Thursday, June 30, 2011

No Mo Eskimo

I passed this billboard while driving through Oklahoma last week:

The faces...they scared the crap out of me. I haven't slept well since.

And I know that "Left on Duck" refers to Duck Street, but the way it's worded is cryptic and surreal.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Cock and Bull Punctuation

A sign spotted in a Cock & Bull pub in Auckland, New Zealand:

I guess apostrophes have a whole different function down under.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Schizophrenic Sports Sandwich

This was spotted by John Bird while on vacation in North Beach, CA:

A baseball sandwich? Does the NBA now handle baseball?

Monday, June 27, 2011


Here's another contribution from Gallery stalwart, Nick Zachariasen. He found it posted at a store called Kids' Stuff in Sioux Falls, SD:

This sign raises so many questions. What exactly is "man-help"? Does the hyphen make a difference in how we interpret this request? Why is "to the garage" in italics? Is this code for something sleazy or underhanded? Why does the person posting the sign offer to help if delivery is made to the bedroom? Is this a clue to "man-help"? Who is the mystery Mike character? And given all of this, why might this particular sign be posted at a store called "Kids' Stuff"?

Annoying J. Crew Model of the Week - 6/27/11

The Annoying J. Crew Model (or Models) for the week of June 27th:

Nothing like the image of smiling, happy J. Crew models to make you want to shove a pencil into your eyeball.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Creepy Submissive Mommy Phone

Ring-a-ding-ding, it's time for this week's installment of


Here's a Bell Telephone magazine advertisement from 1940:
This ad is disturbing on a number of levels. First, there's the whole creepy factor with an anthropomorphic telephone talking with a baby. Then there's the gender discrimination angle. The telephone is a woman on her knees, someone who gives "services" that don't "cost Daddy an awful lot," and a woman who is "downright cheap!"

And what's with the bubble pipe?

Friday, June 24, 2011

Death and Clowns

For your Friday enjoyment, another clown-related Gallery entry:

Death and clowns. Who would have thunk?

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Clown Warning

A sign found in Brighton, UK.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Workers of Texas, Unite!

I found this window sign in Commerce, TX:

And who says that Texans are hostile to communism?

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Annoying J. Crew Model of the Week - 6/20/11

Sit back, relax, and soak in the idiocy of the Annoying J. Crew Model for the week of June 20th.

Another recent image from the J. Crew website:

For god's sake, give her a break and let the woman pee!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Fowl Breath

Indulge the freak in you with this week's installment of


A Listerine ad from the 1960s/70s:
What kind of outfit is this? Looks like she's wearing a turkey.

(Is that Cheryl Tiegs?)

Friday, June 17, 2011

Reusable Children

The Gallery of the Absurd Goes to the Beach...cont.

Driving back from the NC coast, we stayed in a Hampton Inn. There, in one of the elevators, was this sign:
The sign reads, "Reusable Fun. Before you throw something away, think of different ways it can be used." We wondered if this message may be referring to the kid.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Up in Smoke

The Gallery of the Absurd Goes to the Beach...cont.

On the road during our vacation, we saw this sign outside a gas station:

The picture's a little blurry, but it reads that they're selling Marlboros for $495. Wow! I knew smoking was an expensive habit, but this is ridiculous.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Hopped Up on Hoops

The Gallery of the Absurd Goes to the Beach...cont.

Here's some really cheap cereal I found at a local store:
My that bear hopped up on sugar or what?

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Webby Award Time

Webby Award Time

Last night was the 15th annual Webby Awards ceremony. Let's pause for a moment--shall we?--and remember back to 1997, the first year of the Webby Awards...when The Gallery of the Absurd was a big winner.

Yep, The Gallery of the Absurd won a Webby Award. The first week of March 1997 I went to San Francisco to attend the ceremonies, and I walked away with a Webby. In fact, The Gallery of the Absurd swept the entire "Weird" category, winning both the Critics' Choice and the People's Choice votes. I felt highly honored, especially because I was up against some very good weird sites (take a look at them on the Webby's past winners page). I even beat The Onion, if you can believe it. What's more, the Gallery was at that time housed on one of Purdue University's servers--I was in graduate school when I founded the Gallery of the Absurd--and I was getting more web traffic than I'm sure the school wanted. Soon after the award, I moved the Gallery to private domain.

My time at the 1997 Webby Awards was great fun! How much fun, you ask? Well, see the pictures below and you'll get a sense of what happened there. Special thanks to my good friend, Randy Crain, for taking most of these pictures.

Here we are before the ceremony, me with my friends Randy and Kelli. Randy is looking at an issue of The Web magazine that they gave out free to all guests. I have no idea why I have that expression on my face. Perhaps I sat on something that wasn't to my liking.

