'Buddy the Elf' is challenging Bostonians to street pillow fights, and it's sheer delight.

Pillow fights on the streets of America? It's 2018, so why not.

Imagine walking down the street and having a man dressed as an elf toss you a pillow, while holding his own pillow in a fighting stance. What do you do?

You pillow fight, of course!


Thanks to fun-loving firefighter Brendan Edwards, the people of Boston are being challenged to pillow fights in the streets. Edwards, dressed as Will Ferrell's lovable character Buddy from the movie "Elf," tosses a pillow to passersby in the hopes that they'll engage in a friendly, fluffy duel—and people are loving it.

Video of the pillow fights have gone massively viral.

Edwards and his younger brothers, Ryan and Devin, decided they wanted to make a Christmas-themed video. They make videos together occasionally and upload them to Facebook, she says. Edwards already had the Buddy the Elf costume, and the idea to start pillow fights came up in the brothers' brainstorming, so they went with it.

"At first our goal was to make the video for our friends and family on Facebook," says Edwards, "but as the first day went on, we began to see the positive impact we were making and we started doing it to capture the joy these strangers were getting out of hitting an elf with a pillow."

The first video garnered 45 million views in a matter of days across various outlets, and Edwards joy-spreading fights have been picked up by news and media channels across the nation.

The old lady handing offer her water bottle all hold-my-earrings-like is the best part:

Pillow Fights with Strangers ft. Buddy the Elf

Pillow Fights with Strangers ft. Buddy the Elf..Music: Pennies from Heaven by Louis Prima.🎥: Ryan Sullivan.Inspired by: BigDawsTv Angrypicnic Steven Schapiro RossCreations

Posted by Brendan Edwards on Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Edwards and company are using their viral fame to raise money for the Make-a-Wish foundation.

The pillow fights have truly become a family affair. Edwards' girlfriend, Hayley O'Loughlin, has now joined him in his surprise pillow street fight matches. She plays the role of Jovie—Zoey Deschanel's character from "Elf" who's Buddy's love interest.

Seriously, could they be any cuter?

Photo via Brendan Edwards/Facebook.

In follow-up video, "Buddy" calls for "back-up," and "Jovie"—dressed in a pink and red elf costume—comes to the rescue. And this time around, Edwards is inviting viewers to donate to charity.

"While uploading the second video I noticed there was an option to add a 'Donation Button," says Edwards. "I considered the reach we made with the first video and the number of people that left such positive comments and thought, 'Well maybe I can give back somehow.' So I chose my favorite charity Make-A-Wish and hit upload."

ROUND 2: Pillow Fights With Strangers ft. Buddy the Elf AND JOVIE!

ROUND 2: Pillow Fights with Strangers ft. Buddy the Elf and JOVIE!..Music: Pennies from Heaven by Louis Prima.🎥: Ryan SullivanThe viral Buddy takes to the streets of Boston, MA once again to challenge the unexpected to PILLOW FIGHTS! Only this time he calls for back up... AND IT'S JOVIE!

Posted by Brendan Edwards on Monday, December 10, 2018

Keep on spreading that childlike joy and cheer, Buddy. Goodness knows we can all use some.

Courtesy of Verizon
True

If someone were to say "video games" to you, what are the first words that come to mind? Whatever words you thought of (fun, exciting, etc.), we're willing to guess "healthy" or "mental health tool" didn't pop into your mind.

And yet… it turns out they are. Especially for Veterans.

How? Well, for one thing, video games — and virtual reality more generally — are also more accessible and less stigmatized to veterans than mental health treatment. In fact, some psychiatrists are using virtual reality systems for this reason to treat PTSD.

Secondly, video games allow people to socialize in new ways with people who share common interests and goals. And for Veterans, many of whom leave the military feeling isolated or lonely after they lose the daily camaraderie of their regiment, that socialization is critical to their mental health. It gives them a virtual group of friends to talk with, connect to, and relate to through shared goals and interests.

In addition, according to a 2018 study, since many video games simulate real-life situations they encountered during their service, it makes socialization easier since they can relate to and find common ground with other gamers while playing.

This can help ease symptoms of depression, anxiety, and even PTSD in Veterans, which affects 20% of the Veterans who have served since 9/11.

Watch here as Verizon dives into the stories of three Veteran gamers to learn how video games helped them build community, deal with trauma and have some fun.

Band of Gamers www.youtube.com

Video games have been especially beneficial to Veterans since the beginning of the pandemic when all of us — Veterans included — have been even more isolated than ever before.

And that's why Verizon launched a challenge last year, which saw $30,000 donated to four military charities.

And this year, they're going even bigger by launching a new World of Warships charity tournament in partnership with Wargaming and Wounded Warrior Project called "Verizon Warrior Series." During the tournament, gamers will be able to interact with the game's iconic ships in new and exciting ways, all while giving back.

Together with these nonprofits, the tournament will welcome teams all across the nation in order to raise money for military charities helping Veterans in need. There will be a $100,000 prize pool donated to these charities, as well as donation drives for injured Veterans at every match during the tournament to raise extra funds.

Verizon is also providing special discounts to Those Who Serve communities, including military and first responders, and they're offering a $75 in-game content military promo for World of Warships.

Tournament finals are scheduled for August 8, so be sure to tune in to the tournament and donate if you can in order to give back to Veterans in need.

Courtesy of Verizon

When the COVID-19 pandemic socially distanced the world and pushed off the 2020 Olympics, we knew the games weren't going to be the same. The fact that they're even happening this year is a miracle, but without spectators and the usual hustle and bustle surrounding the events, it definitely feels different.

But it's not just the games themselves that have changed. The coverage of the Olympics has changed as well, including the unexpected addition of un-expert, uncensored commentary from comedian Kevin Hart and rapper Snoop Dogg on NBC's Peacock.

In the topsy-turvy world we're currently living in, it's both a refreshing and hilarious addition to the Olympic lineup.

Just watch this clip of them narrating an equestrian event. (Language warning if you've got kiddos nearby. The first video is bleeped, but the others aren't.)

Keep Reading Show less