by Neal Dandade


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Content Advisory

If you’re enjoying The Advent Project with a child, we always recommend that you preview the artwork yourself first. But today might be a particularly good day to do that.


“Uhhhhh… this is Taika Waititi wishing uhhhhh… happy birthday to Cynthia from your husband Nelson. Oooooh you’re a New Year’s baby! And it’s gonna be a great year for you and your whiskey distillery. You’re going to whisk yourself away to distill whiskey in your whiskey distillery and all your hard work is going to pay off. Ooooooohhh weeeee! You’re a New Year’s baby! I like that. Anyway, keep being awesome, especially when it comes to driving your nieces and nephews to and from school. Oooooh New Year’s baby! This is Taika Waititi.” 

“How could an average, alto, singer and a tap dancer get cast in the Christmas musical to play Prancer??” Allison! It’s me: Lin Manuel Miranda and Allison, dear, your parents are proud of all your hard work on the Christmas musical this year. Here’s the thing: you were totally robbed when they cast Julia as Annie last Spring. No stress, no scoff. It’s why your parents got you singing lessons and, girl, they are paying off. You’re sounding better and better — it’s a thrill… and your mom loves the second job she had to take at Macaroni Grill. Your parents love you so much, and love is love is love! They can’t wait to watch you bloom at the performing arts high school your dad sold the house to pay for, too. So dream big, little one! Hard work is never done! Allison, it’s non-stop. And you are not throwing away your shot.” 

“Helllloooo, beta! This is Padma Lakshmi here with a very special message for Sunita from your aunties in Delhi. It was so good to see you when you stayed at the Oberoi in Delhi last year. Oh, we hope you enjoyed the diamond earrings, the gold necklace, the Sabyasachi dress. Oh, and most importantly the laddus. Those are the best laddus in Noida and your Sarla auntie clubbed someone across the face with her Prada bag to get them. Can you believe that? She is so brave. So, we hope you ate them, but too many because you don’t want to get fat. Also, they can’t wait to talk about your upcoming wedding and remind you why Rahul is marrying you and you think about signing a prenuptial agreement. Seriously, beta, you should do it before the Mendhi, okay? Anyways, keep up the hard work at the hedge fund — we love you!” 

“They say that love is blind, but that’s actually not true. Love is a construct influenced by hormones and pheromones that come off our skin that we have little control over. That’s why Alana got you this Cameo from me, Neil deGrasse Tyson. From the moment she was your TA in organic chemistry, Alana knew you were the one. The perfect score on your problem sets, alone, were enough to blow the curve and blow her previous partners out of the water. But ultimately, it was the aroma wafting off your epidermis that swept Alana off her feet. Like an earthworm in love, she thought, “be still my throbbing crop” and she felt it all the way down in her gizzard. You are truly one-of-a-kind in a world full of entropy, Chris, and Alana is excited by the covalent bond between you two. Happy New Year, but only if you follow the Gregorian calendar, of course.” 

“There’s some ho’s in this house! There’s some ho’s in this house! Heeeey Jamie, this is Cardi B, letting you know that your friends love you so much! Tracy, Stacy, and Lacy… you are strong and confident and beautiful and, honestly, you did the right thing leaving Tyrone, baby. He’s a BLEEP-ing BLEEP and you don’t need to take BLEEP from BLEEP, even if they BLEEP you all night long like a BLEEP-ing Greek God. BLEEEEEEEEP. And Jamie, your friends know that you are nervous being on your own, but they got you, baby. They got you at home, they got you at the club, and they definitely got you in your classes at nursing school. ‘Cause BLEEP doctors — we nurses, baby!  So Jamie, you better pop that WAP in 2023 ‘cause you got this. And that’s from your girl, Cardi B.” 

“Wishing Happy New Year to Boris, from friends at Disinformation Platform 40751. You work hard on Tweets this year. You earn all random numbers in Twitter handle. Friends love your cooking when you bring dumplings made from beef, lamb, and chicken from ancestral farm in Siberia. Wow. That was so good. Friends at Disinformation Platform 40751 not allowed to reveal potential promotion, but things looking good. Definitely consider buying boat for riding on Siberian lake for two weeks when not completely frozen. Also friends say thank you for awesome guys weekend in Chechnya. What happens in Chechnya stays in Chechnya. Happy New Year, Boris, from friends at Disinformation Platform 4075—“ 


Artist Credits:
Eddie Mujica (Lin Manuel Miranda)
Amrita Dhaliwal (Padma Lakshmi)
Karl Bradley (Neil deGrasse Tyson)
Adisa Williams (Cardi B)

Song Credits:
Music: Fear of The Dark Soundridemusic
Link to Video:
Publisher: Songtrust Blvd IPI# 615755145
P.R.O.: IPI# 00382646438

Neal Dandade

Neal Dandade is a South Asian-American actor, writer, teacher, video artist, and dad based in Chicago, Illinois. Follow his work on Instagram @nealdandade.