Because we live in a wonderful country, I have access to Amazon's "Vine" program (which you get by either being invited or by floating a big enough bribe). Here's how it works: Amazon posts literally thousands of products that Vine members can order absolutely free in return for writing an honest review of the product.
Or maybe I should say almost absolutely free; at the end of the year, Amazon totals up everything you got and sends a tax form saying that you received that amount as income, meaning you have to pay taxes on everything. Which usually isn't bad, although currently there's an $1800 massage chair on there (really) that I don't even want to pay tax on because it's so spectacularly ugly. It looks like a wrecked VW Beetle covered with Naugahyde and disco lights.
Still, it's fun to occasionally find something I need or just something that seems like it would be fun to own. It's also fun browsing through all of the items and discovering how many absolutely horrible product ideas have actually made it to market. I like to imagine an entrepreneur suddenly sitting bolt upright in bed at 3 a.m. and shaking his wife awake in the dark...
"Honey! I've got it! A million-dollar idea! IT CAN'T FAIL!!!"
(yawning) "Okay...what is it this time?"
"A RUBBER REMOTE CONTROL FOR BABIES TO CHEW ON!"
(long pause, followed by a gunshot)
So just for a little Friday fun, here's a sampling of some of the honest-to-gosh products currently being offered on Amazon Vine and my initial thoughts about them...
That dancing pole is YOU, Stilton!
Just what I needed for my 39th (again) birthday! ;-)
I was just about to head to bed, hopefully with sweet dreams. Oh, the nightmares I’ll be having after looking at these monstrosities!
I laughed 'till I cried! Much needed! Thank you!
What, you don't want toe headlights? A hazmat suit and toe headlights would make great loungewear!
O.M.G. You DO know, don't you, that as soon as I leave your site I SIMPLY MUST GO to this web site. I am intrigued by the concept of wearing a hazmat suit and running amuck with the bubble machine...
Some serious silliness!
Thank you! ;-)
Crazy people have crazy ideas...
Gah! Grandma urn! Now I must get one.
Don't knock foam rubber remotes. Our 3-year granddaughter loves to chew stuff. Last time she was here she chewed a front tire and half the front bumper of my 8" foam rubber school bus I received for 1-year of safe driving. And the kicker is, now that she's played with it, her arch nemesis - our very jealous cat, is upstairs tearing what's left of the passenger compartment to shreds.
Will Smith is gonna *smack* you.....
I have written an Amazon review only once. It was denied.
I had bought a bird bath de-icer (Colorado winters):
"I apparently have been BBQ-ing birds???????
I was going to leave a positive review until I noticed that ALL previous reviews were talking about some BBQ tools, and not about the bird-bath de-icer and fountain pump that I purchased and received.
Is this part of the FAKE reviews I have been reading about... "
Goodness. How can one live without a Dragon Lizard harness.
Please tell me there are also some legit items on Amazon Vine, or is everything like an old Spencer Gifts catalog?
Good thing Fauxci never saw that hazmat suit ad, or we'd all been wearing those during the covid fiasco.
I gotta ask, if you get the items free if you submit a review, how do you review little rubber donuts that make sheep's balls fall off? Do you interview the sheep afterwards? "Was that a pleasant experience for you? Was it painless, or did it feel like a C-clamp on your nuts?" A funny... Mrs. Muenster grew up on a sheep farm and has actually used these! She says the sheep didn't seem to enjoy it very much.
I really did order disposable hazmat suits at one point so that I could clear an overgrown section of my yard without being exposed to the poison ivy growing back there.
If only I'd had a bubble ray gun to go with it...
LOL I love your posts
I may need a little compensation before I review those castration rings.
You are getting those castration rings for FREE, so what other compensation do you need?
How about a soprano aria at the met😁
My 2023 Christmas shopping is finished!!!
I suppose Pool Torpedoes might be next? Oh what fun for the little ones.
Those castration donuts are real. I live in Montana and helped a neighbor when their cows were calfing. The use a tool that looks like a pair of pliers that wen squeezed, spreads 3 fingers apart. The rubber ring is put on, spread to about an inch diameter, then slipped over the newborn's scrotum. Most don't seem to mind, but there was one little guy who could barely walk and I had to help guide him from the birthing field to the next field where they go with their mothers.
I almost felt sorry for him until I remembered his nickname was Cheeseburger.
Enjoy your next burger!
I think the.Croc headlights.could be useful because.the.headlight on the vacuum cleaner.does not quite cut it.
Where does he get those marvelous toys? ( the Joker) This is great stuff, thank you And for MORE Amazon enlightenment, have you ever read some of the great reviews for such things as the Tuscan Milk
And buried in those reviews is the BEST takeoff on The Raven, by a great reviewer named Edgar. And the other reviews noted on this page (https://www.wordstream.com/blog/ws/2014/04/15/funny-amazon-reviews)
are all smile inducing. Have a lovely day in your neighborhood!!
