Tag Archives: Santa Claus

A Man and His Holiday Tweets

For the past several months I’ve been doing a series of daily tweets. First tacos, then monkeys, then daily affirmations, then daily etiquette tips, then incorrect quotes, then fake TV shows, horoscopes, horror, writing tips, and now holiday tweets! Enjoy!

You can also follow me on Twitter to enjoy January’s series of resolution tweets!

Day One – Judging by title alone, Sweet Child O’ Mine by Guns N’ Roses is a great Christmas Carol.

Day Two – “HI HI HI!” -Creepy Autocorrect Santa Claus.

Day Three – Other things you can leave out for Santa: kale.

Day Four – Candy canes are funny because they’re like penises. Bright, colorful, horribly bent penises wrapped in plastic.

Day Five – He sees you when you’re sleeping, he knows when you’re awake, had a burrito, cried in the shower, watched Teen Mom.

Day Six – “Bah Humbug!” is actually an old Victorian curse that translates to “All y’all Christmas bitches can go hump a goose!”

Day Seven – If you don’t like it when people tell you long pointless stories about their weird dreams DON’T GO TO THE NUTCRACKER.

Day Eight – Some of the reindeer games Rudolph didn’t get to play: Settlers of Catan, Russian Roulette, and #AddDickToAStarWarsQuote.

Day Nine – “Mistletoe” is a very old european word that roughly translates to “harassment bush.”

Day Ten – People are upset if you say Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays, so let’s all say “This is why we can’t have nice things.”

Day Eleven – My favorite holiday special is probably “Some Adults Who Were Doing Cocaine in the 1970s Thought Kids Might Like This.”

Day Twelve – The modern equivalent of Gold, Frankincense, and Myrrh is an Xbox One, a neti pot, and $1 gift card to The Body Shop.

Day Thirteen – It’s the thought that counts. This holiday, give your family thoughts like “I like ham,” “I want money,” and “Why?”

Day Fourteen – Ten years ago, I heard someone mispronounce The Nutcracker as The Nutcrapper and I’ve been laughing ever since.

Day Fifteen – I don’t have a cat so every night I have to get up and knock shit off my Christmas Tree myself. Pain in the ass.

Day Sixteen – If you’ve been very naughty this year expect Santa to send you a LinkedIn invitation and a snap chat pic of dog poo.

Day Seventeen – Here’s the complete list of Santa’s lists: Nice, Naughty, Neurotic, Necromancers, Napoleonic, Needy, Nuts, Nerf-Herders.

Day Eighteen – Trader Joe’s should sell a special white wine for the holidays called COPE.

Day Nineteen – Other reindeer names: Runny, Dingle, Chopper, Fumble, Samantha, Conrad, Private Dancer, Freak Nose, Cancer, and Mandy.

Day Twenty – “But do you recall the most famous reindeer of all?” WHAT THE HELL DO YOU THINK FAMOUS MEANS, SONG?

Day Twenty-One – Not all holiday specials have to be a “VERY” something. I would watch “A MILD Ebola Outbreak Christmas.”

Day Twenty-Two – As you gather with your families, give them the special gift of speaking only in best of lists.

Day Twenty-Three – Santa knows, but does not give two shits about, your Klout score.

Day Twenty-Four – A sad Christmas fact: Santa will be unable to find your house if your address is 404.

Day Twenty-Five – According to my autocorrect, Christmas marks the anniversary of the day Chris was bored.

Day Twenty-Six – Traditional 21st Century Boxing Day traditions include looking up Boxing Day on Wikipedia and going “Oh, yeah, right.”

Day Twenty-Seven – My 2014 resolution is to remove “amazeballs” from my vocabulary and replace it with “greattesticles.” Time to grow up.

Day Twenty-Eight – My inner fridge is still stuffed with cold emotional leftovers.

Day Twenty-Nine – Here’s a list of the most forgettable events of 2013: 1) Diane in 7A
2) Uh 3) Um 4) Something about a cat??? 5) Screw it

Day Thirty – I tried to type a joke about my 2014 resolution but I typed 3014 instead. I’m going to go with that. Look out, 3014!

Day Thirty-One: Setting up the Whiskey Tree, hanging the regret pole & putting out the vomit bucket for Hangover Claus! Happy New Year!

Your friend in writing,


If you enjoy my work, check out my brand new comedy and music album FLAW FEST. You can also sign up for my fan list here.


Filed under Daily Tweet Collection

What did you do, Joseph, what did you do?

