They say that we are currently in a ‘Golden Age’ of television. Which is a fair statement I reckon. I remember growing up and the types of shows that I liked to watch (sci-fi, spy, fantasy) were few and far between because nobody really watched them. Then along came reality t.v., cheap brainless crap that took a shoestring budget to make and catapulted idiots into the limelight for fifteen seconds. But in recent years we’re getting some really good shows to watch. Even if the last season of these shows tends to be utter garbage (I’m looking at you Game of Thrones).
Although somehow, like the cockroach of the entertainment industry, reality shows have no fully died off just yet. Honestly, I thought Love Island was a joke until a person in work talk about it at lunch so much that I wanted to pull out my eyeballs and strangle said person with my own optic nerves.
But one type of show that has always survived through the different generations is the quiz show. Everyone loves a quiz show. Prizes that can never be won because the studio is basically Vegas, ensuring the House always wins. A bunch of common people like you and me randomly teamed up, or dragging their family along, to take on the big boys and win. Who doesn’t love a good quiz show?
As I was making breakfast for the two nippers this morning (omelettes no less, which they took a bite of and then declared were yucky) I let my mind wander a little about quiz shows. Not sure why, as the ladyfriend will attest I am quite insane and my thought process tends to verge on the chaotic rather than just the random.
Like in Taken, when Liam Nesson is telling the gangsters that they have disrespected him and ‘for that the price has gone up 10%’ – he does that like four times. Do you reckon that is a compound interest situation or does he just keep adding on 10% of the original amount?
Anyway as my mind didn’t focus on not burning the house down I struck upon an idea that I reckon could be a great quiz show. So great, in fact, that I figured I should document it here and claim a patent before somebody else goes and steals my idea.
All good quiz shows have two competing teams of normal people (that way the belief that somebody other than the studio wins is real and people at home can cheer on their favourite side). They also should have knowledge that the viewers at home are more than likely to have as well. There is no point asking about how to calculate gravitational distance between planetary objects if Nancy from Cork works as an accountant and has an online degree in art. You want the questions to be things that Nancy from Cork will potentially have the answer to. An answer she will scream at the telly as she is swept up in joy of the game.
You want your show to generate conflict on and off the screen, so that the masses watching will shout at the ones on the show at how stupid they are for getting the answer wrong.
What will the majority of people currently have a shared educational knowledge on?
Think about it. If you can’t name all three P.J. Masks are you even parenting, bro? What about being able to sing the entire second version of ‘You’re Welcome!’ from Moana? Can you tell your Tru from your Chip? Do you actually know what Potato is?
The questions basically write themselves and the scary thing is there are so many that you’d never run the risk of repeating one. It would have people jumping off the sofa, dropping both bottle and baby to the floor, as they scream at the top of their lungs ‘It is Iggle Piggly you dope!’.
I’m telling you, I’m onto something here. Baby Brain – the quiz show that gets adults to answer questions about nonsensical things. Mainly because we’ve actually started to forget what having conversations with other adults about grown-up television is like.
For the past few years I've been attending Dublin Comic Con not as a comicbook nerd, but as a comicbook nerd who is there selling their wares. Mainly Filthy Henry novels, since I don't exactly create anything else that would sell at the convention. It has been a permanent fixture on my calendar for the last four summers.
But, alas, not this year.
See the rules for how you get into the con to sell your goods were changed to make things fair for everyone. The idea being that you do not just 'get in' because you had been selling at a previous con.
I know the main criteria is that you need to have new material for sale in order to qualify for a spot in the alley. This is were I become my own enemy, I haven't completed a new book since last August.
Now there are two ways to look at this. Either I am doing a George R. R. Martin on it (come on, I've written four books in the time it's taken him to not write his latest novel - it's overdue by five years at this stage) or I am not just rushing through the novel in order to secure a spot at the convention.
I'm going to lean towards the latter.
