Business as (Un)usual
Most businesses are frightfully normal. After all, what sells better than common goods and services that everyone needs? But humans are unusual creatures with unusual habits and desires, which has allowed some strange businesses to carve out a niche for themselves.
These 12 businesses are among those that have eschewed mass appeal for shock value, intrigue and the just plain weird. Would you ever patronize one of these companies?
Just Food for Dogs
You might have heard of cat cafes, or even dog-friendly restaurants, but have you ever heard of a restaurant just for dogs? If you've ever seen comedian Tony Hinchcliffe's stand-up special "One Shot," then you know there is a restaurant in Los Angeles called Just Food for Dogs that very much lives up to its name.
Just Food for Dogs caters to your canine companion with five-star service and gourmet meals. And if felines are more your speed, don't worry. Just Food for Dogs skirts its namesake with its line of meals called JustCats. If you want something to eat though, human, you'll have to go for a W-A-L-K.
Apparently, edible shoes are a thing. While most companies that make edible shoes are also in the business of producing more conventional fare, edible shoes are a large enough market that a quick Google search reveals dozens of results. Most of these tasty, toe-tapping treats are made of chocolate, which begs the question "What happens when they start to melt?"
Samwise Gamgee of Lord of the Rings fame forgot that in addition to boiling, mashing and stewing potatoes, you can also write on them and send them via mail.
Potato Parcel writes custom messages on potatoes and delivers them to anyone. Nothing says love like a potato you can't eat because it's been written on.
The Beerbelly sells products that help you creatively hide alcoholic beverages, like a flask disguised as a hairbrush and a pouch for holding liquor that conveniently goes around your torso and looks like – you guessed it – a beer belly. Other products are available on this website as well, like a flask that looks like a bottle of sunscreen and a sports bra (The WineRack) with beverage pouch inserts and a straw.
We all need a hug sometimes. Thankfully, things like cuddle parties exist. Cuddle Party does more than just hold on to you; they also teach you skills for creating boundaries and connections.
After opening with a welcome circle and learning some basic skills, the floor opens to freestyle cuddling. Cuddle Party's services are available in various places in the United States, Europe, Canada and Australia.
Virtual Dating Assistants
If you're fed up with the dating scene, you can outsource some of the work for you. Virtual Dating Assistants (ViDA) creates online dating profiles for you, has conversations with potential dates, and plans and organizes dates on your behalf. All you do is show up for the date at the designated time and place and have a good time.
Dirty Rotten Flowers
Bad breakup? Good sense of humor? Have enemies, but you're not quite ready to hire a hitman? Dirty Rotten Flowers is for you. This business sends bouquets of dead, rotting flowers to your not-loved ones.
Just keep in mind that because you're not sending fresh, live flowers, this person doesn't get the opportunity to love something and then watch it die and feel guilty because they kill everything they touch; however, sending a rotten bouquet will send a clearer message.
Bob Barker spoke wise words when he encouraged everyone to spay and neuter their pets. But are your pets really the same after they get snipped? If this is something you're worried about, you can buy artificial testicular implants for your furry friends from Neuticles.
The company claims that its implants will boost your pet's self-esteem – because obviously, your pets are very concerned about their sudden lack of body parts and don't want their animal friends to know that they've been under the knife.