Researchers at Carnegie Mellon have developed the latest in long-distance surrogate affection. It's a robotic pillow named The Hug. Katie in Kansas hugs her pillow, which then transmits a signal over the phone lines, instructing another pillow in Florida to start squeezing Grandma. It's meant to bring the sense of touch back to long-distance communication. But for some reason I think I'm going to stick with simple phone calls (I have visions of the pillow malfunctioning and not letting go).
Not to be outdone, Japanese inventors have developed the Girlfriend Lap Pillow. Put simply, it is "a pillow imitating a woman's legs made from urethane foam." Tired Japanese businessmen can pretend that they're taking a nap with their head on their girlfriend's lap. Kind of like the Boyfriend Arm Pillow, but slightly creepier. I'm sure a fusion of the robotic Hug and the Girlfriend Lap Pillow is being developed somewhere, by someone. And while listing weird pillows, of course I can't leave out the breast pillow.