I suspect I am not alone in feeling as though I am never really getting enough done. While I try not to procrastinate too much, I do make jokes about procrastinating a lot. When I realize I’m procrastinating, I have a lot of little motivational phrases I say out loud to myself. One of them is this:

“Get back to work, you idiot.”

And if I don’t get back to work, I sometimes follow up with:

“You are a bad and stupid person.”

Then I feel guilty that I’m being so mean to myself and I try to make it up to me by allowing myself to make a joke on Twitter about procrastinating. And the cycle continues.

This year, I decided to actually review my calendar and make a list of (almost) everything I did. Please enjoy procrastinating from your work to read about mine!


I worked with John Kovalic on some spec scripts and started writing daily tweets for @DrBlinkShrink.

I did two shows at The San Francisco SketchFest. CineMadness with Bill Corbett and a short version of my geek stand-up/storytelling show, Comedy of Doom.

I performed the role of “Balthazar, D & D Champion” in promotional videos for a company called Awesome Dice.

I co-wrote an internal awards show for General Mills.

I made jokes on Twitter about procrastinating.


I launched the Obsessed podcast as both a live show in Minneapolis and released the first episode online. There have been 10 live shows that have generated 16 podcast episodes.

I wrote a sketch for a magician.

I wrote and performed (with Shanan Custer) a commentary about smartphones for Minnesota Public Radio.

I did a story with the spoken word collective The Rockstar Storytellers.

I was one of the entertainers on JoCoCruiseCrazy II. I performed a full length version of Comedy of Doom. I was thrilled to get a surprise volunteer named Wil Wheaton for my Star Trek bit. I also played the role of “Ed McMahon” on Paul & Storm’s podcast with Paul F. Tompkins.

I gave a talk in a bar about zombies and Minnesota geek culture for the Minnesota Historical Society.

I made jokes on Facebook about procrastinating.


I performed at the Twin Cities convention Mars Con.

I started working as an occasional writer and performer on Wits. Since March, I’ve written for and/or performed with Tim Meadows, Rhett Miller, Andy Richter, Reggie Watts, Fred Willard, Paul F. Tompkins, Wyatt Cenac, Bobcat Goldthwait, Amy Sedaris, Dave Foley, Mike Doughty, Maria Bamford, and Brandi Carlile. And of course host John Moe, John Munson and The Witnesses, and other frequent Wits performers Bill Corbett, Kevin Murphy, and Neil Gaiman.

I went out to eat with my wife on her birthday. She mentioned maybe I should write a book.

I made jokes on Google+ about procrastinating.


I did another story with the Rockstar Storytellers.

I wrote and did eight performances of a one person stand-up show about vampires, stand-up, and vampires doing stand-up called The Sad Vampire Comedy Hour.

I wrote and performed a short story as part of a Minnesota Public Radio showcase led by Kevin Kling.

I did three performances and presentations about using comedy to discuss history for the American Alliance of Museums convention.

I did not get around to making any jokes on social media about procrastinating.


I launched a Kickstarter campaign to fund the book version of Comedy of Doom.

I wrote a lot of new material for the book. I edited the material from the stage version. I took photos for the cover and organized all the illustrations for the book. I hit refresh on the Kickstarter page roughly 700 times a day.

My odd little rock band called Math Emergency (composed of a math professor, a public radio producer, a public radio host, and me) played a gig. I played the drums and made jokes into a microphone.

I appeared on the AON podcast.

I made jokes on Twitter about spending too much time on Twitter.


I went on my friends’ annual bar crawl. I only note this because, while fun, going to 13 bars in 12 hours does feel a bit like work.

I appeared on the Vilification Tennis podcast where I cemented my reputation as an Axl Rose apologist.

I did another story with the Rockstar Storytellers.

I did multiple rounds of proofing and editing on the book and we sent it off to be printed. Comedy of Doom was officially published on June 20, 2012.

I wrote the pilot for an animated series version of the web comic Least I Could Do.

I made mean jokes about Google+ on Twitter.


We sent out all the copies of Comedy of Doom to the kind Kickstarter backers.

I attended the big Twin Cities convention CONvergence. I wrote and performed a one person storytelling and stand-up show about romantic advice for geeks called Verbing The Noun. We’ll be releasing a CD and digital download of the show in time for Valentine’s Day 2013. I did a live Obsessed show with Paul Cornell and Bonnie Burton. I did 10 other comedy panels and a signing for Comedy of Doom.

I went to San Diego Comic-Con. I performed at w00tstock. I had fun meetings, fancy parties, and saw a lot of men dressed as Jedi having a hard time at urinals.

