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Subject: Board Games on SNL rss

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Ryan Lemanski
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On the Weekend Update segment of tonight's Saturday Night Live, Seth Myers made a joke about a person who has accumulated over 1500 board games. Something along the lines of "he failed at the game of life."

Anyone know anything about this person? I assume there was a news story about it. Is it a BGG user?

Edit - I know I could just Google this, but that's no way to start a convo. Also, I think being lampooned on SNL is pretty neat, so if you are on these boards (of course you are), congratulations!
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in this news article.
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Jupiter Jones
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rylmets12 wrote:
On the Weekend Update segment of tonight's Saturday Night Live, Seth Myers made a joke about a person who has accumulated over 1500 board games. Something along the lines of "he failed at the game of life."

Anyone know anything about this person? I assume there was a news story about it. Is it a BGG user?


I just saw that and was about to post about it. A quick google search turned up this article:

http://www.omaha.com/article/20120202/NEWS/302039999/0

He's got to be a member here. This guy needs an "I've been on SNL" microbadge, asap!

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Joe
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Tom Vasel?

However, he seems to be succeeding at the game of life. His outreach to youth groups with board games is anything but a failure.
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いい竹やぶだ!

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When I saw your subject, I first thought of Big Red.
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It was discussed in this thread:

Omaha Gamer makes headlines!
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rylmets12 wrote:
On the Weekend Update segment of tonight's Saturday Night Live, Seth Myers made a joke about a person who has accumulated over 1500 board games. Something along the lines of "he failed at the game of life."


Y'know, because SNL knows what failure is -- do their skits *still* not have any punchlines?

Anyway, congrats to Kaleb for his 15 seconds of fame!
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Kaleb Michaud
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rylmets12 wrote:
Also, I think being lampooned on SNL is pretty neat, so if you are on these boards (of course you are), congratulations!

Thanks, Ryan! I've had a lifetime of helping make folks comfortable with "geeky" things, and while a lot of the jokes online (and now TV) have been at my expense, it's all good! ('specially if they are learning more about our great hobby.) Back in '94 we hired Adam Sandler to do standup at my college and he brought Tim Meadows along and we talked all about life at SNL. Never thought my first appearance there would be this way!

I've kept myself in the "game closet" primarily for professional reasons (faculty at a public university, etc), so Monday may be interesting...
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Josh Gaudreau
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jheaney wrote:
Tom Vasel?

However, he seems to be succeeding at the game of life. His outreach to youth groups with board games is anything but a failure.


I'd be interested in learning more about his work in this area; can you point me to any info?

Love his reviews.

Thanks!
 
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James King
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Sam and Max wrote:
rylmets12 wrote:
On the Weekend Update segment of tonight's Saturday Night Live, Seth Myers made a joke about a person who has accumulated over 1500 board games. Something along the lines of "he failed at the game of life."

Y'know, because SNL knows what failure is -- do their skits *still* not have any punchlines?

Oh, contraire! Contraire! What an undeservedly biased assertion! Why, every time I see a pink-colored chess set or pink-themed board game, I can't help but laugh all over again about that classic "Chess for Girls" board game parody that Saturday Night Live made back in 1995 that satirically took on the Pinksploitation of toys and games for little girls.





You can watch the classic "Chess for Girls" commercial parody at: http://www.hulu.com/watch/282881/saturday-night-live-chess-f...


Now, here's the real irony: That 1995 SNL commercial parody was apparently ahead of its time in sensing a coming trend, for it does seem to have anticipated the infamous Pinksploitation of board games for little girls to come.


For example, real pink chess sets!




Pink Domino sets!




Yikes! Even pink 7-in-1 game sets (including pink Chess and pink Backgammon)!




Pink Uno!




Pink Jenga!

[IMG]http://cdn01.cdnwp.thefrisky.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/07/... [/IMG]


Pink Bingo, Scrabble, Jr., Monopoly, and Game of Life!




Even pink Ouija boards!





So, in terms of more yet to come, could our own modern/Euro strategy games fall prey to Pinksploitation?