CROCS are the most worthwhile offering of the last 100 years. While one may not need the headlights (actually footlights looking for a stage tie-in) the very fact that they are available is great. Maybe they will come out with a dosimeter for those working in nuclear plants.
A couple years back a guy or girl crossed a dark street in front of me wearing ALL black clothes.
I did not see this walker until they passed in front of the headlights of the car coming towards me creating a silhouette. Walker had a hoodie on, ear buds plugged in and head down looking at the phone. Holy crap. Yes there is a need for toe lights and reflective clothes.
@Readers- I'm glad to have you along on this tour of odd products. Let me answer a few questions that have popped up.
Amazon Vine actually has a lot of very nice and useful items, so it's not really an electronic version of "Spencer Gifts." Still, weird stuff is part of the fun of browsing. Just taking a quick glance at things currently offered that could be good (if needed) are a large above-ground swimming pool ($1000 value), Metal bunkbed frames ($438 value), a lateral file for the office ($784 value), and...a "Ramen Noodle Soup Chicken-Flavor Bucket Fisherman Hat" (a floppy hat that looks like a packet of ramen - value 9.99). Hey, they can't all be gems.
The "castration donuts" clearly caught peoples' attention. I just worry about these falling into the hands of woke parents who decide to go the DIY route when modifying their little boys into little girls.
Despite my joke about Crocs, I actually have nothing against them and am an advocate of comfortable footwear. But toe-headlights, not so much - although our dark brown dog Ladybug, who gets stumbled over in the dark, might disagree.
And if you're not acquainted with the wacky world of Archie McPhee; check them out.
But their stuff is not McFree.
I introduced my daughter to Archie many years ago. For a long while following, there was no telling what I might receive on special days. But with more age on us both it's starting to become little bit more respectful. And I really hate rubber chickens. [grinning]
@Rod- It's been awhile since I checked out Archie McPhee so I'll have to look again. Of course, the much-beloved grandaddy of them all was tthe Johnson-Smith novelty catalog. How I loved perusing those crowded pages in my youth! Click on the link to visit the 1951 version of the catalog. I won't lie - it makes my pulse quicken!
I'm thinking of getting that pole for my camper. Might make Saturday night a bit more interesting. (I already have a disco ball)
Hazmat Suit: I'm thinking of getting that. Once a month there is a kind of arts festival downtown where all the galleries are open and people meander the streets. It would be fun to wear these and frantically rush around with the ring bar code reader scanning things. No doubt hilarity will ensue.
Then we could "detox" people with that bubble gun.
Would probably be a good idea to wear that nard cup while doing that.
Croc Lights: How many times have I stubbed my toe getting up in the middle of the night to pee? Problem solved!
Just watched a documentary about Apollo 8 and the first humans to see the moon close-up. They definitely reported back that it was totally colorless.
Audio cassettes: Last year, phonograph records outsold compact discs for the first time since the '80s. So it only makes sense that sales of cassettes will be rebounding next, right?
I definitely want that adult-sized inflatable airplane for the next time I'm doing our annual river float trip with my college friends.
Ha! I'm also a Vine member and can testify - these products really are there! I saw the ugly orange massage chair too ... definitely would have grabbed it if it weren't so hideously ugly!!! But that's why some of these vendors put stuff out there - to get reviews in the hopes that enough people say something about them to generate interest in junk that they couldn't otherwise GIVE away!!
Speaking of junk, I'm going to have to watch to see if anyone has reviewed the camouflage athletic cup yet. I can just imagine - "My son was terrified when I asked him to test this out, but I had him put it on, then took a baseball bat to his nether regions and he never even flinched! Five stars!"
Thank you Stilton. Thank you for that link to the Johnson-Smith novelty catalog. In a few seconds I found the page on microscopes & the like. How many parents (& we were not "flush") give their kid a microscope? And a World globe? Erector set? The old one then with all small bolts & nuts; then also fabricated larger custom pieces so I could build a stable tower that reached the living room ceiling. AND let it stay there for a while. Had I recalled that & other things at the time, I would have mentioned it at their funerals. It was typical of how they lead me to explore & discover. There are tears with good & loving memories right now.
As Anonymous said above, the castration rings have around forever. Mike Rowe in one of his "Dirty Jobs" episodes helped a bunch of Basque sheepmen with castration, etc. Rowe thought the rings were the way to go. They did one, and the poor critter was obviously suffering. Then they went back to the traditional Basque method of slicing open the scrotum, grabbing the testis in teeth, leaning back and wacking the cords off.
I've personally been involved in thousands of knife castrations. The real pros use a special knife that curves back on itself so that you cut with the back side.
Hence the expression, "I'm going to get after you with a hooked knife."
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