Crafty Family That Creates Cringeworthy Christmas Cards Updates for 2019

(Imgur/berjon1)

Whether it’s a recent vacation pic or staged studio portraits, Christmas cards are often used as an opportunity to showcase one’s perfect little family.

This is not the case for the Bergerons.

Since 2003, Mike and Laura Bergeron have celebrated the holidays by creating some of the most cringeworthy Christmas cards we have ever seen. They’ve done everything from 80s glam to white trash chic, and only got more creative after the birth of their daughters, lovingly known online as “Gigi” and “Juju.”

“It would be a way to show the people we loved that we were thinking about them during the holidays and also a way to make them smile amidst the chaos and stress of the season,” Mike told Bored Panda.

Big shout out to JC Penney and their illustrious portrait studio for putting up with the bevy of Bergeron shenanigans over the years.

(Imgur/berjon1)

2003 – Forty & Fighting It

The one that started it all. Originally called ‘Plugs & Jugs’ (due in large part to Laura’s hidden overly-augmented rack), the Bergerons had to change the name when this particular shot—the goofy smiles in particular—spoke to them.

“The photographer tried to move the light away from overhead and I had to ask her to shine it directly down on me,” Mike wrote. “She didn’t know how to tell me that it was reflecting off of my head and making me look like I was balding. Finally, I just told her that the balding look was what I was after. She had no idea that we were dressed up in costumes!”

(Imgur/berjon1)

2004 – We’re Dreaming of a White Trash Xmas

While picking up this year’s cards, Mike had to engage with a JC Penney manager who was clearly feeling the holiday sales crunch.

As Mike recalls:

MANAGER: Welcome to JC Penney Portrait Studio, how can I help you today, sir?
MIKE: I’m here to pick up my Christmas cards.
MANAGER: Okay, what is your last name?
MIKE: It’s Bergeron, but I have my receipt right here if that helps.
MANAGER: Okay, thank you. Give me just a moment while I get your order. Sir, it appears they accidentally printed an 8×10, which is usually $19.99, but we’ll let you have it for $5 since it was our mistake.”
MIKE: No thanks.
MANAGER: Okay…well, I see that your wife is pregnant… I hope you will be coming back to JC Penney to take your baby pictures.
MIKE: [smiling at the realization that she doesn’t get the joke] Actually, she’s not pregnant… and if she were, I wouldn’t let her drink beer or smoke cigarettes…and, as you can see, I don’t have a mullet. It’s a joke card.

In the midst of what was utter chaos for her at that moment, she just sort of stared at Mike in bewilderment as the cashier next to her stopped what he was doing, leaned over to look at the card and said with pure and utter excitement, “Dude, that’s awesome!”

MIKE: Thanks. Merry Christmas!

As Mike took the cards and walked away, the manager stood in absolute confusion, her brain apparently frozen with the realization that her sales training had failed to prepare her for that rare situation.

(Imgur/berjon1)

2005 – Your Aunt & Uncle Who Live In The Midwest

According to Mike, Bergeron men are notorious for going bald. At the age of 32, he foresaw the coming reckoning for his precious hair follicles and decided to go all on on the balding joke before it became a reality.

“The thing is, I had to walk around with a bald head for a couple of weeks while the holiday card was processing and shipping, but I didn’t want to give anyone any hints about what the card might be,” Mike explained.

“So, when people would ask me why I suddenly shaved all of the hair off of my head, I would give them some made-up excuse like, ‘I joined a cult’ or, ‘I’m a racist’ or, ‘Chicks really seem to like that Vin Diesel guy, so I thought I’d give it a shot.'”

(Imgur/berjon1)

2006 – A Very Special Christmas

A rare re-creation of another Christmas card, the Bergerons decided to honor another awkward holiday couple.

“A couple of years before we started this tradition, my friend, Jeremy, worked during the holidays in a photo studio,” Mike said.

“If he thought that a family portrait was particularly funny, he would print a copy for himself and put it on display in his living room. They were all awkward and wonderful in their own way, but there was one photo, in particular, that was so delightfully goofy and uncomfortable that it has always stuck with me. This card is an effort to recreate the magic of that card. I’ll be the first to admit that we fall terribly short, but I think it still manages to bring some joy to the holiday season!”

(Imgur/berjon1)

2007 – American Gothic Christmas

The Bergerons admittedly caught some flak for this more or less photoshopped Christmas card.

