Holiday Cocktail Tales

Here is the first segment of the new Holiday show for Veggiemacabre.tv. It is a little video covering a few of my favorite party libations with some quick ways to make them. But be warned, they can be a little stiff so make sure, especially in a company-party environment, that you drink them sparingly or find yourself with a lampshade on the head and telling your boss what you really think of his golf swing. I tried to keep the nonessential chatter to a minimum but you know me…never one for brevity.

I’ll post the recipes shortly but until then please enjoy the video and let me know some of your holiday creations!

Eggnog. How it should be. Take note.

Oh yeah, there is a moment when the video gets a little wonky and it looks like I am in a bad dubbing foreign video. Keep watching because my voice soon meets my lips. Just a weird quirk I suppose. I am not quite the Practical Cook, I know.

A Weird Christmas Toy Tribute

I admit it. When I was a kid I had bears. Not many but I had a few and even though I pride myself on being a “Tom Sawyer” type of kid who built tree houses, played “guns” in the woods and pledge allegiance to GI Joe and the defenders of freedom, I could not brave the night without a bear in the bed. Their non-blinking black eyes stood watch against C.H.U.D., Freddy and Jason who I knew lived across the hall in the guest bedroom. A skinny boy can rest easy knowing that furry warriors will stay up all night. You know they sleep when I was at school.

There was particular bear, however, that made question the comforts of the snuggly softness and cute demeanor. That was Axlon’s AG Bear; the bear who talked to you in robotic bear talk. If you know what I am talking about, consider yourself the minority because I have met no one who has a clue what I am talking about.

AG (Almost Grown) Bear is the brain child from the makers of Atari and the animatronics geniuses that made Chuck E. Cheese shows come to life. You would think that no matter what, this would be a hit with any kid. But no, kids were smarter than that. They new “WTF” when they saw it. Check it out below!

The only way I can describe AG Bear is by taking Anthony Daniels, putting him back into C3PO’s suit, bashing him in the head to the point of brain damage, cupping his robot mouth and making him repeat the ABC’s. Then we might be able to recreate AG’s voice.

The technology behind AG is a three-second delayed recording and playback so when you say something, AG merely repeats what you say but in a bear voice. It sounds cute in theory but in reality, it sounds as if Aunt Beatrix’s tracheotomy mic is low on batteries. Also, when you sleep and role over, expect to get a “WRAA RAA RA WAAA” so a kid has to sleep in the position of attention.

Here is an actual conversation from my first week back to school after the Winter break. AG bear was a new toy and I relied on him as an interactive friend. That’s what it said on the box!

ME– Hey AG!

AG– MRAA RA RA

ME– How are you today?

AG– WRA RA ROO RORAY?

ME– Ha! Ha! Glad to hear it.

AG- RA! RA! WROA OO RWAA AR

ME– I had a rough day, AG.

AG- WA RA WROUW RA

ME– Well, it all started when this kid who is in the fifth grade said I had a funny fa-

AG– WRA, A RAA RARAOW WROO ARROOO RA WRAAA ROO WROOAAAR WROA RAA

ME– Excuse me AG, I was in the middle of te-

AG– RAROOO RA RARA WO WRA ROOOROA RWRAOW

ME- WHAT THE HELL IS YOUR PROBLEM YOU STUPI-

AG– WRAAA RAA RWWOOO RA WROOAR WRO RWAOAR ROO

ME– Not only are you rude but are you mocking me?

AG -RA RAAO ROOOROO RA ROAWR WRA ROO RARA?

ME– I AM GOING TO SHOOT YOU IN THE TEETH WITH MY FRICK-

AG– WRA A ROAWRA AO ROOOROOO RWAOR WO WRA RAORW RAOA

ME– YOU’RE GOING TO DIE BEAR!

AG– MWROA RAHA!#$%**%!  rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrweeeeeeeeeee

ME– (out of breath and rocking) hmmmmm hmmmmm hmmmmm hmmmm

AT least I didn’t have a My Buddy.

It’s Christmas Time Already?

What? When did this happen? I am not going to say that I don’t like it, but what happened to, well, the year? I suppose there is no use in being upset by a year that when from zero to “Ba-Zing” so…let’s start the holiday off with a bang!

If the above image is confusing to you, then I guess you don’t have X-Entertainment.com in your life, and I am sad for you. Like a broken record, every year at the same time, I shout from the mountain tops to check out Matt’s famous site of all things great. So this year is no different. Make a point to click the link and take a fun trip, whether it is the blog or the wacky antics in the advent calender, I promise you’ll feel colors. Red and Green colors.

