Being unable to spend the holidays with one's family and friends is a very difficult assignment to pull. It's hard enough when -- , due to the specialty of your skill set or the shorthandedness of your company staff -- one is required to work an extra shift at your routine 9-to-5 job in such a time. It's quite another to be totally separated from your home and loved ones by hundreds or even thousands of miles.

The Traveling Terabyte Project holds a special respect and sympathy for all those whose service keeps them from home this holiday season. If you or someone special to you is away from home on active duty, you have the means by which to bring them a little extra Christmas cheer with our help... absolutely free. All that is necessary is to email us a request.

As in years past, we are producing DVD packages that will contain loads of donated Christmas music and videos... anyone who wants to bring some holiday cheer to their loved ones overseas can request a copy to send to them.

I'll be the first to admit that I absolutely hate the "holiday creep" that seems to get worse every year due to malls and other retailers trying to get people whipped up into a feeding frenzy of commerce. Given my distaste for any holly and garland that appears before the turkey and mashed potatoes are cleared away from the dinner table, what am I doing talking about the winter holidays so soon?

Well, as anyone with friends or loved ones knows, sending packages to deployed personnel can take quite a bit of time. Consequently, we will have to start this holiday-themed project even earlier than Wal-Mart, Sears, Macy's, and the rest of the unscrupulous retail world starts piping the Christmas tunes over their PA systems.

The Christmas Cheer DVD Package

We feel so bad that we have a limited number of Terabyte cases that we can send around, especially during the upcoming holiday season. In light of that fact, we have prepared a collection of songs and videos that are part of our donated archive of materials and are going to burn them to sets of DVDs which you can send to your loved ones overseas.

The following content will be part of the Christmas Cheer DVD Package...

TV Specials and Films...

A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965)

When Charlie Brown complains about the overwhelming materialism that he sees amongst everyone during the Christmas season, Lucy suggests that he become director of the school Christmas pageant. Charlie Brown accepts, but it proves to be a frustrating struggle. When an attempt to restore the proper spirit with a forlorn little fir Christmas tree fails, he needs Linus' help to learn what the real meaning of Christmas is.


A Christmas Story (1983)

This delightfully funny holiday gem tells the story of Ralphie Parker (Peter Billingsly) a 1940's nine-year-old who pulls out all the stops to obtain the ultimate Christmas present.


Emmet Otter's Jug-Band Christmas (1977)

Struggling to make ends meet, Mrs. Otter and her son, Emmet, face yet another bleak Christmas until Emmet secretly decides to enter Frog Town Hollow's first annual talent contest on Christmas Eve.


Frosty the Snowman (1969)

To make up for the fact that her students are in school on Christmas Eve, the local schoolteacher hires the magician Professor Hinkle to entertain the kids. Unfortunately, he's not a very good magician. Frustrated in his attempt to pull a rabbit out of his hat, he throws it away in anger. Outside, the kids build a snowman, and when the hat blows onto it, the snowman comes to life.


A Garfield Christmas Special (1987)

On Christmas Eve, Garfield, Jon, and Odie travel to the countryside to celebrate Christmas with Jon's farm family. As we get to know the wacky members of Jon's family, Odie is busy working on something secretive, Grandma and Garfield bond, and unexpected presents are afoot on Christmas morning.


How the Grinch Stole Christmas (1966)

Every who down in Who-ville likes Christmas a lot, but the Grinch who lived just north of Who-ville did NOT! So the cuddly as a cactus Grinch tries to wipe out Christmas for the cheerful Who-villains, only to discover: maybe Christmas, he thought doesn't come from as store. Maybe Christmas perhaps means a little bit more! Magnificently narrated by Boris Karloff and animated by cartoon legend Chuck Jones.


Jack Frost (1979)

A Rankin-Bass, stop-motion animated program, Jack Frost is a classic winter tale of good and evil, hope and despair, and love and sacrifice. Narrated Buddy Hackett and framed as an exploration of the tradition of Groundhog Day, the music-filled Jack Frost is actually the story of young sprite who, under Father Winter’s leadership, is responsible for bringing winter weather to the world.


The Little Drummer Boy (1968)

When Aaron's family is killed, he disowns society and all people. His only friends in the world are the lamb Baabaa, the donkey Samson, and the camel Joshua. When an unscrupulous traveling performer convinces them to join his troupe and then sells Joshua, Aaron follows a star to find his donkey. When Baabaa the lamb becomes injured, Aaron must overcome his hatred of mankind and find a gift with which to approach a babe in a manger and ask for help.


