Housewares: Not such a serious business

March 16, 2008 at 4:41 PM

CHICAGO, March 16 (UPI) -- Walk through the aisles of the International Housewares Association show in Chicago and one might get the impression a comedy routine is developing.

There was the blow-up Santa riding a blow-up John Deere tractor -- just the thing for Christmas decorations.

Then there's the Frozen Smiles ice cube trays from Fred & Friends. These are the folks who also are bringing you the two-carat cup, which comes in both platinum and gold. The cup has an ear on the side shaped like a wedding band on which a two-carat crystal has been mounted.

The Byrd Cookie Co. is offering Democratic Snacks and GOP Cookies, not to mention American Apple Pie Cookies for the undecided.

"We're not telling people how to vote, just telling them to vote with taste," a spokesman said.

The topper though might be the It Sucks bucket. Bob Gray said he was really fed up with the way garbage bags balloon up when a fresh one is put into a waste basket. So he adapted a piston to solve the problem. Pushing the top piece of the two-piece unit up and down sucks out the air and flattens the sides against the garbage can.

The show runs through Tuesday and is not open to the public.

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