It's a pretty important day in history, you guys "“ after all, where would we be without the Showtime Rotisserie or Hair in a Can? Yes"¦ it's Ron Popeil's birthday. He's 75 today, and shows no signs of slowing down anytime soon. Here's a look back at some of Ronco's best (or should I say "best") inventions.
1. GLH-9 Hair in a Can Spray. That would be "Great Looking Hair Formula #9." It's basically paint for your bald spot.
2. The Chop-O-Matic hand food processor, the predecessor to the Veg-O-Matic and the Dial-O-Matic. The Veg-O-Matic actually has a place in the Smithsonian now. And perhaps you're familiar with the SNL parody it spawned, the Bass-O-Matic"¦
3. Electric Food Dehydrator. I confess, this infomercial played relentlessly during a time when I was watching a ton of late-night T.V., and I desperately wanted one. I was in junior high or high school at the time and had absolutely no need for the Ronco Electric Food Dehydrator, but man, he did such a good job pitching it I just couldn't help myself. It looked so FUN and EASY. I never did get one. Apparently they still sell them, though"¦ hmm"¦
4. The Showtime Rotisserie. The Rotisserie itself may not be as iconic as some of Ronco's other products, but the tagline sure is: Set It and Forget It!
5. The Pocket Fisherman. This little product was so successful Popeil named his two boats after it "“ Popeil's Pocket Fisherman I and Popeil's Pocket Fisherman II. Really. "I just love fishing and, yes, I really do love and use my Pocket Fisherman," Popeil said. His dad was actually the inventor of this little gadget.
6. Inside-the-Shell Egg Scrambler.
This actually made
magazine's list of "100 Top Gadgets of All Time," besting the Bedazzler, the Pez dispenser, the Swingline stapler, the Rubik's Cube, the Dustbuster, and Popeil's own Pocket Fisherman. The concept is this: you put an egg on a needle, and the needle whips the contents inside the shell to a perfect, smooth consistency. Because a whisk is just too hard, I guess.
7. London Aire Hosiery
, the pantyhose "guaranteed in writing not to run." The informercial showed Mr. Popeil going at the pantyhose with a scouring pad, scissors, a nail file and even a lit cigarette, just to show that they weren't going to develop runs.
8. Mr. Microphone. You know this one: "Hey good looking, I'll be back to pick you up later." It lets the user broadcast his or her voice over any FM radio frequency, which is clearly the perfect method for picking up chicks.
9. The Cap Snaffler. "Snaffles caps off of any size jug, bottle, or jar." I actually shouldn't make fun of this one "“ I can see how it would come in handy for people with arthritis or carpal tunnel. I'm dealing with some nasty pregnancy-related carpal tunnel at the moment and wouldn't mind a Cap Snaffler, to be honest with you. But the word "Snaffle" makes me giggle a little. Who knew Ron Popeil was a wordsmith as well as an inventor?
10. The Smokeless Ashtray. For the smoker who "cares about his family," the smokeless ashtray sucked the smoke from your smoldering cigarette or cigar back into itself.
So, "˜fess up "“ which Ronco products have you owned (or, like me, just wished you owned)? Was it worth it? Act now! Leave a comment! We can't offer these prices forever!