December 13, 2010 | 8:16am
Construction permits on new gingerbread homes are not issued until the first week in December, after which the confectionary edifices spring up everywhere.
Gingerbread houses were first built in Germany, Scandinavia, and Russia, and popularized in the 17th and 18th centuries. Gingerbread men, as they were later called, drew up the original blueprints.
When you Google "gingerbread house," you're smacked with thousands of images of immaculately tailored and creative Christmas-oriented goodies -- with lots of icing -- plus a lot of old Victorians near Golden Gate Park.
Not many of these bread-based homes, naturally, are suitable for habitation. But they taste good. And they look cool. Here's a list of a dozen of the weirdest ones we found. Just make sure to click on the picture for enlarged, gingerbread-y goodness.
1. Who made this -- Sid and Marty Kroftt?
Is this supposed to be a cartoon, or a photographic representation of actual food? It appears to be mounted on aluminum foil, which a cartoon would not require. It also seems to contain purple gingerbread, gumdrops, and deformed people. Another weird thing: A glowing object sits just inside the house. Kryptonite, perhaps, for flavor?