CLOSE

On the future of contests

Every so often, we get a comment on our site that inspires a whole new posting. Last week, for instance, a reader from Portland who goes by the handle "natlynn" left a comment on my funny sounding words/bobbleheads Weekend Word Wrap post. She wanted to alert us to the fact that the Portland Beavers, a minor league baseball team in her hometown, recently held a competition in which they invited anyone named Bob L. Head to apply for a chance to be immortalized with a bobblehead giveaway made in the winner's image.

Humored, yet bemused, I actually went to the Beavers' website to clarify. As it turns out, natlynn wasn't just bobbling our heads. Not only did the contest exist, but dozens of men named Bob L. Head from all over the country applied! The Beavers narrowed it down to three finalists, who they profiled on their website and asked the country to cast votes.

From the press release on the Beavers' site:

Backed by a wealth of regional and national media exposure, almost 30,000 votes were cast over the two-week period. Bob Leroy Head [Maquoketa, Iowa] received 14,886 votes (51 percent), Bob Lee Head (Evansville, Ind.) got 9,855 (34 percent) and Bob Louis Head (Vallejo, Calif.) tallied 4,368 (15 percent).

Besides a smile, what I take away from this crazy story is this: contests like these could've never existed before the explosion of the Internet, which got me wondering "“ what kind of contests might exist in another 25 years?

While some version of the Olympic games might be the longest running contest in Western Civilization (they began in 776 BC), and Larry David, Jerry Seinfeld and gangs' "Contest," might be the most riotous in history, what will we think up next? When technology makes it possible to __________what???? It's hard to think up the next big development in contest design. But that doesn't mean we can't try, right?

nextArticle.image_alt|e
iStock
arrow
travel
The Real Bay of Pigs: Big Major Cay in the Bahamas
iStock
iStock

When most people visit the Bahamas, they’re thinking about a vacation filled with sun, sand, and swimming—not swine. But you can get all four of those things if you visit Big Major Cay.

Big Major Cay, also now known as “Pig Island” for obvious reasons, is part of the Exuma Cays in the Bahamas. Exuma includes private islands owned by Johnny Depp, Tyler Perry, Faith Hill and Tim McGraw, and David Copperfield. Despite all of the local star power, the real attraction seems to be the family of feral pigs that has established Big Major Cay as their own. It’s hard to say how many are there—some reports say it’s a family of eight, while others say the numbers are up to 40. However big the band of roaming pigs is, none of them are shy: Their chief means of survival seems to be to swim right up to boats and beg for food, which the charmed tourists are happy to provide (although there are guidelines about the best way of feeding the pigs).

No one knows exactly how the pigs got there, but there are plenty of theories. Among them: 1) A nearby resort purposely released them more than a decade ago, hoping to attract tourists. 2) Sailors dropped them off on the island, intending to dine on pork once they were able to dock for a longer of period of time. For one reason or another, the sailors never returned. 3) They’re descendants of domesticated pigs from a nearby island. When residents complained about the original domesticated pigs, their owners solved the problem by dropping them off at Big Major Cay, which was uninhabited. 4) The pigs survived a shipwreck. The ship’s passengers did not.

The purposeful tourist trap theory is probably the least likely—VICE reports that the James Bond movie Thunderball was shot on a neighboring island in the 1960s, and the swimming swine were there then.

Though multiple articles reference how “adorable” the pigs are, don’t be fooled. One captain warns, “They’ll eat anything and everything—including fingers.”

Here they are in action in a video from National Geographic:

arrow
Pop Culture
The House From The Money Pit Is For Sale

Looking for star-studded new digs? For a cool $5.9 million, Top10RealEstateDeals.com reports, you can own the Long Island country home featured in the 1986 comedy The Money Pit—no renovations required.

For the uninitiated, the film features Tom Hanks and Shelley Long as hapless first-time homeowners who purchase a rundown mansion for cheap. The savings they score end up being paltry compared to the debt they incur while trying to fix up the house.

The Money Pit featured exterior shots of "Northway," an eight-bedroom estate located in the village of Lattingtown in Nassau County, New York. Luckily for potential buyers, its insides are far nicer than the fictional ones portrayed in the movie, thanks in part to extensive renovations performed by the property’s current owners.

Amenities include a giant master suite with a French-style dressing room, eight fireplaces, a "wine wall," and a heated outdoor saltwater pool. Check out some photos below, or view the entire listing here.

The real-life Long Island home featured in “The Money Pit”
TopTenRealEstateDeals.com

The real-life Long Island home featured in “The Money Pit”
TopTenRealEstateDeals.com

The real-life Long Island home featured in “The Money Pit”
TopTenRealEstateDeals.com

The real-life Long Island home featured in “The Money Pit”
TopTenRealEstateDeals.com

The real-life Long Island home featured in “The Money Pit”
TopTenRealEstateDeals.com

The real-life Long Island home featured in 1986's “The Money Pit”
TopTenRealEstateDeals.com

The real-life Long Island home featured in 1986's “The Money Pit”
TopTenRealEstateDeals.com

[h/t Top10RealEstateDeals.com]

SECTIONS

arrow
LIVE SMARTER
More from mental floss studios