Category Archives: none really

Reworking Overworked Christmas Carols

Once again, for the second year in a row, Mariah Carey's All I Want For Christmas Is You is the top song on the charts this week in the U.S. And just so we're clear, that's Mariah Carey's version of All I Want For Christmas Is You that was originally released in 1994.

We're not quite as tired of it as we are of the dreaded 12 Days of Christmas song, but we're getting there given how overplayed it becomes this time of year. Overplayed enough where we are finding a mashup of it with Radiohead's Creep to be more worthy of a listen, though it takes a while for the lyrics to break through the uptempo introduction.

All in all, it is surprising how well the Radiohead-Mariah Carey mashup works. Now, if someone could deal with the standalone dread that is The Little Drummer Boy, which not even the talents of Bing Crosby and David Bowie or Pentatonix could rescue, we would declare a Christmas miracle!

2020’s Xmas Bill

We got up early this morning to wrap up our Christmas shopping for 2020. We weren't very imaginative this year, in that we decided to go out and get as many things as we could from the dreaded "12 Days of Christmas" song from a local PNC branch, the only place we know that carries all the items listed in the carol.

Or would, if it weren't for the coronavirus pandemic. Some things on the list just aren't available this year, so our gift recipient will get no dancing ladies, no lords-a-leaping, no pipers piping, and no drummers drumming.

Here's the receipt for all the rest....

2020 Receipt for 12 Days of Xmas Items

The good news is that at $16,163.14 before sales tax, the bill this year for the available line items is $22,825.45 cheaper than in 2019. With the state government's lockdown orders, all the ladies, lords, pipers, and drummers are subject to a stay-at-home order and are thus not available in 2020.

Of course, we're really taking the cheap route in only getting one set of each of the items listed in the "12 Days of Christmas" song. If we were to take the cumulative math resulting from all the repetition in the song seriously, the pre-tax bill for 2020 for the items we can buy would be $105,561.80.

Fourth of July Fireworks Safety Demonstration

We bring you the following $25,362 video produced by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission on some of the things that can go very wrong should you not handle fireworks safely. While no people or animals were harmed during the making of the 2018 video, by our count, six mannequins and two watermelons didn't fare very well....

According to Pacific Specialty, eight people died as a result of fireworks-related incidents in 2017, while another 12,900 were insured, with about two-thirds occurring from mid-June through mid-July. On average, the CPSC has reported an average of seven fireworks-related deaths per year since 2002.

The modern alternative to fireworks is drones, where Travis Air Force Base featured a show with 500 of Intel's Shooting Star drone fleet:

Our prediction: fireworks will continue to be used to celebrate the Fourth of July, and drones will become part of the show.