I did another story with the Rockstar Storytellers.

I co-wrote and performed a comedy show called Comedy: The Show with Four Humors Theater on the Centennial Showboat in St. Paul, Minnesota.

I made a quick trip to Los Angeles for a friend’s birthday party. I even wrote something for that.

I made mean jokes about Google+ on Facebook.


I wrote, produced, and performed in an hour long one act play called Nightmare Without Pants for the Minnesota Fringe Festival. Here is a three minute live video preview of the show, in which I perform an accidental magic trick with a pair of rip-away pants.

Due to the stubborn forward movement of time I became a year older on August 17th.

I performed and did some comedy panels at Dragon*Con in Atlanta.

I made jokes about Google+ on Google+.


I was still at Dragon*Con. For one panel, I was challenged to sing “Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.” I attempted to do it in the style of Nine Inch Nails. It’s a better song that way.

I did a performance at Space Camp with Marian Call, Molly Lewis, Ken Plume, Phil Plait, and more.

Obsessed was featured on iTunes as “New & Noteworthy” and a “Staff Favorite.”

I co-wrote, helped to organize, and performed in a large awards show for the Minnesota theater community called The Iveys.

I did a podcast with the awesome Len Peralta and became a trading card for his Geek-A-Week series.

I hosted and performed at a viewing of the Doctor Who episode “The Angels Take Manhattan” at The Parkway Theater.

I tried to treat Google+ with a little more respect.


I co-produced, directed, and wrote a piece for a theater event called Thirst. It’s a series of short one-act plays performed in a bar. The show had three performances and it was a benefit to fight for Marriage Equality in Minnesota. Here’s the monologue I wrote about Harry Potter and kindness.

I joined The Ladies of Ragnarok (Molly Lewis, The Doubleclicks, and tour manager Dammit Liz) for a leg of their tour. I performed in Chicago, Minneapolis, and Madison. The Ladies also appeared on Obsessed.

I recorded the audiobook version of Comedy of Doom. We’re still working on editing and mastering the hours of audio.

I did another show with the Rockstar Storytellers.

I wrote and performed a ghost story for Torch Theater in Minneapolis.

I played another gig with Math Emergency.

I started a Tumblr account and wrote a thing about Halloween.


I used National Novel Writing Month as a motivation to work on some screenplays. I finished plotting and scripting the first drafts of two feature length films. Now working on second drafts.

My wife and I celebrated our 6th wedding anniversary. The traditional gift is iron. The contemporary gift is candy. We gave one another Iron Man Pez dispensers.

I tried to make fun of Google+ on Tumblr, but I felt like I was kicking a puppy.


I wrote and performed the short story Adult Santa for The New Standards holiday show at the Fitzgerald Theater in St. Paul, Minnesota.

I did another story with the Rockstar Storytellers.

We (and by “we” I really mean my wife Sara and my graphic designer, Matthew Foster) made Comedy of Doom available on Kindle, Nook, iBooks, Kobo, and many stores in the Twin Cities.

I wrote a story about the grim superhero The Leaping Lord for Paul Cornell’s 12 Blogs of Christmas.

I started writing a new stand-up/storytelling show that I’ll be performing on JoCoCruiseCrazy III.

I started writing another stand-up/storytelling show that I’ll be performing at the Bryant-Lake Bowl in Minneapolis in March of 2013.

I booked guests for Obsessed through March of 2013.

I wrote some stuff that I’ll perform for my annual New Year’s Eve show at the Bryant Lake Bowl.

I made fun of LinkedIn on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Tumblr.

I debated whether or not I should write this. I stared off into space and screwed around on social media. I beat myself up about procrastinating. I forced myself to write this. I read it. I thought about all the amazing creative people I got to meet and work with this year. I ran the post by my wife and business partner without whom none of the above would be remotely possible.

Later tonight, I’ll watch some TV, drink a martini, and think about ways to get even more done in 2013.

I’m going to start by coming up with some new motivational phrases.

I think I’ll try:

“Come on, you idiot, get stuff done so you have something to blog about next year.”


“Stop calling yourself an idiot, you jackass.”

And then I’ll hug myself and move on.

Happy New Year’s,



Filed under Comedy Real Life

SANTA CLAUS: Obsessed Ep 16

Mystical being, Santa Claus, is obsessed with fresh breath and shampoo. Santa also has a lot to say about elf cruelty, the Supreme Court, Godfather’s Pizza, and reindeer putting on plays. PLUS random audience volunteer, Madde Gibba, reveals her obsession with Animals in Clothes on the Internet. Enjoy!

