Monday, June 10, 2013

Daddy's Little HELLper

Someone sent me this photo from a big rummage sale they attended -- not strictly thrift store, but definitely terrifying.

Someone put a lot of work into this doll! Per the tag on its foot, it has human hair and eyelashes, is artist-signed, and is called "Daddy's Little He(lper)" (I couldn't read the whole last word, but I'm assuming). But why did they give it (in the words of one commenter) the smile of Jack Nicholson? (She also said he was missing his axe, which explains the outstretched hand.)

I will devour your soul.

Of course, I was punished for my opinion, because someone else looked at the photo and said it resembled me as a child.

Worse yet, I can kind of see her point.

Which, now that I consider it, raises some serious doubts... about my... personality... heh heh... Where did I leave my axe again?

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Bowling For Bridegrooms

Hello again! I must apologize for my disappearance these past few months; on top of my normal chaotic schedule, I've been in the process of buying a house (and stripping paint, sanding plaster, filling out paperwork, moving furniture, packing, and all the other associated complications).

But I'm going to try to resume posting regular terrors for the rest of the summer!  And since it's the first week of June, which is the traditional month of weddings, here's something to kick off the happy month:

I can't tell if this is an Italian tenor or a distressed groom facing his new mother-in-law.
Well, maybe that should be knock down instead of kick off. The poor fellow looks horrified. It's a little disturbing to think that there might have been a whole set of these terrified pins -- or perhaps just this one, with a white bowling ball hurtling toward it, trailing a bit of veil down the alley.

Thursday, March 21, 2013

What's the Holdup, Angel?

This probably qualifies as a seasonal post that's, well, out of season.  But frankly, there's so much trashy Christmas merchandise on the shelves that I could probably run a whole year's worth of blogs on that topic alone, so I'm throwing one in anyway.

Today's terror presents a bit of an existential dilemma.  I mean, heaven is supposed to be paradise -- a place of beauty and glory and perfection and eternity, right?  And there are angels there, right?  So theoretically, angels should be beautiful and glorious and perfect and eternal... yes?

Well, whenever it's my time to go, I sincerely hope that I don't end up in any afterlife where God's operations staff look like this:

They got the part about six wings right, but not the part about covering the feet and face. Which is kind of a shame, all things considered.

What's even scarier than granny-angel's shocking (and aged) appearance is the fact that she's apparently being held up for her angelic pocket change, because the last person I saw reach for the sky that dramatically was Don Knotts.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Blue Walrus

You know what your life is missing right now?

A walrus.

More than that, a blue walrus.  With a giant head.  And a big red nose.  And, uh, fuzzy whiskers.  Wearing a flowered hat.  Yep, that's what you need to make your life complete.

Fortunately, the local thrift store can accommodate your burning need for such a walrus:

Don't forget the shifty eyes!

Thursday, March 14, 2013

An Irish Wish For...

It's coming up on St. Patrick's Day, a holiday that, like its fellows St. Valentine's Day and All Hallows Day, has lost pretty much any resemblance to the original holy celebration and is now about things like... well... beer.

And green things.

And especially beer.

Of course, everyone knows that good old Patrick (whoever he was) had something to do with Ireland, so it's tradition to wear shamrocks and green and Notre Dame T-shirts and the like on Saint Patty's day, also while drinking green beer.  And in keeping with that seasonal tradition, I bring you this warm Irish wish:

A traditional Irish blessing, usually bestowed right before (or as) the speaker passes out from drinking too much green beer.
...AS WHAT?!

(And just for clarity, this is a ceramic trivet. There is no print on the back side.)

Monday, March 11, 2013

Highlander II: The Thriftening

Usually when I feature something on Thrifty Terrors, it's an item so mind-blowingly weird, scary, poorly made, in awful taste, or just unimaginably bad that I feel no qualms about laughing at it.

