The next big thing

24 Feb

I am suspicious when anyone tells me that something is going to be The Next Big Thing. Especially when the decree comes from any sort of industry insider.  Did you know that being a prognosticator of trends is a job?  It is.  However, they have the success-fail ration of a new millennium condo-developer.  Let’s discuss some past fails:

Once box office gold, now just a footnote

In 1988 the nation was assaulted by the persona known as Yahoo Serious.  Out of nowhere he was everywhere.  D’ya remember the scrawny ginge who looked like a sanitized Johnny Rotten?  Yahoo’s popularity was catapulted by a crapfest called Young Einstein.  It was based on a fantasy of Albert Einstein as a cool dude who was into rock n’ roll, surfing and beer.  While it made crazy money, thanks to a magical PR team, it is not ranked on Rotten Tomatoes, nor has anyone submitted a plot summary on imdb.  It has slipped into cinematic obscurity.  He was on the cover of Time Magazine.  Seriously? Yahoo actually made two more movies that no one has ever heard of.  His trail runs cold in 2000, after he sued Yahoo! for trademark infringement.  His coffin was nailed shut when his suit was tossed out of court because he was unable to prove that he had damages or harm from no longer being able to promote or sell his “product” under the name Yahoo due to confusion with the search engine.

No really, it totally works!

Did anyone else’s Mom fall into Pyramid Power in the 1970s?  Mine was all into it.  The idea was that the great pyramids of Egypt hold supernatural properties that can be channeled to preserve food, keep razor blades sharp and amp up your sex drive.  It doesn’t stop there.  Pyramid Power was touted to harmonize your environment, charge crystals, give you spiritual enhancement, personal empowerment and mitigate tooth pain.  It had something to do with the mystical, geometric shape of the pyramid.  People would sleep in special pyramid tents and would have little blocks of pyramid clusters that they would put in the pantry, knife drawer or the dog bed.  My mother usually kept a pack of ciggies on top of her pyramid block.  I’m not sure what kind of power that imbibed; she died of cancer.

Odds are pretty strong that if you were into Pyramid Power, you were also a practitioner of Biorhythm hocus pocus.   The idea here is that people are affected by their biochronometry.  If you can track your rhythms and cycles you can optimize your peak times for performance of tasks.  Huh?  It must be noted that women were known to be on a 28 day cycle.  Perhaps this knowledge could be helpful to dumbass men to know when to not annoy the women in their lives.

Betamax, so long

Betamax was poised to revolutionize making and watching movies at home.  It got its ass kicked by VHS.  And the CD squashed them both.  The end.

Bastard son of car and truck

Banking on the notion that there are people who like the look of a truck, but the fuel economy and shock absorption of a car, Small Trucks were created.  It started with the El Camino, but everyone knew it was just a car that had been given a Frankenstein once-over.  Nissan, Toyota and Mazda came out with tiny, compact pick-up trucks.  I still don’t understand it.  Every time I see one I think that Godzilla is going to come from behind a strip mall and pluck it from the road.


Each year color guru Pantone releases its Color of the Year.  It’s a big deal in any kind of industry that is attached to the design world.  Major purchasing decisions are based on the color forecast. Last year’s color was turquoise, which they described as a protective talisman.  This year’s color is Honeysuckle.  This color is going to change your life, according to their press release.  It’s bullshit.  It’s Pyramid Power in Technicolor.  How is a color going to change my life?  What’s weird about this is that I have honeysuckle vines in my yard and this color doesn’t grow on any of them.  It’s more of a trumpet vine hue.

But you know what?  I would love, love, love to have the job of forecasting the next big thing.  How cool would it be to be the puppet master of pop-culture?  Failing that, I’d like to work for J.Crew coming up with new names for old colors.  If anyone knows Jenna Lyons, feel free to give her my digits.  I have some thoughts on new ways to describe “green”.


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