My Friday Five: Fall Is Here (Plus Other Things)

Photo: Chris White
This week's list includes a variety of different topics.

1) Indiegogo Trouble

I'll preface this by saying that this is in no way a knock on Indiegogo - although they could do more to fight for contributors when issues like this arise, in my opinion.

Back in 2013, I donated to an Indiegogo campaign for a new anti-bullying film project The Day I Died. The project was headed up by a host of people including star actor Corbin Bleu. Like Kickstarter, Indiegogo allows campaign owners to offer perks based on how much you donate to the project. The project ended up not meeting its goal but it operated under "Flexible Funding" which meant it would receive all funds donated. Everything was going fine. That is, until more than a year ago. There have been zero updates on this project since 2014. The last update on Indiegogo stated that not enough money was raised to go into production but they were going to use a portion of the money to "build a new website, platform and identity" to push toward the goal of getting the film made. All I can say is a website has been made for the film. That's it. No perks, no updates.

Now, you may be saying "well, that's the risk you take with these projects." Here the problem: according to Indiegogo, campaign owners must fulfill perks if their campaigns operate under "Flexible Funding" which this project does. If perks cannot be fulfilled for some reason, campaign owners must work with contributors to meet a mutually acceptable resolution. I emailed the director of the project via Indiegogo and regular email and have not received a response at all. I've contacted Bleu via Twitter as well as The Day I Died on Twitter and Facebook. Same result. I finally emailed Indiegogo Support and all they'll do is email the campaign owner to "remind them of their responsibilities" - like that's going to help. It's really frustrating to contribute my hard earned money to this project and be left in the dark. Even more frustrating, I've contributed to numerous projects on Indiegogo and Kickstarter in the past and have never had any issues. It's like these people, Bleu included, don't care. I was a huge fan of Bleu but, after this, not so much. I'll keep you updated if anything happens. 

2) Fall Is Here!

Changing leaves, cooler temps...football! That's right, folks, fall is here! Fall is actually one of my favorite seasons. I don't know, I just love that crisp feeling in the air, especially here in North Carolina.

One thing I desperately miss is homecoming at my church, Grey Stone. I recall the times when we had homecoming - one Sunday out of the year where everyone came together to attend one service and then eat and fellowship with each other. And let me tell you, there was plenty of incredible food to be had at homecoming. We traditionally held homecoming in October and I think about it at this time each year. Grey Stone doesn't have homecoming events anymore. In fact, there's never even a mention of homecoming anymore, like it never happened. I guess it's just a (sad) sign of the times. Call me old school, but I wish Grey Stone would do this again - of course, that'll never happen.

3) New Fall TV Season Has Begun

Fall is also exciting because it's a new season for TV. There are several returning shows that I was glad to see back: "Fresh Off The Boat," "Survivor" and "Castle" -my favorite show on TV right now. With each new season comes some new shows to test out as well. For me there are several: "Life In Pieces," "The Muppets" and "Limitless" among others.

I want to turn my focus to two of those new shows. First, "Life In Pieces" which is basically CBS' response to ABC's "Modern Family." The comedy tells the stories of four different segments of a family as they all go through life's twists and turns. I was the most excited for this show out of all the new ones I planned to watch this new season. Apparently CBS was too as it promoted the heck out of it. So much, that a lot of scenes from the show's pilot episode were seen before its premiere. After watching the pilot, however, I was pretty disappointed. My main issue was its use of some pretty strong sexual references, especially for being on an 8:30 p.m. time slot. Many people on social media were in agreement with me on this. Normally, I can tolerate the references, but those in "Life In Pieces" were a bit over the top and didn't add anything to the show itself.

The second show I want to talk about is "The Muppets." This has been, arguably, the most anticipated new show of the season. Contrary to "Life In Pieces" I really liked this show. It was witty, funny - and the pilot included multiple shots of my favorite character, The Swedish Chef. Leading up to "The Muppets" premiere, the organization One Million Moms and Franklin Graham blasted the show, calling for ABC to cancel it. The organization and Graham believe that the more mature version of "The Muppets" is "promoting sin" to a younger audience, and so on. Good. Grief. If Graham wants to pick a show to grandstand about, pick "Life In Pieces" rather than "The Muppets." Both my mom and I are Christians. We watched these shows and both of us had the same reaction: we were red in the face after "Life In Pieces" but found nothing wrong with "The Muppets." I've never been a huge fan of Franklin Graham and this just gave me more of a reason to not be.

4) Violence On The Field

This story is just ridiculous. A Salesian High School (Calif.) student is accused of smearing Icy-Hot on an opposing player's face during a game. According to CBS Los Angeles, the accused player reached under alleged victim, Angel Salazar's, face mask and spread the substance on his face. The accused player is Rahyme Johnson, a four-star recruit for UCLA, according to Bleacher Report. The apparent incident was caught on video per CBS Los Angeles.

When I first read about this story, I was immediately appalled. It angers me what extent people will go to nowadays to either gain an advantage or just hurt someone else. I mean, seriously, why in the world would someone want to do this? Why can't a player just go out on the field and play football? I guess that is hard for some people.

5) Happy Birthday

Now for something a little more lighthearted.

A federal judge has ruled that "none of the companies that have collected royalties on the 'Happy Birthday' song for the past 80 years held a valid copyright claim," according to the Los Angeles Times. The article goes on to say that Warner/Chappell - which had been enforcing a copyright for years - "never had the right to charge for the use of the 'Happy Birthday To You' song." Randall Newman, an attorney for a group of plaintiffs in this case, was quoted in the article saying "'Happy Birthday' is finally free after 80 years." "Happy Birthday" to all of us.

Thanks for Reading