In the last decade there have been numerous trends that have surfaced. These trends vary from Furbys to Beanie Babies to Italian Charm Bracelets, and now it appears that the next massive trend has arisen. It has taken the form of the little silicone rubber bands known as Silly Bandz. While they are only thin pieces of silicone, these bands have an unusual catch to them that made them so popular. While on the wrist they appear to be an ordinary colorful bracelet, but once they leave the wrist they take a shape. The shapes vary from animals to a rocket ships, making them more appealing for trade and collecting. This gives them an extraordinary advantage over bracelets with only one use. According to an article on businessweek.com, the idea for these cleverly shaped bracelets came to Rob Croak, the man who made them so popular, when he was in Japan on a business trip. When he arrived, he saw animal-shaped rubber bands used as office supplies. These were not a great success since most companies did not wish to spend the extra money on rubber bands. Yet Croak saw an opportunity to turn that idea into something successful. Croak then decided that if they were just a little thinner, they could make a fun clothing accessory. And so began Silly Bandz. Since their creation, the bands have expereinced an extreme amount of success. According to “USA Today,” the bands have raised annual sales from $10,000 to the $100 million the company makes now. If you walk down a hallway in a local school, there will be countless students with armfuls of the bracelets. Yet, as with every trend, these bracelets have received mixed feelings from different people. “Even though I have a few that I wear, I would never pay for them,” said Sophomore Bethany Stutzman. “They’re only cool if they’re given to me for free! But they are fun to trace on my paper when I’m bored in class.” Others have less than fond feelings for the funky shaped accessories. “I think they are just flat-out stupid and a waste of money,” said Sophomore Joey Farfan. “I’m not a fan of them,” said Sophomore Alathea Douglas. “I don’t own any and they look like twisted rubber bands on your wrist which annoys me, hence why I don’t wear them.” And still others see it only as a smart business invention. “The guy who invented them is a genius and probably a billionaire by now,” said Sophomore Karen Ulis. No matter how this latest trend is viewed, there is one fact that is undeniable; Silly Bandz are a cleverly designed product that has made a huge product from almost nothing, and that is certainly not a silly fact.