Tag Archives: Retro

Five Thoughts on a Friday – The “Latest Snowpocalypse” Edition

Happy snowy morning everyone. Yep, it’s another Friday, and that means another edition of Five Thoughts, and here lately – another big snowstorm. It’s been a great week though, so I’m not gonna get a little snow and cold get me down. And with that in mind, let’s get started!

  1. Speaking of being down, I know this won’t surprise anyone who’s even remotely local, but Detroit was just named to the number one spot on a Forbes list! Of Miserable Cities. Like I said, it’ll be no surprise to any locals.. What’s that? It wasn’t a commentary on the city government? Really! Well, it still a pretty accurate ranking.
  2. In the meantime, Michigan’s state government is looking to tackle the tough issues. It seems they’re finally getting around to going after those notorious criminals, Kramer and Newman. That’s right you two. The state’s on to your little bottle return scam!
  3. Being the age that I am, it’s not uncommon for me to reference things from the 80s or 90s. One thing I generally don’t bring up, or even worse, try to bring back is the fashion. Sadly, I may be alone in that. It would appear that one of the worst of the 1990s fashions is trying to make a comeback. Yep, I’m talking overalls. Hmm… I wonder if Tim from Moonshiners has anything to do with it?
  4. This one ended up being one of my favorite stories of the week. On Monday, Burger King’s twitter account was hacked. On Tuesday morning, the company that handles social media for Jeep posted an article about how to avoid being hacked. 15 minutes later, Jeep’s twitter account was hacked. I haven’t checked the site lately to see if they’ve posted a “How not to tempt fate” article yet.
  5. Lastly, from the “You’re not real bright, are you?” department… It seems that there’s an organization that’s battling a rash of employees using work issued electronics for inappropriate communications. Yep, ‘sexting’ basically. Now yes, I know it probably happens everywhere to an extent. And there are people who ‘think’ they probably know ways around it. But when it’s happening at the organization that’s gets involved in investigating a lot of these cases… well.. “You aren’t real bright, are you?”. Ladies and Gentlemen, I give you the F B I.  (I wanted to use this quote – but I couldn’t find a video of it). This one still seems appropriate though. We’re gonna need some more FBI guys.

Okay folks, that’s five and I’m out of here. Time to stare out the window at the snow let the knowledge of my recently scheduled boondoggle keep me warm. Yep, before long it will be Boondoggle time again. Hello, Montego Bay!

Have a great weekend folks!

Found on the internet…

Hmm, this has me thinking of a new feature. We could call it “Total Cheese”!

In case you missed it, we love cheese here at the Beerbarrel. Good Cheese, that is.

Make sure you turn up the sound, the music helps make the commercial.

Later folks, see you back here tomorrow!

The “Good” Cheese

Wow! It’s Wednesday and the Beerbarrel has a new post up! How in the world did that happen??!?!?!?  Anyways… It deals with a question we’ve been pondering here at The Beerbarrel for a while… so enjoy!

There’s a book out called “Who Moved My Cheese“, this post has absolutely nothing to do with that book, or that cheese. We’re talking about the Good Cheese today folks, we’re talking television and pop culture stuff. Specifically the “cheesy” stuff that you remember in a fond way. The GOOD CHEESE . The stuff that doesn’t seem to get made anymore.

So what constitutes good cheese? Well, first off, it has to be cheesy (Ok, I’d say that’s a given). Obviously not real. Of course, this instantly rules out *any* reality television show. Sorry, those just come across as far too “scripted” or “staged” to be *real*. Want real? Watch the news. Go outside. Stay at work.

Good cheese can really be just about anything. Music, Television, Movies, you get the picture.

Want examples? Ok, let’s start with TV. Lots of good cheese there. Sadly though, most of it qualifies as aged cheese. For example, the 1980’s were a golden age for cheese in general. Lots of good cheese to be found there.

The Archtype of 80’s TV Good Cheese?

A movie from a bit further back?

How about some all time cheese?

Ok, I think we’ve established “Good Cheese”. So…what the heck happened?

The stuff today doesn’t even come close. Now, I realize and understand that nostalgia often plays a role. Let’s not forget that although it’s viewed almost comically today, Jaws was viewed as almost “Hitchcock” like in terms of horror films when it came out. Of course, these days it’s more about the one-liners like “We’re gonna need a bigger boat”.

But a lot of the TV shows? You knew they weren’t real.

Knight Rider? A sentient, talking Trans Am? C’mon. That’s cheese.

The A-Team! Right. 100,000 rounds fired from assault weapons and not a single person wounded. Same with the Storm Troopers in Star Wars.

What about CHiPs? Yeah, because there are always random 45  airborne car pileups in the middle of the day. Fun to watch, yes. Real? No. I was in a 6 car accident on an interstate last year. Not one of us went airborne. Very disappointing.

So, how did we get from all of that to the reality tv we have today? The writer’s strike? A change in what viewers wanted? Possibly. What with all the channels available now,  you had to find a way to grab attention. Maybe we’re finding out what’s at the bottom of the slippery slope. “Who can be the most outrageous” seems to win the ratings these days be it television, movies, or music/radio. Economics? Probably. Cheaper to produce and slap onto the air if you don’t need scripts and actual actors? (Ironic that they don’t have actual scripts, considering how scripted they seem!) Or was it something different altogether? Who knows, we sure don’t.

