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.
EVERYBODY knows that Mary Quant invented the mini-skirt. Except she didn’t. In reality nobody really knows for sure who produced the diminutive garment first. Some say it was John Bates, famous for dressing Diana Rigg so memorably in The Avengers, while others say it was the French designer Andre Courreges, although Quant would later write: “Maybe Courreges did do mini-skirts first, but if he did, no one wore them.” There’s no doubt, however, that skirts were getting shorter each year in the early to mid-sixties but this was almost certainly to do with technological advances that enabled tights to be produced relatively cheaply more than anything else. Although Mary Quant is often credited with inventing, or at least popularising, coloured and patterned tights too.
ONCE the Atari 2600 hit its stride in ’81, there was simply no stopping the tsunami of video game offerings. The transition from coin operated arcade games to systems you could play in your living room can’t be overstated – it was revolutionary. But with this influx of new entertainment came a cornucopia of bad games. Here are five of the worst offenders.
This TRS-80 game basically was about preventing other people from using up your toilet paper. Think about this for a moment: It was the dawn of the video game revolution, the prospects were limitless, the future full of possibilities…. and they make a video game about preserving toilet paper?
AUSTRIAN designers Klemens Torggler have invented a new kind of door.
Their Evolution Door is an invention based on rotating squares, The special construction makes it possible to move the door sideways without the use of tracks.
It’s pretty cool.
But it can’t make this happen:
GOLF is so very popular because there is always a golf sale on. It’s a bargain too good to resist for many of us who spot men holding signs advertising “GOLF SALE’ and a large arrow pointing towards a shop. Derek Poe hoped the approach would sell his guns.
IS there anything better than a mid-century men’s action magazine? They were chock full of lurid stories and provocative artwork depicting female biker gangs, nympho pirates, Gestapo dominatrices, etc. If it fulfilled a macho fantasy, it was fair game, and the headlines beckoned men to go along for the ride. Here are ten worthy examples.
THE MAN WHO TOUCHED OFF PHILADELPHIA’S GREAT BOSOM RIOT
Male, Sept. 1959
I’m a mild mannered, peaceful kind of guy – not much into protests and insurrection. That being said, a “bosom riot” is something I could get behind.
Life Once Removed: One Woman’s Wonderful Life With Her Fake Family (Photos To Make You Hate Your Life And Envy Hers)
IN 2010, we shone a light on the Doll Forum – the online meeting place for adult doll owners. We showed you photos from Mechwizard’s holidays with Zara, a tall brunette with long hair and well-appointed orifices. We waited. And now Denver’s Suzanne Heintz shows us that it’s not just men who seek companionship from mannequins. It’s women, too. In Life Once Removed, Suzanne, Mr Heintz and the Heintz nipper take great family trips. They look like they get along so very well. It’s all smiles all the time with the Heintz family.
The Second Honeymoon.
She got her dad’s posture.
MY MOST BELOVED possessions in the 1970s were my T-shirts. They were my identity. My Kiss concert shirt was proof that I’d witnessed the greatest show on earth. My Pete Rose shirt was proof of my allegiance to the Big Red Machine (the Cincinnati Reds). My Mork & Mindy shirt was proof that… well, I guess that I was a complete and total nerd.
HOW do you follow Cop Killer and date night with the well upholstered Coco Austin? If you’re Ice-T you create an audiobook for Dungeons & Dragons.
In Ice T’s Final Level Podcast, the rapper tell how unprepared he was got the job.
“They didn’t tell me this was a motherfu**in’ Dungeons & Dragons book… [it's] some of the most crazy, deep, deep nerd shit.Motherfu**ers talk like Yoda. They were talking about ‘pegasuses’ and ‘pegasi.’ That’s horses with wings. This motherfu**er got a sword that talks to him… Motherfuckers live in places that don’t exist, and it comes with a map. My God.”
VINTAGE sexist advert presents Balls.
Who says women don’t have balls?
INTRODUCING BALLS – the candy to give you courage
In 1978, women has BALLS by the barrel load.
There was a time when it took a heavy dose of spunk for a woman stand up and be counter. Joan of Arc hid her gams in a suit of armour to defend Louis’s honour. Amelia Earhart donned a sexless jumpsuit to fly into the wild blue yonder. Madame Curie wore whites and gazed longingly at test-tubes.
These days, women have finally come into their own – with pants and permanents, muscles and makeup. But there still are a couple of things we can’t lay claim to right?
LOCAL News: Swansea’s Pam Hopkins is “still wearing the same cardigan after 54 years – and she says it’s never lost a button”.
She beats the previous records:
THE STORY of tobacco in advertising is a long and winding tale. At some points it has targeted children, at others it has tried to sound like a health food. The specter of cancer has loomed over the product for decades, and advertisers have done their best to divert your attention from the elephant in the room. Tobacco advertising has been overtly sexist and overtly pro-woman (i.e. Virginia Slims); it will be anything you want it to be in order to gain your love and trust.
Indeed, we could talk all day about the dubious practice of selling carcinogens, but let’s focus on the one tactic that tobacco peddlers have relied on most. Here are ten fantastically sexy and sexist vintage ads for your viewing pleasure.
Can you believe they actually tried to make the second-hand smoke smell good? This one advertises cherry and blueberry flavor. I suppose it sounded like a good idea on paper. After all, why must smoke always smell like the Grim Reaper farted? Why can’t second-hand smoke not only cause cancer, but smell great too? Well, you’ve got to hand it to Tipalet for giving it the college try, even if it did end with abysmal failure. Fruity smokes may not have worked out, but at least it spawned this infamous advert ….
