by Jeremy •
I went and got an estimate on my car yesterday
by Jeremy •
by Jeremy •
Everyone loves generic toys. Well, maybe not, and it’s probably only limited to a few people who need more social skills, but generic toy hunting is always an intriguing, and ultimately educational experience. You see, you never know just how evil toy companies are until you see the very bottom of the proverbial barrel of what they’ll try to get stupid kids to beg their parents to buy. They’ll literally try anything, toy companies don’t care. Especially ones that have nothing left to lose.
So I decided to go out to a few stores and see the current lot of shittiness, but certainly not alone. I’m not that big of a loser yet. So I dragged Ronnie along for the trip, fresh off his stint of sitting at his computer for 56 straight hours, grabbed a camera that we had no clue how to use, and we were ready for adventure.
First up on the trip is Walgreens. Not exactly the most obscure place to find toys, but it was right around the corner from Ronnie’s house, so we figured we’d stop in just to see if they had any of the bootleg Transformers we had heard about before. For those of you that live just outside the edge of the known Universe and haven’t seen or been to a Walgreens or have one currently being built a block down from another Walgreens, then it should be noted that Walgreens is the modern equivalent of a drug store. Remember those? Those little tiny stores that tried to pack as much variety in goods as you could in fifty square feet but yet seemingly never had anything you needed? That’s about what Walgreens is now, just with a giant monopoly on being worthless. Sure it’s got a lot of stuff and about 700 stores in your neighborhood alone, and maybe that cool drive thru window for drugs that no one has ever used, but it never has what you want, so you mostly just go there to buy Big League Chew since they’re the only place on Earth that sells it anymore.
Finding the toy section was harder than we initially thought it would be for a store that has about 5 total aisles, but we somehow kept wandering into some aisle with feminine hygiene products or condoms. We finally located the toys, cleverly disguised with other random things, but was unfortunately full of toys that neither excited, nor made us feel like loathing them. A lot like Walgreens in general. Walgreens seems to actually carry real toys for the most part, as we stumbled across Power Rangers and all the shit you’d find at your local Wal Mart, just condensed into about four feet worth of shelf space. We did however, find a couple of things worth mentioning:
Trucks That Tow Crazy Assed Shit
These things at least drew a laugh. Not so much the truck part, which was cheap and dreary looking, but just take a look at what these things are pulling. Not content with just pulling regular old “boring” trailers around, filled with what your average trailer contains, like old sinks or about seventy million mosquitoes, these trucks went the extra mile and decided to pull GIANT SNAKES, and CAGED ALIENS. Admittedly, the aliens look rather subdued for being hauled around behind a redneck’s truck, but still. They’re fucking aliens. Also note the giant snake that had me laughing forever. Actually, the snake doesn’t look all that great now either. I blame this on being in Walgreens, where when you find anything out of the ordinary, it instantly draws your attention. Anything just to keep you from accidentally glancing toward that damn tampon aisle again.
Bootleg Transformers Part 1
Before we dashed out of Walgreens with a pound of Big League Chew in our mouths, we noticed the aforementioned bootleg Transformers buried towards the bottom shelf. This was a nice surprise, considering everything else was boring as all hell, and also because these things were the brightest things in the store thanks to their stunning neon paint jobs. These little guys are actually bootlegs of a set Transformers from the Eighties, and if you’re old enough to even remember the Eighties then these guys may conjure up some memories. Yes, these are none other than the original Constructicons, except… not. The original Constructicons were five small robots that could transform (hence the clever name) into construction vehicles, that could also be assembled into one giant robot once all five vehicles were put together in a fashion that no child on Earth could ever do without breaking one of the robots in the process. Of course, they were insanely popular. Popular enough I guess to continue making ugly bootlegs of it nearly 20 years later.
After running out of Walgreens with that befuddled “Why the hell did I even go into Walgreens?” look everyone has after they go to Walgreens, we decided to hit our next location. And what better place than your every day random home-grown hobby store? They’ve ALWAYS got useless crap, along with that scary guy behind the counter that asks you if you like trains.
This hobby store seemed to be more content with carrying things that are actually useful to the hobby enthusiast, unlike most hobby stores that just consist of one aisle of old plastic 57 Chevy Mustang model kits and a couple tubes of glue. But we did scrounge up a couple of interesting things that were worth a look:
Fake Hairy Worm
I was more shocked than anything to see this little guy. Of course it’s mostly ass and nothing more than a green pipe cleaner with cheap fur attached, but me and this worm have had a history. I once thought these things were the greatest thing to hit toys since spring-loaded weaponry. I would horde them in my room as my unholy worm army, mostly thanks to them being incredibly cheap, and their ability to make people tell me I should really get some friends. It just so happens that one night, while staying with my Grandparents, I decided to unleash Worm #485, and do a bit of worm scouting. My Grandma was currently in the kitchen, removing the fat from whatever meat we were to be having for dinner at some point. I figure that since my Grandma is absolutely terrified of worms and cannot even bear to look at pictures of them, that it would be comedy gold if I put one on her shoulder without her knowing, then scream: ” OH MY GOD THERE’S A WORM ON YOUR SHOULDER!” Then the laughter would commence and we’d all have ice cream on the back porch.