Let us know what you think, and what are some of your favorite bits of “Good Cheese”.

Later folks!

Gersh gurndy morn-dee burn-dee

We here at Beerbarrel Productions make no bones about the fact that we hate recycled ideas in the entertainment world.  A-Team movie…dumb…. Dukes of Hazzard movie…dumber idea… and on and on and on.  Come on creative people, develop some original  thoughts and ideas.  We, as a buying, demanding population want original thoughts.  Well, I’m going to actually take a step back from our normal beliefs and flip flop here people.   Hold on, the one area I believe is ripe for a recycled project is…..are you ready….THE MUPPETS!!!  What, wait, is the King drunk or suffering his third concussion???  No people, listen to me.  You have to check out the Muppets Studio on YouTube.  It’s great!   I can’t help but smile….  So I’m leaving you with one of my favorites new videos….enjoy!!

The Beerbarrel’s Top 10…..

Hello, and welcome to the inaugural “The Beerbarrel’s top 10…”.

Yeah, yeah… We know. Everyone does top 10 lists. So what? Doesn’t mean we can’t too, and hopefully ours will be a bit different.  We hope to make this an “irregular feature” here at The Beerbarrel, meaning you never know when one might pop up, but it should become a recurring theme.

And to lead things off, we present The Beerbarrel’s top 10……  Songs that are “Just ‘Totally‘ 80’s”. (Ed note: Yeah, we  went there)

  1. Thriller (Michael Jackson).  It was the top one, deal with it. Unparalleled doesn’t even begin to define how big a hit this song was at the time compared to anything else in the 80’s. No, it’s not here because he just died. It’s here because in the 80’s, when this thing came out, EVERYBODY had a copy. Yes, you did too. Admit it.
  2. Video Killed the Radio Star (The Buggles). The very first video ever played on MTV. That alone secures it’s place on this list. And I must hang my head in shame and admit I saw it happen. Live.
  3. Money For Nothing (Dire Straits). With a catchy video, and it’s even catchier use of the “I want my MTV” ad phrase as a refrain, this is another song everyone in the 80’s heard. (Bonus points if you can name the background singer doing the “I want my MTV” refrain)
  4. Safety Dance (Men Without Hats). Quirky, funny, and just a bit different. And supposedly it was about the nuclear arms race (?!?!?!?)
  5. Eye of the Tiger (Survivor).  It was from Rocky III. You remember that one, right? It had Mr. T, and Hulk Hogan in it! Back when EVERYONE knew who they were in the heyday of the WWF (I know it isn’t called that anymore, but it was back then!). Yes, even if you thought wrestling was a joke in the 80’s, you knew who Hulk Hogan was. Admit it.
  6. Living On a Prayer (Bon Jovi). The 80’s gave rise to “hair metal” (still heard on Hair Nation on Sirius/XM), and this one was a prime example.
  7. Obsession (Animotion). The lyrics alone.. “What do you want me to be, to make you sleep with me” put it in the list.
  8. Whip It (Devo). Everybody heard this one. And Devo was…. different.
  9. I Ran (Flock of Seagulls). I don’t know if it was just the song, or seeing that horrible, horrible video that went with it but this one screams “I’m from the 80’s” with the best of them.
  10. The Theme from Miami Vice (Jan Hammer). Even today, Miami Vice just SCREAMS “80’s” like nothing else. Not any Swatch watch you can dig out, not your boom boxes, or your parachute pants. Although the pants might come close.

So there you have it. Our first Top 10… list. One thing that really struck me while working on it was how many songs actually could qualify for a list like this. Originally I thought we could do some “honorable mentions”, but there would be too many.

Think we missed an obvious one (I’m sure we did)? Have a suggestion for the next Beerbarrel’s Top 10 that we should try to tackle? Let us know!

Retro Gaming

So, we’ll admit to being video game players here at the Beerbarrel.

For me it all started back before the (in)famous Atari 2600.  I’m talking the old school consoles (Yes, Pong was one) as well as actual, honest to goodness arcade games. Then there were the early handhelds, like Mattel Electronics Football, and Football II where you ran the little red blips around.

Over the years I’ve blown through numerous consoles and computers, but there’s one thing that I’ve noticed. Every so often, I’ll dust off an old game. Not always really old, sometimes something ancient that I found on a website, and have a go at it again. It’s had me wondering, what gives some of these older games their appeal?

It surely isn’t the high end graphics in most cases.

Is it just the fond memories? Afternoons spent with friends laughing at each other and being silly as much as enjoying the actual game?

Is it the playability? Sometimes yes, some not I’d say.

Novelty? Was it, and is it still a game that fills a niche that nothing else has?

In the end, who knows. It all comes down to having fun. So if you want to go back to the days of the Commodore 64 for Mail order Monsters, bust out the Sega Genesis for Mutant League Football, or you just liked GTA: Vice City best of all go ahead and fire it up.

Me, I’ll be rummaging through the basement tonight to see if I can find that old NES console. Might be time to try Mike Tyson’s Punch Out again.