Tag Archives: The Simpsons

Surprise! It’s Been Five Months…


The package arrived in the early hours of morning, with slush and ice still doing their best to make the UPS driver’s life a  frozen hell. As there has been a crazy confluence of delayed Christmas deliveries recently, due in part to the horrible weather and an obviously overwhelmed Amazon and UPS/FedEx/US Postal staff (who from what I can tell, mostly work for Amazon these days anyway) I wasn’t surprised to get a delivery this late after the holidays.

Between Christmas, my birthday on New Year’s Day, and our 35th Wedding Anniversary on the 9th, there have been any number of reasons for my overworked UPS guy (who stubbornly wore shorts until the weather dropped into the low 20s), to show up with a package at my “home office.”

But, this one was different. I could sense it from the minute I picked it up. As I touched the box, there was an instant burst of cognition emanating from it that made me realize that my life was going to change for the better.  It seemed to glow in the light, with a luminescence that pulsed with a sense of possibilities for the coming year (or perhaps my vision swirled due to the extra 2 cups of coffee and having over-nuked the last of the Christmas cinnamon rolls that had reached a full week past the “best eaten by” label,” that I had consumed minutes before).

Whatever the reason for the halcyon glow,  I could tell this was something that was clearly “unexpected” and magical!
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Snow, Snow Go Away…Come Again Another Update…


I love the snow. Let’s not forget this point, as you read the rest of this lament about snow.  I love the way our Springfield’s, and for that matter, our actual, real-life, towns look, when they are cloaked in a layer of beautiful, white, freshly fallen snow.

There is something magical about the quiet…the way snow insulates and dulls the sounds in the early morning when you first get up.  It is peaceful, beautiful, and often times rewards children (and teachers) with a “snow day,” to frolic, relax, and have fun.

In short…snow is wonderful!

Until it isn’t…
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Homer’s Quest for Enlightenment In Four Parts


Before we start this journey, I would like to ask those of you who despise anything that isn’t “directly game related” to turn away…go farm KEMs or simply just save yourself some time and emotional distress.  This is meant for the REST of you, who in a “grinding period” (as we are now) may be looking for a little insight, fun, and metaphysical diversion.

Fair enough? (Although I hate that phrase…something is either fair, or it isn’t).

This update/event has been one of the craziest, most divisive updates in recent memory, and for reasons that the programmers and writers could scarcely have imagined.  OK. Hold on. Who are we kidding here? They knew it was going to incite some discussion, and some controversy, but most likely didn’t expect such clear division between “isms” from the players. So many “isms” choose from…and so few answers.

But, as it is playing out, Homer has continued to lead us all on a spiritual quest for enlightenment (whether we wanted to go down some of the paths or not).  And in the final chapter (is there ever actually a “final” chapter as it pertains to everlasting life?) it’s mostly meant to be just, plain, fun.

Let’s break down Homer’s journey…

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TSTO – a 2016 Tapping Year In Review

Initially, I was pleased that Alissa tasked me with writing the “Year in Review” post. And then I realized that as more of a “Critical Review” that takes into account the good and the bad, it is actually easier for someone who is opinionated to write it. Alissa is very nice…and for the most part wants everyone to get along and be happy.  I don’t mind that some (many/most) people may not agree with everything I write. I get it. These are personal opinions at best, as we have found out in this Holiday/Winter/Christmas/Pagan event.

Let’s face it. There are some people who LOVE everything that EA does (they don’t call him HappyTapper for nothing!). And others that are a tad more critical (I will refrain from naming names at this point).  But, we all experience the same updates in the same way, through our own Tapping Lenses…which makes all of this subjective at best.

So…taking into account that this overview is just my opinion, and that you are perfectly free to disagree with me (although I secretly want you to agree with me so I feel ratified and relevant), LET’S LOOK BACK ON THE YEAR THAT WAS… IN TSTO.
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The Best Gift of All…And A Special Thank You Gift


First…let me start by saying that Alissa isn’t aware of this post. I’m sneaking it in, and hope that you all understand why by the end of what I am going to write here.

After what has clearly been one of the most contentious years in many decades, I think we are all breathing a slight sigh of relief that at least during the next few days, no matter how or what you celebrate this time of year, can be yours to embrace and savor.  I personally, love the Christmas season. At the age of of almost 63 (on New Year’s Day), it is absolutely impossible to target any single Christmas memory as “the best ever.”  Choosing a favorite Simpson’s Christmas episode is difficult enough…and there are only a handful of them.

