Prizes: The Silly, The Strange & The Simply Stupid

Why are we so obsessed with games? Well, there seem to be a number of reasons. First off, people love to win. Sure, there are some people who claim to not be that competitive, but we’re sure they’d change their tune if they were winning a gold medal at the Olympics. And what’s better than winning? Winning prizes. Whether it’s a teddy bear the size of your bathroom, a gold fish, or a big-old cheque, taking home a prize makes that win oh-so-much sweeter.

Let’s take a look at some of the silliest, the strangest, and the simply stupid prizes that people have won throughout the years. We’ll bet you they were quite excited about them too…

A blow-up alligator

It probably comes as no surprise that a fair few of the most ridiculous prizes ever won were dished out on old-school 90’s game shows. Now, there have been some rubbish prizes on the UK game show Fun House, but a blow-up alligator? Really?

Superfans of the show have recently launched a crowdfunding initiative to launch a Fun House “immersive experience” in London, UK. Is Fun House best left in the past, or should it be revived? The number of backers so far say it should probably stay in the past…

A milking cow


Yep, you read that right. At a charity bingo event hosted by an independent pub in the American countryside, the lucky woman who won the first line found herself the new owner of a milking cow. You may be thinking “It’s not so bad I guess, the winner could live in a farming community…” Nope. The winner was visiting from New York City. Let’s just hope the cow ended up on a farm as opposed to tied up to a fire escape in the Big Apple…

Interestingly, even in the digital version of bingo it’s possible to end up with a physical prize or two. Although most bingo sites pay out cash, some online bingo providers run loyalty/VIP schemes which allow players to pick a prize such as an HD television or new iPhone once they’ve amassed enough points. We wouldn’t expect to find livestock on that list, though!

Socks


Oh look, we’re back in the 90s. UK game show The Generation Game with Bruce Forsyth (may he rest in peace) once gave away the wonderful, super exciting prize of socks. You know, the things your great aunt would get you for Christmas, causing you to have to force a smile even though you actually wanted the latest Power Rangers action figure… 

On that note, fans of The Generation Game (or any 90s game show) will be pleased to know that it’s coming back to British TV and will be presented by ex-Great British Bake Off hosts Sue Perkins and Mel Giedroyc.

A shower

Onto a bit of sport now. In 2014, Tom Meeusen, the winner of the Superprestige Cross race in Belgium, took his place on the podium. He was handed a bottle of champagne (good start), a bunch of flowers (yep, pretty standard), and a shower. It didn’t even come with a tub, just the shower head and the pipe. 

If you’re into cycling type sports, you may want to steer clear of the Superprestige Cross race (unless, of course, you’re in need of a new shower). Maybe try out the Tour de France instead. Last year’s prize fund was an eye-watering $3.3m (with the winner taking home over $1m).


Cheese

We know it may be a dream come true for some, but winning his body weight in cheese was probably not what Steve Webster had in mind when he won the Italian Open back in 2005. Okay, okay, so there was a prize fund too, but who loves dairy so much that they’d be happy to win 70kgs of cheese? Plus, whether you’re a cheese fan or not, it’s a downright weird prize.

To be honest, unless you’re a world-class golfer who can bag yourself that winning prize fund, we’d stick to the driving range.

A mini-disk player

Anyone remember the 00s UK game show Jungle Run? Well, one lucky contestant found themselves to be the proud owner of a mini-disk player. The thing is, they weren’t even good at the time. Expected by Sony to be The Next Big Thing, mini-disk players were supposed to be replacing CD players. The problem? The mp3 player came along pretty much at the same time. Goodbye mini-disk players, hello disappointed Jungle Run contestant.

To be honest, we’d advise you to just forget Jungle Run. Get yourself on American Ninja Warrior and you could win $1m as well as the prestigious title of, well, American Ninja Warrior.

And that concludes our list of silly, strange, and simply stupid prizes. There are some pretty weird prizes out there, right?

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