Happy Festivus, 2020! Boy, do I have some grievances to air …


Happy Festivus, friends! Has there ever been a year when Festivus has felt more appropriate? A rejection of the commercialism of the holidays has never been more welcome than in this shit year, because honestly, who has the time or energy?

But did you know that George Constanza’s family holiday is based on an actual family tradition held by one of the Seinfeld writers? Apparently, Festivus was created by writer and Reader’s Digest editor Daniel O’Keefe, father of Seinfeld writer Dan O’Keefe in 1966 as a rejection of the commodification of the holiday season and to celebrate the first date with his wife, Deborah. 

The O’Keefe family did not celebrate with a Festivus pole, but instead, Mr. O’Keefe would put a clock in a bag and nail it to a wall each year:

In a 2013 CNN segment on the origins of Festivus, O’Keefe spoke about the real-life experiences related to the holiday. O’Keefe’s father, who originated some of the now-recognized Festivus traditions, used a clock in a bag nailed to a wall, not an aluminum pole. It was never the same bag, rarely the same clock, but always the same wall. The nailing was most often done in secret, and then revealed proudly to his family. The younger O’Keefe told CNN: “The real symbol of the holiday was a clock that my dad put in a bag and nailed to the wall every year…I don’t know why, I don’t know what it means, he would never tell me. He would always say, ‘That’s not for you to know.'”

So celebrate how you will: raise your Festivus pole or nail a clock in a bag to a wall, air your grievances, engage in feats of strength (with those in your quarantine bubble only), eat some meatloaf, and revel in the Festivus miracles. May your feats be impressive and your grievances few.

(R.I.P., Jerry Stiller.)

Political Crap

Speaking of airing of grievances, guess who decided to show up to the COVID stimulus/government funding billing party? After staying out of a nine-month-long negotiation (“negotiation” being that the House put a bill on Mitch McConnell’s desk back in May and he ignored it until he realized it might hurt the Georgia GOP Senate candidates’ chances if they didn’t get some money into people’s hands before the runoff election) process, President MAKE IT ALL ABOUT MEEEEEEE released a Facebook video in which he attacked the bill for several reasons. Mostly it seems that dummy doesn’t understand that this isn’t a stand-alone COVID-relief bill, but instead a regular annual government spending bill that includes things like “foreign aid” and “research money.”

But he also decided to yell that $600 isn’t enough money to put into people’s hands and that the government should be giving folks $2000.

Now, here’s where it becomes funny because the Democrats are like, “FUCK YEAH, THAT’S WHAT WE’VE BEEN SAYING!”

So, what is going on here is a few things: President Branding insisted his name be put on the COVID checks that went out to millions of Americans earlier in the year and it was very clever — in fact, many Americans cited it as a reason they voted for him in November. He wants that credit again, out of narcissism, out of perhaps a misplaced idea that this will rally the people around him in his attempt to steal the election, out of his deep understanding of populism, some combination therein.

But he’s also doing this out of sheer pettiness. He’s pissed off at Mitch McConnell for admitting President Second Best lost the election, and he’s fucking McConnell over. McConnell is stuck now: he either has to 1. accept the $2000 stimulus which he absolutely does not want to do (but now has revealed to the American people that it is the Republicans who are against helping the American people out in any meaningful way) 2. send the bill to President Swollen Gland and have him veto it and it dies and Kelly Loeffler and David Perdue get no benefit in their Senate runoffs, 3. send the bill to President Scabies, have him veto it, and then have Congress override the veto thereby humiliating an already raging lunatic, 4. send the bill to President White Nationalist, have him veto it, then wait for Joe Biden to become President, send it to him and have him pass it and take all the credit (this also fucks over Loeffler and Perdue). It’s a no-win for the most evil man in Washington D.C. what a shame.

And here’s where I point out that all this pain the GOP is facing could have been avoided a year ago if they had voted to impeach the fucker for interfering in our election.

ANYWAY. There is an obvious downside to all of this posturing and carrying on, of course. If the bill doesn’t pass, the government will shut down on Monday, unemployment benefits will run out for millions of Americans on Saturday, and, of course, even $600 is better than nothing in the middle of a goddamned global pandemic during the holiday season. Now might not exactly be the best time for a lame-duck president to be fucking around with the Senate majority leader because his fee-fees were hurt.

Oh, and also, too, President Felony just pardoned and commuted the sentences of 20 people, including some involved in Russiagate; three congressmen: one who used campaign funds like a personal checking account, one who did some insider trading, and one who committed securities fraud and lied to the FBI; and some war criminals who killed 17 Iraqi civilians, including a 9-year-old child. And this isn’t the biggest news story of the day, much less week because … ~gestures broadly at everything~.

