Nov 17, 2011

And That’s the True Meaning of Desert Bus, Charlie Brown

Only 32 hours to go, folks, before Desert Bus 5 starts rolling! If you haven’t already signed up for a donor account, please do so, before the madness starts.

This is, by far, the wittiest charity event of the year. If you don’t know, then let me break it down for you.

“Desert Bus,” a minigame on Penn and Teller’s Smoke and Mirrors for the Sega CD, was designed to be the most realistic game ever. In it, you drive a bus, whose top speed is about 40 mph, from Tucson, AZ to Las Vegas in real time. The highway is completely straight with no landmarks, and the bus drifts ever so slightly to the right, requiring you to actively play the game. If you complete the task, which takes eight hours of real time, you earn one point – and then, you turn around and have to drive back. The game has no ending.

Desert Bus for Hope is a marathon, in which a team of gamers are forced to play this game for hours on end. The more money you donate, the longer they will have to play. The fruits of their efforts go to Child’s Play, which provides hospitalized children around the world with toys and video games (all of which, I am assured, are better than “Desert Bus.”)

So, to extend the players’ misery, their friends have lovingly set up a whole internet telethon, which happens in the room where Desert Bus is being played. They raise money by taking donations for performing sketches – for these are no ordinary gamers, but in fact a geektastic sketch comedy group called Loading Ready Run – by holding contests, and auctioning off prizes, some of which were handmade by Desert Bus fans.

All of this madness starts tomorrow, and you can watch the whole thing go down at DesertBus.org. While you’re there, take a look at all the sweet stuff they have for auction this year. One item in particular should interest you.

If you are AT ALL interested in making these people do ridiculous things on camera for your enjoyment, OR in bidding on any of the auctions, there is a signup thing to do first, so they can contact you properly when you win. Please consider donating, for the childrens.

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