But unlike what may happen on your average Andy Griffith episode, my scenario was slightly less funny, and more in the way of scarring. I barely got out the words “OH MY GOD THERE’S A-” before my grandma turned to look at me, only to see this giant hairy worm on her shoulder, where she then reacted by screaming and throwing discarded meat fat at the worm while I fucking ran like a bitch. About five minutes later my Grandma slowly realized that the worm was in fact fake, and turned her rage toward me. Needless to say, this is the first time I’ve seen one of those damned worms since then.
Bootleg Transformers Part 2
Okay, they’re not bootlegs, but they’re just bad. That’s all I can even come up with. It’s a bug, that has about two moveable parts that reveal a robot…that looks more or less exactly like the bug. These “Insectobots” looked about as entertaining as the fake worm does now.
Having had quite enough of the faint musty smell accompanying the hobby store, we decided to leave to our next destination, which is known as the generic toy hub of the Universe: Big Lots.
If you’ve ever been to a Big Lots, then you already know the treasure trove this place is. At least places like Walgreens and, God help them, even Family Dollar tries to show that they carry brand name products. Big Lots however, doesn’t give a damn. It knows that all it sells is generic shit and all the damaged and outdated goods that no other stores wanted. It’s so proud of this fact that they actually trumpet it all over the store via cardboard cutouts of Jerry Van Dyke exclaiming, “Is this place great or what?” You know any store that uses Jerry Van Dyke as their mascot really isn’t trying that hard in the first place, and that carries over to the rest of the store. So what you’re stuck with is an entire store that goes out of its way to sell you absolute shit, including groceries, which is just really frightening by itself. But we’re not here for year old tuna salad concentrate. No, we’re here for toys like the losers we are.
God forbid our youth not feel that they don’t have any hardcore ghetto gangstah rapper DJs to relate to. Thank god then we have Scribble’s Spinheads, which just takes racial stereotyping back about 20 years in one fell swoop. I can’t tell you how many times I never once thought about playing with a stylin’ black DJ complete with afro and jivin’ body language. But that’s not all. Since this just so happens to be a DJ, you can also move their head in four directions (just like real life) to make them bust out some funky mixes in screeching 1 bit mono that will surely send every sucka MC and animal within forty yards running for their lives. The ones pictured here feature smoove hip hop, and reggae beats for your future druggy raver kid to enjoy for hours to come.
Bootleg Transformers Part 3
Wait… isn’t that… why yes it is! It’s another bootleg Constructicon set! Like the ones from Walgreens, except they’re all together in one package, and not painted in horrible neon colors. Not bad for $4.99. Needless to say, this is the only purchase we made the entire day. We later realized the reason it’s only $4.99. It seems this is what happened to all the rejected bootleg Constructicons that were either too fucked up to be sold as a generic toy by themselves, or assembled by a person that couldn’t understand the concept of “Legs should not be put on backwards.” The minute I even took mine out of the package, I knew I was dealing with a Grade A bootleg, as two of the robots weren’t even assembled correctly, and the others were so badly molded that they weren’t even able to be in either mode without looking like one of your old toys that you broke and tried to fix yourself with a pair of scissors and the concrete on the side of your house. The stickers also seemed to have been thrown at the toys from a distance, in hope that they would sort of stick to it. But hey, it’s 5 bucks, and the stares we got from the cashiers were the stuff you could tell your grandchildren about someday.
Nasty Assed Table of Panties
This isn’t a toy, but really, it’s a goddamn table of panties. A dirty table of panties. In the middle of the store. You know, this is what I imagine third world countries having to deal with, but I never imagined that I’d see it for myself one day. One gets the idea that a giant dump truck filled with panties just rolled up in Big Lots one day and decided this is as good a place as any to dump them. All 8,673,954 pair. This almost made me feel dirty just being near it, like I should be one of those creepy types, and just dive headfirst into it and begin sniffing madly at them in hopes that someone returned a pair and were thrown back into the pile, which after glancing nervously at them a few times, doesn’t seem to be that far from how things are done. To make this scene slightly more acceptable, we inserted bootleg Constructicons in hopes of making this table not as horrid looking. Amazingly, not even the mighty Constructicons can topple the sadness that is the Big Lots Panty Table.
After making our purchases, we decided to hit one more store before we called it quits for the day. So a few blocks down and a quick no turn on red, and here were are, the mighty Family Dollar.
Family Dollar is all about cheap. It has a few things that may occasionally breach the massive 5 dollar mark, but that’s not what Family Dollar is here to do. Instead, Family Dollar strives to sell you shit that no one else wants for very little money. Like pens shaped like cars and beach chairs in the middle of winter. You also get a fine selection of toys, most of which are at least ten years old since no one ever restocks that shit. If there’s anything new at Family Dollar ever, I honestly think it’s because other people just bring them stuff because they feel sorry for Family Dollar since they never get anything new. “Here, take this pencil, I don’t need it any more. Really,” is what they’d say with a pitiful look on their face. The toy aisle seems to be the same way, full of absolutely random shit you wouldn’t even see at a bad flea market. Let’s see what we found….
