Ah, celebrities. You see them in magazines, you hear about them on the radio or you watch them on TMZ, getting driven away from the cameras, by their very own drivers. You see their assistants buying them lattes at Starbucks. You see them on the red carpet, trailed by publicists who direct the celebs to interviews, making sure they don’t spend too much time with E! because then, Access Hollywood would feel neglected.
So what are we getting at here? It’s this: celebs don’t seem capable of doing their own things. Surprise! Which is why we often think of them as just pretty faces. But who knew some celebs are actually smart enough to invent things? Sure, some of their inventions are impractical, but that’s not the point here. The point is, they’re inventors! Here are ten things you probably didn’t know were invented by celebrities.
9. Jamie Lee Curtis’s Diaper-Wipes
Poop. We sometimes forget that Jamie Lee Curtis received a BAFTA award for best supporting actress in Trading Places, and starred in the cult film, A Fish Called Wanda. What we seem to remember Jamie Lee Curtis for, is bowel movements.
As a spokeswoman for Activia, which claims that a regular diet of the yogurt helps you move your bowels, Jamie Lee Curtis is more famous than ever, and will probably always be associated with endorsing the brand. And her poop-infested career has been cemented, ever since she parodied her commercials on SNL. So, maybe it’s no surprise that she created a disposable diaper that includes a waterproof pocket that holds baby wipes. She’s cornered the market for all things poop! Genius! What parent wouldn’t want to have easy access to supplies of wipes, while changing a diaper, especially when the two are usually sold separately?
8. Yakov Smirnoff’s Waterproof Clipboard
The Soviet-born American is best known as a comedian. He played the role of the clueless émigré from Russia, who didn’t get American culture, especially its phrases.
So we weren’t sure what to make of it when we learned that he patented and invented a waterproof pad, that could be used while in the shower and which didn’t deteriorate under water. So you can soap up and write down those can’t-be-missed ideas or inventions, that pop into your head while showering. Just think, it’s just like a notepad you keep by your bedside to record your thoughts, ideas and dreams. Except you’re naked under a cascade of water, jotting down your grocery list! Forget the other fun things to do in the shower. Like a massage, or, as everyone around the world probably wishes, balancing your checkbook. Ah! But you can’t do that with the invention. And why not? Well, perhaps money issues are not a perplexing problem for Smirnoff as he takes a shower. And who even writes down things using pen and paper these days? What we really need is for our laptops and ipads and iphones to be waterproof. Hmpf.
7. Fabio’s Slim-Fit Fat Burning Water
Mmm. Fabio. You know him intimately. And why not? At the peak of his career, this steamy hunk with long, blonde locks has been on the cover of so many romance novels that we can’t even begin to count. He’s even famous for endorsing ‘I Can’t Believe Its Not Butter’. And now look what we’ve uncovered. Fabio wants us to be as hot as he is. Thanks, Fabio! He patented a “slim-fast burning water” for instant hotness! No really. And it works.
Okay, so we don’t know if hotness in a bottle really helps shed pounds. But it seems legit because it contains L-carnitine, a slimming ingredient. Sure, there are some energy drinks out there that contain carnitine, but just lower in dosages. Fabio, forever thinking of us, wanted to up the dosage, so that people could burn fat faster. The only thing is, can the invention grow our hair as long and luscious as his own?
6. Frank Gehry’s Cardboard Chairs
Ah, Cardboard. A fun way to spend your afternoon is to get your exacto-knife out, and start cutting it up into pieces. You know, just because you can. But who knew you could cut up a chair just as easily? Well, Frank Gehry, the most important architect of our time, does because he invented cardboard chairs. Sure the chairs are fortified by hidden screws and fiberboard edging, but what we want to know is since when has cardboard cost us an arm and a leg? Well, with Gehry’s “Easy Edges” furniture, a cardboard chair can set you back fifteen hundred dollars. That’s right. Fifteen hundred bucks for cardboard.
You can peel off layers to make a bookcover. You can use it to build a fire. Moving? Just reconfigure it into a box and stash those pots and pans in it! And speaking of boxes, what happens when you need to mail something out and don’t have any? Well, get those scissors out! Do we hear a Fed Ex truck backing up? Yep, and it’s carrying a package made out of material from our Gehry chair.