For the first official day of the 2009 Christmas season, I believe I will discuss the greatest memories I have and that is the countless hours spent browsing the Sears catalog, making a “wish list” and checking twice. Or three hundred times. Ok, five hundred. Whatever. Combing my memory, here are some great toys that even today, I wouldn’t mind having.

The USS FLAGG was the greatest toy a boy could have. It was like a toy for your toys. That didn’t make any sense, I know, but go with me here. It was so massive it required a permanent portion of a room. I had fantasies about this thing. I dreamed of being the kid that truly had the best gift every kid wanted and the massive amounts superficial friends I would acquire because of it. I dreamed of eating cheeseburgers on the deck while watching Thundercats. I dreamed of reenacting the opening scene of  Top Gun while humming the theme song. A kid can dream, can’t he? But sadly enough, it was a dream. Never had the damn thing.

Holy shit did I have a few of these. I think this was the present that all my relatives bought for me when I was six. It was as if everyone got a memo for that Christmas stating my aspirations to build a fleet for the Rebel Alliance. What ever the case, if you needed a Kenner X-Wing; I was your guy. The one thing I hated about this toy was the laser sound. It made a noise that would turn a cat inside out and explode. What ever that noise was, it was not a laser sound. Watch this below and see what I am talking about. “REEEEE”

Speaking of lasers, remember this awesomeness of awesome? The Hasbro Lazer Tag set was one of my most treasured Christmas gifts and even though I never found a kid in the neighborhood who had a set to compete with, I did enjoy shooting myself with the help of the bathroom mirror. The only thing I didn’t like about this was the noisy heartbeat sounds on the monitor. Made sneaking around pretty much impossible.

When I was searching for the perfect Transformer picture to rant and rave for the “must have” toy of the mid to late 80’s, I came upon this. Megatron. In an instant I was whisked off the couch back to 1987, sitting in my PJ’s on the blue carpeted den in Marietta, Georgia on Christmas morning. On my lap was this glorious purple box. When I took it out of the static clinging styrofoam I immediately began to “transform” the Rugger pistol into the nemesis of Optimus Prime, ignoring the pleads of my father not to force it. But before I knew it, I forced it, and hyper-extended it. I broke off the leg of Megatron. Though the disappointment was apparent, I still managed to enjoy it for what it was. God, I can still smell the pine, scotch tape and new plastic. Some nostalgia can rival any of Einstein’s greatest theories.

Pow Pow Power Wheels! Much like the dream of owning the USS Flagg, another pipe dream of mine was owning a set of Power Wheels. I had plenty of first grade daydreams of driving my Power Wheel Jeep to the store for my Mom or picking up my pal Toby and cruising to Showbiz Pizza and catching a Rock-A-Fire Explosion animatronic show. But it was not in the stars. But the next year I did car jack the neighbors daughter and take her Barbie Jeep around the block. That is until Mom found out and a foot chase issued. Turns out Power Wheels were a lot faster in my dreams. I was escorted by the elbow to a cell without dinner.

The WWF Wrestling Buddies were a big item for my friends and me. What toy could be better than an Ultimate Warrior a 75 pound kid can body slam? In fact, this pillow character above is directly responsible for a dislocated shoulder. I will just say the couch is not a platform for a pile driver. It’s embarrassing to admit losing a match to a half pound pillow. Even if it was this dude:

Yeah, would you mess with this guy? I didn’t think so.

Perhaps it was for a lack of siblings but I really wanted a bear that could read me bedtime stories and have conversations about Star Wars. This was the one time it was sociably acceptable to have a teddy bear as a boy. We all knew Christopher Robin was a pansy. But going through my old photos from my time home for Thanksgiving I found a troubling picture.

Ah shit. No wonder. I will leave it at that. No wonder.

Nothing will fuck a vacuum up like a Lite Brite peg. I know this from experience. But really, I have received this a couple of different times during Christmas and even though I understood the concept, I never made anything more than an illuminated Jackson Pullock. Seriously, if Lite Brite was an intelligence test, I would have scored somewhere between “cat with paintbrush in mouth” and “chimp with paint on it’s ass”. Meh, this was a shit gift.

No, I have never owned a Strawberry Shortcake doll but I have tried to eat one. Like you haven’t at least thought about it. But I can attest, it just tastes like plastic.

I believe this is a good way to wrap up this old Christmas-want article. The one, the only Castle Greyskull. Even my Grandmother knows what Castle Greyskull is. This magnificent play set was a Masters of the Universe staple in every snotty kid’s room. I was shit, I admit. I even had Skeletor’s Castle. In fact, there are fond memories of saying “boner” over the Doom microphone. I suppose you have to be eight to see the humor. I still cackle when I hear “boner”.

I hope some of my memories have brought up a few of yours. I know I can’t be alone in my head toy chest. Tis the season to be happy and these memories make me smile no matter where or when. Let’s kick off the X-Mas fun starting….right…….NOW!