“For those who love it, thanks… we love you, too,” Mike wrote. “For those who feel we cheated… look, we actually dressed-up in costumes and took a photograph for this card (we even bought a pitchfork!).”

(Imgur/berjon1)

2008 – Merry Krishnas

“We got started a little late this year, which meant that when we went to JC Penney to take our picture, there was a one hour wait,” Mike explained. “We walked through the mall and wound up eating dinner in the food court. I only wish that we had brought flowers.”

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2009 – Los Cholos

This year marked the Bergeron’s favorite Christmas favorite card to date.

“Again, on this particular year, we weren’t able to take the picture until after Thanksgiving,” Mike wrote. “So the JC Penney photo studio was bustling, and we had to wait for an hour to get in. Understandably so, Laura was nervous about walking around the Westminster Mall looking like we did, but I reassured her by saying, ‘Seriously? Look at us… nobody is going to fuck with us!’ I was right… not a single person would even make eye contact with us.”

(Imgur/berjon1)

2010 – Olin Mills Family Portrait from 1981

Not only did this year ramp up the horrible awkwardness to all new heights, but it was also “Gigi’s” first ridiculous Christmas card experience.

“On a side note,” Mike explains. “As a bald man who has known his entire life that he would grow up to be bald, it had been a longtime aspiration of mine to sport a combover at some point because they are so fascinating in their ridiculousness! So, this particular card allowed me to not only fulfill a lifelong dream but also to capture it in all of its glory for the ages.”

(Imgur/berjon1)

2011 – The Unibrows

Despite the inherent greatness of a thick unibrow, Mike belives things could have gone better in 2011.

“Don’t get me wrong, we look funny and Gigi really gives the card a whole other dynamic with her incredible cuteness, but I think this concept had the potential to be our best card ever, if we had done it right.”

(Imgur/berjon1)

2012 – Goth Xmas

No explanation needed. Just take it in.

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2013 – Jazz Hands

Oh boy. 2013 was a year of spirit, shine, and awkward bulges.

“Sometimes you catch lightning in a bottle,” Mike wrote. “Look at Laura… bringing it! Look at Gigi… bringing it! Look at Juju… well, protesting (at least she’s consistent). I am truly blessed.”

(Imgur/berjon1)

2014 – The Holidays Are Such a Drag

Sometimes you witness something so special, few words can be said that can truly encapsulate the magic.

“I had to hunt high and low for shoes that would fit me (thanks Lane Bryant) and, of course, I shaved my legs, so you can imagine how excited I was that we wound up choosing a shot from the waist up. And, seriously, how friggin’ cute are those boys? If we had given Gigi glasses, I think she would’ve looked an awful lot like Ralphie!”

(Imgur/berjon1)

2015 – Les Modèles (AKA Fashionistas, AKA Euro Trash)

Some years, you look goofy. Other years, you just look fly as hell.

Mike summed it up best:

“His shoes – $850, her shoes – $950, spending your holiday with the Bergerons – priceless.

(Imgur/berjon1)

2016 – Cussin Jerry Nem

“A little over a year ago, Gigi started calling me ‘Cousin Jerry,'” Mike explained. “It caught on with her little sister and, after a while, I started talking to them as I imagined Cousin Jerry would. Since then, he has become a regular visitor in our household, so it seemed fitting to share him with all of you this holiday season.”

He probably has a metal plate in his head and a propensity for the phrase, “Shitter’s full.”

(Imgur/berjon1)

2017 – Gingers in Paradise

A rare year that didn’t include JC Penney’s portrait studio, the Bergeron’s didn’t let that stop them from going all out.

“This was our nod to the ever-so-popular holiday card theme that says, ‘Look at us soaking up the sun’s rays in a beautiful tropical paradise while you’re freezing your nuts off… don’t you wish you were us?'”

(Imgur/berjon1)

2018 – The West Texans

This year, the Bergeron girls got all “prettied up” while leaving the creepy awkwardness to Mom and Dad. Clearly feeling confident in her duds, Gigi had no problem telling everyone at JC Penney exactly who runs their portrait studio every Christmas.

“Gigi was quick to let the staff know that we are famous,” Mike wrote. “Laura then told Gigi that, ‘You’re not famous if you have to tell people that you are famous.'”

