Jack’s Takes: There’s a new giraffe in town

If you like cute animas, then look no further!

If you’re wondering why the proportions of this giraffe seem off, they are not: this is actually a dwarf giraffe, one of two of his kind in the known world.

The dwarf giraffe (aptly named Gimli) stands at 9 feet 4 inches tall – so, still pretty tall, relatively speaking. At first, scientists thought this was a baby giraffe. However, they soon came to their realization about Gimli due to his adult sized neck and head.

There is no denying that Gimli is cute as all get out, so it begs the question: can we expect to see more dwarf giraffes in the future?

Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem likely. According to a study conducted by the BMC Research Notes journal, “Given that both observed giraffe with skeletal dysplasia were male, successful mounting for breeding seems physically improbable, suggesting the inability to transfer any potential genes associated with this condition.” Now, call me naive, but I’m not exactly sure what they mean by “mount”… 😉

Regardless, here’s a scalding hot take to end this brief missive: that’s a cute giraffe!

Jack’s Takes: Dancing robots…Cute? Or creepy?

I was a child when the first dancing Elmo doll came out, and as I unwrapped the gift paper to this new, beautiful treasure of mine, I remember thinking to myself, “This is the height of technology. Truly, mankind has reached its peak with this new, wondrous creation.”

Boy, was I wrong…

These Contours loving robots were made by the good folks at Boston Dynamics, and reception has been mixed at best. Opinions have ranged from elation:

To skepticism:

Some users have even expressed disappointment:

As for me, I think it’s pretty cool to see how much technology has evolved over the years. But, like the saying goes, there’s nothing better than the original…

Jack’s Takes: A fitting end to a bizarre year

Another Christmas has come and passed, and while I don’t claim to speak for everybody, the holiday movie classics from years past will be sorely missed: It’s A Wonderful Life, Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer, National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation (my personal fave), the list goes on.

Heck, I will even miss the newer Christmas movies! While many people are critical of reboots, I personally enjoy seeing a new take on an old classic. With one exception…

Many viewers at home were critical of Matthew Morrison’s performance as the titular character, and while I wasn’t a huge fan of his performance, other folks had some harsher words to say about his take:

https://twitter.com/softchelles/status/1336870976450146305

Others felt his performance was too sexual:

To be fair, the Grinch has become an iconic holiday character of late, and even the most seasoned actor would find the task of filling Jim Carrey’s shoes daunting, to say the least.

All that aside, I cannot think of a more fitting way to end the year 2020 than with a creepy Grinch. My wish for next year is for more content as memorable (for better or worse) as this!

Jack’s Takes: A Recipe for Over Production

The year 2020 has brought with it a lot of strange content to consume while in quarantine. I thought I had seen it all with the release of Tiger King in March. Even so, I couldn’t help but do a double take after watching the trailer for a new Lifetime movie production:

Yes, this is a real movie. And no, it is not based on a true story.

Calling the finished product a movie is being generous. Clocking in at a little over 15 minutes, it’s closer to being an infomercial (which it is, minus the “info” part).

Even so, I thought it was really enjoyable! It definitely makes fun of the campy quality that Lifetime movies possess (packed into the 15 minute masterpiece is a murder, and a forbidden affair), which I got a kick out of as an avid fan of Lifetime movies.

So if you’re looking for something to cleanse your pallet of Christmas rom-coms, I would suggest watching Recipe for Seduction.

Jack’s Takes: Where is Screech??

Hello everyone! I am back once again, by unpopular demand, to provide my unsolicited comments on pop culture comings and goings.

And speaking of things that nobody asked for, a beloved 90s sitcom is making its return to television!

You saw that correctly: Saved By The Bell has gotten a reboot! On Wednesday, November 25, the glorious halls of Bayside High graced our television screens once again, only this time on the NBC streaming service Peacock.

This new series follows a different gang of kids as they navigate the dicey waters of adolescence. However, the original cast is featured prominently in the reboot as well, particularly Mario Lopez and Mark-Paul Gosselaar, who reprise their roles as A.C. Slater and Zack Morris, respectively.

But to my dismay, one character is conspicuously absent from the show…

Unfortunately, Screech (played by Dustin Diamond) has not been featured on the show, nor can one expect to see him make any appearances anytime soon, more than likely due to his tumultuous personal life.

It’s a shame, really. As an awkward, curly-haired kid myself, I looked forward to turning on the television every Saturday morning, bowl of cereal placed firmly in my hand, to see what kind of antics Screech would get himself into next.

Like I said before, I doubt that Screech will make an appearance on the show in the near future. But mark my words, if he does show up, I will be there, cereal spewing out of my mouth with laughter for old times’ sake.