Where Did You Go? Part 11

Here we are, turned all the way up to eleven. Tell me where that line comes from and I will give you 400 gorka gabbas. If you don’t know what those are they are my own currency that I plan on flooding into the economy. So you will be ahead of the game! What was I talking about?

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We will start off with the bread winner for the Tanner family in one of my favorite shows of the 80’s, ALF. Max Wright played Willie Tanner, a meek social worker that is constantly pushed to the edge by an ADD alien named ALF. I always tuned in on Monday nights, sitting in my GI Joe’s (themed PJs) nervously waiting the moment when Willie snapped and back-handed Kate or hammer punch Benji in the nose. Of course it never happened and Willie kept his cool, even when Alf dug a pool in the backyard garden.

Max hasn’t been in the TV or film circuit in the past 10 years. Partly because of his diagnosis with lymphoma and his run in with a few mailboxes resulting in a DUI arrest. On the lymphoma he has been in remission but the duey, I’m afraid Max plead guilty. Dag, yo. He has been in many TV episodes throughout the 80’s like Tales From The Darkside, WKRP in Cincinnati, MASH, and even was in the first couple episodes of Friends as the Central Perk’s manager. But ALF was his only real main role for TV. As far as his other acting roles he has been in such movies as Soul Man, Grumpier Old Men and The Sting II. His live theater acts like Broadway actually led to a Tony for IVANHO. Who knew Willie would win a Tony?

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Max currently resides in California with his wife, Linda and their two kids Ben and Daisy. I suppose he is doing well and waiting, like the rest of us, for an ALF comeback. But that can’t happen until ALF puts down the pipe and sticks with his rehab.

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You think that cookie looks like Anne Ramsey? Fuck’n eh, it does! But really, I think it looks more like this below from Big Trouble In Little China. Either way, you can’t eat something that cool.

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So yeah, Anne Ramsey was an icon in the film industry. At least the film industry that interests me. Her most memorable roles to me were The Goonies, Mamma Fratelli and Throw Mamma From The Train. Can you believe she was nominated for an Oscar for that? Too bad she past away from throat cancer before the nominations were rewarded. Regardless her list of roles were plenty and in all reality she didn’t start her film career until late in life.

I remember being a little scared of her as a kid. I think it was the gruff appearance and her “after stroke” way of talking. To this day my friends and I quote “Quiet, you lashey poop!”. That was from Throw Mamma From The Train.

She was married to the actor Logan Ramsey but her career really took off after his death. She has been in a number of great films like Scrooged, Any Which Way You Can and National Lampoon’s Class Reunion to name a few. But to me her most memorable role and sadly her last was a cranky old lady in ALF. Strange how that ties in. RIP Anne.

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Alison Parker. Who is Alison Parker, you ask? That is a good question because unless you have seen the 1977 movie, The Sentinel, you wouldn’t have a clue. I have researched quiet a bit and came up with very little. And I find that strange because her only role is a staring one and she shares it with many famous actors and actresses like Christopher Walken, Chris Sarandon, Ava Gardner, Eli Wallach, Tom Berenger, Jeff Goldblum, Richard Dryfuss, and many more. Where did she go? But I guess that’s my job to know, huh?

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I think I need to keep these next two in character. Above is Ben Gardner in the movie Jaws. Actually he is a real fisherman that inspired Shaw’s character Quint, but that’s neither here nor there. Ben has an on going role in the movie but is rarely seen. Known as the local fisherman he pokes fun of the visiting frenzy of fisherman stating “…they’ll wish their mothers had never met their fathers when they start slamming into those rocks…” and other such witty jaunts. But there is one thing that puzzles me. How did he die?

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See? Did Jaws just eat one eye? Did he trip and stick it on something sharp? Did Jaws spit his head back in the boat? Who knows? I smell fowl play.

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Much like Ben “Headintheboat” Gardner, Ben Trammer of Halloween one and two has an ongoing but rarely seen role too. In the first Halloween Ben and Laurie had a thing. Well, as much as two shy nerds do, anyway. But poor Ben made the mistake of being a William Shatner fan much like Mike Myers was and dressed just like him on that night. What are the odds? To good in my mind. In any case, Ben is seen above fleeing Loomis who is having an episode only to be hit, crushed, exploded and burned to death by….a deputy of the law.

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Laurie was right. Ben is kind of hot. Ohhhhhh....

 I didn’t really have a question about Ben but I do find it very uncreative of the screen writers to dress Ben up as a blond Michael Myers. I mean, did Ben off a tow truck driver too? Meh, I am thinking too hard about this again. S knows what I mean.

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Real nice, Loomis. Real nice.

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