Forget all that useless stuff you received last holiday season. This year, use our helpful guide to drop a few hints in the right person’s ear, or just leave a few little yellow stickies on these suggestions for your girlfriend, wife, or brother to find. After all, how many gift subscriptions to Penthouse can one guy use?
By Deirdre Goldbeck
ARAMITH BALL AND CUE CASE
$420 • Aramith.com
Even if you have your own pool table at home, you’ll appreciate this handy travel case for your gear. It’s made of sturdy, lightweight aluminum and comes with a complete high quality ball set from the company that supplies them for pro tourneys around the world. There’s space for two shafts and butts, and pockets for chalk and accessories. Tack on an additional $30 for a personalized cue ball. What better way to protect your balls and stick?
FASTBACK UTILITY KNIFE
$17 • MilwaukeeTool.com
When you’re in the middle of a project and you’ve only got one free hand, you need an edge. Not only is this pocket-size blade designed to be opened with one hand, but it’ll open fast. It features an integrated wire stripper and a gut hook, and comes with five additional easy to change blades. In some cases, one hand can be better than two.
POWER BOX 360 DELUXE
$249 • BoschTools.com
Rock your garage or job site with four speakers and a subwoofer pumping out 50 watts of sound in all directions. It features 20 FM and 10 AM digital presets, a Sirius radio dock and play port, preset equalizer settings, and adjustable bass and treble. Or use the digital-media bay ports to plug in your MP3 player, SD card, or USB flash drive. It can charge both Bosch 14.4V or 18V lithium-ion batteries, which can also be used to power the 360. When it’s plugged into an electrical outlet, the four GFCI outlets can power tools or charge your cellphone or laptop. Plus, it’s moisture- and dust-proof and the aluminum and rubber roll cage will protect it from serious impact. Tough jobs require tough tools and music.
SELECT STEP LADDER
$200 plus shipping and handling • LittleGiantLadders.com
Sure, we’ve laughed at the infomercials, too. But every guy needs a good ladder, and this one actually lives up to the hype. It has an xtra-wide base and a spacious, built-in Comfort Platform for stability. It comes in two sizes, with ranges from four to six feet and five to eight feet, has independently telescopic sides for use on stairs and inclines, and ad justs to a 90-degree angle for working in corners. The AirDeck Safety System adds personal security with a sturdy handle. It has slots for paint cans and tools, and a magnetic tray for small hardware. The ladder weighs only 24 pounds but supports 300, and has wheels for easy transport. No more half-stepping.
MILWAUKEE HEATED JACKET
$119 with battery holder; $169 with holder, battery, and charger • MilwaukeeTool.com
Forget the cold. You’ll feel nothing but warmth in this multilayered jacket. It’s powered by M12 lithium-ion technology, and has four heat settings to choose from: preheat, high, medium, and low. The battery holder is located in a pocket at the lower rear area of the jacket, and the M12 can be used for lots of cordless Milwaukee tools. It comes in sizes ranging from medium to 2XL, and it’s water- and wind-resistant, so you’ll feel the heat no matter how long it takes to get those holiday lights up on the roof.
$30 • GerberGear.com
This implement of destruction won’t turn you into Machete’s Danny Trejo, but it might help bring out your inner badass. Both the head and handle are crafted from high-carbon steel, and the blade—a 15-inch fine edge on one side and an 18-inch saw edge on the other—is capable of doing double duty and double the damage. Sure, it’ll make a good weed wacker, but just imagine wielding it against a horde of rampaging zombies.
SENSOTOUCH 3D MODEL 1290X
$300 • USA.Philips.com
With a combined triple threat of GyroFlex 3D to closely trace the contours of your face and neck, UltraTrack heads to catch both longer and normal-length hairs and short stubble, and a SkinGlide system to reduce skin stress and irritation and allow for the use of shaving gel for added protection, you’ll get smooth shaves every time. You’ll also love the illuminated display that indicates remaining shave time, charging status, and when it’s time for cleaning. Scoring the new SensoTouch 3D will not only make you look good, it’ll put you at the top of your game.
$40 black; $30 brown • BionicGloves.com
An orthopedic hand surgeon designed these driving gloves, taking anatomy and ergonomics into consideration. That means a better grip, better dexterity, and special inserts and ventilation to keep your hands from getting clammy. They’re leather, they’re washable, and they come in black or brown. Bionic also makes fitness, golf, and tennis gloves in a wide range of sizes. Pick your sport.
TOUR MANAGER DUFFEL
$120 • ful.com
When you think of Tennessee, good things like BBQ, blues, and country come to mind. Now you can add fu–l tour luggage to that list. The Memphis-based company’s travel gear is inspired by music and designed with musicians in mind. This rolling duffel measures 16 by 30 by 14 inches, has two roomy sections for clothes, dual side areas, internal zipper compartments, a retractable pull-handle, and front compression buckles to tighten things up; it comes in black or slate. Next time you try to sneak past security, just say, “I’m with the band,” and roll through with your bag.
