Twice a year, I publish a tribute to the world’s worst Web sites. I’ve even given these eyesores a name — the Guilt ePleasure.
But what is a Guilt ePleasure? A true Guilt ePleasure site must be so bad, it’s funny.
More importantly, a Guilt ePleasure must be unintentionally funny. Mulletsgalore.com, the Net’s legendary shrine to unfortunate hairstyles, is hilarious. But it’s no Guilt ePleasure. It’s supposed to make you laugh.
On the other hand, nipguards.com — the real-life home page for “a patented product that prevents nipple chafing” — qualifies completely.
This time around, I asked pals to send me their favorites.
Finding a genuine Guilt ePleasure can be as easy as falling down stairs.
The Stair Diving home page (www.404.org/dive) is a perfect example. Set up by three crafty Web pioneers (including U-M student Joe Casey), Stair Diving begins like a practical joke. There’s the ridiculous premise (“taking a dive down a staircase promotes clarity of mind”). Then, the list of rules (“watch out for objects that may cause impalement”). And the silly manifesto (“Nothing illustrates better the Zen principles of cause and effect than a controlled plunge down a staircase.”).
Funny stuff — in a “have a nice trip, enjoy the fall” kind of way. But not true Guilt ePleasure material, right?
Wrong. The page includes actual videos of the site’s creator tumbling — head first — down a steep flight of stairs. It’s not faked. And it looks incredibly painful.
Maybe these guys are serious. “Once you’re at the bottom ... raise your arms in triumph,” instructs the site. “But remember that all glory is fleeting.”
Not necessarily guys. I hereby bestow Stair Diving with permanent Guilt ePleasure status. You’ve stumbled past humor into genuine lunacy.
You want success? Get a gimmick.
Just ask Dr. Ronald Cunning. Cunning (his real name) is a suburban Los Angeles dentist specializing in “hip-hop dentistry.” Apparently, there’s a burgeoning market for chic urban dental work. And Cunning is at the center of the gold-cap storm.
“For years, Dr. Cunning has been known ... as ‘The Dentist to the Stars,’” notes Cunning’s Web site, rapperdentist.com. “But it wasn’t until one of the Mega-Stars asked for a sparkling set of golden teeth with diamonds that he acquired the nickname ‘Rapper Dentist Daddy.’”
Cunning’s stunning Web site offers no clue to the identity of his famous clients. But who cares? Especially when Cunning (who also offers “Dentistry while you sleep”) can make yours a Fort Knox smile.
Of course, fashions change. Last year’s hip-hop grin becomes this year’s downtown frown. Rapper Dentist Daddy feels your pain: “Gold crowns can be made as part of your permanent smile. (Or), a removable appliance can be made to cover your natural teeth.”
No word yet on whether Cunning will be swapping the retro “Dentist Daddy” tag in favor of the more fashionable “Diddy.”
I’ve spent years exploring the Net. I’ve suffered through bad poetry, midget porn and Web sites about string. But nothing could prepare me for the hideous shame of “Crush A Toy” (home.t-online.de/home/Darragh).
Worse than any graphic sex site (and I’ve seen plenty), “Crush A Toy” depicts the shocking exploitation of children’s toy automobiles. Yes, this Web site contains photos of attractive women in high heels crushing tiny toy trucks and sedans with their feet.
“I like female feet crushing little toy-cars!!!” writes the site’s German Webmaster. It almost sounds funny, but “Crush A Toy” isn’t joking. Full-length video can be purchased of these monstrous acts (including a particularly disturbing sequence involving a squashed plastic Ferrari).
“Its not easy to find pictures like this,” notes the site’s creator. He’s right. “Crush A Toy” was the only Web site I could find devoted to women crushing toy cars with their feet.
And I looked.
Forget “Love Cruise” or “Spy TV.”
The nadir of reality television only exists online. Visit the “Danger Island” Web site (dangerisland.tv), a “next generation reality television show” that’s still in production.
“What’s the new definition of Danger?” asks the show’s home page, “We define it as 12 real-life felons competing for a million dollars on a deserted tropical island.” The proposed show will pit “top manhunters” against “some of the greatest criminal minds.” All prize money goes to the victims of the criminals’ most recent crime.
Think it’s a hoax? Zap2it.com doesn’t think so. The entertainment news site recently interviewed “Danger Island” executive producer John Surowy, who said, “We’re getting calls from major motion-picture celebrities you wouldn’t believe.”
He’s right about that. In fact, I nearly split my shorts when I heard that former “The Incredible Hulk” star Lou Ferrigno has signed as the show’s first manhunter. Notes the show’s site, “Given the nature of our contestants, it’s important to bring in a big gun like Mr. Ferrigno to even out the balance of power.”
I’ll hold off awarding Danger Island official Guilt ePleasure status until it’s proved 100 percent real.
But if it’s not, let’s hope Lou Ferrigno doesn’t take it too hard. I’ve heard he gets pretty cranky when he’s angry.Adam Druckman wanders the Web for Metro Times. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org