PONTIUS PALM PILOT: A cute one mimicking the before-and-after category on Wheel of Fortune. Yet where to go beyond the surface joke? I look around for some pictures of Pontius Pilate, but none of the paintings he appears in are very recognizable, except maybe to very religious people. I think it might work with a caption saying, “Art thou king of the Jews? No, wait — let me check my Palm Pilot.” Unfortunately, or maybe fortunately, I lose interest.
SCOTT VERTRIEBT: A short script written by my friend Scott. In this parody of the German movie Run Lola Run, Scott is asked not to retrieve 100,000 Deutschemarks but a humble chicken biscuit for a coworker. When I tell Scott we could film his script with my Camcorder, he becomes violently opposed to the idea. We both get miffed. If right now you’re thinking, “What’s Run Lola Run?,” you’ve identified a crucial problem with our parody.
BABY ALIVE: Three of us — me, my friend Georgia, and Scott again, who’s no longer miffed — were reminiscing about toys from childhood. We spent some time discussing Baby Alive, a primitive eats-and-defecates baby doll: you fed a sort of reconstituted paste into its mechanically chewing/swallowing mouth, and it eventually shat out the paste, unchanged. We speculate that you could probably just feed a rope or cable to Baby Alive, and it would gradually ingest and eventually “excrete” the rope. Tie it off and the baby would endlessly cycle the rope through its system. Or better yet, tie one end of the rope to a fixed object, like a fire escape, and feed the other to Baby Alive, and when the second end has emerged from Baby Alive’s rectum, tie that to another fire escape across the alley, like the clotheslines in old movies about New York. Then Baby Alive would gradually digest its way across the rope, traversing the alley. If two Baby Alives were placed in opposition — that is, chewing toward each other along the same rope — we hypothesized that one would eventually engulf the other, and, furthermore, the engulfed one would eventually emerge unscathed from the consumer’s nether regions. We had some other ideas, too, but I’ll stop here.
GARTH MAUL: For Halloween, Scott wore a Darth Maul mask and, in the manner of Garth Brooks, a cowboy hat and some generic country-style clothing. The problem here is that Garth Brooks is completely non-distinctive. Scott stood around waiting to explain his costume to anyone who asked, but people didn’t notice the cowboy hat and just assumed he was Darth Maul, except too lazy to wear the full costume. Before the night was over, he stopped wearing the cowboy hat, and eventually he took off the mask too.