No, Pumpkin Spice Condoms Are Not A Real Thing

No, Pumpkin Spice Condoms Are Not A Real Thing

Here at Consumerist HQ, we were both intrigued and horrified when a plausible-looking mockup of a pumpkin spice flavored condom spent the weekend circulating around the Internet. If pumpkin spice gum and bacon condoms can exist, why not? Alas, the wrapper circulating online isn’t real, even though some people kind of want it to be. [More]

Here’s Hobby Lobby’s Nightmare Before Christmas

Here’s Hobby Lobby’s Nightmare Before Christmas

We complain about holiday mashups and Holiday Creep, but we secretly love “Nightmare Before Christmas” displays, where retail necessity meets art, and cool holiday mashups ensue. Hobby Lobby puts out their Christmas merchandise early, even by craft store standards, and we have gradually grown to enjoy these Halloween trees, even as it’s fundamentally wrong to celebrate the coming of autumn with evergreens. [More]

Kmart Airs What Is Totally Not A Christmas Commercial

Kmart Airs What Is Totally Not A Christmas Commercial

Last year, discount retailer and aspiring landlord Kmart kicked off its Christmas marketing early. Really early. Last year, the chain waited around until September 10 to start airing its first Christmas ad. This year, they moved that start date up, presumably so people who chatter about retail would complain about the early start date and embed the ad. You win, Kmart. [More]

People Started Lining Up Outside Of Tokyo Apple Store On Sunday

People Started Lining Up Outside Of Tokyo Apple Store On Sunday

You may have heard that there are new products emerging from the magical land of Cupertino tomorrow. People started camping out near the glass edifice of a Manhattan Apple Store last week, but they have sponsors. The campers in Tokyo’s fancy Ginza district set up on Sunday, and are supposedly there out of just fanatical devotion to Apple products. [More]

CVS Gives Out Free Cigarette Packs Stuffed With Help For Quitting

CVS Gives Out Free Cigarette Packs Stuffed With Help For Quitting

You can’t buy tobacco products anymore at the newly-renamed CVS Health, but you can get the cashier to give you a free pack. While the little red box is shaped like a cigarette pack, that isn’t what’s inside. These packs are available for free, and have coupons and materials inside meant to inspire customers to quit smoking. [More]

Cheese Makers In Switzerland Fight Counterfeits With Secret Bacteria

Cheese Makers In Switzerland Fight Counterfeits With Secret Bacteria

Did you know that counterfeit Swiss cheese is a problem? It certainly is if you’re a cheesemaker in Switzerland. Industry experts recently estimated that as much as 10% of all Emmental cheese (that’s the pale yellow cheese with holes in it that Americans usually refer to as “Swiss” cheese) sold outside of Switzerland was fake: not made in Switzerland. How are the Swiss protecting their cheese industry, which has exports in the hundreds of millions of dollars? DNA tests. [More]

CompuServe In 1994: Here, You’ll Never Outgrow 60 E-Mails Per Month

CompuServe In 1994: Here, You’ll Never Outgrow 60 E-Mails Per Month

Decades ago, our ancestors would purchase or receive in the mail “magazines,” primitive information delivery devices printed on shiny paper. Most of these magazines featured advertisements for products and services. In 1994, an ad for Popular Mechanics promoted CompuServe, a service that you could dial into with your modem. One that connected you to news, sports, weather, shopping, information, and included sixty e-mail messages per month. Sixty! [More]

Linkwallet Emerges, Says Wallets Will Ship By End Of 2014

Linkwallet Emerges, Says Wallets Will Ship By End Of 2014

Since backing a hardware project on a crowdfunded site feels like shopping, people get annoyed when the things they “bought” don’t show up when expected. Like the Ping Wallet, which we featured here on the site yesterday. A year after raising $59,000, the smart wallet is the subject of a Kickstarter backer revolt. However, the company’s CEO has re-emerged and says that the delays are just because he wants to send backers a wallet that doesn’t suck. [More]

Whole Foods Pulls Yogurt With Bogus Nutrition Info From Stores

Whole Foods Pulls Yogurt With Bogus Nutrition Info From Stores

Food companies put nutrition information on the labels of their products, and we consumers assume that information is, you know, true. Maybe naively so. When tests by our calorie-crunching colleagues down the hall at Consumer Reports showed that there was more sugar in Whole Foods’ plain Greek yogurt than the label claimed, the grocery chain pulled the product from shelves. [More]

