August Kickstarter Round-Up: Chemtrails. Beer Pong, and ASL Music Videos

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Once a month we'll be bringing you a look at some of the best local Kickstarter campaigns in order to let you know what's getting ready to be unleashed through the help of small investors.

American Sign Language (ASL) Music Video Project: The first Kickstarter this month that I'm really excited about is the work of Andrew Vieth, a former sign language president at Ohio State University. He's obviously spent a good amount of his time around the deaf and hard of hearing, and was surprised to find out just how big a role in their lives music plays.

You can go on YouTube and find plenty of modern pop songs being signed by volunteers, but these are generally not very professional. Mostly it's a single person in a static shot. Many are good, and some like Ally ASL actually gain big followings for their work, but a dedicated industry looking to artistically fulfill the need of the deaf to be able to experience music videos is lacking.

That's where Vieth's project comes in. Anybody furthering the music video arts in Houston has my vote, and he's doing it for a noble cause to boot. $5 is enough to get you started, and lines you up on their update list for when videos become available. If you're a band that can spring for the $1,000 package, you get to actually pick a song to be made and star in the video. Personally, I would love to see a band raise a $1,00 on their own Kickstarter just to be involved in this one.

Goal: $10,000 by August 27

Magnetic Beer Pong Set: Michael Tresten is not messing around when it comes to beer pong. In the past he's already designed a floating beer pong table for use at your pool party, but now he's tackling the conventional manner of play.

Can you believe that there isn't already a magnetic beer pong set to keep cups from spilling? I Googled around and no, it doesn't look like anyone else has come up with this insanely logical and simple idea before Tresten. So kudos man. The introductory package is $45, but you get two sets of the game. Honestly, you know you're going to want to give one away as a gift, so it makes perfect sense.

No word on if he's found a way to keep the ball from falling on the ground and getting dirty, but if anyone can, it's him.

Goal: $35,000 by September 13

Acme Rocketry Chemtrail Cloud Seeding Research: And now for our nutbar of the month, we have David No Last Name. David wants to know more about chemtrails, and apparently doesn't find the answer that they are just condensed air mixed with jet exhaust quite spooky enough.

He's careful, though, and avoids any of the typical conspiracy language aside from the usual "It could be anyone/anything." Luckily, he has a plan to find out the exact chemical make-up of chemtrails. He wants to shoot rockets at them to collect samples, and he needs $100,000 to do it because apparently he's never seen October Sky.

The gullible are free to drop $5,000 as a backer and they'll send you a sample to analyze on your own, assuming their as yet undersigned collection device works. Because people who aren't smart enough to not give someone money to fire missiles at water vapor hoping to hit a secret government poison are definitely the best qualified to conduct sober chemical research.

Goal: $100,000 by September 6

Jef has a new story, a tale of headless strippers and The Rolling Stones, available now in Broken Mirrors, Fractured Minds. You can also connect with him on Facebook.

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