AWOOGA! Obsessed is now a part of Feral Audio! Go to Feral now to listen to this episode and subscribe for new ones!

Listen, rate, review, and subscribe to OBSESSED on iTunes.


Filed under Obsessed, Podcast

Adult Santa Claus

I originally wrote this piece for the very awesome New Standards holiday show. Many thanks to John, Chan, and Steve.

I have a new holiday tradition. Right around Thanksgiving, I turn to my beautiful wife and say, “Honey, I hate Christmas.” She patiently listens as I go on the exact same rant that I do every year.

“I don’t want to hate Christmas. I used to love Christmas. I used to get a break from school. I used to look forward to opening presents. I normally got Star Wars action figures, but one year my mother hurt her back, got high on pain meds, and gave me three different individually wrapped flashlights.

I didn’t even care.

I just went to my room, turned off all the lights, and pretended the flashlight was a lightsaber. I danced around in the dark waving a flashlight like an idiot. That’s what Christmas used to be–a warm comforting light in the middle of the dark winter. It used to feel magical. Now it’s just more stuff I have to do.”

This year instead of just complaining to my wife, I’ve decided to make Christmas magical again. In order to do that, I’ve invented a new myth.

The myth of Adult Santa Claus.

I don’t mean Adult Santa Claus like a special holiday movie you would order in a hotel room.

No, Adult Santa is like your cool uncle who also happens to be a life coach. He has the magical ability to visit every stressed out adult in the world on one night. He doesn’t have a sleigh guided by reindeer and he doesn’t enter through a chimney. He drives a 1997 Ford Taurus with a missing muffler and he comes in the front door like a normal person.

Adult Santa has many names. In Germany he’s known as Dave Kringle. Some know him as Saint Chad, the patron saint of whatever, man. In Belgium, they just call him Low-Stress Pete.

Adult Santa doesn’t say, “Ho Ho Ho!” He says, “Ho Ho Ohhh—I’m tired. Whooo! My back is killing me. Ahhhhhhh! Son of a—!” And he just goes on like that for a while.

His face doesn’t appear on Coke cans, but you might see him on a package of Nicorette or a bottle of Xanax. Because Adult Santa is just here to help.

He logs onto your facebook account and deletes that horrible post you wrote about your mother-in-law while you were hiding in the bathroom during dinner. He finishes that stupid PowerPoint Presentation you have to give on December 27th. He leaves a big bottle of Trader Joe’s wine under your pillow. He knows Trader Joe’s wine isn’t fancy, but you like it, so who cares? Adult Santa doesn’t judge.

Maybe he just sits on the end of the bed and rubs your feet. It should be creepy that an old dude named Dave sneaks into your house and rubs your feet, but it’s not.

It’s magical.

He will even hang out with you. Adult Santa will stay up late and watch that episode of Downton Abbey you’ve had on the DVR for two weeks. He agrees with you that the best part of Project Runway is Tim Gunn. He’ll bring you an Xbox and play co-op Call of Duty all night. He is really good with a grenade launcher.

Adult Santa won’t force you to sing Christmas Carols. But if you want to, he’s got a couple of carols he likes to sing. He calls them Realistic Christmas Carols. His favorites include “Silent Night, Passive-Aggressive Night,” “I’m Beginning To Bitch A Lot About Christmas,” and “All I Want For Christmas Is Two F’ing Minutes To Myself.” Adult Santa likes to say that by title alone his favorite Christmas Carol is “Sweet Child O’ Mine” by Guns N’ Roses.

Unless you don’t like that kind of sarcasm, then Adult Santa just keeps it to himself. Because he’s not here to fight, he just wants you to be happy.

Adult Santa knows Christmas doesn’t actually suck.

It’s just really, really hard to be an adult.

So this year, I am going to recapture the magic of Christmas. On December 24th, I’m going to stay up late at night and wait for Adult Santa. I’ll set out some whiskey and a wedge of brie. I’ll sit in a dark room illuminated only by the glow of the Christmas tree. I’ll sip some of that whiskey as I listen for the low rumble of his rusted out Ford Taurus. I will feel warm and safe.

In that moment, I will get the true gift of Christmas. A gift that all adults deserve. Just a few precious minutes of peace on Earth.

Thank you and merry realistic Christmas to one and all.

This story is now available in audio format as part of my comedy album A VERY HOLIDAY THING. The album and the blog post were made possible by funding from Patreon. Thanks, patrons!


Filed under Comedy Story, Uncategorized

A Death Star To Guide Me

The following is the letter I should have sent to Santa Claus when I was a young boy.

