Show #045: Examining the Bear

539wThe forty-fifthst episode of our podcast, Paul and Storm Talk About Some Stuff for Five to Ten Minutes (On Average), is now online.

This week’s episode: discussion of John Hodgman’s excellent speech at the RTC Dinner, and his rightful place in the Dept. of Geek Affairs; failures in advertising; video games and motion sickness; our respective first performance experiences, and violating Storm’s memories; and our respective favorite commercials. Also, we loves the hecks out of the Englandses.

AUDIENCE PARTICIPATION ALERT: What should John Hodgman’s honorific be? Also: what video games (especially Xbox games) are worth our hard-earned dollar?

Featured post-show song: “I’m Going to Go Back There Someday” – Paul Williams & The Great Gonzo (Dave Golez)

Show #045: Examining the Bear (Some content NSFW)


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  1. Tam o'Shanter
    Posted June 23, 2009 at 11:13 pm | Permalink

    I unfortunately don’t have an X-Box so I can’t help with that. I’ll get back to you guys on a Hodgman honorific.

  2. MoonRabbit
    Posted June 23, 2009 at 11:40 pm | Permalink

    I thought for sure Storm’s favorite commercial was going to be the Charmin Bears.

  3. Posted June 24, 2009 at 12:43 am | Permalink

    I knew this mob guy his name was Creased Gene, just saying…

    No you’re thinking of a more Rahm Emanuel not Sec. Clinton for Hodgman in relation to Wil.

    I loved Hodgman’s speech – the part about the March Madness Bracket that ended being some kind of “sporty flow chart” thing and not, as it turned out, some cool new punctuation.

    Head-On is chapstick? I think that’s giving it credit. I’d go a few levels down and say it’s more of a glue stick. The kind you (possibly) used in elementary school.

    I like Pepsi and Coke, but alas I’m cutting down on pop as much as I can lately, still enjoy it every so often.

    People get angry at things that change, whatever, people will get over it. It’s the same thing with websites, see for example this article from the Guardian re: Facebook being better than MySpace about how people hated the “new” facebook when it looked more like twitter, but now, well, no one really cares that much. People who like Pepsi will keep drinking/buying it. I’m not a marketing type, so I don’t know anything about “new markets” or whatever, though I know Coke is big in international arenas, I guess maybe Pepsi could try to go there?

    I don’t get “stuck” per se on levels anymore, but occasionally I have programming challenges I can’t get over. For some reason I come up with really good solutions in the shower. Sometimes though I’ll forget about it, try other stuff, and when that doesn’t work, come up with the same solution I had before, remember that I came up with it before, and bam, it works.

    No Storm is a doctor because he’s a Jew – we’re born with it, as are some other groups too, it seems.

    Hmm Storm quiet? Paul an attention whore? Noooo…..

    Good show, I think. I’m glad I’m getting back into the loop here. Fun times, fun times.

  4. Posted June 24, 2009 at 8:35 pm | Permalink

    Regarding Hodgman’s honorific, if you want to stay with the fed org chart and keep him in the Dept of Geek Affairs, he could be a Deputy Secretary or an Assistant Secretary. You could go the British route and call him a Minister. Also, I seem to recall people referring to him simply as “Professor Hodgman.”

    Your discussion of first performance experiences reminded me of the first time I was on stage. Elementary school – maybe 2nd grade? I got to play a jack-in-the-box in the holiday pageant. At a rehearsal, one of the boys in class thought it would be funny to sit on top of my box while I was in it and not let me out. I damn near had a panic attack. It’s a wonder I still perform! (No, it’s not.) 😉 And in 5th grade, I got to play Mindy in a Mork & Mindy skit, I think primarily because I had Pam Dawber hair.

  5. Posted June 25, 2009 at 4:15 am | Permalink

    Gonzo’s song in the Muppet Movie is my favorite song from that movie, and still one of my fav’s.

    I think Hodgeman’s title should be Undersecretary of Geek Affairs.

  6. Posted June 25, 2009 at 9:43 am | Permalink

    I’m with Undersecretary. It has the added benefit of making him sound like a mole man. Outside the Geek Affairs context, I generally follow his lead and describe him as “famous minor television personality John Hodgman,” though I often find myself having to describe him as “the PC guy.”

  7. Jack F.
    Posted June 25, 2009 at 10:34 am | Permalink

    My wife and I have been saying “Nobody Bothers Me!” for years, and no one knew why. (The commercial aired in State College in the 80s.)

    And of course, the Ideal jingle has been permanently lodged in my head for more years than I care to say.

  8. Robin
    Posted June 25, 2009 at 2:20 pm | Permalink

    I’ve haven’t been able to stand The Beverage That Shall Not Be Named, or any other cola for that matter, since sometime in elementary school. But I too find their new logo strange and off-putting.

    First big performance: Second grade Christmas show. I played Chris Kringle’s aerobics instructor in an little musical gem called “Shapin’ Up Santa”. In a hot pink leopard print unitard. (In my defense, it was the 80s and I was taking gymnastics at the time.) I don’t know if it was just that traumatic an experience or what, but I didn’t return to drama or public singing until senior year of high school when I agreed to help with choreography for Grease! and got shanghaied into playing Cha-cha and singing a duet (offstage, as a song on the radio) with Sandy.

    You should totally go to the Irealands and the Scotlands and the Waleses. They’re purty.

