DISCLAIMER: This is what happens when work is cancelled due to weather. I come up with brilliant ideas like a post about a table.

There's a table in the corner of my basement that sits behind the bar and supports my turntable.

The legs have been removed and put back in place countless times since I inherited this table from my parents sometime near the start of my college career. Over the past 20+ years, any time I've moved somewhere new, this small table has gone with me.

My wife often wonders why I hang on to old beat up furniture like this. Let me explain.

From the time I was born, this table was a fixture somewhere in my house. There it is in late 1975 -- seven months before I was born.

And there it is again a little later that year and a little closer to my worldwide debut.

And there's me and my baby toys hanging out with the living room table.

I got older and the table stayed put.

Occasionally it moved around the living room as other furniture was moved, but it was always there.

After a few years, around 1980, my parents invested in a full set of living room furniture -- a coffee table and two end tables to go with the couch and two recliners we already had. The former living room table was promoted at that point to "kitchen corner table which holds the 8-track player."

After bouncing around our house for years and likely spending a good amount of time in storage, the table found its way to my brother's room in the late 80s where it served as "table to support a giant clunky TV and Nintendo system." Here you see my cousins from Tennessee engulfed in a game of Super Mario.

It was five years later that I left for college and the table went with me. Twenty more years down the road and it's in my basement quickly approaching 40 years of four-legged furniture servitude.

So why do I hang on to stuff like this?

I think you know.

A New Monkees Upgrade

A few years ago, I made a serious confession: I'm a New Monkees fan.

Not familiar with the New Monkees? That's okay. Most people aren't. To bring you up to speed:
In 1987, the original Monkees were on the comeback trail. Someone somewhere got a bright idea to bring a similar zaniness to a new generation and the New Monkees were born -- Larry, Marty, Dino, and Jared. 

Today's mail delivered a long-awaited package from California. Return address: "Decay."

Or "D.K."

Or Dino Kovas, drummer from the New Monkees.

For years, I've had copies of all thirteen episodes of the New Monkees, but the quality was seriously lacking. They'd been recorded from television to VHS and copied to other VHS tapes countless times before finally being transferred to DVD. Thanks to this wonderful thing called the internet (and Dino, too, of course), I've finally got my hands on a complete and quality copy of the New Monkees series.


Indeed, time to TURN IT UP!

Nerd Lunch Podcast 167: Infomercials

If podcasts and random garbage you can buy on TV are your thing, have I got a treat for you: I'm back with the Nerd Lunch crew this week for a talk about our favorite infomercials!

Jeeg, Pax, CT, and I take a look back at products like the Pocket Burger, the Deion Sanders Hot Dog Express, and the Comfort Wipe.

Now listen.

Different. But Same.

You've heard the expression "you can't see the forest for the trees" -- basically saying that you're too focused on one aspect of something to see the big picture. Having watched The Karate Kid and Summer School countless times over the past three decades, I clearly have not seen the forest.

After recently confirming that Gary Riley is alive and well, I had Summer School on in the background this past week while I did some stuff around the house and it hit me like a ton of bricks.

I know that school!

Now this may be old news to you, but it's a revelation to me. Even after digging into the minute details of The Karate Kid for a mental_floss article, I was still in the dark.

Indulge me for a moment.

Here are few shots from the film that show the structure and style of the actual school building. Take particular notice of the color of the lockers and doors as well as the semi-transparent wind blocks handing in the breezeway.


And here are a few shots from the school scenes in The Karate Kid.


This was the same school and somehow I had never made that connection between two of my favorite movies!

Not convinced?

A Karate Kid fan site indicates that the address of the building used in the school scenes of the film is 5607 Capistrano in Woodland Hills, CA. The site features several snapshots taken at this location -- no doubt the right spot.

Google Maps takes us to an aerial view of the building.

Switching over to Google's Street View and snooping around the outside of this building used in The Karate Kid, I eventually came to this spot.

And in the opening seconds of Summer School, there's this.


Same building.

40 Lessons from NBC's "One To Grow On"

YouTube playlists are cluttered and unorganized. So here you have it. The internet's most comprehensive collection of "One To Grow On" PSAs from NBC.

You're welcome, internet.