SNL's "Chess for Girls" commercial parody certainly leaves that question open for us because once the classic game of Chess had been Pinksploited, then every other game under the sun that might also appeal to little girls is open to assimiliation by the forces of Pinksploitation. cry

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James King
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Kadorus wrote:
rylmets12 wrote:
Also, I think being lampooned on SNL is pretty neat, so if you are on these boards (of course you are), congratulations!

Thanks, Ryan! I've had a lifetime of helping make folks comfortable with "geeky" things, and while a lot of the jokes online (and now TV) have been at my expense, it's all good! ('specially if they are learning more about our great hobby.) Back in '94 we hired Adam Sandler to do standup at my college and he brought Tim Meadows along and we talked all about life at SNL. Never thought my first appearance there would be this way!
I've kept myself in the "game closet" primarily for professional reasons (faculty at a public university, etc), so Monday may be interesting...

Kaleb, you don't have to take Seth Myers' commentary lying down, sitting down, or curled up in a fetal position in your game closet. It's time to come out of there and take on Seth Myers. You can send him a letter at 30 Rockefeller Plaza, New York arguing that in the interest of satiric journalist integrity, you'd like to invoke your right to rebuttal in order to appear with him on an upcoming show's Weekend Update to answer his belittling charge that you'd "failed at the Game of Life", for he indeed had not only besmirched you with those snarky comments but also had besmirched an entire modern strategy-gaming community.

Now, the hard part of your letter: writing something that would satirically drag Seth Myers through the metaphorical mud and rub his nose in it -- the cardboard of modern strategy games -- in an meaningfully funny and accessible way. If you were able to express yourself in a serio-comic deadpan manner and at the same time, use your rebuttal commentary to set Seth straight about what modern/Euro strategy games are while at the same time taking him to task for misrepresenting them as if they were just some lame-brain mainstream games, well, who knows, you might very well earn consideration of being allowed to rebut Seth Myers using some that very serio-satirical content of your letter.

Suggested content: Tape a wooden meeple to your letter and tell Seth that his comments had made you feel *that small*; however, upon reflection, you took heart by recalling that even tiny Lilliputians united in spirt and purpose were able to subdue a giant Gulliver, and that you and your fellow "Lilliputians" comprise an imposing modern strategy board-gaming community. In essence, you'd be saying that Seth had awakened a sleeping giant populous enough to tar and feather him in most, if not all, of the United States, certain select provinces of Canada, Puerto Rico, Guam, the Bahamas and Trinidad & Tobago.

*However,* you'd express your hopes for equal time on his "Weekend Update" that by appearing on SNL's "Weekend Update" to deliver your rebuttal that "calm might be restored" and that We The Meeple shall have been not only heard but heard out. For the central issue is NOT the number of modern/Euro strategy games that one person owns but how many other people he/she connects with in playing them.

If you were a combination satirical agent provocateur with a knack for comic delivery and a modern/Euro strategy games missionary at heart, you might well more seriously entertain this audacious suggestion. Indeed, if you were interested in exploring this opportunity, you could take a number of modern/Euro strategy games with you and during your rebutall challenge Seth with each and every one, saying something like, "Now, Seth, does this look even remotely like 'The Game of Life'? Or 'Candyland'? Or 'Monopoly'?"

And you could play on the newest oldest modern/Eurogame joke by asking Seth in all due mock seriously that if he were playing "The Settlers of Catan" with you, might he not seriously consider trading wood for sheep with you?


Based on what I've read about him, Seth Myers is more intellectually bent to go for this sort of geeky humor anyway. Even getting Seth to jokingly accept a raincheck to attend your game group would be a triumph. It would be like the Whos of Whoville on that floating puff ball had finally been heard.


On the other hand, even if you're unable to seriously consider such a notion or aresimply unreceptive to this challenge, take heart that you are still envied by most of us on both counts: for your game collection and for being razzed about it by SNL no less.



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Gerry Palmer
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There are a couple of other great SNL product parodies from the 20th century that have indeed become legit items:

The four blade safety razor and 'Colon Blow'.

I fully expect sometime soon to see a Scotch Tape Store in the mall.
 
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James
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I finally was able to watch the clip here at about the 39 minute mark.

http://www.nbc.com/saturday-night-live/video/february-4-chan...