Jack’s Takes: How do you replace a legend?

As a longtime “Jeopardy!” fan, I was shocked to hear of the passing of the beloved host Alex Trebek. His gracious, cordial manner is so synonymous with the show that one struggles to think of a candidate worthy enough to take up the mantle. Nor should they; after 37 years at the show’s helm, it seems wrong to immediately rush to find his successor, a mere week after his death. Rather, like Marie Kondo would advise, we should spend this period thanking Alex Trebek for his time, before addressing the future of the show.

However, some fans are already looking forward to a possible “Jeopardy!” future, having put together a petition to make known their wishes. And, if I do say so myself, the future looks bright. As in, bright like a rainbow.

Credit: Getty Images / Rich Fury

That’s right: host of “Reading Rainbow”, LeVar Burton!

“Between hosting 21 seasons of the educational Reading Rainbow,” the petition states, “playing the brainiac engineer Geordi La Forge on Star Trek: the Next Generation, and filling the roll [sic] of Kunta Kinte in the ever important mini-series Roots, LeVar Burton has inspired and shaped the minds of several generations of trivia-loving nerds.”

LeVar Burton has seen the calls for him to take over as host, and is flattered, releasing this tweet:

Do I think he’ll actually take over the show? Personally, I doubt he will. The tweet seemed too vague as to be a promise. Furthermore, I believe the new host should be someone longtime fans are already well acquainted with, like former contestant Ken Jennings, who holds the record for most consecutive wins (at 74), and who is already set to begin guest-hosting the show when it comes back. I believe either one would do a good job hosting, nonetheless.

Regardless of who I believe should take over, there is one contender who looms over the others, like an albatross in the night sky, who has been conspicuously absent from the conversation…

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is alex-trebek-will-ferrell.jpg

Jack’s Takes: They don’t make employee training videos like they used to…

Hello again! Jack here, back to share with you all footage from our weird, weird past.

There are many things that make starting a new job unpleasant, such as meeting new co-workers, adjusting to a new schedule, and so on. In my opinion, all of these pales in comparison to sitting through new employee orientation.

I’ve had enough entry-level jobs in the past that much of the information from these orientation seem repetitive and dull. You would think employers would have found a way to jazz up their presentations by now.

Then again, maybe they already have…

Before you ask the obvious question: yes, this is a real employee training video. I could not believe it myself.

As tacky as this video may seem, I can’t deny that it was very informative. Needless to say, I will never forget how to make hot drinks again!

Have you ever had to sit through a tacky new-employee training video? If so, let us know about it in the comments!

Jack’s Takes: A Completely Unique Experience

Hello! It’s Jack, here to give my take on a media relic from the distant past (the 1970s).

Do bullfighting, cutting down trees, archery come to mind when thinking of things to do while drinking malt liquor? They don’t for me (I haven’t even done any of these activities sober), but what do I know?

As misguided as it is to do extreme sports while drinking, I admire this guy for his various interests! He makes the Dos Equis guy look agoraphobic in comparison.

Anyway, based on my observations, here is the moral of the story: as long as you have a can of malt liquor on your person, you are invincible. Only God himself can strike you down.

Between the Legs: The Bill Buckner Story

Hey everyone! It’s Jack, here to add a fresh perspective to all things nostalgia.

I don’t know about you all, but I have been glued to my TV during the World Series this year. Specifically, I have enjoyed back-and-forth nature, with the L.A. Dodgers and the Tampa Bay Rays taking turns bringing home the W, in this best of 7 series.

Although I have no dog in this fight (being the loyal Brewers fan that I am), I still felt bad for the Rays ultimate defeat. It must sting to know that, despite their best efforts, they still came up short. But I believe they can rest a little easier at knowing that at least they’re not this guy:

For those of you who don’t know, that is Bill Buckner, first baseman for the Boston Red Sox, and the error happened during game six of the 1986 World Series against the New York Mets. Because of the error, the Mets were able to score another run, securing their victory, and forcing a tiebreaking seventh game (which the Red Sox also lost, adding credibility to the long-held belief that the Red Sox were cursed).

Predictably, the error was met with an avalanche of criticism, which Bill Buckner gracefully took in stride. Listen to what he has to say about the play almost three decades later:

Boo Berry vs. Count Chocula

Which cereal do you prefer: Boo Berry or Count Chocula?

Personally, I like them both, although if I had to pick one, I would have to go with Count Chocula. Chocolate AND marshmallows?! Not even a question.

The more important question though (that is alluded to at the end of the commercial): which of the two cereal mascots would fare better in a duel?