“After we did our various poses and finished the photo shoot, I showed the staff our catalog of cards on my phone and, sure enough, one of them said with a smile, ‘Oh yeah, I’ve seen these before!’ So, Gigi was right. We are famous… it’s just that nobody knows what any of us looks like since we’re pretending to be different people in all of our cards. So, it seems that we Bergerons have our own unique brand of fame – to be seen by many, yet recognizable to no one!”

The Bergerons 2019 Christmas Card
(Imgur/berjon1)

2019 – A Bookie’s Family Holiday

“The concept for this card originated with my deep-seated desire to rock a gold Star of David resting upon a chest full of hair (shout out to David Menuck). I came up with the idea of being a Jewish bookie and then we just brainstormed about what his wife and kids would look like.”

Bergerons, we salute you. See you in 2020!

Father Figures: Could Not Even Imagine

“Like a similar post I saw on your Facebook page, I too am the father that I am despite the father that I had.

My father was an alcoholic who decided hanging out with friends and drinking was more important than coming home to his wife, three daughters, and son.

My parents split when I was in 1st grade and of course, as the only son, I looked up to him and sometimes despised my mom for being strong enough to kick him to the curb.

I am now a father of 3 of the best children I could imagine, and I have learned from his mistakes. I will never have my children go through what me and my sisters had to go through.

I could not even imagine my life without all of my family.”

– Kevin Munk

Want to share a story about fatherhood? Email [email protected]

You Can Pre-Order This 1,000-Piece LEGO Version of Baby Yoda

Baby Yoda LEGO
(LEGO Group)

We are a little more than a month away from The Mandalorian returning gracing our beloved screens. But if that’s not enough for you, LEGO Star Wars has announced a special set featuring the true star of the show. That’s right, you’ll be able to build your own LEGO Baby Yoda and it gets released on October 21st (a week prior to the season 2 debut.)

Season 2 of the blockbuster hit for Disney already looks to be pretty badass, and we know much of the season will revolve around Din finding The Child’s home planet. Yes, this is the part where we say he’s not really a baby version of Yoda, but he is “The Child,” a young version of whatever the heck Yoda’s species is. Some people can be really annoying about this distinction, but come on, everyone knows what you’re talking about when you say Baby Yoda.

And just look at how adorable this LEGO creation is.

The 1,073 piece set known as the LEGO Star Wars “The Child” construction set is available for pre-order now. Like the show about our favorite bounty hunter, the playset won’t be released until October 30th. The Baby Yoda set has a posable head, movable ears, and an adjustable mouth, which means it is a must-have for all Mando fans.

A design manager at LEGO Star Wars said they aimed to “capture the charm, and above all, the cuteness of the character.” Nailed it. The set also comes with a miniature toy version of The Child.

You can pre-order it now, right here.

Six-Month Old Baby Sets World Record for Youngest Water Skier

Baby WaterSki
(Instagram/richcaseyhumpherys)

There’s cool, and there’s “water skiing cool.” And then there’s “world-record holder, water skier cool” and that’s the vibe earned by our new world-record holder for youngest water skier, a six-month-old baby from Utah.

At a time when anything cool with the word “baby” is usually followed by “Yoda,” or “shark,” this is a true win for a baby from Utah. His parents, Casey and Mindi Humphreys posted a pic and video of tiny Rich water skiing for his 6 month birthday, making him the youngest to do so ever. They included the “#worldrecord” just to make it a full flex of a post.

 

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I went water skiing for my 6 month birthday. Apparently that’s a big deal… #worldrecord

A post shared by Rich Casey Humpherys (@richcaseyhumpherys) on

Of course, there aren’t “official” records kept for stuff like that, because it would be kinda weird. But it is accepted that he’s the youngest to water ski, at least according to major media outlets.

And sure, with an accomplishment like this, you’re gonna have some haters. But also, you’re gonna be one of the youngest people ever featured on SportsCenter too, so haters gonna hate. Some people are drawing comparisons to the infamous photo of the Patagonia baby toss, but that baby turned out just fine!


He’s got a life jacket, his dad is right there with him, so he was (probably) gonna be fine. And anyway, the planet is dying and everyone is trying to avoid this global pandemic, so give him some points for living life in a socially distanced and badass way.

Would I do this with my own kid? Of course not. But it’s fun to watch someone else’s kid enjoy that lake life! Big props to little Rich and I can’t wait to see him skydive or bungee jump when he turns 1.

