiddos, and prepare to be graded on a curve.
1) Which late Canadian actor starred in films about both Thanksgiving and Christmas, among his other works?
2) Which American actor starred in one of those films after playing a supporting role with him one year earlier?
3) What does 'Mele Kalikimaka' mean, and what film brought the Bing Crosby version of this song to a new generation of listeners?
4) Far more well-known, White Christmas is nearly synonymous with Bing Crosby. In which two films did he perform this song?
5) Name two other films where the song is used in its recorded form.
6) Identify the actor who played Adolf Eichman in one of those films, in addition to playing another Nazi in an earlier movie. (Check previous 'RAoT' posts for a hint...)
7) How many bottles of Frooney Green Eye Wash would one need in one's medicine cabinet to qualify for the beautiful silver tea service and a night on the town with Alfred Hitchcock?
8) After playing the Devil (hereinafter known as George Spiggot), in what 1987 film did Peter Cook play a far holier character?
9) In which 1985 film did Dudley Moore, Cook's frequent collaborator, play one of Santa's elves?
10) As if playing Santa Claus in that film wasn't a big enough role, what 'big' character did David Huddleston go on to play?
And now, as Blake would say, first prize is the Eldorado, second prize is the steak knives, and third prize? Third prize is you're fired.
Alternately, you can choose from any of the other exotic Vosges bars here.
And third prize? Well, you know.
You can email your answers by clicking on the Fat Guy icon in the upper right of my page. You can put your answers in the form of a comment, but since I'm grading on correct answers first and timeliness second, posting there would give your competition the opportunity to copy from your paper. Entries will be taken through Christmas, but sadly, I'm not springing for next-day delivery, so you'll get your prize in January some time. Think of it as extending the holiday season.
Speaking of grading on curves, here's a bonus question: Which James Bond film featured a larger-than-life Anita Ekberg, though she received no billing in the credits?
Wishing you and yours all the best.
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
Monday, December 14, 2009
As for you lot, you know the drill. First person to guess correctly the original source of the quote wins a prize - no movie characters quoting other movies. No Googling or asking Jeeves, either you know the quote or you don't, and if you haven't seen the film, there's nothing to be gained by knowing a single quote. I guess what I'm saying is, if you're going to Google because you don't know the quote, take the time and go rent the movie once you identify it (or download it, or zune it, or iFilm it, or RedBox it, or do whatever the kids are calling it these days.) If you know, guess away! Your fabulous prize consists of the people's ovation and fame forever (and the title of Iron Quote-Guesser). This week's quote:
Without a plan, there's no attack. Without attack, no victory.
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
Monday, December 7, 2009
Friday, December 4, 2009
Upon his return to the bakery, Earl noticed some of the workers dipping graham cookies into marshmallow and laying them on the window sill to harden. So they added another cookie and a generous coating of chocolate and sent them back for the workers to try. In fact, they sent MoonPie® samples around with their other salespeople, too. The response they got back was so enormous that the MoonPie® became a regular item for the bakery.
By the late 1950's, the MoonPie® had grown in popularity, so much that the bakery did not have the resources available to produce anything else.
So popular has this food icon become, several years ago Mobile, AL officials were contemplating ways to incorporate the oversized sandwich cookie into New Year's celebrations. Hey, why not?
A cousin to this beauty is the Scooter Pie, and apparently, even though it's the bastardized northern version of the original, I never had one of these, either. Now it looks like they're only available through novelty food sites, while I can just run over to my corner Marathon station and have my choice of all the Moon Pie flavors.
As some post-writing research, I think I need to run out and get the other flavors to compare, since I've only had chocolate so far. (Call me a traditionalist.) They also make banana, vanilla and orange. And apparently, since "RC Cola and a MoonPie®" seems to be a theme, I might need to get me one of them, as well. I only ever see the triple-deckers, but I've had the original and they also make 'mini' Moon Pies. I don't see the point of that.
If you live in the American southeast, you should also be watching your state and county fairs for the batter-dipped, deep-fried Moon Pie. Because how could that be a bad idea?
Finally, as if reading my posts doesn't kill your productivity already, check out the official Moon Pie website for some games! Fun for the whole family!
Thursday, December 3, 2009
Tuesday, December 1, 2009
I'm old. I'm 38 going on 83. I complain. I grouse. I drive slowly. I suddenly enjoy Barry Manilow music. I forget things, like the things I want to write for you, oh dear reader.
I wanted to tell you about our mini-vacation last weekend, a beautiful time in Nevada. But it just kept deteriorating into a full-blown old-man rant about unrelated and generally unimportant things, so this is the third draft.
To sum up, first, the Bad (so you'll end on a high note, like the French resistance!):
No free rental car upgrade. Skippy would have gladly charged me 50% more for a slightly larger car, but really, I'm not going to pay more for something I don't want to drive, when I'm already getting something I don't want to drive. The exception here is if the only car they had in my class was a PT Cruiser, I do have my limits. His response to me became the title.
No hotel reservation when we arrived at the hotel around midnight.
A nearly two-hour adventure in the hotel's only open restaurant in order to get our food. He comped us, apologized profusely, but when I haven't eaten in ten hours I don't really care. Bring me my bacon and eggs. If necessary, I'll cook it myself.
DFW is a monstrous airport, just allowing them to put connecting gates further apart, I suppose. It's an impressive feat of engineering, but how can you enjoy it when you have 20 minutes to travel to another time zone in the airport?
And really, can't we join hands across America to stop people from bringing their yippy dogs and screaming children on planes? I understand that children need to get places, too, I really do. But is it really a good idea to take them on the latest flight you can possibly find? Overtired children plus overtired me will get me banned from an airline some day, I'm sure of it.
Funny how travel takes everything out of you. As nice as the core of our trip was, seeing the strip and the mountains and everything between, the periphery of a trip can really take its toll. In fact, I know this is a lousy post, but hey, they can't all be winners.
The Good:Believe it or not, my Ford Focus. The Ford Focus with the bad wheel bearing and jangling rattle in the door. Of course, I could have taken the Rondo, but we already know how I feel about that. Truth be told, though, if I were an economy car kind of guy, and wheel bearing aside, it was a zippy little car. Not much for offroading in the desert, but zippy nevertheless. I'd actually give this car a B, for what it was.
Had a nice Thanksgiving dinner at my boss' house with his family and friends, phenomenal wine that I could never afford myself and pumpkin pie. Mmmm, pie.
Had a great drive out to Red Rock Canyon, though we failed to see any of the wild burros they claimed were roaming the land. Because Friday was their busiest day of the year, filled with people avoiding the mall, they let us use Friday's receipt for admission again on Saturday. We went back in the morning, when the crowds were gone, and it was still stunning that something so wild could be so close to civilization. That just doesn't exist here in Florida.
Drove the strip, still quite the experience, we even drove past the 'civilized' areas and on to the cliched wedding chapels and motor lodges. It's important to have perspective.
Had some great Mexican food, first thing we've had that rivalled Jalisco's that didn't come from a truck by the side of the road. Though I love me some truck tacos.
Even though it was just a long weekend trip, we got to look at houses. There's some surprisingly affordable new construction out there.And the best part of any vacation, returning home and sleeping in my own bed, with my own pillow, nestled against my sweetie.
Dreaming of luxe rental cars, posh new houses and wild burros.