    @Ken: “Undersecretary of Geek Affairs” sounds like Hodgman would be under Wheaton in some capacity, which makes my brain go to a strange and dirty place. O.o

  9. Ross
    Posted June 25, 2009 at 7:27 pm | Permalink

    So I was way too excited to have started a topic on the podcast. I was the one who “Tweeted without thinking” about video games.

  10. Ross
    Posted June 25, 2009 at 7:28 pm | Permalink

    Oh, and I forgot to add that I think Vice Secretary of Geek Affairs would be appropriate. Then he would have an edge as the incumbent in the next “election.” Maybe like a bracket all his own where he doesn’t get voted against until the final four.

  11. Candace
    Posted June 26, 2009 at 12:12 am | Permalink

    I have a story about one of my childhood performances.

    I went to a very small elementary school and we decided to put on a school play. I was in 3rd grade I think and because there weren’t enough people, we had the 4th graders be in the play too. The play we were going to put on was Peter Pan. Of course, being a small school, the pickings were slim and nearly everyone who was in the play was a girl and wanted to be Tinkerbell. I ended up being Peter Pan(everyone else Tinkerbell) because I was the girl with the shortest hair and had a green shirt at home. Just with this information, one can tell this play is going to be great.

    Anyways, it was the big opening nigh when all us kids got to preform for the parents. There was a fight scene where I had to rescue a person from Capt. Hook and before that, I was off stage relaxing on a couch. While on stage I had to keep my sword through my belt loop and it hung down against my side. Well, to sit on the couch I had to take the sword out of my belt loop and set it on the ground next to the couch. I lost track of time and was rushed on stage for my big fight scene with Capt. Hook. I reach for my sword which should have been in on my side, in my belt loop and it wasn’t. Like Paul, I stopped the whole show, turned out to the audience panicked and yelled, “I FORGOT MY SWORD!” and ran off stage to the laughter of the whole audience. I returned to fight Capt. Hook but was so embarrassed. My family still makes fun of me(but it’s okay). I actually wish they had it on tape but they decided not to bring the camcorder that night 🙁

  12. Fnord
    Posted June 26, 2009 at 10:05 am | Permalink

    As far as video games, Oblivion: Game of the Year Edition, and Fallout 3 are games you can play for months at a time, since there’s always something to do. They’re both good, but the PC versions are better, and have been patched a bit more.

    Crackdown is very video-gamey, in a good way, and you can find it pretty cheap.

    The Ghostbusters game is good, but, being a child of the 80s, I can forgive a lot in a game if it gives me a proton pack and a neutrino wand.

    As for downloadable games, Bionic Comando: Rearmed is good if you remember the original game from the NES days. Lumines is an awesome puzzle game that kind of has to be experienced. Rez is also a good one to look at, if you like the art and music style. The board games, such as Catan, Carcassone, Uno, etc. are good, but can’t be played with anyone in the same room (which kinda defeats the point).

  13. Posted June 29, 2009 at 9:03 am | Permalink

    I will hate you forever for putting that Ideal jingle back in my head after I finally got it out. I was listening to your podcast while alone in my house, & as soon as you started singing it, I shouted out loud, “Noooo!!!!” Alas, it was too late, and now I have an earworm. Thanks a lot! >:-/

  14. Posted June 29, 2009 at 11:10 am | Permalink

    Yes, you should definitely come back to the Englandses if you can, especially Cambrdigeabob

    For xbox games, continuing the racing game theme, I think you should check out GRiD, I’ve had a lot of fun with it and cataclysmic crashes are always fun to watch.

    Also, kudos to Storm for refusing to use a walkthrough for braid. I used one for only one puzzle in the game, but I’m kicking myself about it now because I feel I cheated myself a bit.

  15. Isaac
    Posted July 3, 2009 at 6:08 pm | Permalink

    Yeah, yeah, I’m going to take a lot of heat for this, but the “generic game” games are a good bit of mindless fun- Halo, Call of Duty, etc. I recall Coulton and perhaps you also having a love of Guitar Hero et al and you can’t go wrong with Rock Band.

  16. Posted July 8, 2009 at 1:38 am | Permalink

    well, I’m not involved enough with you guys to really know who hodgeman is. but I am definitely a fan of your music, and I would also call myself a gamer. so i would like to lend my advice.

    First of all, games on the 360. there’s bioshock, which is an amazing survival horror/FPS game that takes place in a steampunk-ish sort of city beneath the ocean.

    there is also the orange box, which is a valve compilation of halflife 2, which is a FPS plot driven game, very good, two expansions of HL2. a very good puzzle game called portal. and team fortress 2, which is just an online multi-player shooter. so the orange box just about has something for everyone.

    after that there is battlefield: bad company, which is a basic FPS with a incredibly fun (albeit short) single player campaign and several online multi-player game modes.

    Now onto ps3 games. my personal favorite is ratchet and clank future: tools of destruction. this is part of an ongoing 3rd person shooter (with platformer elements) series devoted to nothing but fun, none of those wishy-washy stories that make no sense. here there is just enough story to string together the fun of the game.

    another good one is inFamous, this is a sandbox game made by suckerpunch. its sort of a 3rd person runny/jumpy/climby shooter sort of thing, like all sandbox games there’s the main story, then there’s the smaller side quest missions that you’re allowed to undertake. lots and lots of fun.

    finally there is resistance 1 and 2. both first person shooter games set in the 50’s (i think) and both lots of fun. they each have unlockables that make the game worth playing through more then once.

    i hope that if you take any of my advice that you will enjoy the games immensely. i know i did.

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