Tuesday, December 30, 2008

The Ants Come Marching...

What better gift is there, than the gift of bugs!!

It's Uncle Milton's Fascinating Ant Farm!!

What kid didn't want to watch some industrious little creatures dig tunnels, build bridges, or move mountains? I mean, that sounds almost supernatural. And the best part, an Ant Farm is fun for the whole family!!

And while this spectacle of nature is fascinating, it did have a downside. No ants. I remember opening the bright yellow box and expecting to see a bunch of ants ready to greet me. Lo and behold, though, I had to mail in the special certificate and wait what seemed like 2 years for the critters to arrive.

But when they did show...boo-ya!!

A Paramount of Pizza

Back in the day, I knew kids that got big bucks as a reward for A's on their report card. I, however, was never one to lust for cold, hard cash. So, MY reward was a trip to Paramount Pizza Palace in Indianapolis, Indiana.

And this is just the lobby!!

Here's the deal:

Order Pizza...Buy Candy at the Gift Shop...Listen to Organ Music.

If that last part leaves you scratching your head on bemusement, well let me tell you something. This organ wasn't some fuddy-duddy church organ. It was a monstrous behemouth of pipes and sound. It even had drums, trumpets, and fake birds.

And, get this, it ROSE FROM OUT OF THE FEAKING GROUND. This magical appearance never ceased in getting an ooh and aah out of me.

And you could give them requests. Now the geezers would always request something from Bach or Sousa. I, on the other hand, had only two requests: Star Wars and the Original Phantom of the Opera. You ain't heard John Williams until you've heard him blasted with hundreds of pipes from an organ that levitated out of the ground!!

Paramount's closed now, but you can still hear this kicking organ in Florida!!

Monday, December 29, 2008

It's Smurfing Cold...

On a cold, blistery winter's day, nothing gets me up and at 'em faster than a colorful bowl of cereal made by Smurfs.

Ah, cereal based on Saturday morning television. Plopping down in front of the television at the crack of dawn, just knowing you had 5 hourse of non-stop cartoons to watch. Getting a big bowl of sugar, milk, and neon coloring. Could anything be any tastier?

Let's just see Gargamel try to whip up some of this goodness. And to top it off, the cereal had its own siren's song to lure in the children. To this day, I can sing it:

Sunday, December 28, 2008

I Double Dare You!

In some board room in the 80's a plan was hatched: A game show who's prime purpose was to dump massive amounts of sticky crap all over children.

That game show: Double Dare

Every evening at 5:00 could find my sister and myself tuning into Nickelodeon for this apex of children's knowledge. Didn't know that Bon Jovi released Slippery When Wet? Well then it's time to get dirty!

With bright red/blue uniforms, knee/elbow pads, goggles, and a helmet, contestants on Double Dare where the luckiest kids on the face of the earth.

Like special forces ninjas, we spent hours developing key strategies on how we would win that free trip to Space Camp!! At the very least, we might win a couple of Huffys. And when a home version was released, children over the globe united in world peace.

Even Nintendo jumped on the bandwagon...

Alas, the days of wasting food are gone. And children are resigned to watch Quiz Bowls and Spelling Bees for their educational entertainment. So, God Bless You, Mark Summers!!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

It's Not a Doll!!

This guy could take down an entire Barbie Dream House by breakfast. It's the latest from Sideshow Collectibles...a Cobra Trooper.

I'm gasping in wonder...

And check out all of this havock-wreaking gear!!

I love how this guy is packing 7 clips worth of ammo.

Friday, December 26, 2008

Oh Boxing Day

So, now that Christmas is gone for another year, I thought I'd turn my allegiance to England. You see, they have this holiday today called boxing day. I think it has to do with worshipping shipping containers or something.

Anyway, here's my ode to the box:

God bless us everyone.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas from your friends at Nerdlander!!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Twas the Night Before Christmas...

And Sniffles was stirring:

Even now...I...want...to...sleep...

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Peace on Earth

Man, Oh, Man!! Christmas is almost here. As a kid, I ate up everything that had to do wih Christmas. And that included this very creepy Christmas cartoon:

Yay!! Mankind is gone for the holidays, and animals rule the world!!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Rockin' the Holidays

Throughout my life, Santa has left me some kicking gifts. And one of those was the gift of music. I present to you, theFisher Price Record Player.

Its simplicity is very futuristic. Its ruggedness amazing. Fisher Price knew that grubby little fingers have almost no cognizant motor skills. Plus, this being the 80's, this record player could take a direct hit from an ICBM launched by the commies.

