Just when you think everything that can be invented has been invented ( and featured on its own late-night blue-screen-800-number commercial, followed by a stint in the As-Seen-On-Tv store ) you run across a chair made out of boxing gloves or a toilet paper roller modeled after a fishing reel (which i actually really like, and would totally install in a cabin or lake house… you know, me and all my investment properties). There are some creative weirdos out there.

Some of these new ideas are practical and useful, so much so that once they become as ubiquitous as kleenex or disposable silverware you’ll wonder how you ever lived without them. I think magnetic tape is totally headed this direction.

Then there are those items you won’t really know you need until it’s too late, and you’ll find yourself wishing you would have invested in them earlier. Like the pint lock, to protect your precious half-eaten Ben & Jerry’s from a scavenging houseguest.

I have to wonder about the inventor of the wake N bacon… just because you can do something, doesn’t mean you should, ya know? As much as i love waking up to the smell of breakfast cooking – a pleasantry only awarded me when i’m visting Mom and Dad – i don’t think i’d want my breakfast cooking *unattended* unless it was in Doc’s automated kitchen from Back to the Future.

And what wacko-invention roundup would be complete without one that’s not even an invention at all, just a regurgitation of a 20-year-old idea with slight improvements and just enough nostalgia to make some corporation that’s probably already rich, a little bit richer? Today that niche is filled by the return of Teddy Ruxpin, who in addition to being powered by CD’s or a microdrive or a USB key inserted in his left nostril instead of ye olde cassette deck of yore, will no doubt be reincarnated “in da hizzouse” with gangsta-speak and imbibed with mad hiphop dancing skillz. Et tu, Teddy?