TX 730 SERIES CLASSIC FLYBACK CHRONOGRAPH
$395 • Amazon.com
This pilot instrument–inspired timepiece is perfect for daily wear and travel. Special features include second time zone and date, electronic compass, tachymeter, and luminous indexes. It has a sculpted dial, sapphire crystal, and a stainless-steel casing and bracelet band with a secure deployment clasp. Best of all, it’s water resistant to 330 feet, just in case you want to swim a few laps in the hotel pool or sneak in a little snorkeling at the beach.
$550 • Botta-design.de/en_solus.html
Minute hands are such a waste of time—or so goes the design philosophy behind Botta’s Solus timepiece. It delivers a single dial that tracks both hours and minutes, making it easy to tell the time (give or take five minutes) at a glance. This German engineered watch’s minimalist approach doesn’t end at its single hand. At less than five-millimeters thick, it’s as thin as a second skin, and the hand’s luminescent coating means you’ll never need a light to check the time during your darkest hours.—Crispin Boyer
3-G-CRS CHRONO SIGNATURE
$1,240 • PhilipStein.com
Philip Stein timepieces are designed to operate with two frequencies that work within the optimum range of seven to nine hertz: electromagnetic, which works via a dual-chip system, and natural, delivered through a metal disk. Exposure to these frequencies is said to promote better sleep, better concentration, and less stress. This watch also displays time and date, has a sapphire-coated curved mineral crystal, and is water-resistant to 165 feet. It’ll not only make you feel good, but you’ll look good, too.
TARMAC FLIGHT BAG
$130 large; $100 small • EagleCreek.com
With more airlines adopting the “fee for all” logic to help separate you from your hard-earned cash, selecting the right carry-on luggage is important. That way you can save your money for other things like in-flight drinks and snacks. These bags come in small (17 by 11 by 8 inches) and large (20.5 by 12 by 10.5 inches). Both have U-shaped openings, lockable two-way zippers, tote and padded shoulder straps, a back-slip for stacking on wheeled luggage, and an internal panel and mesh pocket for organizing your stuff. They come in black, cayenne/coffee, or palm.
READY SET JOE
RSJ $6; travel version $9 • Melitta.com
Whether you’re on the run or on the job, this personal brewer will give you great coffee every time. Just place the cone over the mug, add a filter with a scoop of your favorite blend, then pour in hot water. Brew it as strong or as weak as you want—it’s coffee made your way. The travel version is perfect for the urban commuter.
$20 • ShopStanley-PMI.com
Just name your poison—this rugged, stainless-steel flask can handle it. The eight-ounce capacity means you’ll always be prepared for a spontaneous toast with a buddy, to share an intimate sip with a hottie you pick up at a concert, and even have enough left to throw back for emergency situations. It’s tough, low-key, and looks cool too, making it the perfect guy’s gift.
STAR TREK ENTERPRISE PIZZA CUTTER
$25 • ThinkGeek.com
Dammit, Jim, it’s not just a pizza cutter, it’s the Starship Enterprise. It’s stainless steel, it’ll cut the hell out of a pie, and it’s a great conversation piece. What more can we say?
URBAN COLLECTION MASSAGE CHAIR
$1,700 • Panasonic.com
Last year you treated yourself to that drive in size LCD that takes up an entire wall, so why not upgrade your ratty recliner? Replace it with this advanced massage chair with realistic sensation. It has a remote that lets you select from four preset programs and eight different massage modes, including Chiro, Swedish, and Shiatsu, and it comes in black or brown. It’ll look great in your living room. Of course, you’ll have to figure out how to keep your friends and the dog out of it.
FRIIS COFFEE SAVOR
$22 • FriisCoffee.com
This canister’s revolutionary one-way valve and filter allows flavor-robbing carbon dioxide to escape while preventing air, light, and moisture from seeping in, which means your coffee will always taste as good as the day you first opened it, whether you buy whole bean or ground. The manual dial on the lid reminds you to change the filter every two months. It’s not rocket science—fresh coffee is good coffee.
GRIDDLER GRILL CENTRO
Griddler Grill Centro $129; Griddler $99 • Cuisinart.com
Guys love to grill. It’s in their genes, which means you shouldn’t let a little nor’easter or the fact that you live in a condo the size of a matchbox stop you from gettin’ your grill on. The Grill Centro lets you cook topside on a nonstick surface, while skewers of kebabs rotate automatically on the bottom. It also comes with rollers for hot dogs or sausages, and the grill plates flip so you can make hotcakes and eggs when you have an overnight guest. There’s also a smaller Griddler that multitasks as a contact grill, a double-wide, a griddle, and a panini press, so you can impress the girls. Who says you can’t grill in comfort all year round?