Quirky stuff I’ve found on the Internet
Nevada Appeal Staff
Occasionally, I’ll find myself with a spare chunk of time. Actually, it happens often enough that I don’t despair when I find myself thinking “Gee, I’m bored.” If the library’s closed and OnDemand is on the fritz, I know what to do.
I surf the Internet.
There’s a routine. I check my e-mail and my blogs, and I visit the Straight Dope Message Board. Between those three and random searches on Google and Wikipedia, I’ve found some weird, interesting things on the Internet. You can buy stuff at some of the sites, and others are just kinda nifty, but it’s all interesting to look at.
GIANT Microbes (www.giantmicrobes.com) – Here, you can buy oversized, plush versions of famous diseases like HIV, the common cold, malaria, and even the Black Death. Who hasn’t wanted a gigantic Mad Cow Disease microbe (comes in unique cow print) staring back at them? I love this site. So far, however, my quiet campaign to get the office to pitch in and “give our boss the Clap!” is going unanswered.
InternetBumperStickers (www.internetbumperstickers.com) – If you like bumper stickers. Then you’ll love InternetBumperStickers, which are graphics with funny bumper sticker sayings on them that you can download and put on your Web site, blog, or in your e-mail. They’re fun to peruse, and new ones are added regularly. They also have a store where you can buy real versions of the bumper stickers. This is also where I got my favorite T-shirt: “If it weren’t for physics and law enforcement, I’d be unstoppable.”
ThinkGeek (www.thinkgeek.com) – Geeks only. Well, OK, you’d have to actually be a geek to get a lot of this stuff, but seriously, who doesn’t want a T-shirt with the caffeine molecule on it? Or a pair of 20-sided fuzzy dice? There’s also some other stuff that’s just generally cool, like a gel light-up ant farm, a titanium spork, and an MP3 player that’s also a Swiss Army Knife. Personally, I like the panties that say “403: Forbidden” on them.
Freecycle (www.freecycle.org) – Got stuff you want to get rid of that’s still perfectly good? Don’t feel like throwing a yard sale? Freecycle is for you. Ostensibly aimed at limiting the waste in landfills, Freecycle is the packrat’s dream come true. It’s a nationwide (with some international groups) network of local Freecycle Yahoo! groups. If you want something, you can post asking if someone has an old something they don’t want. If you have a bunch of stuff you want to get rid of you can post it, and if someone wants it they can contact you and come pick it up. I’ve gotten baby stuff for expectant mothers, furniture, books, shoes and electronics off of Freecycle, and I’ve dumped some of the stuff I don’t want. Carson City and Reno each have one Freecycle group, and there’s a group in Carson City called “Give & Take” that operates on a similar principle.
The Straight Dope Message Board (http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/) – I mentioned this earlier. This board has more than 65,000 members from all over the world. I can say with reasonable assurance that the majority of people who post to the SDMB are intelligent and, best of all, they probably have an answer for any question you can think of. The down side is that you have to pay to post there (I like to think that it keeps people who just want to start Internet-fights out, but sadly enough, I may be mistaken), but anyone can read. To be sure, the SDMB isn’t the only board to have reached such epic proportions, but it’s definitely worth a gander. Especially for those of you like me who have a strange sense of humor.