Abandoned Telegraph Building
Gregory Highway
Queensland, Australia

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My only fear in keeping a list of the Web's most absurd sites was that some people might not get the joke. I've decided that can't be helped and is no good reason to keep the rest of us from having a good laugh.

What do I mean by "Absurd"? "Unusual", certainly, but more than that -- not simply "Neat", or "Bizarre", or "Useless" -- some mixture of these is surely Absurd.
Use this form and register to be notified by email whenever something Absurd is added to the list.

Theatre Absurd

08 MAY 97 :: 22:41

The Dancing Baby
OK. It's been a while since the last absurdity. I've been waiting for a gem. Well, this ain't quite it, but this feature of Woodie's Home Page is too too good a combination of bizarre and useless to resist. The URL was forwarded to me by a friend. The original message accompanying it read:
"My faith in the uselessness of the Internet has been restored. Everyone's homework assignment is to look up: http://www.marimba.com/people/woodie/cha.gif And let it get going..."

History, but still Absurd

24 AUG 1996 :: 21:30

World Birthday Web
It's not the site itself that is absurd, rather it may be this idea... I've come up with a theory about the population of webspace: we're all characters in a Douglas Coupland novel. If you scan through the personal homepages available through World Birthday Web, I'm sure you'll catch my meaning.
Think about it. Rather than defining their favourite jeopardy topics, Coupland could describe characters by their hotlists. He would save scads of time in developing characters if he just browsed entries in the World Birthday Web (possibly by astrological sign if he wanted certain personality traits -- and believed in astrology) where net denizens by the hundreds have created perfectly useable characters for him.
For example, from a page chosen at random:
University of Illinois at Chicago..
Late Show with David Letterman
Saturday Night Live
Growing Pains
Beavis and Butthead
Rock Web
Shakespeare's sonnets
Poems and Verses
Beginner's Guide to HTML

08 JULY 1996 :: 21:30

Desert Eagle Fanpage [Page gunned down in a hail of bullets]
I know this will probably earn me as much negative eMail as my writings about Vietnam, but to a statistically large majority of people living in Canada there's something more than a little absurd in the following:
"This is my favourite weapon..."

2 APRIL 1996 :: 10:30

The V- Barcode
Well, it started out as an April Fool's prank, but like the best such pranks, it struck a bit closer to home than a good firm leg-pulling should. What's absurd here is that the prankster may be responsible for enabling the next round of governmental free-speech rating systems.
"The Canadian Library Association today announced its intention to comply with the wishes of millions of Canadians who hadsigned a petition decrying the increasing presence of "vivid imagery of sex and violence" in books targetted at children. "
I'm not really sure where I stand on this issue -- I can see the value of keeping Hustler Magazine out of a child's personal library, but then the best way to do that is to teach the child which materials are appropriate and explain the nature of inappropriate material. It's bad enough when a parent uses the phrase, "Because I said so." We don't need a government empowered to say the same thing.

2 7 JANUARY 1996 :: 01:30

The AC/DC Lyrics Page
Now, even way back in high-school, I didn't quite know what to make of this band, or anybody's taste for them. Now, a decade later, somebody's gone out and compiled the lyrics from practically every song ever release by this much over-rated band. Here's a sophomoric winner from the page, picked at random...
SINGLE: Dog Eat Dog/Carry Me Home (197?)
(Young, Young, Scott)

The bartender's working on a late night shift
She's bonka blonds and Bon aims on a midnight drift
And the dance band's playing the same old slam
I'm sinking whiskey and you're sipping fine wine
I don't know what it is you're trying to prove
Well it should be you but it's me who can hardly move
And I've got my reputation lying on the line
Come on baby, be a good dog and help the blind

Won't you carry me home
(Like a truck, pick me up)

You ain't no lady but you've sure got taste in men
That head of yours has got you by time and time again
My arms and legs are aching and my head's about to blow
And your back's been breakin' and I'd hate to spoil the show
But I've just spent next weeks wages and I'm right out of coin
But you want more and it's half past four and they want to close the joint
But we can't afford a taxi, and it's too late for the bus
But I've been told by friends of mine you're someone I can trust

Won't you carry me home
(Don't let me lie here in all this beer)

You drank all your booze and half of mine
I'm bleary eyed and you're waiting for the sunshine (to come and kill me)
Just like the man who threw me on the floor
Don't matter, while I'm down here I might as well try and find the fucking door
Excuse me, have you seen my swizzle stick
And have you got a plastic bag 'cause I'm gonna be sick
I'm dead drunk and heave'n hanging upside down
And you're getting up and leaving, you think I'm gonna drown

Won't you carry me home

OK, so go back and read their big hits like Highway to Hell or You Shook Me All Night Long or Hell's Bells and explain to me how they make any more sense...in fact, it gets worse: try The Jack.

17 JANUARY 1996 :: 19:30

TV Bytes: WWW TV Themes Home Page [Show cancelled]
I just couldn't decide whether this page was Neat or Absurd. So today, for the first time, we have a site that manages to be both.
It's Absurd because TV theme songs have entered the cultural vocabulary, our zeitgeist. Cool people at parties know all the words to The Brady Bunch and can delicately imitate the vocal stylings of Cindy singing it. Admit you can't recall the melody from The Addams Family and your friends will begin to wonder about your flagging mental capacity. And some guy's spending a good fraction of a lifetime digitizing the theme songs from, apparently, just about everything that's ever been broadcast. He's not being paid to build this archive. That's kind of absurd too. And he does requests.

Then again, I posted 300 pages of my travel journal -- with photos -- so who am I to comment on the absurdity of weblishing esoterica...