TO Grimsby and Cleethorpes in north east Lincolnshire, where the hunt is on for the Pizza Bandit, who lurks in takeaways listening to phone orders before delivering empty boxes and pocketing the cash.
Hollie Belton, 27, of Grimsby, had ordered tow large chicken kebabs from Verona’s Pizzeria in Cleethorpes. A man arrived at her door. she paid him the £12. He then drove off in a yellow T-reg Ford Ka. She opened the box to find it empty.
FANCY hanging a live animal from your throat? AVAAZ.org are campaigning to end the revolting trend of sticking live animals in jewellery. They want the United Nations to:
We call on the UN to demand the Chinese government to ban the manufacture and sale of amulets and jewelry containing live animals.
Would the Chinese listen to the UN when they and anyone who buys these keychains can’t see for themselves that it’s sick?
New fashion jewelry in China, animals living under plastic containing a liquid nutrient and oxygen that allows them to live up to 2 months.
This is cruel and should be condemned by the international community.
The animals – mostly turtles and other sea creatures – are, as Change.org’s petition states:
…Brazilian turtles or king fish swimming in colored water are considered good-luck charms by many Chinese…According to vendors, the colored water in the 7-centimeter-long keychains contains nutrients that allow fish and turtles to live inside for months. While that may be true, Mary Peng, cofounder of the International Center for Veterinary Services, says they couldn’t survive in the sealed bag for very long, due to lack of oxygen.
These creatures are better off dead.
“WE are influenced by the beauty of Eiffel Tower, we are not content to just add something to the nose, we reconstruct it,” says surgeon Wang Xuming.
CUE the husky voice. Cue the thumping backtrack. Cue the man in combat fatigues shooting at melons. This is an advert for the Radically Invasive Projectile - The Last Round You’ll Ever Need. It is the RIP Cartridge.
The RIP bullet is not only handy pun that gives death’s tribute a twist or gut-mangling gorn, but it is “effective against”:
MULTIPLE DENIM LAYERS
Comes with free thesaurus:
TECHNOLOGY has been rocketing along so quickly, it’s difficult to put on the breaks, stop for a moment and get a perspective. Sometimes you just need to dig your heels in and take a look backward. As the current rushes you madly onward, it may do you good to just pause and see how far we’ve come in such a short amount of time.
Taking a look at progress in technology as whole is much too broad; our heads will likely explode if we try and take it all in. Instead, let’s just look at your phone – that thin little rectangle you have in your pocket or are looking at right now…
It can do more than Hubot could ever dream of. And while it is unlikely Hubot was capable of dreaming, it could play AM/FM radio, check the temperature, tell the time, and play Atari 2600 games. Hubot came with a price tag of $3495 in 1981 – adjusted for inflation that comes to $8957 (£5432). For that kind of price, Hubot better be able to do dishes, kill intruders, and stimulate pleasure centers on command.
Alas, it did not. But let’s look at a single function on your mobile device that you likely take for granted: voice messages.
To read this advert, it sounds as though your very life is going to change thanks to an answering machine. Indeed, the Phone Butler will rid you of your cumbersome existence, and introduce you to the jet-setting world of recorded phone messages.
Now you can spend your vacations and nights out on the town with complete ease, knowing that all your calls and messages are being handled efficiently, and are waiting at home for you!…. Don’t worry about missing calls while you’re out doing yard work, in the shower, shopping, sunbathing, or socializing with the neighbors, you’ll never have to make a run for the phone again!
It’s hard to imagine that something as commonplace as voice messaging was sold as an answer to prayers just a few decades back. That would be like saying having no phone cord was a miracle of science – hey, what a sec…
“You see, with our cordless phone you’re not tied down by the cord – because there is no cord!”
No longer was mankind tethered; he was free to roam from patio to garage to toilet with splendid freedom. Advertisements announced this latest break with great fanfare. Of course, no longer being “tethered” meant you were also never out of reach. So, in a twist of fate, going cordless resulted in less freedom. Who knew?
In the ‘80s, you knew you “made it” if you could conduct business from your tub… preferably while sporting a self-important smirk. Once again, the advertisers are driving the point home that your tech devices no longer require terminals – they are wherever you are. Our younger generations will never know the type of world where you have designated phone and computer locations – things haven’t just become portable, they are damn near bodily appendages.
Another thing future generations will never know is the telephone queue. The very thought of actually having to wait your turn to use a phone is madness. But there’s a flipside to this: If you knew you had to spend a painful amount of time waiting in line every time you had to make a call, wouldn’t you use the phone less? And if so, might you be doing something more enriching or enjoyable with the time?
That’s crazy talk. Let’s move on.
One thing that we’ve all collectively dreamed about in our science fiction is the “video phone”. Every futuristic depiction worth its salt had one. Of course, now Skype, Face Time and the like are just boring parts of life – no more shocking than your washing machine or toaster oven. Who would have thought that a technology so anticipated would so quickly be taken for granted?
Well, we could stand in amazement at the many examples of brilliant communications technologies which have become mundane overnight. However, the current is quickly pulling us onward. No time to linger in quiet appreciation; in the time it took you to read this article, at least three of your tech devices have gone obsolete.