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Fisher-Price Tickle Me Elmo – 19 Fun Facts About the Elmo Phenomenon

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Who would have guessed back in 1996 that Tickle Me Elmo, a newly released plush toy, would become the hot new sales sensation that Christmas? He was “just” a funny little bundle of red fur who laughed hysterically when you tickled him. And yet since that time Tickle Me Elmo and his successors have topped the sales charts for several Christmas seasons.

This year promises to be another hot sales year for the Elmo line of plush dolls with the introduction of Elmo Live! by Fisher Price. Some stores are currently limiting the quantity you can buy in anticipation of hot sales numbers. Here are 19 fun facts about the sales sensation started by the little red guy who laughs.

1. Tyco introduced Tickle Me Elmo into the United States markets in 1996. By Christmas Elmo had become a sales phenomenon.

2. Elmo saw a jump in sales after Rosie O’Donnell featured the doll on an episode of her show in October of 1996. Whenever a guest said the word “wall,” Rosie threw a doll into the audience.

3. A similar jump in sales occurred that same year after Bryant Gumbel held a doll during most of an episode of the Today Show.

4. The day after Thanksgiving of 1996 Tickle Me Elmo sold out in 2 hours in most stores throughout the country.

5. Tyco originally expected 400,000 Elmos to sell that first year. They easily sold that many and were unable to meet demand through Christmas despite their continued urgent manufacture of the doll.

6. The shortage in supplies drove some parents in North America to extreme measures. Parents actually fought each other in stores over the doll.

7. Prices shot up with classified ads in some newspapers advertising the toy for hundreds of dollars. One report claims that the $28.99 toy sold for as much as $1500.

8. Several stories of injuries around the nation were reported. For example, on December 14, 1996 at a Wal-mart in Fredericton, New Brunswick a crowd injured a clerk when they spotted him holding one of the last dolls in stock.

9. The New York Daily News reported an unusual story. John Gotti, Jr., son of the reputed mob boss, purchased a case of Tickle Me Elmos at a store in Queens, New York several weeks after the doll had sold out. Store officials said Gotti “was just fortunate to be in the right place at the right time.”

10. The vibrating feature of Elmo uses a larger version of the vibration motor found in cell phones and game controllers.

11. In 1997 three new Tickle Me dolls were released: Tickle Me Ernie, Tickle Me Big Bird, and Tickle Me Cookie Monster. None of them have matched the mysterious success of Elmo.

12. In 2001 a “surprise edition” of Tickle Me Elmo was released as part of a contest. On January 9, 2002 five of the dolls stopped laughing. They then announced to their owners that the owners had won a prize, the largest being a staggering $200,000.

13. The TMX – meaning either Tickle Me Extreme or Tickle Me Ten (where “X” is the Roman numeral 10) — was released as part of a 10th anniversary commemoration of the first doll. TMX Elmo expanded Elmo’s laughing behaviors to include rolling around on the floor and smashing his fist on the ground.

14. In a well-executed marketing promotion, the manufacturer built excitement for the TMX by shrouding TMX Elmo in secrecy prior to its release. People who reviewed the product prior to its release were required to sign confidentiality agreements that prevented them from disclosing details about the doll early.

15. The TMX Elmo marketing promotion included pre-release sales of the doll. Amazon took more presale orders than it could fulfill.

16. The full look of the TMX doll was first revealed on ABC’s Good Morning America.

17. The box for TMX Elmo hid the doll from view until it was purchased. A “preview flap” on the box only let you see Elmo’s eyes, and he said, “Ah, ah, ah, ah! No peeking!”

18. A 2007 version of the doll featured hidden messages that Elmo would only say if you did just the right things to the doll. Rhyming clues on the manufacturer’s web site helped consumers figure out how to trigger the special messages.

19. The 2008 version of the doll is called Elmo Live! He features a whole new set of actions and sounds, making him the most advanced version of the popular Elmo dolls. Sales of Elmo Live! are expected to be brisk for the 2008 Christmas season. With the economic difficulties we are having this year it will be interesting to see how well Elmo Live! sells.

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Elite League of Legends Teleport Tricks to Destroy Your Friends

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Every day, thousands of gamers log onto League of Legends to play Riot Games’ free DOTA-style video game, unfortunately most of them get crushed by the elite few that know all the tricks of the trade. The most popular tricks often involve one of the lesser used summoner spells in public games; the incredibly useful but oft-ignored teleport spell, and while these tricks can take weeks to master, it only takes a few moments to read on and learn them.

1. Fiddlesticks’ Surprise — If there is one sound that strikes fear into the heart of every experienced League of Legends player, it’s the horrifying “Caw! Caw! Caw!” of Fiddlestick’s monstrous ultimate, which is nothing less than an area of effect spell of doom for everyone caught in its wake. The problem with this spell, of course, is its two-second channel time that requires you to be smart about when you’re ready to attack. Surprisingly, few players realize the power of this ultimate when combined with the utility of the teleport summoner spell.