1 4 JANUARY 1996 :: 17:30

Your Bride is in the Mail!
"Tired of 'liberated' career women so wrapped up in their own agendas they haven't got room for yours? Many men who want a moretraditional, supportive wife are finding their perfect mates in foreign countries." [The site moved once, and the wording changed but you still have to wonder....]
Can't live up to the expectations of women with their own minds? Looking for a young, under-privileged girl you can easily dominate even if you get no respect from people your own age? Want someone barefoot and pregnant in your kitchen, or a sexual plaything half your age that also does windows? Getting tired of sheep?

1 8 DECEMBER 1995 :: 11:30

Ouch... Don't they mean SHOUT something positive at yourself?
I'm not convinced of the value of affirmations to begin with (getting yourself to believe you are a good person is not the same as being a good person) but my alarms really go off when someone's cashing in on stuff like, "I PUTT WITH CONFIDENCE" and "I DESERVE TO BE WEALTHY". Oooh, don't you just want to stick those thoughts all over your apartment! The last one sounds like the drivel Amway tried to hook my parents with.

1 3 DECEMBER 1995 :: 02:00

The Nomadic Spirit
What? Calling my own homepage absurd? No, not at all. My whole site is -- well, from this link, the entire Web is now a little absurd. Well, just go check it out. Follow all the links you like. Don't say I didn't warn you.
See, with the Zippy the Pinhead Page Filter any page can be as absurd as any Mad Lib.

12 DECEMBER 1995 :: 02:00

The Gillian Anderson Testosterone Brigade
A page for fans of Gillian Anderson, aka Special Agent Dana Scully of Fox TV's "The X-Files". The name is in response to the previously existing site dedicated to her co-star, David Duchovny (Special Agent Fox Mulder) which was created by female fans and called " The David Duchovny Estrogen Brigade".
Well, here we have dueling personality pages. (Actually, David's winning since there are three (3!) different 'DDEB' pages!) I don't know. This "Cult of the Personality" stuff kinda baffles me. I mean, I can understand watching an interview or two, or even picking up People magazine to find out what Cher's been up to lately (just for the laughs) but expending this much energy just to follow the story of another person's life that you've never met...it's not like they're gods or anything, are they? Perhaps they are, their fans gush about them with that kind of blind reverence: eg. "She has shown arange of emotions on the show from fear and anger, to happiness and caring, which, admitedly is not that unusual foran actress, but...but...but...it's Gillian! :) "

3 DECEMBER 1995 :: 21:00

Forrest's Candy Shoppe [Forrest's gone for a jog]
This one's about as crassly commercial as they come.
"Hi! I'm Forrest. Forrest Gum. And this is my new Bubba Gum and Candy Factory."
And it features such candy gems as: "I have to go Pee." (All the candy that starts with the letter "p")

Oh, while you're on the page, go check out the Screwball Mall which may well be the only site on the net tacky enough to host this page. Let's hope so, anyway.

3 0 NOVEMBER 1995 :: 00:00

The Surrealist Compliment Generator
"Were it not for the dizzy whiptail ambivalence of your crumbling fleece, I could never contemplate the ways of so many merchant bankers in heat."
That example is a bit dubious as a complement, don't you think? How 'bout this one:
"Tribes of primitve hunters, with rhinestone codpieces rampant, should build pyramids of Chevy engines covered in butterscotch syrup to exalt the diastolic, ineffable, scintillated and cacophonous salamander of truth which slimes and distracts from each and every orifice of your holy refrigerator, Sears be its brand."
Try it out for yourself; amaze your friends with wittily absurdist reparte.

2 9 NOVEMBER 1995 :: 04:00

"Welcome to BeautyNet, your inside source for beauty, style and fashion trends. Straight from the professionals from North America's top salons, BeautyNet gives you beauty secrets, hot trends and even an opportunity to ask the pros."
Well, that's the opening blurb on BeautyNet. It reads an awful lot like Seventeen, or Mademoiselle, or Vogue, or . . . meaning we basically have here an infomercial for the 'beauty' industry. But when back in 1995, it was so deliciously directed at the internet audience: I mean, Cyberhair? My personal favourite has to be 'The History of Perms' -- seems women have been putting themselves through that often painful madness for millenia -- boiling water, electricity, Borax, ammonium thioglycolate acid. . .<shivers>. The amazing thing here is that all this information is provided without any sense of irony, or even any acknowlegement of the discomfort and physiological damage.

2 5 NOVEMBER 1995 :: 05:00

Kurt Cobain's Magic Talking Eightball [Now Defunct! — Sorry.]
Personally, I get a kick out of the title.
From the other side, Kurt will answer those burning questions, like, "Do you like the Foo Fighters album?" and "Does Courtney Have Talent?" Or make up your own question! "Is this page wackier than The Ronald Reagan Homepage?

23 NOVEMBER 1995 :: 03:00

New Items Added!!! 23 AUGUST 1996
What's Inside Jeremy's Wallet?
Well, what's inside Jeremy Wilson's wallet is pretty much what you'd expect. And who really cares, anyway? I think the most absurd thing about this page is, I read the whole thing -- and enjoyed it. That is, it's absurdly pleasurable.
When I informed Jeremy that his page had finally motivated me to create Theatre Absurd but that, unfortunately, he'd have to follow the Ronald Reagan Homepage since the intended seriousness of that page made it the more Absurd choice, his sporting response was:

"I am extremely honoured! I am sorry that I wasn't more serious about thepage, since that would obviously increase the mockability factor by 10 andthus elevate it's humour status exponentially.

"I look forward to seeing the Reagan page..."

2 2 NOVEMBER 1995 :: 05:00

The Ronald Reagan Homepage
At first glance I thought I was reading the most sublime political parody since Tim Robbin's film, Bob Roberts. Then it occurred to me the webmaster was serious.
Whenever the subject of Ronnie Raygun comes up I immediately think of the Evil Empire bumper-sticker.

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