April 16, 2002:
Scott's passing pop-culture interests have inspired content on the site before, like pages about Nintendo 64 and Taco Bell in the site's first year, but this time he gets literal about his obsessions, by creating a page called Obsessions within Tragic Comedy. It lists the movies, books, TV shows, video games, musical albums, and other cultural content that he's currently enjoying. The plain white page simply shows their cover images, each one linked to the item's listing on Amazon.com. The first item is Super Smash Bros. Melee, a game that Scott has been playing extensively with friends that spring. The page survives through several iterations of the site, eventually becoming a feature in Exquisite Corpse where other bloggers could upload their own obsessions. Scott even utilizes an API so that Netflix subscribers can make the page automatically display what DVDs they currently have at home. Eventually people forget to add new items to the page, it falls into disuse, and Scott takes it offline, but the idea of sharing current pop-culture obsessions survives years later in site features like Song Crush.
November 2, 2019:
With his friend Wes Bryant, an occasional Rock Block player, Scott signs up to participate in the Extra Life charity drive. Every November, gamers sign up to play all sorts of games for 24 hours, while seeking sponsors to raise money for Childrens Miracle Network hospitals. Scott and Wes agree to play Marvel Legendary, a strategic card game that features different super-heroes and super-villains each time it's played. Scott even crafts a narrative to tie the games together, about a Skrull invasion of Earth and an alliance between heroes and villains to resist it. Several Funeratic members including Andy Perkins, Erik Bates, Jeff Coopes, Kelly Lee, Matthew Preston, and Steve West contribute to the fund, inspiring a series of Marvel GIFs to thank each one individually. In Tragic Comedy, Scott posts another chapter of the "story" each time another game is finished over the course of the 24 hours. Together, Scott and Wes, along with short visits from friends Carl, Jeff, and Kelly, play a total of 15 games of Marvel Legendary, and raise $609 for charity.
February 9, 2020:
The annual Predict the Oscars contest has seen participation by strangers since its very first year in 2000 and especially starting in 2004, but the trend accelerates in the late 2010s. In 2020, when the Korean film Parasite wins Best Picture, over 70 people participate in the contest, and only five of those are either a Funeratic member or a friend of Scott. Despite the seeming appropriateness of the term "parasite," Scott is in fact happy to host the game for most of these strangers, since the few that talk to him are polite. But a few people create fake accounts to enter multiple times and boost their odds, requiring Scott to build an admin tool to find and eliminate duplicate accounts quickly, since so many of them appear on the evening of the Oscars ceremony. It's hard to tell for certain exactly how many real people enter, but it's definitely a lot, perennially making Oscar night Funeratic's most active night of the year.
February 28, 2020:
Just as COVID-19 takes over the world in 2020, so too does it dominate Tragic Comedy. There are several discussions inspired by the coronavirus, but the main one dwarfs most other TC discussions, becoming the site's most active conversation in four years. And just as the year is full of anxiety, depression, and rage at the news, the conversation is among the most negative (albeit cathartic) that the authors have had in a long time, registering their fear and anger when they and their loved ones are exposed to the deadly disease. In a difficult year for everyone, the authors find comfort in each other's contact through the forum.
May 20, 2020:
Chris Lemler has a suggestion to cheer up Funeratic members during the awful year that is 2020: Meeting online using a video conferencing service. Initially via Zoom on May 20 and later several times via Google Meet, members meet on several weeknights over the course of the summer and fall to chat, commisserate, share good news, and (inevitably for Funeratic) play a series of trivia games. Brenda West, Chris Lemler, Denise Sawicki, Erik Bates, Jason Lemler, Kelly Lee, LaVonne Lemler, Lori Lancaster, Matthew Preston, Pam Bates, Samir Mehta, Scott Hardie, and Steve West all participate at one point or another. The trivia games are such a hit that several authors take turns running them. When Scott runs a game of rebuses that spell out the names of classic rock artists, he copies the game to TC and expands upon it, giving players online who missed it more opportunities to play.
June 14, 2005: Competition in the now-daily goo game becomes so intense that victory seems a privilege reserved for a few dedicated experts, especially Mike Eberhart, Russ Wilhelm, Megan Baxter, Jerry Mathis, Elliot Farney, Denise Sawicki, Todd Brotsch, and Steve West. Read more...
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