I think I first heard about Zubbles in 2006 when I came across a link to an article about them in Popular Science. I have been waiting for them ever since. When I emailed them in April 2006, I was told that a toy company had signed an agreement with C2C Technologies, “the emerging leader in temporary color technology,” and that Zubbles would be released in 2007. That same day, I set a Google Alert for the query [Zubbles].
In January of last year, after 2007 had come and gone with no Zubbles, I contacted the toy company, who told me that they would not be manufacturing Zubbles. I tried contacting somone from Zubbles, and my messages bounced.
In February of this year, I was able to get through to someone who was pleased to announce that his company had recently acquired the rights to Zubbles and would soon be going into production with a “limited spectrum” of colors in the spring.
Finally, on June 24th, Google Reader let me know of a new item in my Google Alert feed for Zubbles. Dennis Williamson, who had been keeping an eye on the Zubbles Store domain, had successfully ordered Zubbles. I placed my order as soon as I could.
Today, after no shipping notice or order status update on their online store, my Zubbles arrived. I opened them up right away, and started blowing blue bubbles in the office. There was some brief concern that they would stain the carpet, but within about 15 minutes the dye had faded from where the bubbles landed. That’s part of the great innovation of these bubbles. The dye doesn’t stain. Inventor Tim Kehoe spent years trying to find such a dye using science, but the label clearly states his final breakthrough: He used magic.
I soon took the Zubbles outside, where it was a bit windy, but the bubbles that made it off of the wand did pretty well. As you can see in the video above, I also had fun with them after work on my balcony. I enjoyed my time in the fresh air, so I think I’m going to start a healthy bubble habit. As in, “Hey, you want to go chat outside? I need a bubble break.” A bottle of regular bubbles is like 60¢ at a party store, so it should be pretty affordable.
While I was waiting for the dye to fade from my shirt (I thought I would shoot a time lapse), I accidentally spilled a bottle of Presto Pink. It looked like a crime scene:
The liquid dripped down to the patio below, so I really hope nobody is living in that apartment right now. I don’t need the cops knocking on my door.
Yes, I’m the creepy guy from upstairs who blows bubbles on his balcony, dumps blood onto your patio, and then takes pictures of it.
Fortunately, the dye did fade after about an hour, so now it just looks like I over-watered my plants. Perhaps I should now actually get some plants to make this more plausible.
As you can see, it looks like my wood floor should be unstained as well.
By the way, the color didn’t fade from my shirt on its own like I thought it would, but after dabbing it with some water it was gone.
Overall, I’m pretty happy that I finally have Zubbles. The dye does collect at the bottom of the bubbles making them a bit bottom-heavy, and you don’t get as many bubbles per blow as you do with normal bubbles, but hey, they’re colorful! Now they just need to release them in more colors. I think it’d be really fun to have all of the Google colors. For now, Zubbles can only be used to mimic the Flickr logo.
Ok, gotta step outside and get my bubbles on.