Below, that's me on the right up on stage accepting the award. The metallic babe to the left was the funky mistress of ceremonies, Cintra Wilson. Nothing against Cintra, but I had no idea who she was. Now the Webby Awards are such a big deal that they have some pretty big names who attend. This year, Lisa Kudrow hosted the ceremonies.

Here I am right after having won. Despite appearances to the contrary, I'm not hopped up on goof balls. I'm just happy to have won the Webby Award.

After the ceremony, the event organizers asked all winners to go into the VIP lounge so that we could talk with the media. In the photo below, the dude with the microphone was from PBS. There were a lot of interviews that night, and they all seemed to flow together. But I do remember this guy being a little too happy and excited for his own good.

Below is a quick shot of my reaction after my award broke--that's right broke--and half of it fell to the ground. Luckily, nothing cracked or shattered. When I got back home, I fixed it with a little epoxy. However, a Webby Awards producer standing near me got on my case for holding the award "incorrectly" (as if the award came with special instructions). It was kind of funny, in a way. When the marble base fell off and onto the floor, all of the media cameras immediately pointed in that direction. I guess that's what you get when you try to use a hot glue gun to attach two heavy pieces of non-porous material (marble and glass)...which is what the Webby people apparently did. I hope their awards this year are more sturdy.

The broken award.

The VIP lounge is where all of the celebrities in attendance mingled with the winners. Here's an off-centered shot of me shaking hands with the San Francisco major at the time, Willie Brown. I have no idea what he's doing with his tongue, but it frightens me even now just looking at the picture.

Here I am with a much more enjoyable celebrity, this time web star Danni Ashe, the beautiful webmistress of one of the earliest Internet porn site, Danni's Hard Drive. She really is a friendly and unassuming person.

Another one with me and Danni.

The black and white picture below was taken by a retro-looking guy going for the Jimmy Olson look and with a nice old camera. This is me with my friends Lisa, Kelli, and Randy.

After a full evening of schmoozing, boozing, and not losing, here I am standing outside of Bimbo's 365 Club (where the ceremony was held) with my broken award, one piece in each hand. I have no idea what that red splotch is down at the bottom of the picture. Perhaps the aura of webmaster joy? Pride? Late night indigestion?

So there you go, my experiences at the 1997 Webby Awards. My fifteen minutes of fame.

Sea Turtle Sex

The Gallery of the Absurd Goes to the Beach...cont.

I found this in one of the gift shops on Topsail Island:
I don't know what is more disturbing: the melancholic expression on this cherub's face, or what he seems to be doing to the sea turtle.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Sea Section

The Gallery of the Absurd Goes to the Beach

While on vacation at Topsail Beach, NC, I found several interesting items that I'll be featuring this week. The first is a sign bearing the "cute" name of a neighboring house, something you'll find on most property at the beach:
What a memorable way to commemorate your birthing experience. I would guess that the owners' other property is titled something like "Afterbirth."

Annoying J. Crew Model of the Week - 6/13/11

Your Annoying J. Crew Model for the week of June 13th.

Another stupid image from the current J. Crew website:

I'm not exactly sure what this model is doing. Is she adjusting her hat? Saluting in some bizarre, unfathomable way? And what's the deal with her legs? Is this just another in a long series of J. Crew flamingo poses? Or does she have to use the bathroom really badly?

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Funnier than Bozo, scarier than's time for this week's


To round out this week's romp through clowndom, here's another vintage Sugar Smacks cereal box:
Breathe deep, relax, and let it take over...

Friday, June 10, 2011

Evil Clown Cream

Since I've been featuring images of Ronald McDonald the last couple of days, let's stick with the clown theme.

Here's something found by Gallery friend, Al Wirtes, some weird kind of ice cream vehicle:
Let's take a closer look at the clown head, shall we?

Enjoy your Friday!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Goosed Ronald

Building on the momentum of yesterday's Gallery entry, here's another McDonald's billboard, this one found in Oklahoma:

Looks like Ronald's been goosed...either that, or he sat on a special kind of french fry.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Creepy Roadside Ronald

A billboard I found while driving through Missouri:

What a creepy-ass Ronald.

For more McDonald's frightfulness, check out the "Reasons to Hate McDonald's" specialty page.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Whoring Your Appetite

I'm not sure I like the word "pimp" associated with anything I'd want to put into my mouth.

Thanks once again to John Bird, who found this prostituting ad in a BART station in San Francisco.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Annoying J. Crew Model of the Week - 6/6/11

Happy, happy, joy, joy! It's the Annoying J. Crew Model for the week of June 6th!

Here's one of the latest images on the J. Crew website:

Either she's ducking down to avoid something low-hanging, or she's drunk. Or she's drunk and she thinks there's something low-hanging near her head.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Annoying J. Crew Model of the Week - 5/30/11

The Annoying J. Crew Model for the week of May 30th:

During your moments of summer fun, please try to avoid the dork zone.

Changing LINKS