But hey! He didn’t pardon his kids or himself … yet.

Going Viral

We hit another grim record yesterday: more than 3,300 Americans died, the most in one day so far. Over 331,000 Americans have died according to Worldometer. The good-ish news is that the number of new cases is beginning to flatten out a little — but the bad news is that the new cases and hospitalizations that are from Thanksgiving will continue to see a death spike for the next week or so. And the terrible news is we are definitely going to have a second Christmas-related spike in a few weeks because people are traveling despite warnings not to. January is going to be rough. Joe Biden addressed the nation yesterday, warning us as much.

Fortunately, Pfizer and the Trump administration have come to an agreement to supply the U.S. with an additional 100 million doses of the vaccine by the end of July. So even in the event that a third or fourth vaccine isn’t available by then, we should have most people covered by mid-summer.

Dr. Brix has announced she will retire after the transition.

Never forget: Kirk Cameron is an asshole.

Remember that United flight where a man died of COVID mid-flight? Yeah, United is now saying it’s not their responsibility to inform the passengers, if anyone should, it’s the CDC. Now passengers are feeling sick and considering lawsuits. (An aside: FoolishWatcher’s in-house legal consultant is actually representing a travel industry giant whose name you’d definitely recognize in a battery of lawsuits brought against them by passengers who contracted the virus while traveling with them early this year. I asked him about United’s approach here, and he said that because the virus is so widespread now, it will be very hard — if not outright impossible — for the plane’s passengers to prove that they contracted the virus on that particular flight. However, he noted that United not contacting the passengers is “stupid” and a terrible public relations move, basically telling all travelers that they truly don’t give a shit about your safety. Something to think about!)

Here in Houston at a neighborhood bar, a doorman and bar back was attacked and hit in the head with a glass after he asked a patron to put on a damn mask. Y’ALL. STOP IT. Harris County is now in the top 10 counties in terms of deaths. WEAR A MASK AND DO NOT BECOME ANGRY AT PEOPLE WHO TELL YOU TO DO SO, YOU FUCKING IDIOTS.

All Other TV News

Josh Weinstein, a Simpsons writer, and showrunner, opened up a Twitter thread yesterday, inviting fans to ask about jokes they never quite got or misunderstood and it is a treasure.

And y’all … this one took my innocent brain way too long to get, but it is NAUGHTY:

For those of you who are as sweet and pure as your trusty blogger and still don’t get it:

Anyway, the entire thread is a jewel. Enjoy.

Someone wrote some lyrics for The Mandalorian‘s theme song:

Hey, fellow children of the 70s and 80s, you can now get your nostalgia on with the original Wonder Woman series on HBO Max.

Legendary Studios might sue Warner Media to try to make Dune‘s opening theatrical only. We’ll see how that goes.

The Boys‘ actor Laz Alonso got revenge on showrunner Eric Kripke for … that … fight scene with an NSFW gift for the ages. Spoilers if you haven’t seen season two.

Pull it together, Johnny Fairplay.

In Development

Casting News

Mark Your Calendars

  • Whitney Houston & Bobbi Kristina: Didn’t We Almost Have It All will premiere on Lifetime on February 6.
  • The Chicagos will return on NBC on January 6.
  • Pennyworth will return on Epix on March 7.
  • Teen Mom OG premieres on MTV on January 26.


Rick Squire, Director and former marketing executive for CBS, NBC, and Fox

Harvey Litwin, Co-founder of the APA agency

Chad Stuart, Member of the British folk duo, Chad & Jeremy; father of General Hospital and All My Children actor Jams Patrick Stuart


The Midnight Sky: George Clooney is a scientist racing to save a crew of astronauts during a global catastrophe. Netflix

Monty Python and the Holy Grail: And now for something completely different. 9 p.m., BBC America

I Used to Go Here: Gillian Jacobs stars as a novelist who returns to her alma mater and finds herself involved in the lives of a bunch of college students in this film. 9:45 p.m., HBO

Meet Me in St. Louis: “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas” was originally from this Judy Garland film. And that is probably one of those things that everyone knows, but I’m sharing it with you anyway. 7 p.m., TCM

WEDS. 7:00 7:30 8:00 8:30 9:00 9:30
ABC Santa Claus is Comin’ to Town The Great Christmas Light Fight
CBS A Holly Dolly Christmas Garth & Trisha Live! A Holiday Concert Event S.W.A.T.
CW Devils
FOX I Can See Your Voice
NBC Chicago Med
Chicago Fire
Chicago P.D.

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