The Consumer Category
We bring you the chic and unique, the best and most bizarre shopping offers both online and offline. We offer you tips on where to buy, and some of the less mainstream and crazy, individual and offbeat items on the internet. Anything that can be bought and sold can be featured here. And we love showcasing the best and worst art and design.
ARE you scared by the “Anorexia doll”? The Sun says there are “Fears over toy snubbing food”.
Daniel Jones reports:
HEALTH campaigners want to ban a new doll that refuses to eat — claiming it encourages anorexia. The interactive baby turns her head away when a child tries to give her food. Critics say the £34.99 Nenuco Won’t Eat set will make toddlers think that refusing food is normal behaviour.
PLENTY of small companies out there have found themselves sliding down the Google search results after they paid some consultant or other to improve their web rankings. Because the consultants then go out and buy links from blogs and other websites: something that tricks the Google search engine into thinking that the site is more important than it is.
EVER looked at the world and become suddenly depressed? You realise that everything ugly you see, is man-made. So, your attentions turn to nature, where everything is beautiful. And vicious. And cruel. And bloody.
In a bid to couple the two worlds, some weirdos have decided to make models – which you can buy – of unborn babies. That’s right. You can now pay money for something that still lives inside a woman you know.
BEN Wilson is the chewing gum artist. We say ‘the’ because we can’t find anyone else who paint of splats of discarded, squashed gum. He is the self-styled ‘Chewing Gum Man’. Today, Ben was painting pictures you can take home on the sole of your shoe on the Millennium Bridge in London.
BRANDENBURG Germany is enticing tourists with a calendar featuring a photo of an expansive cottage. It turns out that this holiday home once belonged to Hermann Goering, the German politician. The German federal Government is aghast, ordering the calendar to be pulped. You won’t get to look at Himmler’s en-suite (March) or Martin Bormann’s spare room (also March. In fact, it’s all March.)
FLASHBACK to June 1, 1932: Five members of the Alcohol Prohibition Research Committee depart on the bus Diogenes, named after the man who sought in vain for an honest man, in New York City. The membership is seeking one drunk who has been reformed by the 18th amendment in their campaign against the liquor ban. From left are, Stephen Duggan Jr., assistant investigator; Russell Salmon, chief investigator; Ernest Boorland Jr., member of the executive committee; Robert Nicholson, assistant director; and Paul Morris, director.
The failed Prohibition experiment ended on December 5, 1933,
CHILDREN in Restaurants Watch – Part 2: The Squeaky Shoes.
“They want to help children with disabilities and this was just something that happened in their cafe and they are not proud of it,” says Catherine Duke.
Last week, an assistant manager at a Savannah Panera Bread, told Duke’s 2-year-old daughter to remove her shoes. A customer had complained they were squeaking “too much”. “We weren’t welcome with the shoes. It was very blatant,” adds Duke. “Emma has an undiagnosed developmental disorder that prevented her from walking until she was 23-months-old. These are special shoes. They squeak when she walks properly.”
FACE of the Day: World Scotch Pie winner Stephen McAllister, from Kandy Bar bakers in Saltcoats, celebrates after being presented with his prize at The Scotch Pie Awards at Carnegie conference centre in Dunfermline.
LADY mannequins inside the American Apparel store window displays on East Houston Street in New York City are now sporting full bush, Gothamist reports. Under the flimsy, translucent undergarments of each of the bespectacled female dummies sprouts a dark hairy merkin. There’s no doubt that the controversial exhibit will stop pedestrians in their tracks, and really isn’t that what founder Dov Charney and his team really want?
Insert snarky comment here.
THE music streaming service, Spotify, now allows unlimited free listening. This is seen as a great step forward: the company’s technology is getting better, they’re getting better at selling ads and all that sort of stuff. This may or may not be the actual reason they’re lifting their previous limits though:
Spotify’s advertising engine and paid customer conversion funnel are finally working well enough that today it eliminated all limits on free, ad-supported web listening in all countries. It’s an important milestone for the scalability and sustainability of Spotify’s business that contrasts with other streaming music services like Ex.fm and Rdio that are stumbling or shutting down.
