Slate's Dumbest Inventions Ever List Includes Beating Breasts. You Know, for Kids

Illustration for article titled Slates Dumbest Inventions Ever List Includes Beating Breasts. You Know, for Kids

Ladies and gentlemen, these are our ancestor's Billy Mays infomercial products. Judge them lightly, but laugh heartily, for in 50 years' time our great grandkids will laugh openly at our version of the Beating Breast baby sleeping aide.

Most deadly? Probably the "baby cage," which promises to give your tiny tot a breath of fresh air while neglecting to mention the part about a deadly fall twelve stories down. The curved machine gun is another contender.

Most legitimate? Definitely the shower hood. It helped women protect their makeup in the shower, thus saving time if they were in a rush. Sadly for whoever invented it the device never caught on. [Slate]

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DISCUSSION

The curved barrel gun, while goofy looking, had a deadly purpose. Called the Krummlauf it was invented by the always-clever Germans for their tank crews. As the very angry Russian troops swarmed over your tank to set it on fire, you could open the top hatch, stick the curved barrel through the crack and sweep the top of the tank without exposing yourself to enemy fire. Or so the theory went. Seems to me as soon as you opened the hatch you'd have a grenade in your lap at the very least. The Krummlauf wasn't very efficient, but at such close range it didn't have to be. The only model produced in significant numbers had a 30 degree bend.