What I do know, is that my favorite two movies this time of year, both of which we watch faithfully with the kids every Christmas Eve, are “It’s a Wonderful LIfe” and the Goerge C. Scott version of “A Christmas Carol.”  For me, the reason they resonate so strongly, is that they are both stories of men gone astray, and then finding salvation and a second chance for redemption.

I can honestly say that I have had far more second chances in life than any man deserves.  But, part of that gift is understanding when one has been handed to you, and knowing to appreciate it.

I had exactly one of those “Chances for Redemption” this year…
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The Greatest Christmas Gift of All…

golf-mainThis being my 5th Winter/Christmas/Holiday TSTO event, I really go into these things with a heavy dose of pragmatism, which starts with the question, “How many Christmas things can you actually use every year?”  And then I look at the hilariously gigantic, incongruous Christmas display at my neighbor’s house, and realize, “more than you can imagine” being the proper answer.

When I use the word “incongruous Christmas display,” in the previous description of my neighbor’s annual display (which takes the better part of two solid weeks to put up), I mean the kind of display that has Mary, Joseph and the Baby Jesus right next to Santa and a mechanized Mickey Mouse in an airplane.  Ralph is an “equal opportunity celebrationist.”  And that’s just one of the things that I like about his inclusive view of the holidays.

But, it also explains why I think that the “Greatest Gift of All” in this decidedly broad definition of a “holiday celebration” of an event, is hilariously divisive while being inclusive and inspirational.

I am of course (both declarative  and recreational)  talking about The Parson.

Good, old, what’s his name…The Parson.
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Mag Points- A “Chillaxing” Report and Graph


We have had more than a number of players who seem to be in “panic mode” over being “stalled” on Mag Points.

This is a quick post…with rEAl numbers…in graph form…that should help you all Chillax!

There is good and bad…but mostly good.  Continue reading

When Grinding Gets You Down…Turn Up the VOLUME!


I’m the first one to admit that these long updates, with flurries of content, followed by extended periods of grinding, can get you down.  And then, when there is actually an item for which you have been grinding, turns out to be less than you had hoped (the covered bridge), you can rEAlly get torqued off, and lose more than a little faith in the programming department at EA to give you any sense of Return On Tapping (ROT).

But, just when I was at my lowest ebb, after getting just such an EArned prize (the covered bridge), I discovered a method of playing, and an alternate pleasure source that could bring me joy once again.

It starts by Turning Down…then Turning Up…and getting off!

Follow along…
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Live From the REAL Springfield- A Quest for the Truth Begins


Over the years, one of the most hotly debated Simpsons topics has been, “Where is the REAL Springfield?”  Or at the very least…”Where is the Springfield that inspired Matt Groening to name the Simpson’s hometown, Springfield?”

It is a question that is asked of him at almost every Comic-Con press session. And after 27 years, that is a LOT of Comic-Cons.

However, as someone who “knows Matt”…or at least knows a lot of people who know Matt…or his sister…I feel that I can have a vetted and valid voice in the discussion, and have made it my life’s work (OK. That is a huge exaggeration…but it is an election year), to find out the answer!!

Now, I know that there are a ton of you out there who would like to lay claim to this honor. There are a TON of Springfield’s in the world.  Trust me. And if you don’t trust me, then take a look at this WIKI page.

That’s right. There are Springfields in every shape and size…across the entire world!! (or at least in places where they can pronounce the word “Springfield”).

But, as I will reveal over the course of several installments, I believe with my donut-fattened heart, that the REAL SPRINGFIELD is in Matt’s Home State (mostly) of OREGON!

Let the unraveling begin!!
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The Simpsons – The Best Television Show of All Time – Do You Agree?


Let’s start with the assumption that almost nobody playing this game, is anything less than a huge Simpsons fan.  Yes. I know you are out there, those of the “I really don’t watch the show…I just like the game,” variety…or even those of you would argue that “The Simpsons is good, but it doesn’t stack up to Deep Space Nine!” But, I suspect you are in the minority.

However, once again, a pair of well-known media critics have written a book about the top 100 television shows of all time, and “The Simpsons” comes out on top!

The numbers speak for themselve. But surprisingly, the notion that “The Simpsons” is the “longest running television series” isn’t even close to being true.  While our favorite show is in fact, the longest-running animated American series,the  longest running American sitcom and the longest running scripted prime-time series, it’s 27-year run doesn’t even come close to the 68-year run of “Meet the Press.”

But, “The Simpsons” is a heck of a lot funnier…unless you count the times that Sarah Palin was on “Meet the Press.”

So, what makes “The Simpsons” so enduring? What keeps a show fresh well beyond the “expiration date” that most viewers would expect?

There are a lot of reasons… Let’s Take a Look!
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