Creative Crap

Reality Show: Seed My Startup

Hey, look, it’s been five months since my last post, and before that I posted about fifty times in two months. How can I go from hyperfocus to chasing butterflies that quickly? I have a lot of catching up to do here, but there’s not a lot of time for that now.

I realized the reason I started this site and poured out a couple months of ideas almost daily for awhile was because I was burnt out on the idea train. I come up with new ideas every single day, and jump head first into the best ones. After a few months of that, I have a burn out period where I can’t keep up, so I do nothing. Well, now I have this site for that.

I’m actually not feeling completely overwhelmed just yet, so I’ve only come back here to log some things for future posts so I don’t forget, and I thought I’d post a quickie while I was at it.

So, here goes…

Imagine if you took the Shark Tank TV show one step further and each week you watched a new company get awarded with some kind of seed money for starting a business. Maybe not exactly like the Shark Tank where the potential businesses try and have it all mapped out ahead of time. It would be nice to see people come in with ideas and get some pre-seed money to run with it.

Maybe most fizzle out or die because of a lack of business sense, but maybe there’s a couple of gems out there that actually turn into something. Maybe there’s a future Rockefeller out there who just needs a little starter cash to flip the world upside down. The other side of that coin is maybe all the future Rockefellers of the world find a way no matter what the odds.

Other than the main story of someone receiving this seed money, we could use the remaining time left can be dedicated to updates on other start ups and ongoing projects to see where they all are in the process. What do you think? All I want is a producer credit. Let’s talk! Just kidding. Please don’t call. I’ve grown accustomed to limited human interaction and I’ve convinced myself I can get plenty of Vitamin D from the warm glow of my LCD’s.

All Day Skipper Parody

Here’s the beginning of a new parody I started and lost interest in recently. The great thing about this version of the song is I can sing it as loud as I want in the car without worrying someone is going to hear me and think I’m a racist.

All Day Skipper

Uncharted island port of call, all day Skipper
How long were we out there in that squall, all day Skipper
Betcha we lost all the fish in our trawl, all day Skipper
Still got a radio if I recall, all day Skipper
How long Mrs. Howell gonna wear that shawl, all day Skipper
Voodoo doctor putting flame on a doll, all day Skipper
Banana cream pie with a Ginger hair ball, all day Skipper
We in this for the long haul, all day Skipper

Puppet Show Youtube Channel

This is the kind of admission that makes me (and others) laugh. I like to think of myself as a fairly artistic person. I’m constantly coming up with new ideas covering a broad range of interests. In the creative realm, that mostly means turning videotaped family events into funny films, writing short stories, fleshing out screenplay plots, and the occasion poem or song parody.

This was a new one for me. I seem to remember reading up on those content producers making millions on Youtube and I was really inspired. A good number of them were just people doing what they love. Imagine making millions creating videos of yourself playing video games. Some people are making insane money doing that.

Others do unwrapping videos of toys or tech products, and then there’s just the characters we love to watch. I knew right away if I was ever going to do a video series, it would not be me in it. I’m not sure I’d fare well in front of the camera. I don’t think I’d have any kind of screen presence. I am no Jenna Marbles.

My fantastic, well thought out idea was to bring two puppets to life in their own web series. Yep, so I bought two puppets. I purchased one full body adult male puppet and one slightly larger purple monster puppet (both with arm rods). It was going to begin with a camera fixed on a box as it starts to shake until it’s revealed that the man was attempting to free himself from his cardboard jail.

The monster would either be one of those nanny cam dolls or have a GoPro strapped to him. The two puppets would eventually realize they could use the video for their own purposes. They would become the producers of their own show which would center around bringing the man puppet up to speed because he’s been packed away nose deep in Raggedy Anne’s soiled crotch for the last 25 years.

The first episode is a series/character introduction with the man puppet freeing himself from the box, becoming acquainted with the monster, and sharing a few tidbits about life in the 21st century. It becomes understood over time that the man was a child’s doll who is now a grown adult, which is why he was packed away all this time.

I had taken down some notes about topics that might be fun to discuss if one of them has been absent (or stuffed in a box) for a couple of decades. Certain things would be completely new. (internet, electric cars) Some things would be surprising. (Things becoming obsolete like VCR’s, public phones) And some things would be shocking. (OJ Simpson, 9/11, and ending the Curse of the Bambino)

So where are these puppets now? Partially true to the origin story, they are stuffed into the very box I planned to have the man puppet bust out of in the pilot. The arm rods are in a bin on my book shelf. I think part of my hesitation to start this series is, well, it’s puppets. Don’t you get this idea in your head about a person when you hear they play with puppets? I certainly do.

I didn’t exactly mention this idea to my girlfriend either. (most I don’t, that’s what you’re all here for) She doesn’t know I have them and I’m not about to go pulling them out suddenly to start playing with them in front of her. If I eventually do film a skit, it will definitely be when she’s not around.

Will I ever tell her? Only if I can simultaneously disclose a monthly advertising income statement that shows we could live comfortably from my labors of puppetry. I would suspect she might then embrace it, but until then I’m not taking that chance.

Sell A Drivers Ed Handbook

I grew up in a state that’s pretty well known for having assface drivers, so I’m no stranger to roadway douchebaggery. I moved to a west coast city where it was rather tame considering the amount of traffic, then moved back to the east coast and currently commute through a state that has the worst drivers I have EVER experienced.

