I sometimes review gadgets for national broadsheet NRC Handelsblad and a few months ago I had the opportunity of checking out the Antworks, a device to
kill keep ants in. The pre-supplied ants dug themselves in so deep in the blue gel the Antworks contains that even their tracheal tubes couldn't provide them with oxygen anymore, or perhaps they popped a strychnine pill. Either way, they were all dead in a few days.
So I went to see an entomologist who told me that ants couldn't possibly survive in the Antworks. He gave me another colony of ants to prove just that. They died as well, except for the queen, who was already well on her way to colapse when I decided to set her free. Hopefully, the neighbourhood cats didn't get to her.
Needless to say, the distributor was somewhat ant-agonized by my review entitled 'Toy for sadists'. Then again, when I told her I went to see an entomologist to verify my findings, she had to look up the meaning of the word first. (Sadly, I am not kidding about the latter. Unfortunately, neither ignorance nor the entomologist's expert opinion stopped her from yelling at me. My physician says the ringing in my left ear should pass with time. In another decade or so.)
And now it turns out there are more people out there who had to have solemn ant burials, such as this guy from Bristol. So if you're looking for the perfect gift to teach that aspiring young executive about the harsh realities of business life and dog eat dog, this is it!
(By the way, I do write about 'larger' subjects than ants as well. But if you ever have an interesting gadget to review, and are pretty sure it doesn't kill anyone or -thing, drop me a line. If it's for sale in the Netherlands at least. I've got outlets in several national media, and I promise to check with an entomologist first if it turns out to suck after all.)