Which is why when I found THIS treasure at Goodwill, I knew it had to go on the blog, if only as an honorable mention:
Highlander II: The Film Disavowed By Everyone Ever Involved In Highlander.
If you're not familiar with Highlander II: The Quickening, you should know that it's considered by many to be one of the worst films ever made.  (Don't believe me? Watch The Spoony Experiment's review.)  It's so bad that the rest of the Highlander films -- which, in spite of their cult action-movie status, are not exactly the highest form of cinematic art -- booted it out of canon and refuse to acknowledge its existence in the series storyline.  The movie's producers even re-edited the film and re-released it to remove all the [SPOILER] references to space aliens and flying stardust people, calling the new edit "The Renegade Cut."

But this is not that version.  This is the original film, in all its terrible post-apocalyptic, plot-holed, planet-full-of-inconsistently-immortal-aliens glory.  And it was still in plastic wrap, with K-mart discount stickers all over it.  How could I do anything BUT invest 99 cents in this... er... classic?

So I picked up the movie, thinking I had hit the bottom of the barrel for that particular store.  But that was before I discovered a whole cache of Christopher Lambert movies.

The postscript to this story is strangely appropriate:  Even though Highlander II was "new" in retail shrink wrap, when I finally opened it to show it to a group of friends, it turned out to be a used copy re-sealed in plastic. The previous viewer had stopped in the middle, and didn't even bother to rewind it.

(I can't really say I blame them.)

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Eight-Legged Freak-Out

Keeping in theme with the previous post, we have another whimsical wall-hanging:

"Hehehe... hehe... HAA ha ha ha hehe!" *twitch*

And in this case, the word "whimsical" can be interpreted to mean "clearly demented and mentally unhinged, while suffering from some disfiguring multichromatic pox and a bad case of bloat."

Also, missing one appendage... assuming it's actually intended to be an octopus.  But then again, I could be jumping to conclusions.

Monday, March 4, 2013

Departing Ham

Today's terror is yet another of those head-shakers that makes you ask, "What purpose was this decoration intended to serve?"

The rear end of a pig. Not a view I generally go out of my way to see.

I mean, who wakes up in the morning and says, "Gee, I really wish I had a wall hanging of a rosy-cheeked pig's bum with the word 'BYE' carved into one ham"?

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Oh, Pat Robertson.

Hello, readers!  I apologize for my absence the past week; I was out of town for a while, and due to computer troubles and life's distractions, my queued blog posts ran out before I could stock up again.

No thrift store kitsch today, but I offer you a terror of another sort:

Full article here.

Now, I firmly believe that people should have the right to believe what they want to believe, and (as you can probably tell from my previous posts) I have pretty strong personal beliefs, myself.  But I'm amused -- and kind of horrified -- by the concept of, "Eh, there might be demons, there might not, so go ahead and banish them anyway just in case."

So, how about it? Has anyone encountered a used demon at a thrift store?  Now that WOULD be a terror.

Monday, February 11, 2013

All Hail The Kween

Anyone who walks through a shopping mall is probably familiar with those kiosks that sell customized belt buckles spelling out your name (or other words, usually along the lines of "PIMP" or "SEXY") in shiny metallic letters.  They're a less-subtle cousin to Italian charms and airbrushed license plates and all the other varieties of kitschy personalized junk, and they're fairly harmless in most cases.

But this one made me blink:

If I tried to wear a belt buckle this size, it would effectively serve as body armor for my lower abdomen. It would probably also weigh down my pants and make me look like I had joined an entirely different fashion trend.

Now, there are a few different meanings associated with this word, some of which can be found here if you're not familiar with them.  Some of them are unflattering and wouldn't necessarily be something I'd want to wear emblazoned on my clothing.  On the other hand, this could actually be someone's name -- in which case having it on a belt buckle is understandable (though giving it to a thrift store for resale is kind of odd, since there isn't likely to be anyone else with that unusual name in the immediate area).  Or perhaps someone was just trying to make a statement with an unconventional spelling and had no deeper meaning in mind.