I'm my own worst critic, but I definitely don't want to be asking people to part with their hard earned cash for sub par writing. They do that already, but the least I can do is make it a little less sub par than it already is.
Anyroad, long post short this is just an entry to say that I sadly won't be at Dublin Comic Con 2019. But hey, there is always next year (by which time I will definitely have Duplex Tempus finished).
This week we've been on holiday. Our first family holiday abroad with the two nippers. Given how we were illness magnets for most of Jellybean's first year, last summer we did a stay-cation. In that we stayed in our own house, took time off work, and did loads of little day trips instead.
But this year we decided to be insane and go to lands foreign, a Eurocamp located in Domaine des Ormes in Brittany. As Eurocamps go it has all the usual stuff. Tents for the younger travelers, little log cabins for the families who like to shit in a small cupboard (our category) and some fancy ass villa style things that are expensive just to look at. Accommodation aside the site also has some activities that people can partake in and a swimming pool, with a roof so that the gingers don't immediately catch flames and heat the water for the rest of the swimmers.
It was one of the activities that myself and the ladyfriend decided to try out hand at the other evening.
See neither of us are 'sun holiday' types. As in the sort of person who is happy to go away for a week and literally sit by the pool all day drinking and getting skin cancer. Not that there is anything wrong with that sort of holiday (but seriously, trust me on the sunscreen), it is just we get bored quickly. A day or two of that and we are off looking for villages to explore or old churches to visit. In our younger, non-parent, days we would have even done some of the activities. Such as crazy golf.
See I enjoy a bit of friendly competition. Herself, on the other hand, gets a bit competitive. So crazy golf as a family should have been a fine way to pass away some time.
Except we forgot one crucial thing: our kids are bat shit crazy.
Do you crazy golf, bro? Because you haven't crazy golfed until you crazy crazy golf.
We had the little eighteen hole course entirely to ourselves, which is more a win for any of the other guests at the campsite than it is for us. For you see neither of our kids played crazy golf. They played something else, with rules written in Sanskrit on the air between raindrops.
Nugget, Thor bless her, decided that hitting the ball into the hole was no fun. However climbing over the obstacles and throwing the ball, full force, at the hole was much more fun. Almost as much fun as taking a swing at her fourteen month-old brother with the stick...because 'reasons'. When she wasn't doing either of these activities she was playing her own version of 'Queen of the Castle'. The castle being the fourteenth hole, where an actual little castle stood but one big enough for a nearly four-year-old girl. From here she declared to the world there were dragons, fairies, pirates, bad guys and fuckers all around the place.
She learned that last one from her mother. I never curse.
Honestly, I rarely fucking swear.
Then we get to Jellybean. Hardly a bastion of sanity in this crazy mixed up golf game we were playing, but definitely a lemming to some degree. The way the course was built meant there were two levels to it, with a slope running for about four feet upwards between them. Of course the slope was something you never stepped on, because the course wound around it. But Jellybean, Odin bless him, saw the slope as a challenge. A declaration that the world needed him, nay required him, to crawl towards the small fence and duck underneath then full on Superman off the top to race down.
IN THE MIDDLE OF MY BACKSWING!
Luckily I was a few strides away from him and raced over, catching him before screams of pain and injury occurred. My reward? I was marked down by herself on the scorecard because my ball left the hole and Jellybean then started screaming because I hadn't let him injury himself.
Fuck my life.
Nugget then, never wanting to feel left out, declared at the fifteenth hole that she was bored. That crazy craze was boring and mummy and daddy should stop and go home.
You bring the little shits away to shores new for a holiday and they can't let you pretend for thirty minutes that you are still people who do silly things like play crazy golf.
Of course that would have been the end of it, had Jellybean not then decided to munch down on his golf ball. A few chomps in and he hurt himself, go figure, and started crying again.
So yeah, don't go telling me you've played crazy golf until you've played Ultimate Crazy Golf (our kids may be required, other kids may behave in a more normal manner).