HomeTechWhat the Hell Is That?

What the Hell Is That?

Back in the early years of Saturday Night Live, Steve Martin did a simple skit in which he would peer quizzically into the camera for a few moments, then ask, "What the Hell is that?" He would wait a few moments, waiting for a response, then ask again, "What's that danged thing doing here? How did that get here? What the hell is that?" He then draws Bill Murray into the scene, who joins him in observing this off-screen wonderment. Each makes observations like, "I would not mess with that thing," then returning to the original question, "What the Hell is it?"

I think I might have figured out what they were looking at. It's something from a major manufacturer I found at CES last night. Perhaps it's a hat. Or a speaker. Maybe a giant, opaque bong. You try to figure it out before you hit the link to find the answer.

It is officially called the Black & Decker iShred Vertical Shedder, the "first ever vertical paper shredder." Really? A paper shredder?

This $100 gadget shreds up to six sheets of paper (even if it has staples) or credit cards through a thin vertical slot in the top of the device. It does the shredding relatively quietly (68 decibels) and has a bin-full sensor. The blades are fully enclosed, with no access to them, even when the top is removed to empty the shredded items.

Back to the Saturday Night Live skit, Steve Martin finally admits, "Oh, I know what it is!" Bill Murray takes another look, then agrees, "Oh, yeah. Oh, yeah," and chuckles. They walk out of the shot, then Martin leans back in and says, "What the hell was that?"

Share With:
Rate This Article

Born at a very young age with no foreknowledge of the event.