Dad Spends 265 Days Sailing Around The World With Stuffed Animal

Canadian Dad Sails Around the World
(Instagram/svseaburban)

Where have you been quarantined? At home? Did each member of your family decide to quarantine in their own individual blanket fort? That’s cool, this Canadian dad spent the past 265 days quarantined on a boat as he circumnavigated the globe.

That’s right, Bert ter Hart from British Columbia didn’t ride the wave of social distancing, he was social distancing long before it was cool. Dubbed “The Safest Man on the Planet,” Bert ter Hart has barely seen another person in the better part of a year. In fact, he rarely even spoke to one face-to-face. During his journey around the world, he used only celestial navigation – no phone, no GPS, not even a tablet to binge The Mandalodian.

 

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Cowboy Hats Since we’re talking about hats, my Dad gave me this one. I didn’t have the foresight to bring anything other than ball caps and toques. Dad realized immediately that I would need something for the tropics and gave me this Tilley. Actually, he gave me two knowing that I am a bit of a fumble-fingers and more likely than not to lose it overboard. The hat is in use everyday and judging by my tan, it’s mire than necessary in these parts. This picture also made me realize I could have saved some dough on storm canvas. It looks like my ears are big enough to set in a blow. I would only have to stand in the cockpit with my back to the wind! #oceancowboy #dadknowsbest #tilleyhat #svseaburban #aroundalone #6monthsatsea #sextant #penandpaper #circumnavigation #sailor #sailing #nonstop #5capes #onehandfortheship #occadventuresailing #sailinglovers #adventureisoutthere #occchallengegrant #instasailing #sailboatsofinstagram #captainbert #onemanshow #brave #sailinglife #sea #ocean #sailboats #zhik #sailingaroundtheworld Follow my tracks in real-time: https://forecast.predictwind.com/tracking/display/Seaburban

A post shared by SV Seaburban (@svseaburban) on

Only eight people have ever done what this Canadian native did, and he’s the first from North America to complete the long and arduous expedition. Inspired both by early explorers and his own father who taught him to sail, Ter Hart used a sextant (a navigational device used to measure the angular distance between two objects, essential to Ter Hart for taking altitudes while he navigated), charts, and a pen and paper to make his way around the world.

 

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A COVID-19 Message from Bert’s Son, Webmaster, and Sailing Padawan Apprentice. Do it now. Not later. Tomorrow is already too late. That is the advice my father has taught me my entire life. The situation didn’t matter, be it at home, at sail, or anything else. Get your assignments done now, and have more time to make it perfect. When you’re at sea you have to do everything now. I learned early that taking a sail down, before it gets out of control reduces the effort required by its square. Start cooking now, before your forced to stay above deck for the rest of the day, and you go hungry. Make weather decisions early, as soon as you get the forecast. Change the heading now, before you’re stuck in the storm without options. In flight training hesitating before making a decision, especially a meteorological decision, can be the difference between your passengers life or death. Land under control, before you crash out of control, or even better decide not to take-off at all. Bert wanted me to share the following post that was originally written by Jason Warner, the chemical engineer and business executive. It explains COVID-19 by the numbers, and why it is important to make a plan now and take action now. Tomorrow may very well be too late: “This is a long post addressing two underlying issues with the current response to the pandemic that leaves me concerned. It’s the longest post I’ve ever written. For those of you not taking action, or believing the pandemic to be “overhyped”, you can make fun of me as much as you want now or when this is over. You can make me the subject of memes and post it everywhere. I will pose for the picture. I am not trying to convince you, but I do feel compelled to share information that I deem critical to all of us, which is why I am posting this at all. *WHY YOU SHOULD TAKE 5 MINUTES TO READ AND CONSIDER THE INFORMATION I AM SHARING:* As of 3/15/20 at 9 am PST this post has been shared over 50k times since it was posted 2 days ago. So a lot of people find value in the post and although it’s a long read, I believe you will find this information valuable too. (Cont’d on Facebook page: Around Alone)

A post shared by SV Seaburban (@svseaburban) on

Ter Hart departed in his 13 meter (that’s about 43 feet, Americans) boat last October, and though he has a degree in oceanography and plenty of sailing experience, this trek was harder than anyone could have anticipated.