1. Betty White


Scenario: A girl and her brother are home alone and the boy is stuck in the bathroom. Having flushed a brush down the toilet, water begins to flood the room. The girl panics.
Solution: Know where you parents will be and have emergency contact information at your disposal.
Watch: YouTube

2. Byron Allen


Scenario: Two boys are hanging out together and one gets jealous when the other keeps talking about how much he likes a different friend.
Solution: People always find their way back to their old friends. Byron Allen talks about his dog.
Watch: YouTube

3. Byron Allen


Scenario: Two friends are walking down the sidewalk at night when one breaks a radio antenna from a parked car.
Solution: Vandalism isn't funny. There are lots of ways to have a good time. Destroying other people's property isn't one of them. Karma comes back to get the vandal.
Watch: YouTube

4. David Hasselhoff


Scenario: When a girl tries to introduce someone new to her best friend, she gets the cold shoulder.
Solution: Everybody has a bad day. Don't take it personally. Wait a little while and your friend will probably be less of a jerk.
Watch: YouTube

5. Dwight Schultz


Scenario: A fire breaks out and two boys panic.
Solution: Don't try to be a hero. Hit the floor and get out. Then call the fire department while you wonder where your parents were at.
Watch: YouTube

6. Dwight Schultz


Scenario: Ronnie has had enough with his parents not listening to him and has gone on strike against them.
Solution: Tell the truth and "9 times out of ten" your parents will understand. The other time you're just screwed.
Watch: YouTube

7. Dwight Schultz


Scenario: Adam's mom doesn't like his new friend and doesn't feel comfortable with them playing together.
Solution: Assure your parents that you are smart enough to avoid trouble with your new friend. Especially if your new friend is Steve Urkel.
Watch: YouTube

8. Dwight Schultz


Scenario: A boy is frightened while he watches a monster movie in the dark with his friend.
Solution: As long as you're in a safe place, the dark isn't a big deal. Stop being a baby.
Watch: YouTube

9. Dwight Schultz


Scenario: At the dinner table, an overzealous boy takes more than his share of the food.
Solution: "Sometimes your eyes are bigger than your belly." Your future waist line will appreciate you not being a glutton.
Watch: YouTube

10. Jason Bateman


Scenario: A teenager with bad hair is playing his music at a high volume on a public bus.
Solution: Turn it down. The people around you deserve their peace and quiet. Jason Bateman threatens jail time for those that don't obey.
Watch: YouTube

11. Joel Higgins


Scenario: Two obnoxious teenagers make fun of an elderly man walking down the street.
Solution: Quit being an ass and respect your elders.
Watch: YouTube

12. Joel Higgins


Scenario: A girl tries too ride her dog like a horse and is frustrated when it will not follow her commands.
Solution: Don't ride your dog. Especially if your dog is big enough to eat you.
Watch: YouTube

13. Joel Higgins


Scenario: A girl in a room full of toys complains that she is bored and has nothing to do.
Solution: Playing by yourself can be fun. Or maybe quit being such a spoiled brat and clean that mess of a room.
Watch: YouTube

14. Justine Bateman


Scenario: Two girls argue about whose music is better -- Sid Haircut or Johnny Sincere.
Solution: Open your mind and quit being a music snob. Besides...everybody knows that Sid Haircut is awesome.
Watch: YouTube

15. Justine Bateman


Scenario: A girl is not happy when Andrew the "creep" is part of her group for a class project.
Solution: Give people a chance and you might learn to like them. Or maybe even "like them" like them.
Watch: YouTube

16. Kim Fields


Scenario: A girl is pressured by two friends into trying a cigarette in the bathroom.
Solution: "Smoking is a bad habit. Believe me, I know. But not from experience." This makes no sense, Tootie.
Watch: YouTube

17. Kim Fields


Scenario: Two boys are seen rigging a park swing to fall when used.
Solution: Tell an adult if someone is going to get hurt. Teach the pranksters to loosen salt shaker lids instead.
Watch: YouTube

18. Lisa Welchel


Scenario: Two boys are home alone and drop their dad's new camera.
Solution: Be responsible. Only break rules that cannot be traced back to you.
Watch: YouTube

19. Michael Gross


Scenario: Heather does not want to do gymnastics with her friend. She is sad because her parents are getting a divorce.
Solution: Don't blame yourself for divorce. Blame your parents.
Watch: YouTube

20. Michael J. Fox


Scenario: A girl tells her friend that she was inappropriately touched by her Uncle George.
Solution: Tell an adult if something makes you uncomfortable. Unless that adult is Uncle George.
Watch: YouTube

