10 Silly Inventions That Became Wildly Famous

Pocket Fisherman
Ron Popeil invented and sells dozens of wild, wacky and silly inventions. © Tony Korody/Sygma/Corbis

Centuries from now when people talk about the great minds that shaped the 20th century, it would be a shame if they left out Ron Popeil. Popeil is a salesman extraordinaire, peddling some of the oddest wares ever seen on a television screen. Whether it was the Veg-O-Matic cutting board or the Inside-the-Shell Egg Scrambler, Popeil tempted and tickled his audiences with silly inventions of debatable usefulness.

Picking one invention from Popeil's contributions was difficult but the Pocket Fisherman makes a strong case. It's still available for purchase today. As the name implies, it's a compact fishing rod. A compartment in the handle holds hooks, sinkers and other small gear. It can fold up to fit into small compartments and yes, if your pockets are a little on the large side, it'll even fit in there, too.

Like many of Popeil's inventions, the pocket fisherman seems to solve a problem you didn't know you had. But the product has its share of devoted fans who swear by its portability and usefulness.