1. Bagel Heads. So, apparently, there are people in Asia who will pay someone to poke them in the forehead with a needle full of saline, which results in a big puffy blob on the forehead, which is then formed into the shape of a bagel, naturally. What in the holy fudge?! This offends me for so many reasons, not the least of which is that the forehead aberrations look more like glazed donuts than bagels, so this trend isn’t even aptly named. I never thought I would learn about something that’d make dakimakura wife pillows seem not that weird. Nah”¦they’re still very, very weird, actually.
2. Nose Cleansing as a Competitive Sport. I Neti pot in cold and flu season as much as the next gal, and I pride myself on really getting the offending gunk outta there, but never could I have imagined that nasal douching could be done in a competitive fashion. Well, as this video of the 2011 Aqua Maris World Championship Nose Cleansing Men’s Final ““ 5 Liter Class shows, I could not have been more wrong. Apparently nasal lavage ain’t just for rhinorrhea anymore.
3. Circus Cats. I couldn’t get my cat Frances Mittendorf to shift his gaze on command, much less shimmy across a set of parallel bars. In fact, it’s one of the things I love about him, he’s about as compliant as, well”¦me. Making him very relatable as a pet. But the trained cats of The Acro-Cats and the considerably more dignified Moscow Cat Theater prove that the impossible is possible. These cats leap, bound, and pose, and it doesn’t even appear to be under threat of death. I may be contacting the MCT for a consultation on how to get my cat to chunder on the kitchen tile instead of the living room carpet.
4. Dagorhir. This is basically performance-enhanced neighborhood Nerf. It’s full-contact, live-action combat, where the combatants battle each other with foam weapons, called boffer weaponry. I can imagine the cries of elaborately costumed lads and lasses in search of some human touch, “Thou hath been boffed!” The three tenets of Dagorhir, enforced by the Manual of Arms Heralds, are safety, play-ability, and realism. Yes, realism. Because there’s nothing more real than foam combat, son.
5. Maroon 5 Fans. Yeah, I know. This is a thing. They’re basically people who like the band Maroon 5. There’s a lot of crossover between this group and another weird phenomenon, Jason Mraz fans. Fortunately, both of these are pretty fringe movements that don’t appear to have much influence, other than making up a significant voting block for NBC’s The Voice.
6. Chainsaw Tulle Couture. I’m starting to think that the fashion industry doesn’t really care about women’s bodies”¦
7. Weaving Clubs. Communal weaving appears to be thriving, both online and in meatspace. Google it, or Bing it, or Ask Jeeves, if anyone is still doing that. I don’t really object to folks getting together to do arts and farts and crafts in one another’s company, but weaving involves a loom, and a loom seems like just about the least portable fabric making apparatus imaginable. I also question whether these weaving clubs are adequately addressing the gender dichotomy that is very much alive in modern weaving communities. Consider this conversation between Jemaine Clement and Bret McKenzie of Flight of the Conchords:
Jemaine: Women love weaving, they love to weave.
Bret: No, weaving is a man’s game.
Jemaine: Bret, you put a woman in front of weaving machine and just watch her go.
Bret: No, honestly, my Dad weaves, my grandfather was a weaver…I come from a family of weavers.
Jemaine: I’ve never seen a man weave.
Bret: I love weaving. I’m weaving at the moment, making a pair of trousers.
8. Shoe Pants. In my perpetual quest for comfort, I am often drawn to two-in-one clothing items like Slankets, Forever Lazys, and hats that are also hoods that are also scarves. But I feel like I need to draw the line somewhere, and that somewhere is shoe pants. A) They do not look comfy. At all. B) I don’t think I could get over the reality that wearing shoes that go up to the waist really just means that, technically, you’re not wearing pants. C) I try, whenever possible, to not take my fashion cues from Willow Smith. Because, though she is adorable, she is 11. So instead of starting at Willow and trying to dial back, I start at Katie Couric, and dial up. It’s safer.
9. Anthropomorphized Mini Wheats. Let me get this straight, there’s a multi-googolplex dollar marketing industry designed to make us forget that animal product food actually comes from animals, but then those same marketers take food that doesn’t come from animals, and turns it into talking cartoon food. Huh? A burger is just a burger, it never once came from a cow, in fact, you should just buy it as a pre-formed patty so that you don’t have to think about the fact that you’re eating an animal, but hey, check out this ad for Chips Ahoy where a poor unsuspecting cartoon cookie is just waking up in the morning to a fresh new day when along comes a hand from the sky that plucks the poor cookie from its happy life and stuffs it into a hungry face! This is some dark, dark shit.
10. The Fifty Shades of Grey Classical Music Album. Yes, truly, excepting the phenomenal prose, I think the most salient aspect of that book is the music. And really, if it weren’t for fan fiction turned bestselling erotic romance novels, how would people know what albums to buy?