“The navigation was really hard because in order to figure out where you are with a sextant, you have to see the horizon. But when you’re at sea in a small boat, there’s always waves — and the swell can be anywhere from 12 to 15 feet,” Ter Hart told Travel and Leisure. “The motion is so extreme…the boat is tilted at some crazy angle, it’s going up and down, and rolling from side to side. If I were to put a pencil down, five seconds later, that pencil is in a completely different part of the boat.”

 

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Celebration The crew was anxious to celebrate our good fortune and successful rounding so when I announced it was time Port, Starboard, and Sir Salty Ants-In-His-Pants didn’t need to be told twice. It was a full time job just to get them to be still for the picture. You may remember that the bottle was a gift from Randall Reeves. From all of us aboard Seaburban Randall, thank you. I needed to pry the bubbly out of Sir Salty’s flippers to make sure that there was enough left for formalities. As is proper, Neptune was given his due. For a toast, I thought of this: For those who came before and lit the way, thank you. For those who may yet come, I say welcome. And for those who remain, may this place bring you everlasting peace. I hope it is enough and well received. Chock full of emotion, I stumble over a sheet strewn over a cockpit locker and splash some of the bottle’s contents on Seaburban. Of course! I had forgotten Seaburban! Remedied immediately, looking up I see a single point of light bursting through the clouds. In disbelief, I check the bearing. It bears directly over Cape Horn. There things in life you will never forget. Things indelibly stamped that never fade. Things like this. #celebration #breakoutthebubbly #neptunesdue #svseaburban #aroundalone #6monthsatsea #sextant #penandpaper #circumnavigation #sailor #sailing #nonstop #5capes #onehandfortheship #occadventuresailing #sailinglovers #adventureisoutthere #occchallengegrant #instasailing #sailboatsofinstagram #captainbert #onemanshow #brave #sailinglife #sea #ocean #sailboats #zhik #sailingaroundtheworld Follow my tracks in real-time: https://forecast.predictwind.com/tracking/display/Seaburban

A post shared by SV Seaburban (@svseaburban) on

This brave father of four endured challenging conditions, even anchoring for several days to wait out a hurricane. Incredibly, during his entire journey, he didn’t lose sight of his goal. Accompanied only by his stuffed seal dubbed Sir Salty, Ter Hart persisted. Aside from the personal satisfaction of achieving this incredible feat, Ter Hart was motivated by his desire to push others towards their own dreams.

 

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Nervous I am more than a little bit nervous as we slowly reach in the troughs of some impressive but unforgiving waves with winds at 31 or 32 gusting 38. The Solent is up with 3 reefs and I dare not reduce sail as we would lose steerage. Th current is, as luck would have it, against. All in all, a character builder I would say. The forecast, already wildly wrong, is calling for both the swell and wind to subside. It looks that way to me so what has worked all night is not going to be changed significantly now. I will alter downwind slightly however just to keep us moving if the winds lighten. I am not running off as I need to go north like I need a hole in the boat. Not only is it in the wrong direction, but north of us is another ridge and windless patch. Turn three times, scratch a mast, and grab a stay The wind and swell should go away If not the morn, then let us pray That it comes to pass sometime this day #scratchthemast #nervous #swell #svseaburban #aroundalone #6monthsatsea #sextant #penandpaper #circumnavigation #sailor #sailing #nonstop #5capes #onehandfortheship #occadventuresailing #sailinglovers #adventureisoutthere #occchallengegrant #instasailing #sailboatsofinstagram #captainbert #onemanshow #brave #sailinglife #sea #ocean #sailboats #zhik #sailingaroundtheworld Follow my tracks in real-time: https://forecast.predictwind.com/tracking/display/Seaburban

A post shared by SV Seaburban (@svseaburban) on

“I wanted to inspire people to take that first step forward in realizing whatever dreams or adventures they might have,” he explained to Travel and Leisure. “Once you take that first step, the next step is easier, and the step after that becomes easier. And pretty soon, you’re living your dream — whatever that may be, big or small.”

After nine challenging months, Ter Hart did it. On July 18, the daring dad returned to his overjoyed family.

“When I got back, the first thing I said was, ‘What did I miss?’” Ter Hart told Yahoo News.

Returning to life on land after nearly nine months at sea is difficult in itself, but Ter Hart had the added stress of returning to a world much different than the one he left. We’ve had months to adjust to life in a pandemic world, and it’s still far from easy – Ter Hart has the unique challenge of adjusting in an instant.

For Ter Hart, this is just the next adventure. This time though, he has the best crew in the world by his side – his family.