Mister Magoo's Christmas Carol (1962)

An animated, magical, musical version of Dickens' timeless classic A Christmas Carol. The nearsighted Mr. Magoo doesn't have a ghost of a chance as Ebenezer Scrooge, unless he learns the true meaning of Christmas from the three spirits who haunt him one Christmas Eve.


Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer (1964)

Sam the snowman tells us the story of a young red-nosed reindeer who, after being ousted from the reindeer games because of his beaming honker, teams up with Hermey, an elf who wants to be a dentist, and Yukon Cornelius, a prospector. When Rudolph vows to see if he can get Santa to help a group of misfit toys, he learns the old man's sleigh is fogged in. But when Santa looks over Rudolph, he gets a very bright idea.


The Muppet Christmas Carol (1992)

A retelling of the classic Dickens tale of Ebenezer Scrooge, miser extraordinaire. He is held accountable for his dastardly ways during night-time visitations by the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Future.


The Polar Express (2004)

Santa Claus does not exist. Or does he? For one doubting boy, an astonishing event occurs. Late on Christmas Eve night, he lies in bed hoping to hear the sound of reindeer bells from Santa's sleigh. When to his surprise, a steam engine's roar and whistle can be heard outside his window. The conductor invites him on board to take an extraordinary journey to the North Pole.


White Christmas (1954)

A successful song-and-dance duo become romantically involved with a singing sister act and team up to save the failing Vermont inn of their former commanding general. With memorable performances by legendary talents like Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye, Rosemary Clooney, and Vera Ellen... this is one of my favorite Christmas films of all time.


Other Miscellaneous Videos

Also on the disc are such short offerings as "A Very Matrix Christmas" (a compilation of spoof artwork set to rocking TSO music), an episode of the History Channel program "Modern Marvels" highlighting Christmas technologies, a Pixar short featuring penguins from the film Madagascar, a Christmas episode of the Saturday morning cartoon Tom & Jerry, and lastly a clip of perhaps the most ostentatious and technologically-wired set of Christmas lights i've ever seen on a house.


A Charlie Brown Christmas - Soundtrack

The original soundtrack recording of the CBS television special recorded in 1965.


Christmas Harp - Reflections

Add some elegance to your holiday celebration with this relaxing collection of Christmas classics.


Trans Siberian Orchestra - Rockin' Mix

This is a mix of selections from the symphonic rock group that plays Christmas carols on electric guitars, melding choir voices and heavy metal.


Classic Traditional Christmas Carols

From "God Rest Ye, Merry Gentlemen" to "Jingle Bells" to "Santa Claus Is Coming To Town" this unsorted collection of holiday tunes will have your room sounding like a shopping mall or any stateside radio station during the month of December.


There are a few important technical details of which you should be aware. First and foremost, these discs won't be playable in most standard DVD players. They will be DVD-ROMs, which are best suited for use in a computer. While occasional set-top DVD players might handle this format, most will not. These are not for enjoying in one's living room, but are specifically designed for use by people who have little but their laptops and MP3 players... people like those serving overseas. Furthermore, these are "dual layer" DVDs... now, most modern DVD drives should handle these without difficulty, but if you experience trouble just try the disc in a different laptop.

The files on these discs will be predominantly MP3 audio or MPEG-4 encoded (XviD) AVI files. Most laptops (both PC or Mac) will be able to play such content, sometimes with the addition of a few drivers or codecs, all of which will be included on the discs to the best of our abilities. If any file fails to play for you at all, it is likely you need to install a codec. If files play slowly or haltingly, there is likely a speed problem... try copying the file from the disc to your computer and playing it that way, since your drive may not be reading the DVD with full speed and ease.

The sources of the content on this Holiday Collection vary a great deal. Some appear to have been recorded from TV broadcasts (or even captured from VHS tapes of earlier TV broadcasts) but in each instance we feel they are good enough to be enjoyed by all... after all, what's Christmas without seeing the stop-motion puppet animation of Hermey the Misfit Elf or crossing your fingers in the hopes that Ralphie gets his BB rifle from Santa, even if the picture is a little bit blurry at the edges?

Please feel free to contact us with any questions you have about this or any other aspect of the Traveling Terabyte Project. If you have loved ones who are serving, wish them well... may you see them come home soon. If you are in the service, keep your action clean and your ass covered... come home safely and quickly.

- deviant

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