13 posts tagged with novelties.
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It’s not all screaming pickles and wind-up teeth.

The Strange Perils of Running a Novelty Item Empire: Seattle’s Archie McPhee is one of the largest and oldest novelty designers and manufacturers in America, providing the average Joe with items that seem like they were designed in some other dimension where the laws of practicality and common sense no longer apply. They have a long, colorful history of bringing weird and unfathomable items to an unsuspecting world. But it’s not all screaming pickles and wind-up teeth. Running one of the most successful novelty operations in the world can lead to some pretty bizarre disasters.
posted by Johnny Wallflower on Jul 6, 2016 - 46 comments


Have you any spare mercury about the house? Are you well supplied with saltpetre, phosphorus, and oil of vitriol? Such domestic staples can you afford you ENDLESS AMUSEMENT! in the form of hundreds of science tricks from 1847! [more inside]
posted by Iridic on Feb 6, 2015 - 36 comments

O lovely Pussy! O Pussy my love, what a beautiful Pussy you are!

Often attributed to Rossini, the «Duetto buffo di due gatti» ("humorous duet for two cats") is a popular performance piece for sopranos. [more inside]
posted by Nomyte on Jul 20, 2011 - 11 comments

Sprinkle with water to make it look more realistic

The ultimate in gag gifts.
posted by ottereroticist on Dec 13, 2007 - 15 comments

Jazz Age Novelties, Obscurities and Outliers on the YouTube

Here are some antique jazz novelties, obscurities and outliers:

Mae West with Duke Ellington - My Old Flame
The Hoosier Hotshots - She Broke My Heart In Three Places
Harry 'The Hipster' Gibson - Handsome Harry The Hipster
Spike Jones & His City Slickers - I Like To Sock Myself In The Face
Ina Ray Hutton and Her Melodears - Truckin'
Cliff Edwards - I Feel Pestamistic
Red Ingle - Nowhere
The King Cole Trio - I'm An Errand Boy for Rhythm
Jack Teagarden - The Sliphorn King of Polaroo
Reg Kehoe & His Marimba Queens - A Study In Brown
The Slim Gaillard Trio - Laguna Melody
posted by y2karl on Dec 21, 2006 - 33 comments

Just fill the catapult with one or more cupids, pull the trigger, and aim at the person of your dreams!

Just fill the catapult with one or more cupids, pull the trigger, and aim at the person of your dreams! This "love gun" alarms me, but maybe I overreact as a parent about my kid's exposure to violence. Is this just a harmless novelty, or a disturbing example of how desensitized we are to guns? At least it's for kids over 3.
posted by margarita on Feb 4, 2005 - 23 comments

It's not only the size of the boat, but also the motion of the ocean.

Remember small scissors? Big scissors! Remember small chocolate? Big chocolate! Small clipboards? Pfaff... Big clipboards! ... such is life at Great Big Stuff (thanks John)
posted by holloway on Jun 25, 2004 - 13 comments

Magic 8 Ball Santa

Magic 8 Ball Santa Witness the jiggling fat man! This couldn't wait for a Friday humor post. I've asked questions like: Will that cute brunette ever return my call? Will the Cincinnati Bengals go undefeated next year? Oh those lonely times at work...Huzzah!
posted by lheiskell on Dec 5, 2002 - 18 comments


Crapola.com - finally a place to purchase Unsavoury Products Online: postmodernist door knobs, Sodom & Gemorrah Bible Playset, Six Bags of Yak Vomit, and more. Also check out their Fatal Copyright Warning.
posted by jacknose on Oct 17, 2002 - 5 comments

..but no more X-Ray Specs

..but no more X-Ray Specs One of those other groups had a pointer to a review of old comic book advertisements; it made me a little nostalgic. I went out, bought a copy of 'Amazing Spider Man', two bucks worth of gum and candy, and went surfing for my old nemesis, 'The Johnson Smith Novelty Company'. I remember buying the x-ray specs (didn't work, but the girls didn't know that - just as much fun) and the six foot Frankenstein screen printed of a 6 foot plastic tablecloth... with two lil glow in the dark stickers to put on the eyes. Anybody else have memories of comic book purchases?
posted by resigned on May 19, 2001 - 2 comments

Everybody loves Jelly Beans!

Everybody loves Jelly Beans! Especially the Horseradish, Grass, Black Pepper, Sardine....and yes, Booger. Bertie Bott's Every-Flavor Beans are now a reality. (From The Leaky Cauldron)
posted by bkdelong on Dec 18, 2000 - 11 comments

Giant Underpants!?

Giant Underpants!? ONLY $12.95!? Where's my VISA card!? A bit of frivolity amongst the heaviness of late.
posted by sjarvis on Sep 6, 2000 - 3 comments

Can't get enough of the Hampster Dance remix? Now you can buy it on CD. I guess some people will buy just about anything -- just ask the people who made the singing fish for proof.
posted by teradome on Jun 26, 2000 - 5 comments

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