The most important photo of all. With Dad

Posted by The 5 Capes, Seaburban Around Alone on Sunday, July 19, 2020

Japan Builds 59-Foot Gundam Robot THAT CAN MOVE ON ITS OWN

Japan's Gundam Robot is Moving
(Twitter/catsuka)

There is big news if you’re a fan of either anime or giant robots capable of taking over the world and enslaving mankind. Engineers at the Gundam Factory in Japan have built a life-sized giant Gundam robot, built with a mechanical skeleton so it can move on its own.

If you’re an anime fan, you’re already aware of the booming popularity. And if you’re a fan of robots, well, you know they’re going to take over the world. Sure, they start by doing simple chores like mowing the lawn and cleaning your floors, but even after a self-driving car killed an autonomous robot, people still think it’s a good idea to start building them this big.

If you’re a numbers guy, the Yokohama Gundam is 59 feet tall and weighs 55,000 pounds. I’m not sure if I mentioned this but it can MOVE ON ITS OWN. For now, anime fans see the robot at the Gundam factory outside Tokyo. Soon, they will be able to see them stomping all over cities around the world (probably).

The huge robot, based on the wildly popular Gundam robot from the anime series Mobile Suit Gundam from the 70s (thanks, Wikipedia) started earlier this year. And if this is where we’re at now, it’s not hard to imagine a future where these things are EVERYWHERE.

It’s not the only Gundam replica in Japan, but the RX-78-2 Gundam robot is the only one that can move.

Definitely an astonishing engineering feat. But perhaps they were too preoccupied with whether or not they could, instead of asking if they should.

Discovery by Astronomers May Signal Extraterrestrial Life on Venus

Life in Venus Gas Clouds
(Pixabay/GooKingSword)

Remember a few months ago, when 2020 was just getting terrifying and we weren’t sure we could take anymore, and then suddenly scientists found evidence of a parallel universe that turned out to not quite be what we thought it was?

Then the Pentagon reported they had encountered “off-world vehicles” and we collectively admitted that none of us had ‘aliens’ on their 2020 bingo card.

Well, get ready for another fun piece of scientific speculation!

The other day, astronomers made a discovery that could signal life on Venus! Well, not actually on Venus, in the clouds around Venus, but still. Life!

Usually, when we consider the possibility of extraterrestrial life somewhere in our solar system, we skip the planets that are even closer to the sun than earth and focus on places like Mars or Jupiter. Maybe the scientists just missed this!

Of course, scientists being scientists, they are careful with their language. They rely on pesky little things like facts and data and analysis, and in this case, those things don’t exactly reveal the presence of alien life hovering in the atmosphere around Venus, but instead the POTENTIAL for alien life. They’ve discovered a chemical called “phosphine,” which apparently should NOT randomly exist where they’ve found it.

Again, the article discussing these findings is actually titled “Hints of Life on Venus” so they haven’t actually found E.T., they’ve just found the potential for him. So relax, those observing Venusian clouds aren’t running around warning us of Independence Day 3.

YET. But there are still many months left in 2020.

That said, the microbes that have been found in the clouds around Venus have opened up the possibility that if and when the White Hosue is incinerated by evil alien invaders, they may be from Venus. So that’s exciting!

Or terrifying. Depending on your mood.

It’s Jedi vs. Jean-Luc in Fun New Uber Eats Commercial

Luke Vs Jean Luc
(YouTube/Uber Eats)

Is Star Wars vs. Star Trek really a thing? The new Uber Eats commercial seems to think so.

In the commercial, Mark Hamill and Patrick Stewart, the stars of two of Hollywood’s biggest space-based franchises square off over dinner orders, the correct pronunciation of “tomato,” and… Daddy insults while waiting for their Uber Eats to arrive. Which it very quickly does.

The ad is funny regardless of whether you know your Millennium Falcon from your starship Enterprise, and Hamill and Stewart are both beloved figures who’d draw major crowds at Comic-Con, but the conceit seems to be that they are at odds because of the properties that made them famous.

In my mind, Star Wars and Star Trek couldn’t be more different. Star Wars is pure fantasy, a fairy tale with magic and monsters that happens to take place in outer space. Star Trek is pure science-fiction, the action movie trappings of the Chris Pine reboot notwithstanding, featuring moral quandaries, philosophical debates, and even some actual science. There is no science in Star Wars. A parsec is measures distance, not time, Han! No wonder Greedo was so mad.