21. Michael J. Fox


Scenario: A boy is uncomfortable with his friend playing with matches.
Solution: Fire is a tool used for cooking and warmth. Play with a hammer instead. It won't burn you up.
Watch: YouTube

22. Mr. T


Scenario: A baseball player argues with the umpire after striking out.
Solution: You don't always get your way. Learn to play together unless the umpire is a jerk, too. Then be sure to spit on him before you take your ball and go home.
Watch: YouTube

23. Mr. T


Scenario: One boy makes fun of another when he is working out with smaller weights.
Solution: Start small. And don't buy weights like you're going to work out at home. You won't and they'll sit in your basement for years.
Watch: YouTube

24. Nancy McKeon


Scenario: Three girls are home alone and can't decide if they should open the front door for someone claiming to be selling magazine subscriptions.
Solution: Tell them to come back later. Tell them you have your father's gun and scorching case of herpes.
Watch: YouTube

25. Nancy McKeon


Scenario: Three boys playing basketball make fun of the "nerdy" kid when he asks to join them.
Solution: Don't make fun of nerdy kids. Nerdy kids will be your boss some day.
Watch: YouTube

26. Perry King


Scenario: After watching a game on TV, a boy goes to the fridge for a cold beer like he's seen his father do.
Solution: Don't always imitate what you see. Besides, you drink during a game. Not after a game.
Watch: YouTube

27. Perry King


Scenario: One girl has a nice bike and makes fun of her friend's less sophisticated bike.
Solution: Negativity often stems from doubts of self-worth. Not surprising considering this girl's hair and glasses.
Watch: YouTube

28. Perry King


Scenario: A girl goes bat-shit crazy when she thinks something is unfair.
Solution: Talk to people with respect. Acting like this girl is a good way for ensure you'll be left alone in a remote area.
Watch: YouTube

29. Rene Enriquez


Scenario: A boy can't stay awake in class after staying up too late watching TV.
Solution: Get plenty of rest and be nice to your body. If you're that tired, skip school.
Watch: YouTube

30. Ricky Schroder


Scenario: A boy tries to lie his way out of a mess in the bathroom.
Solution: Tell the truth. If you lie, people will quit paying attention to you. The same can be said about people who talk about the Karate Kid and the Knicks too much.
Watch: YouTube

31. Sarah Purcell


Scenario: A boy is upset following the death of a close friend and his sister wants to help.
Solution: Talking about your feelings is important. A friend you've lost can go on living through your memories. If you're trying to help and someone wants to be left alone, leave them the eff alone.
Watch: YouTube

32. Soleil Moon Frye


Scenario: A young girl gets lost in a busy department store.
Solution: Ask a policeman or salesperson for help. Or ask your parents to buy a kid leash.
Watch: YouTube

33. Soleil Moon Frye


Scenario: A girl is nervous about seeing a doctor.
Solution: Doctors are there to help you. Not hurt you. Dentists are there to hurt you.
Watch: YouTube

34. Tempest Bledsoe


Scenario: A boy asks his mother for an expensive bike and is told to earn the money himself.
Solution: Get a job. Consider playing the part of the Winslow's nerdy neighbor.
Watch: YouTube

35. Thom Bray


Scenario: A babysitter does nothing when the baby she is caring for starts to cry.
Solution: If you have a job to do, do it right. I'm pretty sure this carelessness could warrant jail time in 2015.
Watch: YouTube

36. Thom Bray


Scenario: Two friends of different religious backgrounds question the validity of each other's traditions.
Solution: Be respectful of other beliefs. And get that girl out of the church choir. She's awful.
Watch: YouTube

37. Thom Bray


Scenario: A girl cannot find her skateboard in her messy room.
Solution: Toys are fun, but when you're done playing with them, put them away.
Watch: YouTube

38. Thom Bray


Scenario: Two boys ignore their curfew to stay at the arcade and play video games after school.
Solution: Be sure your parents know where you are and don't be late. Unless you're at the arcade playing video games. Then it's totally worth it.
Watch: YouTube

39. Valerie Harper


Scenario: One girl looks at her friend's private paperwork.
Solution: Respect the property of others. Or don't leave your junk laying around for the world to see.
Watch: YouTube

40. Tim Lybarger


Scenario: A teenage boy is bullied by a gang of karate students.
Solution: Get to know your building's maintenance man.
Watch: YouTube