As I said in the other thread, to me see Kaleb seems to be a kind, down to earth fellow despite being a very accomplished man - a professor with an MA a PhD from Stanford. I would say he's doing pretty well at the game of life, myself.

I get the joke and can snicker at myself for how I live up to the stereotype, but the joke doesn't go much further once you learn a little more about this "Omaha gamer."

Enjoy your Monday, Kaleb! I lost pretty badly on "Jeopardy!" and got plenty of love from my friends and co-workers when the episode aired. It was almost like I won!
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Marc Lanctot
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And for those of us who can't watch the video above, the News Update is now up on Youtube (jump to 9:33)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iONoIPheEJw

(though I hope someone puts up a clip with better sound quality)

@Kaleb: If you're willing to share, I would love to hear about how your Monday turns out.. meeple
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Kevin Warrender
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1,500 games, that's it?
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Tom Vasel owns more games than the guy in the article so its really not all that special. Seth Meyers is of course Pittsburgh sports fan so he knows a lot about losing.
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Kadorus wrote:
I've kept myself in the "game closet" primarily for professional reasons (faculty at a public university, etc), so Monday may be interesting...

Don't worry too much.
I grew up in a University town (Amherst, MA). Spent 20 years with my evil ex, a board gamer & also a Univ. Professor. I've siblings in academia as well. Basically a lifetime around academics and I promise you you're hardly the only board game geek in academia.
 
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Scott O'Dell
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Hello all, I am Scott O'Dell, owner of the Game Vault in Omaha.

While my store is a video game store I carry some board games and special order them all the time for people.

Kaleb is one of the warmest and welcoming people I have ever met. He has introduced many people to the fun of Euro Games and has converted many casuals.
 
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robbdaman wrote:
Tom Vasel owns more games than the guy in the article so its really not all that special. Seth Meyers is of course Pittsburgh sports fan so he knows a lot about losing.


Tom only has 700 something listed in his collection, he has over 1100 previously owned though. I assume he keeps it up to date.

Aldie has over 2000 games listed as owned in his collection.

It's been reported that Sid Sackson had over 18,000 games in his collection at the time of his death, these were auctioned off, so it is probably verifiable.
 
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Guido Van Horn
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Sam and Max wrote:
rylmets12 wrote:
On the Weekend Update segment of tonight's Saturday Night Live, Seth Myers made a joke about a person who has accumulated over 1500 board games. Something along the lines of "he failed at the game of life."


Y'know, because SNL knows what failure is -- do their skits *still* not have any punchlines?

Anyway, congrats to Kaleb for his 15 seconds of fame!


I listened to an interview with Seth Meyers one time (he's also the head writer at SNL) and he said their goal is that any random person would find 1 in 3 sketches very funny 1 in 3 sketches ok funny and would detest 1 in 3 sketches. However 3 in 3 random people would have a differing opinion of each sketch. Obviously that's hard to do.
 
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GuidoVanHorn wrote:
I listened to an interview with Seth Meyers one time (he's also the head writer at SNL) and he said their goal is that any random person would find 1 in 3 sketches very funny 1 in 3 sketches ok funny and would detest 1 in 3 sketches. However 3 in 3 random people would have a differing opinion of each sketch. Obviously that's hard to do.


Yeah, except that, during the first four seasons, I found the sketches *consistently* funny. A good number of sketch comedy shows I remember watching, such as the Flip Wilson show and Sonny, Cher Show, and Living Color, were *consistently* funny. And you may remember a certain Monty Python series that was amazingly consistently funny, even though the links solved the problem of coming up with a punchline.

SNL is one of the last sketch comedy shows, with comedy now a sea of sitcoms and late night comedy shows. I think the decline in sketch comedy is the same reason why variety shows died out. You have to provide the viewer with something *consistent* or they'll tune out. With a sitcom, that's much easier, since you have the same cast of characters, same setting, same running jokes, etc. The cost, of course, is that you don't have the flexibility of sketch comedy, but, after the SNL budget cuts and control by the suits, I'll agree with the wiki that SNL became less edgy as the seasons progressed.

So. Anyone remember Night Flight?
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