But I think it was just the tragic result of the mall kiosk running out of Qs, and hoping no one would notice.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Horatio Hornlawyer

I understand that sometimes those overseas factories have a hard time figuring out what English-language words to put on their products.  I imagine it goes something like this (in, of course, another language):

Modeler: "Boss, I've finished the new figurine design."
Boss: "Great! Get it on the production floor."
Modeler: "Well, there's a problem. I don't have any titles for the books, and it looks silly to leave them blank."
Boss: "Can't you just make something up?"
Modeler: "I think we ought to use real book titles; otherwise, it'll look like we didn't even try."
Boss: "Where are they being shipped to?"
Modeler: "America, I think."
Boss: "They speak English in America, right? Hey, I think our company lawyer has some English-language books in his office. Go copy those titles down and put them on the model."

That's the only reason I can figure that you'd end up with an adorable little sailor-suited bear playing with his model sailboat, like this:

Isn't Sailor-Bear cute?

...While sitting atop a stack of law texts:

He'd better be cute. If you say otherwise, he'll sue you.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Syntax is Hard Crossing

With the rise of housing additions in our area, I've seen some really weird and confusing street names pop up.  Sometimes it's "Stable Chase Boulevard" or "Ripple Run Drive" or "Center Crossing Circle" or other names that sound odd out of context.  But now even garden stakes are becoming a jumble of awkward juxtaposition:

Is this some sort of secret drug culture code with which I'm not familiar?

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Free Ashtrays, Anyone?

This isn't really a terror -- more of a head-scratcher.  It gets an honorable mention for being thrift-store related, though.

When I was in high school, my friends and I used to eat at fine dining establishments like Dairy Queen because we didn't have much money and we liked sugar.  This was back in the days when smoking was still allowed in public restaurants in our city, and Dairy Queen had these sweet* little disposable foil ashtrays with stars on them. I have always hated cigarettes, but my friends and I sometimes picked up the clean ashtrays and made crafts out of them because... well, they were shiny, they were easily folded, and they had stars on them. They were also free, and we were broke high school students.  We had to get our kicks somewhere.

Fast forward XX years.  Smoking has been prohibited in restaurants for nearly seven years in this county, and I hadn't seen those disposable ashtrays anywhere for years before that.

Until this week:

The stuff of my teenage craft projects. I still have one that used to hang on my bedroom wall.

Apparently someone stole a stack of disposable ashtrays from a Dairy Queen, hoarded them for more than a decade, and then decided to donate them to Goodwill.

The best part? Goodwill priced these (formerly) free, disposable items at a magnanimous 49 cents each.  "Yep, ladies and gents, for only 49 cents, you can own your very own free disposable ashtray!  Join us next week, when we'll be selling plastic drink lids and paper napkins for the bargain price of 29 cents!"

* I use this term in the '90s slang sense meaning "awesome," not the more common usage meaning "adorable or cute."

Monday, January 21, 2013

Love Is... Creepy.

If you've been reading this blog for any length of time, you've probably figured out by now that I really don't like cutesy little figurines with ditzy or affectionate sayings on them.  Perhaps it's a flaw in my character, or my healthy inner snark, or perhaps I just have stronger views on the nature of love and don't feel that it can be adequately conveyed by a badly-rendered clay lump and a trite phrase.

But a lot of that comes down to taste, and I have no real problem with other people liking such things.  Except when they're really weird or creepy or odd, at which point I feel a little justified in poking fun at them.

Gives a new, creepier meaning to that Jack and Jill rhyme about pails of water.

...And what part of love, exactly, is running around in the fields totally naked and collecting your tears in buckets?  Even Miss Havisham didn't go THAT far off the deep end when her boyfriend left.

(Well, okay, there was that bit with the rats in the shell of the wedding cake, and the ruined dress and things.  But at least the woman kept her clothes on when she went crazy.)

