Whenever I'm at the airport, I get this weird urge to improve myself.
Fresh from my full-body TSA massage, I snub the smutty gossip rags at Hudson News in favor of The Economist and The New Yorker; then board my flight feeling oh-so-very-pleased with myself.
But shortly after takeoff, something else happens just as surely. I'm riveted by "Talk of the Town" -- really, I am -- but can't help eyeballing the SkyMall catalogue in front of me. I then dog-ear my New Yorker, open the catalogue with a sigh of defeat and cave to the sick pleasure of wondering who really buys all that sh*t.
To be fair, there's some stuff in SkyMall that I actually kinda want. Like those pimped-out massage chairs, for example, and the SkyRest pillow. And those genius, new Pajamajeans -- perfect for freelancers like me, who yearn to look more respectable, but generally can't be bothered to get out of their yoga pants.
But I'm not writing this to talk about the useful things -- nor are you reading this to hear about them.
So to get straight to the point, here in no particular order are the 13 weirdest things in the SkyMall catalog (with links to the items, should you for some unfathomable reason desire to purchase them):
1. The Bigfoot Garden Yeti Statue - Not to put this guy first would be to ignore, well, the bigfoot in the room. He's always topped my personal WTF list, but this month, he also appears in an inside-cover sweepstakes ad that reads, "What would you buy with $100,000?" Now I'm really confused -- vacation condo, or life-sized sasquatch?
2. Biffy Butler Bidet Sprayer, Digital Accessory Caddy and Toilet Paper Stand - Okay. I admit that a flight home from Europe is probably the best time to convince me to buy a bidet. But can you just imagine the smirk on some floppy-haired Apple Genius' face when you have to tell him that you accidentally squirted your iPad with a bidet hose?
3. Talking Dog Collar - Everyone knows that a cute dog is a great chick magnet, but this nifty contraption turns your pup into the ultimate panty-dropper. With just the click of a remote control, you can program Fluffy's collar to say, "Hey there, good lookin'" and other suave pickup lines. Now why didn't I think of that?
4. Big Splash Divers Pool Statue - A sobering reminder of what really happens to people who dive in the shallow end of the pool.
5. Humunga Lips Dog Toy - With lips like Angelina Jolie, who could resist your pooch's smooches?
6. Pet Crate End Tables - A table that doubles as a cage -- good for dogs, great for kids!
7. Zombie of Montclaire Moors - Tired of looking at all the dead things in your garden? Try something undead for a change!
8. Skel-E-Gnome Garden Sculptures - I always wondered where bone-meal fertilizer came from. Now I know.
9. Peeing Boy Fountain - Okay. So he's modeled after some statue in Brussels -- I don't care! He's peeing, for heaven's sake!
10. St. Joseph Home Sale Kit - According to the description, burying a statue of St. Joseph to improve your odds of buying or selling real estate is an "Italian age-old practice." My native-Italian boyfriend has never heard of such a thing, but in a down housing market, why let the facts get in the way of a good story?
11. Socrates the Gargoyle Thinker - Never mind why one would want this meditative monster in the first place. Referring to the background of the product photo, my boyfriend Riccardo pondered, "Who the hell has a church to put it in, anyway?" Not even the Italian had an answer to that question.
12. Velociraptor Dinosaur Statue - When my two-year-old nephew developed the hazardous habit of sneaking out of his room late at night, my sister cleverly broke it by building a barrier of toy dinosaurs outside his door. With this life-sized lizard, I might just be able to keep a certain grown man away from my chocolate stash.
13. Mounted Squirrel Head - The description reads, "Ok, so you didn't bag this bad boy in person. But you know you would if you could, so we did it for you." Really, guys? Of all the things one might sit around fantasizing about killing and mounting -- a squirrel, for chrissakes? Why not make a Mounted Bigfoot Head or something? Now that would be cool.