DIDDO has “aroused the curiosity of creators and tastemakers, receiving requests from the likes of Sasha Baron Cohen, Kanye West and Lady Gaga.” That’s what it says on his website.He ads that he “was born on the luckiest day since the sixth century (7-7-’77).”
Diddo studied at The University of Portsmouth.
And he’s made a skull from cocaine. No, it’s not Pete Doherty’s X-Ray.
THIS is a bit of a surprise really, given RyanAir’s long standing policy on being listed upon any of the flight comparison sites like Skyscanner. That they’re going to team up with Google in order to build a site that will be incorporated into the Google home pages and search index:
There are some very exciting developments with Google, where we have been working with them on sharing the pricing.
We’ll be sharing the Ryanair pricing through all of the Google outlets, so when you go in, there’ll be route selections, cheapest prices and so on. Google are developing a price-comparison thing themselves.
They want to launch with us and we’re working with them on that kind of product. It’ll blow comparison sites like Skyscanner out of the water.
WITH so many “important things” going on the world, why spend time looking at forty year old sweaters? Simply put, the brain needs a break from the barrage of jarring images of a world on the brink. A tour of 70s men’s sweaters is exactly what the doctor ordered.
So, sit back, relax and enjoy a cornucopia of magnificent vintage sweaters. And you’re welcome.
Left: I’m not a fashion connoisseur, but I do have a general rule of thumb: Avoid sweater vests with built in belts.
Center: Add a cape and it’s almost superhero-like. Don’t for a minute think that superheroes are somehow above sweaters when they have no problem prancing around in Spandex unitards.
Right: Looks like he just stole Janis Joplin’s belongings. Poor sap. Her sweaty clothes are probably so saturated with drugs, he’ll be dead soon.
“WHERE is the Close Up effect? I’ve been waiting for it for over seven years,” says Anthony Olatunfe. He’s using Unilever Nigeria Limited for failing to live up to the promise that brushing with Close Up toothpaste makes you irresistible to women.
AT the foot of the Shimao Skyscrapers in China’s Wuxi City, a fake shopping district has popped up featuring storefronts marked with signs that knock-off major international brands like Starbucks (now “SFFCCCKS”), H&M (now “H&N”), and Apple (now “Appla”).
Hug China reports that there are no actual stores behind the signs, that local real estate professionals have created these phony, but familiar, brands to make the property more appealing to potential buyers.
“Dogs love Possum”
In New Zealand, there is a big problem with an ever-growing population of small, cat-sized critters, the non-native possum. Now considered the island country’s public enemy #1, the beady-eyed brushtail possum was introduced in 1837 to New Zealand from Australia as a way to establish a fur trade. Prior to this, New Zealand had evolved without such mammals for many millions of years. Not only are these marsupials dangerous predators to the South Pacific nation’s defensiveless indigenous species, they have also dramatically impacted its delicate ecosystem by multiplying into the millions and eating literally tons of the country’s vegetation each night. On top of all that, they are often carriers of the contagious disease, bovine tuberculosis.
LETTER of the day: why did you read the Financial Times:
THERE have been thousands of boxed games (board games and their ilk) published over the years. For your convenience, we’ve pulled together twenty of the most peculiar (in no particular order). Don’t say you weren’t warned.
1. GAY MONOPOLY (1983)
Alas, “The Parker Sisters” company was sued by Parker Brothers, and is subsequently with us no more. Thankfully, copies of their games still remain, including this gay themed Monopoly game featuring such real estate options as Castro Street and bath houses. In the place of the familiar boot and iron is a stiletto heel and blow-dryer. Naturally, there are $3.00 bills.
FAT is bad. The top-down message is consistent. The Mail leads with news that Obesity is “worse than we first feared”.
Whose afraid of a fat planet? As the BBC reported this year: “Obesity quadruples to nearly one billion in developing world.” In the report “Implications for agriculture and food prices”, Sharada Keats and Steve Wiggins, note:
Over one third of all adults across the world – 1.46 billion people – are obese or overweight.
IN 1933, German students planned to burn “Un-German” books. Helen Keller wrote this open letter to the students:
“History has taught you nothing if you think you can kill ideas…”