Dear Mr. Claus,

My name is Joseph Aaron Scrimshaw. The adults in my family call me Joey. I hate that. I tell them my name is Joseph. They laugh and call me cute. I tell them their reaction is condescending and pejorative. At this point, most adults leave the room.

Their loss.

But back to subject matter that is more germane to this missive. In regards to my Christmas present this year–it is my deepest desire to be the first child on my block to own a Death Star Space Station play set inspired by the major motion picture event, Star Wars.

Now, Santa, I realize you are probably not a fan of this recently released sci fi/fantasy epic since you are of the older generation and probably prefer more adult fare such as Annie Hall, ABBA:The Movie, or Exorcist II:The Heretic.

Suffice it to say, like yourself, Star Wars is rooted in ancient mythologies. Its timeless narrative allows young people to vicariously live a life of noble heroism through the main character, Luke Skywalker.

The film reminds us that we all have exciting destinies. As soon as a fascist regime brutally murders our parents or guardians, oh, the adventures we will have!

At the end of the film (after his second parental figure, Obi Wan Kenobi, has also been murdered) Luke Skywalker deals a terrible blow to the Galactic Empire by destroying the aforementioned space station, The Death Star.

The film’s phenomenal box office success has generated an unprecedented wave of merchandise. There are Star Wars glasses, posters, cereals, pillow cases, ornaments, etc. In Germany, you can even get Star Wars toilet paper.

Wiping your ass with an image of C-3PO seems like an odd way to express your interest in the film. But then, it’s Germany. I don’t need to tell Kris Kringle how weird the Germans can be.

(As a side note: I am so completely surrounded by the oeuvre of Star Wars, I often wonder if it will warp my mind and lead me to an adult life in which I obsessively quote the film and pretend any long cylindrical item I see is a lightsaber. So it goes.)

The most popular tie-in product is the Kenner toy company’s line of action figures. Action figures are like dolls that don’t threaten your masculinity. As much. The Death Star is a play set for these action figures. Sort of like Barbie’s Mansion, but evil.

And speaking of evil, I realize the irony of celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ by receiving something called The Death Star. I could argue that there is a STAR connection to the story of Jesus’ birth, but I think we both know I would be equivocating.

I ask you to judge the Death Star not by the blatantly evil name (in fact, one wonders how the Empire got this name past the steering committee. Perhaps The Force was used?) or the rather inflated suggested retail price of $49.95, but rather judge it by the joy it would bring to me–young Joseph Aaron Scrimshaw. An intelligent, sensitive young man trapped in the barren wastes of the frozen tundra that is Northern Minnesota.

(Another side note: Northern Minnesota is much like the North Pole if most of the elves were alcoholics and Mrs. Claus had never heard of contraceptive devices. That is to say: it is lacking in magic.)

Rest assured, Santa, that I have exhausted every other possibility for acquiring the Death Star. I have asked my 26-year-old hippie parents to buy it for me. They answered a firm “no,” shaking their needlessly long hippie hair.

Even both of my Grandmothers put together to form a sort of financial Mecha-Grandmother could not afford the Death Star. I find this hard to believe as I have personally witnessed my maternal Grandmother smoke at least $60 worth of Virginia Slims cigarettes in one sitting.

And so, Santa, as holographic Princess Leia said to Obi-Wan Kenobi, you are my only hope. I risk no hyperbole when I say my entire world view for the rest of my life hangs in the balance.

I realize the Death Star is merely a collection of cheap plastic (and orange foam used to clumsily symbolize the garbage in the trash compactor), however, what magic has been fused into the plastic? Is it really an overly priced commercial tie-in? Or is it like a star itself? Both a muse to sentimental poets and a very real giver of light, warmth, and life?

If I receive the Death Star, I will be justified in my current belief that the world is a bright and happy place in which one can always make one’s dream a reality.

OR these fragile beliefs could be ruthlessly shattered by YOU. And I will be sentenced to a long and hollow life devoid of joy, compassion, and love. Suddenly, $49.95 doesn’t sound that expensive, does it?

Yours with much affection,

Joseph Aaron Scrimshaw


P.S. I must warn you in advance, I will not be able to leave out any cookies for you. As I mentioned earlier, my mother is a hippie, so I hope you will enjoy her seasonal collection of dried fruits and unsalted nuts.

Merry Christmas and May the Force Be with You.

A version of this story is also available in my book COMEDY OF DOOM.
Thanks for reading.

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Filed under Comedy Story, Uncategorized