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My reviews of absurd yelp reviews

I love the open textboxes on the internet. Sites establish an intended purpose for these textboxes, but occasionally someone writes in a way that teaches us more about them than the main topic.

Location review sites are full of this inadvertent source of comedic content. I've been screenshotting any weird review I stumble onto for a couple years now. In accordance with these sites' philosophies that everything in life must be rated, I will be reviewing these reviews.

The reviews

Yelp review for the Ben Rebhuhn House by Charles Young: "I have 3 houses, one in Perth Australia on the Swan River, one in Jackson Hole Wyoming that's on a mountain and the third ni the desert neart Tucson Arizona. Each one is more beautiful and larger than Frank Loyd Wright's homes. Each with more acreage and splendid vistas and gardens. Still I appreciate Wright accomplished and my favorite is the "Waterfall House". I would never live in one of his homes, they're just not suitable for my tastes. I like a beautiful home with large vistas of a lake, river, valley, mountains or such to make it my home."
As someone who hates Frank Lloyd Wright's leaky starchitecture and abhorrent personality, I am inspired by Charles finding a new way to dismiss his work. This review is the definition of "weird flex but ok". What's exciting is this review focuses on his work in total rather than this specific house. Is Charles reviewing a place he's never been to just so that he could brag? For that possibility, I have to nearly disqualify him. 2/5.
Yelp review for Glass Bottle Beach by Doug Reside: "Fun to hunt for old trash on a massively polluted beach."
Short and sweet with an ankle-breaking twist. You're forced to learn more about this place in order to make sense of this review. Once you've done that, you're already invested enough to start planning your visit. 5/5. It's the "For sale: baby shoes, never worn" of reviews.
Two Yelp reviews for Highland Park by Kate M. Review one: "in the late spring and in the summer at 6pm or later watch out for people making out or young people having sex on the benches or behind the trees." Review two: "best place to bring kids in the summer"
Kate really panders to my love for unexpected twists. At first I imagined these reviews as playing out over the course of her day, where she immediately wrote a positive review upon arrival as an act of gratitude-journalling only for the idyllic family-friendly moment to unravel later in her evening. Now I'm realizing these reviews referencing summer were written in February. She wasn't Yelping as if it were live-tweeting, instead she wrote about her distant memory as two reviews to truly play with the medium. 4/5
Yelp review by Dan R.: "I would say this bar is good.  I would never rate any gay bar a 5. The owner is very friendly.  The people there are not really friendly, but then again, what gay people are.  The club side is only open on friday and saturday night.  Saturday and wednesdays are the only days that the club is full.  Other than that. it's pretty quiet.  I go there time and time again.  There are fights there a lot.  Jeleousy.  If you are hot, then dont expect people to be nice to you."
This one starts with a fun puzzle. Dan "would never rate any gay bar a 5", so does that mean he's a cishet man with the gall to review a gay bar? If so, why would he leave any review and disclose that he goes there "time and time again". I personally choose to believe he's a gay man because I love the review's last line so much. Maybe my dragging him means I'm not a nice person "but then again, what gay people are"? 5/5 for being the most quotable review.
Google review for Sagamore Hill National Historic Site by Edward Green: "OK. So I went there the worst possible time, in the middle of a heat wave and a pandemic, no shelter, no facilities! Pretty grounds. If you expect cooling breezes off the Sound you may be disappointed, and that arm of the sea nearby smells stagnant. If you expect the quiet of the country as Roosevelt enjoyed it you may be disappointed also, as the relative local quiet reveals a roar of distant expressways and manmade sound, the kind of noise pollution which drives some people crazy until they complain of the Hum. I get it now - - the hum is no one thing, it's the general background of low frequency manmade noise intruding where you hoped for complete quiet, worse in the borderlands neither urban nor country, close enough to country that you can hear the background pollution the way you see light pollution when you are close enough to darkness which you cannot perceive in the noisy brightness of the city, where neither dark nor quiet lives. The place makes me yearn for real country, which I had all but forgotten existed, forgotten so completely that I didn't even realize I missed it."
I get excited whenever I see a long review that isn't a 1-star rant. Edward made this an emotional reading experience, a slow first half before jumping into a depressing novel. This made me need to read his other reviews. I found that he mainly reviews diners and grocery stores longing for the past whilie making philosophical poetry like "every place seems to have poor values on apples these days. I blame people for this atrocity of taste - apple tree don't grow bad apples, people do!" 3/5 this review is spiritually a French film.
Yelp Review for a billiards hall by Cheyanne P.: "This place has terrible customer service, the owner is white and racist also she is overweight which doesn't makee the situation better."

This is the review you stumble on when you've taken a daytrip to escape the city. Reading the first half of the review makes you question "Have I ventured out too far?" which leads to "What am I really escaping from?" which leads to "Oh no the problem is coming from within, not my location." Right before you fall too deep in this spiral of thoughts you're broken out of it by reading further for Cheyenne's twist into fatphobia. You summarily disregard any near breakthrough you almost had.

Revisiting this review, I discovered that Yelp actually has a Terms of Service and that this review has violated them. 0/5.

I came here with my boyfriend yesterday. We both got dark meat chicken with two sides. The chicken was AMAZING but that Amanda's corn pudding got me wet. Idk how this Amanda is but her corn puddin is ridiculously good.

Learning that Yelp does indeed ban inappropriate comments makes it even more exciting that this review was not flagged. I'd like to think that Yelp moderators have never weighed in on "makes me wet" because this is the first person ever to use the phrase to review food.

I had the corn pudding, and it did live up to the hype. 5/5.

If this was mildly entertaining to you, I recommend this Reply All episode on someone who used reviews as their primary personal writing outlet. I also made a page celebrating my favorite entries on another open textbox, IMDB goof pages.