And, come Christmas day, there was only one album powerful enough to entertain me for hours on end:

And when I say hours, I mean hours. I believe that to this day, my parents go blank-eyed and begin spouting drool whenever they hear this song.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

A Brite Christmas

I knew at a young age that I would never be an artist. But that never seemed to deter my parents from trying to fertilize any hint of talent I may have. Thus, the Lite Brite for Christmas...

I would spend hours in the dark, insterting brightly colored pegs into the black construction paper mounted on the front of my Lite Brite. And the best part: Lite Brites came with templates, so no matter how inept one was, he/she could create a work of bright, plastic art.

Never has a light bulb brought so much high culture to one's life. And, get this, you can now bring out that inner Dali at home or at work with the Virtual Lite Brite!!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

A Christmas Blast-off

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — NASA's soon-to-be-retired space shuttles are up for grabs.

The space agency said Wednesday it's looking for ideas on where and how best to display its space shuttles once they stop flying in a few years. It's put out a call to schools, science museums and "other appropriate organizations" that might be interested in showcasing one of the three remaining shuttles.

Beware: NASA estimates it will cost about $42 million to get each shuttle ready and get it where it needs to go, and the final tab could end up much more.

Is this not the greatest Christmas gift in the history of human kind? Star Wars...Awesome. Model Rockets...Cool. But a real live Space Shuttle?!! This is definitely going to the top of my Wish List on Amazon!!

But, if I can't get the real thing, I'll settle for this:

Friday, December 19, 2008

A Christmas Snarl

Based on past experience, I've learned that Grandparents can fall on either end of the spectrum when it comes to Christmas presents. Come Christmas morn, I could either open a gift containing a new sweater, or I could be opening up:


My eyes did a Tex Avery moment, and then I got the shakes. Dear Lord. My grandparents had just gotten me a freaking Dinobot!!

The miraculous part was that I hadn't even asked them for one. Some sort of divine Providence led them to pick out this EXACT gift. And, so, for all I cared, they could give me a bounty of socks for the rest of my life.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

A Fuzzy Christmas

With a promo like this, you know you're about to experience some serious Christmas entertainment. Not since Charles Dickens has a work of art so infused the true nature and wonder of the Holiday Season.

Alf was one lovable wise-guy. And this Christmas special does not dissapoint. It starts out with Alf singing about dead cats for crying out loud. And in the end, isn't that what Christmas is all about?

You can catch this episode in one swoop at Hulu.

Or you can break up it up by checking out these embeds:

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

More Christmas Time Fun!!

Growing up in the midwest, we didn't have your fancy-dandy high-end department stores. We had Zayre where you could get the latest Wrangler Jeans or Conair Product. And then after filling your red cart with bargains, you could head on over to the snack bar for a giant pretzel and a Coke.

Zayre was a veritable Shangri-La to us kids. It had aisles filled to the ceiling with toys. And at Christmas, they expanded the toy department with the latest in children's crack.

You'd be watching your favorite T.V. show's special Christmas episode, when, BAM!, a Zayre's ad would come on, thus reminding you of all the stuff you just had to have.

Yes, they were opened 24 Hours right before Christmas. Now I could wake my mom up at 3:00 AM and beg her to go out and get my loot!!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Terrifyingly Fun

In the world of kids, nothing beats a great playground. After all, isn't romping and frolicking what life is all about?

However, I think my heart would have burst with the evil blackness that resides in these playgrounds:

Yay!! Climbing around on giant, mutant killer wasps is fun!!

Mommy!! I want to see the killer croc with the ferocious teeth and various kitchen implements sticking out of his back!!

Wheee. The Dumbo ride at Eastern Euro Disney is better than I could ever have imagined!!

Murderous doctors are fun for the entire family!!

Head over to Darkroastedblend for even more diabolically fun playgrounds.

Monday, December 15, 2008

A Crimson Christmas

God Bless movies made on toys from my childhood. I'm not saying the new GI Joe movie coming out next year will be good, but it's forced Hasbro to start releasing "25th Anniversary" GI Joe toys.

And one of these nuggets is the Cobra Crimson Guard.

Let's face it. While Cobra is an evil entity that needs to be exterminated, they did have some uniforms that were unbelievably cool.

Imagine this guy coming at you from across the battlefield. I'd wet myself and renounce freedom in all its glorious splendor.

The best thing about these re-releases is that the packaging is almost identical to the original.

I love how the Crimson Guard is good at accounting. I'll remember that next April. I'm sure he's great at write-offs. Stolen booty?...Oh, yeah, that's deductible.

And Hasbro has gotten me salivating with this tid-bit:

Mwaaa-haha...More to come!!