5. Penn’s Hydro-Therapeutic Device Exclusively For Women
You know him. He’s Penn Jillette, or Penn from Penn & Teller. They had their own show. They make you laugh in their Las Vegas acts. But did you know that Penn is so attuned to the female body? Or, to be specific, he’s concerned about their sexual well-being? He created a tub with a hydro-therapeutic device exclusively for women.
It’s basically a reconfigured sauna that provides streams of water aimed at a woman’s private parts. Well, let’s get our mind out of the gutter and be proper about this. It’s a bathtub configured with jet streams directed at a female’s genitalia, for the sake of therapeutic pleasure.
4. Rachael Ray’s Tools Garbage Bowl
She’s that spunky chef with her own syndicated daily talk and lifestyle program, her own magazine, her own kitchen product line and her own cookbooks. But did you know that she’s also the proud owner of an invention you probably didn’t know was invented by a celebrity? Yep, she invented a bowl.
What? Yes, a bowl. It looks like you can toss a salad in it. It looks like you can whisk an egg in it. It looks like you can put food into it and use it for serving food. It looks like you can do those things with it, but—wait for it—it’s not sold to do such things. It’s a bowl that looks exactly like a bowl you might have in your kitchen to do all of the above, but instead, has been manufactured and marketed to dispose cooking scraps and waste while cooking. Got that? Good. Because the bowl is supposed to make food preparation easier than ever. The bowl minimizes trips to the garbage can. So you’re asking: Couldn’t we just place our garbage can next to where we’re preparing food to throw our waste into it? Couldn’t we just, well, use any bowl in our kitchen to put our scraps in it? Why do we need a designated trash bowl? Well, only Rachael Ray would know.
3. Christie Brinkley- Children’s Alphabet
Who says models don’t care about education? Christie Brinkley isn’t just the hot girl-next-door, who’s graced the cover of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue for three consecutive years. She’s also the inventor of a children’s “educational toy,” a toy for learning the letters of the alphabet. It’s a learning device with only a few parts so that a pre-school kid is better able to arrange them to learn the alphabet. The fact that it was marketed as an “educational toy” didn’t help. Children, it seems, are more inclined to learn if they are playing a game that, in addition to helping them learn something, also has entertainment value. Who knew? Sorry, Christie, maybe another try?
2. Robert Heinlein’s Waterbed
Robert Heinlein is one of our most revered and popular science fiction writers. His leaps into the future in his novels led him to invent something we still use today. Well, maybe used by those who have mirrors over their bed and heart-shaped tubs right in the middle of their bedrooms. Yes, you guessed it, Robert Heinlein invented the waterbed. Okay, so he didn’t really invent it. A form of the waterbed was invented in the early 19th century, by the Scottish physician, Neil Arnott. And in the 1960s, Charles Prior Hall modernized it and his sales company became the leading retailer of waterbeds in the U.S.
Still, Heinlein’s idea provided the spark for the waterbed in the 1960s. When he served in the US Navy, he suffered from pulmonary tuberculosis that made him consigned to bed rest for a long period of time. And during this time, with nothing to do, he started to design a better, more comfortable bed for the hospital. That was his waterbed, a watershed moment, so to speak, in bed construction.
1. Francis Ford Coppola’s Itch-Locating T-Shirt
A critically acclaimed director, screenwriter and producer, Francis Ford Coppola revolutionized movie making with films, not only popular for audience-members, but also for critics. The creator of The Godfather movies and Apocalypse Now, among other films, Coppola’a invention easily tops our list at #1, perhaps because it’s one of the silliest inventions we know.
Coppola designed a T-shirt with a grid on the back, so that when you have an itch you need help with, you can direct a friend right to the source. The grid is in the shape of a turtle and it’s numbered so that you can easily refer someone to parts of your back that you can’t reach. No, we didn’t make that up. We do have a question for Sir Coppola: why is the itch grid on the T-shirt in the shape of a turtle? Why not a lion, a tiger or a bear, oh my! But why stop there? Since we are talking about celebrities, what about using Coppola’s face, for example, on the back of the shirt. Sure his face would be covered by a grid of numbers, but at least he’d be itch-less!