The deadly Whoopie Cushion
It's hardly surprising that if you become a Roman Emperor at the age of 15, your sense of humour may be a little juvenile.
Back in 218 AD, Syrian Emperor Varius Avitus Bassianus, also known as Heliogabalus, invented the first known whoopie cushion from animal bladders.
He was assassinated by the time he was 18.
OK, so it wasn't just the whoopie cushion that got Heliogabalus killed, he was also a prize arsehole in many other ways. For example, he'd often get his party guests drunk until they'd pass out. Which was when he'd dump them in a bedroom full of toothless leopards, lions and bears. Imagine that hangover!
The modern incarnation of the Whoopie Cushion was invented by Canadians.
In the 1920s, employees of JEM Rubber Co. in Toronto often experimented with scrap sheets of rubber. The owner of the company approached Samuel Sorenson Adams, the inventor of numerous practical jokes and owner of S.S. Adams Co., with the newly invented item.
Adams said that the item was 'too vulgar' and would never sell.
JEM Rubber offered the idea to the Johnson Smith Company which sold it with great success. S.S. Adams Co. later released its own version, but called it the 'Razzberry Cushion.'