An awesome way to get the drop on your opponents with Fiddlesticks, is to lay a ward down in the farthest bushes on the top or bottom lane of the map. When done correctly, you can teleport in behind your opponent and out of sight, waiting for the right time to launch from the bushes and strike. This is particularly effective if for some reason you are playing Fiddlesticks in the lane, as you can recall base before quickly teleport behind them to create mass confusion.

2. Nunu’s Trap — Nunu is well-known in League of Legends to have one of the strongest ultimates in the game, capable of swallowing entire teams in its large radius and exploding them into a million bits. Unfortunately, this is perhaps the most difficult ultimate to land in the game as it has a long stationary channel that is easily interrupted and even more easily stepped out of…. that is, of course, unless you have the teleport summoner spell.

With the teleport spell at your disposal, Nunu can quickly become a frightful player for the opposing team. Try sneaking a ward right into the middle of the middle lane to teleport to later, and wait until your opponent’s solo mid steps by it. When he does, teleport in and quickly ice-blast him for the slow effect, pop your ultimate and watch as he explodes with the help of a teammate already in that lane. This is an awesome technique because you will actually give yourself an additional second or so for your ultimate to go unnoticed, as your opponent will be extremely confused as to how you appeared next to him out of the middle of nowhere.

This is also an effective technique at grouping hot-spots, like Baron, Dragon, or a short distance in front of your middle tower. Placing a ward a bit in front of your middle tower is particularly rewarding, as once you teleport in and cast your ultimate while your opponents are attacking your tower, they will be pinched in and be forced to move into the tower where all your teammates await, or back toward you for an icy surprise of ultimate death.

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How to Play Spoons Card Game

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How would you like to play a game that could be enjoyed by the entire family regardless of age? Sounds pretty fun, right? Well, we’re going to teach you about just that game. It’s called spoons, and it’s one of the more popular card games. It’s really simple to play, and it’s really enjoyable! So just follow these simple steps.

What you’re going to need:

  1. Spoons ( You need one less spoon than there are players. So let’s say that there are 5 players, you need six spoons )
  2. Deck ( Full Deck of Cards )

Game Set Up

To set up the game, you’re going to need to count the number of players. Let’s say that there are six players in your group. You’re going to need six suits of cards. You don’t need to use the whole deck.

Now, at this point, you’re going to need to put the spoons in the center of the table and pass out an equal number of cards to each player. Then you’re ready to go!

Game Play

Once each player has a hand of cards, it’s time to get started. The object of the game is to get a suit of hands in your card, so what you’re going to do is select one card from your hand and pass it to the player on the left. At this point, the player on the left, the one receiving the card, has the option to take that card into his hand, or he can pick a card from his hand and pass it to the player on his left. This continues until one player has an entire suit of cards in his hand.

Once that happens, his goal is to sneakily grab a spoon from the center of the table. If other people find out he has an entire suit, they could inadvertently make him the loser, so don’t let that happen. Once you’ve grabbed the spoon you reveal your hand to the other players.

They then have to hastily grab their own spoons. The player who is left without a spoon is then declared the loser and removed from the game. The game play continues until there are only two players in the group. At which time, they are both declared the winner.

Get Your Game On!

As you can tell, spoons is a real simple game, and it is perfect for those family game nights. So we recommend you give it a try! We guarantee you won’t be disappointed.

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Dog Training Academy – How to Create Obedience in Your Dog

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Training a dog can be a frustrating act but not anymore with the Dog Training Academy e-course. Dogs tend to be unruly at times with excess of barking and whining along with aggressive actions towards visitors. It is high time to start training your dog using well established and proven methods when you find him reacting in a non responsive manner to your commands.

Lack of training can lead to behavioural problems in your dog and this can turn them into a disobedient pet. An unruly pet can end up tearing furniture or behaving in an uncontrollable manner. It is hence necessary that you take the right measures to control behavioural problems and to train your dog. This is where Dog Training Academy can help you get the perfect pet by bringing in obedience in your dog. The training course is a 7 day series that consolidates tips and tricks on training your dog on obedience matters.

Training a dog is not an easy task, but the job now becomes simple for you now with this free training e-course. The methods of training and the skills of the owner and pet normally determines the time taken to train a dog, but this training e-course can resolve all your problems in just about 7 days. They provide you with many widely practiced professional methods of obedience training to bring in fast and effective behavioural changes.

Basic bonding and effective communication is required between you and your dog before you can start training on obedience. This kind of essentials that needs to be obtained before the dog can respond to your basic commands and orders are detailed in the Dog Training Academy course.

There are many ways of training your dog other than the e-course methodology. One such way of obedience training your dog is by taking him to a training school. Such schools provide professional help offered by expert trainers who can handle any kind of dogs. But is it necessary to check whether such schools are recognized ones before your enrol your dog. Such kind of schools also charge a hefty amount for a complete training spanning around 3-4 weeks time as compared to the free course.

A proven training plan and a step-by-step guide of the plan can make you feel the difference in your dog’s behavior in just a week time. The training plan can bring in more obedience and security in your dog at the end of the course. Enrol for the Dog Training Academy course and you no longer need to worry about torn furniture or garbage in your living room.

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