Anyway, I’m probably taking this way too seriously. Thankfully, neither of the actors are, which makes for an entertaining commercial.

Check it out:

The Mandalorian Is Getting a Series of Books and Comics

Star Wars The Mandalorian Books
(Star Wars)

They say the universe never stops expanding, and we believe that’s also the case for the Star Wars universe. From novelizations to lackluster Christmas specials to game shows to high-end furniture to BBQ grills, there will never be a shortage of ways to get your Star Wars fix.

One of the most popular expansions to the Star Wars media empire has been The Mandalorian on Disney+, which is loads of fun and jam-packed with some truly dazzling production design. The series even launched a whole subgenre of memes in the form of Baby Yoda.

Earlier this summer, the official Star Wars website announced that it would continue Mandalorian world-building with a new series of published titles. One of those titles is The Art of The Mandalorian, and the cover art by Lucasfilm illustrator Doug Chiang alone makes it a worthy addition to any fan’s coffee table.

(Disney)

The series is also getting its own Marvel comic, as well as a coloring and activity book, magazine, and children’s storybook. Fans of Star Wars can expect The Art of the Mandalorian to hit shelves this December, with more releases slated for winter and spring 2021. Here’s what to look forward to:

  • The Art of The Mandalorian (Season One) by Phil Szostak; cover by Doug Chiang (Pre-order for 36.00 for delivery on December 1)
  • The Mandalorian: Original Novel (adult novel, Del Rey) by Adam Christopher
  • The Mandalorian: The Ultimate Visual Guide (DK) by Pablo Hidalgo
  • The Mandalorian: Allies & Enemies – Level Two Reader (DLP) by Brooke Vitale
  • The Mandalorian: 8×8 Storybook (title to be revealed later) by Brooke Vitale
  • The Mandalorian: Junior Novelization by Joe Schreiber

And for no reason, here’s Baby Yoda again.

We have spoken.

Gary Sinise Foundation Steps up To Help the Grieving Family of a Vietnam Veteran

Gary Sinise Foundation Helps Pay Grieving Family's Bills
(garysinisefoundation.org)

Actor turned philanthropist extraordinaire Gary Sinise has been helping veterans and their families for nearly a decade, since founding The Gary Sinise Foundation in 2011. Sinise’s foundation has provided adapted homes to wounded veterans, served over 400,000 meals to defenders across the country, and even taken over 1,750 children of fallen soldiers to Disney World. Sinise has been recognized for his impact, receiving a Patriot Award among other national honors. And COVID-19 didn’t stop Sinise and his foundation from doing what they do.

One of the most amazing things about Sinise’s work is that his foundation takes the time to assist many individuals and families in need as soon as the need arises. Over the summer, a Vietnam veteran named Henry Cordero passed away. The loss of a family member is devastating enough, but Cordero’s daughter Jennifer Ruelas found herself facing a mountain of her father’s outstanding medical bills and various other expenses.

With nobody else in her family able to help, Ruelas was solely responsible for dealing with the thousands of dollars of debt. While she made enough to cover her own cost of living, Ruelas had no way to add a pile of debt to her own expenses. On top of the heartbreak of losing her father, Ruelas now had to face the strain of paying back bills that weren’t hers with money she didn’t have.

Prior to her father’s death, Ruelas had already taken a financial hit after becoming his caregiver in 2018 when he was diagnosed with dementia.

According to the Gary Sinise Foundation’s article, Ruelas had told her boss, “My father is my life. He is my best friend, so when he is sick, I am going to leave. So if you guys can’t accept that, then I can’t work here.”

Cordero had been incredibly generous throughout his life, helping family members purchase their own homes and volunteering with communities in need. Ruelas wanted to help her dad as he helped her throughout her life and did the best she could with the resources she had. After her dad’s passing, Ruelas and her husband worked to try to pay his remaining bills, but even their combined incomes barely made a dent.

Ruelas contacted the Gary Sinise Foundation after a friend mentioned that they may be able to help. Finally, Ruelas got some desperately-needed relief – the foundation’s H.O.P.E. initiative paid Cordero’s remaining caregiving fees as well as his cremation costs. With a large chunk of debt no longer weighing on her, Ruelas was able to breathe a bit easier – all thanks to Gary Sinise’s life-changing foundation.