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Glowing Beaded Objects

In an effort to keep today's post safe for all ages, I'm going to leave the more obvious commentary up to your *cough* fertile imaginations.

I found a stash of these lamps (yes, lamps -- see the light strands and power cords? They're stuffed full of Christmas lights) at the local thrift store.  Their shapes were... perplexing.  It took me a long time to figure out what they were meant to represent.  Most of the confusion came from the color scheme, because my initial assessment would have been something more, uh, monochromatic.

Ready to make a guess?

Just picture one of these as a nightlight, and it gets even creepier.

Did you guess a lighthouse?  Well, neither did I, the first few times I walked by them, but that's the only G-rated thing I can come up with.  After all, they do light up.  Just like a lighthouse.  Or... yeah.  No.  I don't really get it, either.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Broccolliflowegrape Mug?

Today's specimen has yet to be identified.  Here's what we know so far, agents:

  • It's possibly representative of some sort of vegetative matter. Suggested theories so far are broccoli, cauliflower, or a bunch of grapes.
  • It's green. Sort of. Chartreuse, perhaps, is a better description.
  • It has only one arm.
  • It appears to be wearing shoes.
  • It has facial features, but it is somewhat difficult to differentiate them.
  • It appears to be either happy or demented.
  • Its hairstyle (if that is indeed hair) might have been inspired by either Elvis Presley or Mme. de Pompadour.

Just... brace yourselves.

And it's happy to seeeeeee you!
It's clearly intended to be some sort of mug.  Which presumably means that you're meant to drink out of it.  But look deep into its eyes, and tell me: Would you put this... thing... anywhere near your mouth?

I didn't think so.  Me, either.

Thanks to Yaexrae for today's submission!  (...I think.)

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Shoot No Evil

This creepy little monkey looks like it must have once been a part of one of those sanzaru sets (the ubiquitous "See No Evil, Hear No Evil, Speak No Evil" monkeys). Unfortunately, it seems that this little guy failed to keep his mouth shut and ticked off Don Corleone or somebody, because he has what appears to be a neat bullet hole through his forehead:

Either he's speaking no evil, or he's smirking because he's secretly mocking you. I'm voting for the second option.
Granted,  I have never particularly liked anthropomorphic simians in any context (except perhaps this one), but knocking them off like the proverbial shooting-gallery ducks them seems a bit extreme.

So I'm guessing the hole actually supposed to be some sort of candle vent or something (though the whole back of the figure is hollow, so it shouldn't need one), but why would you design a figure with an opening right THERE? It just looks really weird.

Monday, January 7, 2013

A Bug. A-Bug. Uh... Bug?

I... what... the...

I don't even know what to say about this one.

It's clearly some sort of bug.  On... stilts?  With striped clown pants. And bells on its ankles.  And it has a giant triangle cut out of its crotch.  Or maybe that's supposed to be a letter A... with feet?  Maybe the anklets are some sort of buggy house-arrest system?

It looks awfully happy.  I think it's waving at you.

But all that is beside the point.  We're not focusing on the real question here.  You may think the important issue is, "Who the heck comes up with this stuff?" But equally important is, "Who the heck BUYS it?!"

Thursday, January 3, 2013

2-pack: Counting Is Hard

No, that's not the latest single from an undead rapper.

This is technically not a Thrifty Terror, since it's in a retail store and not a true thrift or secondhand shop -- but it's a dollar store, so we'll give it an honorable mention.

I was walking through the baby supplies aisle, and noticed that everything this particular company sells comes in a 2-pack, labeled as such in the upper right-hand corner.  As advertised, many of the packages did, indeed, come with two items:  Two plates; two bowls with lids; two bottles; twelve spoons...

Wait -- twelve?

Counting is hard.

Yep.  Guess it's too much work to ask the graphic designer to stick a 1 in front of the 2 on the product card.  *facepalm*