Grow A New Sister
This fine little piece of cheapness is something you really don’t see too often anymore, at least in the terms of sheer legality. If you were lucky enough to be a child in the eighties, when ANY toy, no matter how dangerous or life threatening was allowed onto the market, then you might remember this as one of those things that were small when you bought them, with the promise that dipping it into water will cause it to grow to ginormous proportions in a matter of seconds. Unfortunately, the truth was much sadder than the actual event of watching your little piece of foul smelling plastic turn into a slime monster approximately 1.5 times larger than its actual size. I’m not exactly sure what the hell this stuff is made of, but no matter which one you bought and submerged, the end result was always closer to an organ that had been sitting in preservatives for years, rather than the super toy promised on the box.
Such is the case with this thing here. I was well aware at just what the hell it was, but never have I seen packaging taken so far as to literally pass this small, pink lump of claystuff off as a REAL GIRL….that you can GROW… in WATER. If you can’t make out some of the amazing quotes on the package, it’s all nothing more than several reasons as to why your new lump of plastic will be ten times better than a real sister. As if that wasn’t absurd enough, a few of the quotes are decidedly un-childish, including the one stating, “You will never get as bloated as she does.” Oh really. The other statements are mostly just sad, like, “You’ll be better than her at sports,” and my personal favorite: “Compared to her, you’re the genius in the family, and therefore the favorite.” I dunno about you but if I needed a slimy assed piece of wet clay-plastic to compare myself to to raise my self esteem, I’m pretty sure I’d throw my head in the sink along with my new little sister. Except when they found me a few days later, I’d be only slightly less bloated and slimy than this fucking thing.
If the whole line of My Little Ponies seems to have sold out to the new generation of children, then you’ll be happy to know that you can still buy a shit pony at your local Family Dollar. Other than its elongated face, it appears to be close to the “other” Pony line of toys. It doesn’t appear to be all *that* fancy to me. Okay, so it’s got the bright purple hair going and made of nothing but pink plastic, but fancy may be going a bit far. That saddle, for instance, really clashes with its current colors, and the nose could use a few trips to the plastic surgeon. The eyes also scream “I put out” which is bad for any pony looking to be fancy. If there was ever a cry for attention, this is it. This pony would be better off being called “I Have No Standards and Am Probably Very Clingy In Relationships Because No One Else Would Ever Want Me Pony”.
After that, we really couldn’t take anymore. Besides, Ronnie kept bitching about how he was going to shit himself any minute thanks to the 2 pounds of Teriyaki Chicken he ate at the mall, so we decided to stop this madness. I think what we found was more than enough to show everyone that toy companies will really go out of their way to make things that they *think* will appeal to young children. But it’s fairly obvious that what they *think* and how much *medication* they should probably be on isn’t always the same thing. So what we’re left with is a ton of toys that really have no point, that no kid in their right mind would ever want, which is kinda sad. Sorta like that Island of misfit toys, except these toys would probably tear off your face and eat it if they ever inhabited an island. The Dark Island of Shitass Insane Toys That Will Eat Your Face is what they’d call it.
I need friends
by Jeremy •
There’s this thing called sledding that people sometimes do when it gets cold enough to freeze your dog solid and a few inches of snow happens to be covering the ground. Perhaps you’ve heard of it. I’m sure many of you have even participated in it at some point in your life. Nothing beats memories of your parents dragging you to a large hill when you’re barely old enough to walk, and then pushing you off of it on a small plastic board at fantastic speeds. It’s where every good childhood scar starts. I, personally, haven’t really gone sledding much in my life. And the only reason I’d consider going now is to simply try and hurt myself and the other people I’m with as much as humanly possible. Which is exactly the mindset I was in the other day when Super Friend Ronnie asked me if I felt like dying. I replied with a swift “God yes” and the deal was done.
by Jeremy •
We here at OMGJeremy realize that many of you may still be apprehensive about going to a flea market, simply from the inability to understand what these flea markets have to offer. “Couldn’t I just find the majority of this stuff at my local landfill?” you may be asking. For the most part, yes, but you’d be missing out on the magic that is the flea market experience. To help you understand, me and my good friend Ronnie took a trip to our local flea market, and we’re going to let you come on a virtual tour with us:
by Jeremy •
I’ve long been a fan of the flea market scene. Much like the whole yard sale scene, the flea market is one of the last great bastions of open market business left in these United of States. A throwback to the days long gone, when large groups of dirty people gathered together in a giant gravel lot, or under one horrifically shambled roof, to sell goods bootlegged from Korea. It is this kind of entrepreneurship that makes the flea market experience one not to be missed, and today, I’d like to share that experience with you.