Weekly Whack: Outside the Walls of Feff World
Outside the Walls of Feff World
December 1, 1996

I was cruising around the Internet the other day, and I found something very interesting. Did you know that there are actually other Web pages out there besides of Feff World? Yeah, that kind of took me by surprise. There are millions of them little pesky things out there. It seems like everybody has their own Web page. Amish people who don't even own a toaster probably have their own web page by now. It's really something. So I decided to visit a couple of them and write my own in depth reviews of them because, hey, everybody is a critic. So I hope they will be as enlightening to you as they were for me.

The Foosball Source:

I'm still not exactly sure how I ended up at The Foosball Source' found at http://www.foosball.com. It seems every time I cruise the Net under the influence of pineapple soda and orange-flavored Tic Tacs I wind up in the strangest places. And strange is definitely a good word to describe The Foosball Source.' For a little background information, foosball is that game with the miniature guys who have a metal rod stuck through them. It's also a big hit at senior citizen centers when the weather is too cold to play bocce ball. Personally, I never considered foosball more than a novelty parlor game, but apparently it is much more than that. As The Foosball Source' points out, there are foosball tournaments, professional foosball players, and even a foosball hall of fame. It seems a lot of people really take this game seriously.

The general content of The Foosball Source' include: updated foosball-related news, links to other foosball sites (yes, there are others), a foosball FAQ, pictures of foosball tables, tournament information, the official rules of foosball, a glossary of foosball terms, the text of a novel about foosball, information on the top foosball players, and the history of foosball.

When I checked out the news section, there was an exclusive interview with the number one foosball player in the world, Terry Moore. I wasn't exactly paying much attention to most of the interview, but I did notice when Moore was discussing how ESPN should televise foosball matches. Now give me a break. What's next, Monday Night Air Hockey? In addition, the official rules of foosball are over forty pages long! Listen, if I wrote the rules of foosball it would be simple. You drop the ball in the middle of the table, both players hit it around for awhile, and then eventually somebody scores. There's even a section in the foosball rule-book entitled, Technical Fouls.' How do you possibly commit a technical foul in foosball? Illegal defense? Hacking? What? However the best part of The Foosball Source,' would have to be The Foosball Player Gallery.' For example, the bio on foosball pro Tommy Adkisson states, "Young Tommy's versatile three rod and unique ability to read defenses on the run have helped propel him into the national spotlight... The future is certainly bright for this Oklahoma foos phenom." Who are they kidding? The future isn't bright for young Tommy, he plays foosball for a living! In a year he'll be selling peanuts at truck and tractor pull competitions.

Anyhoo, overall The Foosball Source' is a solid web page. The flow of the page is smooth, and the graphics are well done. The only real problem I have with the page is that they take their subject matter a bit too seriously. Yet it is this very aspect of the page that makes it unintentionally hysterical. So whether you like foosball or not, I would definitely recommend a visit to The Foosball Source' at http://www.foosball.com to anyone looking for a place to go on the Web.

The Official Fisher Spacepen Co. Website:

As the World Wide Web continues to grow, it is taking on more and more roles. One role that will become increasingly significant, is that of a virtual shopping center. Not only will you no longer have to leave your house to buy items, you won't even have to pick up the phone, or deal with those perky Home Shopping Center operators. All you will have to do is go to the Web page of the particular product you wish to purchase, supply a credit card number (preferably your own), and wait for the friendly UPS delivery man to come to your doorstep. An example of a top notch shopping site can be found at http://www.xe.net./spacepen/ , which is the address for (drum roll please) The Official Fisher Spacepen Co. Website.

When you first step into the The Official Fisher Spacepen Co. Website' you suddenly realize that this is not just your average Web page selling a pen. This is an eye-pleasing, well-designed, gem of a Web site. True, being a corporate Web page, it is probably maintained by a team of twenty computer geeks who are locked in a room programming HTML and JAVA while surviving only on Jolt Cola and instant soup; but we won't hold that against them. As for content, because take away all the fancy graphics and a Web page is only as good as its content, the Fisher Spacepen people seem to have questionable priorities. It seems all the main page contains is a list of their many awards. Let's see, they were Microsoft Network's pick of the week for 2/29/96 through 3/5/96, that had to make a lot of people's Leap Year especially happy. They took home The Top Shopping Site Award, which I heard was a toss-up between them and a killer Web site which was selling homemade beef jerky over the Internet. It was also fortunate enough to receive The Top 100 Site Award, which was given out by some organization called Planetearth. Personally I never heard of Planetearth, but they must be a fine organization if they are able to judge the millions of Web pages out there, and then narrow them down to the top one hundred. Anyhow, it seems the Fisher Spacepen page has won just about every award out there except for those awards set aside for Web sites containing pornography, and the Fisher people are planning an add campaign next month that should change that real quick. I don't mean to be critical, because this really is a fine-looking site, it is just that awards on the Internet can be a bit deceiving. I was at a page once that had an award patch labeled: The Favorite Site of Jesus!!" Now that is just crazy, although I'm sure if Jesus was around he would dig a good pen-selling Web page like The Official Fisher Spacepen Co. Website.

The main content of the page can be found through a link to their catalog. In their catalog they have nice pictures of all their Spacepens, and you have the option to print out an order form if you wish to purchase one. If you are not aware (I probably should have mentioned this earlier) a spacepen is one of those fancy pens that the astronauts use that can write underwater, in zero gravity, and in extreme temperatures. Why a normal person needs a pen like this I'm not sure. I guess it would come in handy if you ever have to make out a shopping list while searching for the lost continent of Atlantis. Besides selling different varieties of Spacepens, they also offer StarTrek pens, which must be a big seller among those Trekkies who memorize all the episode numbers of the original series and try to invite Terry Ferrell to go to the Junior Prom with them, and StarWars pens, for those George Lucas worshipers who have a shrine to Yoda, and refer to themselves as Sith. The catalog page also has a link to where you can read about the history of the Fisher Spacepen. You will definitely find some neat information there. They have an explanation of the technology behind the spacepen, including diagrams, and a history of how it was developed and used by the American space program. I found it disturbing that the American government spent two million dollars to have the Spacepen developed, but it didn't seem too bad when I read that they normally spend four million dollars on the white-lined paper that they use to write on.

Anyhoo, to conclude, The Official Fisher Spacepen Co. Website is a great Web page that is very well designed and has a lot of neat eye candy. Whether you need to buy a pen or not, I can definitely recommend a visit to http://www.xe.net./spacepen/ .

Well that's it, I hope they were informative for you. That just about ends the Whack for this week, so to conclude, something called Foosball should never be taken seriously; the Spacepen was a great invention, but sliced bread still has it beat; and I hope everybody had a happy Thanksgiving.

Now for this week's special feature, we have Feff's top ten Thanksgiving side dishes to go along with his Turkey:

10. Cranberry Sauce
9. Stuffing
8. Peas
7. Turnips
6. Mashed Potatoes
5. Corn
4. Yams
3. Sweet Potatoes
2. Shredded Football (An Hawaiian delicacy)
1. Orange Tic Tacs