Consumerist Friday Flickr Finds

(Eric Arnold Photography)

Here are seven of the best photos that readers added to the Consumerist Flickr Pool in the last week, picked for usability in a Consumerist post or for just plain neatness. [More]

This Vegetarian Breakfast Item Totally Looks Like Poo

This Vegetarian Breakfast Item Totally Looks Like Poo

We don’t want to go around accusing food stylists of doing a bad job, because the people who photograph food, especially packaged and fast food, to make it look edible are doing truly honorable work for the good of capitalism. However, sometimes a delicious part of a packaged shelf-stable breakfast looks like a poo emoji, and someone must point this out. [More]

Google Fiber May Come To Phoenix, Cox Customers Receive 100% Coincidental Speed Boost

Google Fiber May Come To Phoenix, Cox Customers Receive 100% Coincidental Speed Boost

We all know that this country doesn’t have nearly enough competition in the broadband Internet sector, but it’s a little sad to watch what happens when one of the nation’s cable giants faces some unexpected competition. Google Fiber’s gigabit connections may soon grace the city of Phoenix, Arizona. Oh, and back in July, Cox Communications gave their customers with faster broadband plans a completely coincidental 100% speed increase. [More]

Report: Secret Service Now Investigating Home Depot Breach

Report: Secret Service Now Investigating Home Depot Breach

Nothing scares big-box shoppers and retailers quite like the specter of another nationwide credit-card data breach. Home improvement chain Home Depot has announced that it is investigating a possible data breach of the payment systems in its 2,200 stores, and the blog Krebs on Security analyzed data found in a shady corner of the Internet to show that this is likely what happened. Now Reuters reports that the Secret Service is involved in the matter. [More]

Ping Wallet Collects $59,000 On Kickstarter, Disappears

Ping Wallet Collects $59,000 On Kickstarter, Disappears

The Ping Wallet (later renamed Linkwallet) seemed like a boon to the absent-minded consumer. It was part of the super-slim smart wallet boom on Kickstarter, and it would sync to a user’s smartphone with Bluetooth and send reminders to put payment cards away, and even remind users if they tried to leave their wallet at home. Sounds like a great idea, and maybe it would be if the project creators hadn’t vanished a few months ago, shipping no wallets and not answering their messages. Update: we’re sure this has nothing whatsoever to do with this article, but the management of Linkwallet have re-appeared and say the wallets will be in backers’ pockets by the end of 2014. [More]

Burger King Drive-Thru Serves Up Whoppers, Chicken Fries, Boa Constrictor

Burger King Drive-Thru Serves Up Whoppers, Chicken Fries, Boa Constrictor

Boa constrictor was on the menu this week at an Illinois Burger King, but not in the sense that you could eat one. No, we mean on the menu board at the drive-thru. Wednesday afternoon, customers alerted the restaurant’s employees that there was a boa constrictor relaxing near the drive-thru lane. How did it get there? No one knows. [More]

Nest Smoke Alarms Can Tell Smoke From Steam Now, But Wave Feature Still Doesn’t Work

Nest Smoke Alarms Can Tell Smoke From Steam Now, But Wave Feature Still Doesn’t Work

When it comes to smoke detectors, the only thing worse than a screeching alarm when there’s no fire in your home is when the alarm doesn’t go off when there is a real fire. One of these problems is annoying, and the other can be life-threatening. In lab tests and real-life situations, users of the Nest Protect smoke alarm have reported both issues, and Google-owned Nest has really only been able to fix one of them. [More]

Business At Uber In Germany Is Booming, Thanks To Publicity From Ban

Business At Uber In Germany Is Booming, Thanks To Publicity From Ban

Yesterday, we shared the news that ride-sharing service Uber had been banned in Germany. The company’s service that lets people summon a limo with a smartphone was fine, but the peer-to-peer, lower-cost UberPop service had to stop accepting passengers under a temporary injunction. A strange thing happened when this story hit the news, though: people in Germany thought that this UberPop thing sounded like a great idea, and started hailing rides. [More]

Tumblr Copies Facebook, Experiences Outage

UPDATE: Tumblr is back. That was a grueling half hour or so, wasn’t it? Tumblr’s official Twitter account announced the end of the outage, though they failed to explain what happened. There was no error message for many users: they simply couldn’t load the site. [More]