GISH 2020 over and out!

Every year for the last decade, Misha Collins — the actor who plays Castiel on Supernatural — ringleads the Great International Scavenger Hunt, or GISH, which is a challenge to do fun and silly things, and also to help out those in need. I’ve done GISH many times in the past (see the fruits of same from 2015, 2017, 2018, and 2019) as part of Team Inevitable Innuendo, and in this batshit year, Collins and his friends decided to hold a couple of mini-hunts that went over a weekend before diving into the big week-long scavenger hunt this past week.

Wrenn and I did the first of the mini-hunts, and I never did show off what we did there, so here’s what we did for that, as well as our contributions to Team Inevitable Innuendo’s hunt this year. (I emphasize that these are just our contributions to the team. The team as a whole did a great deal more…)

First, the mini-hunt from the end of April, where Wrenn and I led a team called Scribes Anomalous…..

We had to re-create the experience of visiting one of the Wonders of the World in our homes, and since I’ve been accused of looking like Jesus anyhow, we decided to use me to re-create the Christ the Redeemer statue in Brasil, with Wrenn taking a selfie in front of it.

This item was simply: “Nap. Make it a good one.” So I napped surrounded by stuffies and books. And a cat.

I’ll just post the description of this one: “While you’re working from home, your conference calls show a professional background of books, flowers, artwork. But we all know deep down that that’s a facade: we all are just struggling to hold it together and sometimes, things like cleanliness and orderliness fall by the wayside so that may not be an entirely accurate depiction of what the rest of your abode looks like. What happens when the camera is rotated off your video conference call 180 degrees? Show us – shot dramatically as a tense suspension short film.” Yup, that’s my office….

We were to post to social media an open letter to someone from our past who was influential on our present lives, and I chose Marie Captain, my drama teacher from when I was in grammar school. The above letter was also put on my Facebook page.

We were challenged to write a handwashing haiku. I’m particularly proud of that one…..

This past week, our usual gang of crazy people, Team Inevitable Innuendo, did our GISH thing.

One task was for the entire team to write a poem, one line at a time. The first and last lines were dictated by the item description and had to be by the team captain (in our case, the redoubtable Catherine Sharp). And then we each wrote a line.

We were told to not only bury our anger and frustration, but also hold a funeral for them. So I did!

The hardest one we did — and by we, I mean Wrenn, I just assisted — was to show how climate change affects Gingerbread Houses and villages and such. So Wrenn made two gingerbread houses, two gingerbread people (well, actually fondant people), a gingerbread sea wall, and a whole mess of gingerbreak sandbags, to defend against the fondant storm surge you see on the right……

I’ll just quote this task: “Epic poems are, well, epic. But they’re also way too long. Re-write a classic epic poem such as Beowulf or the Iliad for modern attention spans — as a tweet-thread of no more than 10 tweets. Submit a screenshot and also a link to your poem.” I did The Odyssey, and tweeted it. (You can also read it on Twitter here.) I was heavily inspired by Luis, Michael Peña’s character in Ant-Man and Ant-Man & The Wasp.

We were asked to take a page from Sarah Cooper and lip-sync a politician. I could’ve done any politician, but I decided to also do President Trump the way Cooper does, in particular doing a bit from his recent AXIOS interview. I think I captured his essence…..

Next was to give a stump speech about deforestation at an actual stump. (Just like the Lorax!) As it happens, Woodlawn Cemetery here in the Bronx has a stump that’s had a buffalo carved into it by chainsaw sculptor Jon Vincent, which he did for Earth Day 2020.

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson is apparently looking for a spokesperson. We were urged to put forth one of our pets as a candidate, so I submitted Louie. Furthermore, I really-o-truly-o mailed it to 10 Downing Street. We’ll see if the Rt. Hon. Johnson goes for it……

Since we can’t do in-person large gatherings in a pandemic, we’re having a virtual sunset party. Here’s our team at sunset. (We did the best we could with uncooperative weather…..)

Encouraged to follow the example of Sarah Michelle Gellar, we were told to do a 2020 calendar grid with a Supernatural star or some other celebrity. I’m kind of a Supernatural celebrity, and I decided to do it with myself, using my five works in the Supernatural universe as props, and also with assistance from Sam the Moose and Dean the Squirrel.

“Hot Potato” is something else we can’t do in person anymore, so we did it over Zoom instead.

Finally, at the last minute, a final item was added to the hunt: Tweet between 9.30pm and 10.30pm Pacific time (I’m on Eastern time, so my Tweet was at 9.37pm Pacific) with the #GISH hashtag in the hopes of getting that hashtag to trend.

As always, GISH was tremendous fun. Because we lost power for two-and-a-half days, we didn’t get to do all the items we wanted to — a spice-art picture of Stan Lee, re-creating a favorite painting, reciting a bit of slam poetry that discusses slang using only academic-ese, an interview with someone who was at a major event from 50 or more years ago, and a bunch of others all fell by the wayside — but it was huge fun to do what we did do. Our team did wonderfully, too.

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