I’m not talking bad drivers, hahaha, funny. I’m talking, WTF, that person almost just killed us because there was no space to merge but they did anyway, on purpose. It’s almost as if I’m living inside of a Darwin Awards book just waiting for the next near death experience to happen. I don’t care if they off themselves left and right, but I’d prefer to not be taken out along the way.

This is not some string of extraordinary incidents I’ve seen over a few months time. I have seem this behavior consistently over nearly 10 years. It’s truly a very different world driving there.

If I studied human behavior, I would have to surmise that this driving style is a defense mechanism, perhaps compensation, some projection, with maybe a little regression thrown in too. Let me give you an example starting with a question.

If you were driving rather slow in the passing lane on the highway and saw a line of cars approaching behind you, what you you do?

a) Continue driving slow while the caravan of cars behind you continues to grow longer
b) Yield to faster moving traffic by changing lanes
c) Speed up only if someone attempts to pass you to prevent them from getting ahead of you

If I’m assuming you’re sane, I’d guess that you’d choose b) as the appropriate answer, but let’s remember we’re dealing with, in my opinion, a good percentage of the driving populace known for their lack of good judgment on the roads.

Both a) and c) would be the correct answer in this state. To most people, they’d chalk up a situation like this as one bad egg and share stories of this detestable jackass. The only problem is it’s the norm for this state, and that particular example is only one of the many reprehensible offenses I see repeated on a daily basis.

This is where the idea popped up, briefly I might add. I started writing down each move I saw and giving it a name. The one from answer a) above was called the pace car. After awhile I had dozens of pages worth of incomprehensible maneuvers from these drivers.

I thought of creating a book or ebook called the unofficial drivers handbook for this state, but right off the bat I realized I would be limiting myself so much by only writing it for this one state. I don’t think people from other states would care about it either.

I also had a hard time keeping it light and funny. If I was going to sell this as some type of tongue-in-cheek comedic persecution, I needed to make it amusing, but that wasn’t working. I’d find myself unable to diminish the violations for the purpose of entertainment.

I thought that by writing out what I experienced and putting a funny twist to it, that it would also somehow diffuse the anger, but it ended up only reminding me of these often dangerous situations I had just gone through. Not worth it to me.

Limited market and a topic that boiled my blood is an easy pass. I don’t even have to feign starters syndrome for this one. This unfinished project was a mental health issue. 😛

Kidnapped: A Faux Documentary

When I moved to a different area a few years ago, I started jogging this 2 mile loop around my neighborhood. I usually get lost in thought when I run and it’s often when the ideas start flowing. On one particular run, I came up with an idea for a fake documentary about a fictional crime that happened in the town many years ago.

I enjoy writing (OK, mostly starting) screenplays, but this was one of those ideas that I thought I might actually have a shot at shooting myself. I spent a considerable amount of time on this too, with many revisions. I even signed up at the local cable TV station for a class on producing your own stuff, which I also happen to run by every time I’d jog the loop.

I figured documentaries are more forgiving of amateurish characters because a lot of them contain interviews and clips of real people, not trained actors. I thought it would work out perfectly since I’d be asking regular people to act like they knew about the story, so they wouldn’t come off too polished.

Here’s a very rough and extremely brief version of the story.

The documentary would start with an on screen narrator telling the back story of a young boy living with his mother who is estranged from her boisterous and affluent husband. The boy was kidnapped early one morning on his paper route a couple decades ago. The kidnappers left a ransom demand with a Polaroid photo of the bawling boy with some kind of symbol burned into his chest.

The boys father initially fought with the police publicly to not pay the ransom, but eventually relented and a drop was made by the police. In the end the money was taken but the boy was never returned, the boys father was blamed for his delay, and neither the kidnappers nor the boy were ever heard from again.

The narrator switches gears and begins discussing a new investigation into the disappearance of a young woman only days ago. That young woman is the now grown younger sister of the boy who was kidnapped. A rehashing of the old crime ensues with interviews and comments from a cast of characters close to the first case back then.

Some uncomfortable pressure is put on the woman’s boyfriend who is a bit of a loser with a penchant for manhandling the women in his life. There’s also in depth interviews with the two police officers who made the cash drop from the kidnapping to get their take on whether this new disappearance could have anything to do with the old crime, a copy cat, or if it’s just a coincidence.

The boyfriend paints himself into a corner as the prime suspect. He’s the classic protagonist of the story and is very unlikable as he deflects the tough questions about his actions and his relationship with the missing woman. Meanwhile, the conversations with the two elder police officers become tense when their interviews turning into a slight interrogation of what happened the night of the failed recovery of the kidnapped boy.

The only major plot points I hadn’t worked out would be figuring out a way to include a new ransom demand for the young woman that went missing days earlier, and pinning the ransom on the boyfriend while still extracting the ransom money from not being recovered when the police capture the boyfriend.

Next shown in the sequence is the endings of the interviews with the police involved in the original kidnapping. The narrator sternly informs them he knows they stole the drop money, that it never made it to the kidnappers, and that they are directly responsible for what may have happened to that young boy.

The narrator brutally murders each police man. The ending is the narrator changing his shirt in front of the camera and the audience sees the same burned scar on his chest of the kidnapped boy. A young woman (his supposed missing sister) stands next to him holding the bag containing the ransom money before they turn and walk off.

I know it might break some rules, and the story probably sounds pretty thin, but that’s only because it’s just the gist of it. As I was writing this, I realized how attached I was to this story, so if you happen to see this post disappear one day, that’s just me buying back my own clothes I dropped off at the consignment store.