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YBMW 2011 Holiday Gift Guide: Geekgasm

Posted by Hoob on November 16th, 2011
(+1 rating, 1 votes)
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  • Publisher: Ecoloblue
  • MSRP: $1199-1699

Ecoloblue Environmental Water Generator
We’ve honestly been wanting to feature the Ecoloblue Environmental Water Generator in the guide for as long as we’ve been doing it. What’s so special about it? The machine makes water!!! That’s right, I’m sitting here right now, drinking an ice cold glass of water that the Ecoloblue pulled right out of the air. How freakin sweet is that?!?

This machine pulls water directly from the air and then runs it through a reverse osmosis filter, several layers of carbon filters and then even runs it through a UV filter to kill off any potential bad things that might have come in through the air. We can’t speak highly enough about this machine. Depending on the model that you buy, it can make between 26 and 30 liters of water a day and it can store over three gallons at a time… at the temperature of your choosing! again, depending on which model you purchase, you either get hot or cold options (with digital temp control) or when you get the 30 S model, it can even be dispensed to you in a carbonated form… Kinda makes that soda stream you bought look like garbage, right?

This fits into so many categories for gifts. Not only is it perfect for the kitchen, and it is truly an epic gift, but this is also an essential survival tool for when society breaks down and the world ends at the end of next year. When everyone else is in water lines waiting for their daily ration because the whole public water supply is contaminated with zombie virus, you’ll be kicking back in your house, sucking water straight from the air and into your frosty glass. You don’t even have to worry about when the power grid shuts down because the Ecoloblue also has an add on solar generator that you can buy!

Get yours today at: Ecoloblue
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  • Publisher: Think Geek
  • MSRP: $24.99
  • Age: 6+

Huey the Color Copying Chameleon Lamp

When we saw this item from Think Geek we knew that we had to test it out. Chameleons are cool. They always will be. Now, the kids are loving them too because of Disney’s movie “Tangled”. There are plenty of cool chameleon toys out there, but there are not really any items like this. They call him Huey the Color Copying Chameleon Lamp. You can use him as a plugged in night light or you can throw some batteries in him and carry him around to have a lot of fun. You see, he’s got a sensor on his underside which will cause him to light up in the same color as anything you place him on. We put this little guy to the test for several days and we were unable to stump him. Sadly, he can’t really do plaids or spots, but who would really expect that anyways. Point is, this is a great stocking stuffer for any grown geek and an excellent lamp/ toy for any kid over 6.

Get yours today at: Think Geek
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  • Publisher: Silver Screen Machines
  • MSRP: $79.99

Die Cast Cars of Classic Movies and TV Shows

This is a great gift for car collectors and general pop culture geeks in your life. Silver Screen Machines has taken some of the greatest cars from TV Shows and movies and turned them into exquisitely detailed 1:18 scale models. Right now they are offering: The Munster coach and Dragula from The Munsters, Greased Lightning from the film ‘Grease’ and Speed Racer’s Mach 5. We only had a chance to look over the Greased Lightning, but if it’s quality is indicative of the rest of the line, all of these cars are worth owning.

What can we really say about this car? You can tell that there was a lot of care put into the design of the vehicle. it is spot on from what we remember from the movie and is sure to make anyone who loved ‘Grease’ break into song. The paint job was fantastic and very clean, there’s just nothing bad to say. If we were going to improve the car in any way, we’d probably just turn the radio on the dash into a sound chip and have it play the ‘Greased Lightning’ song, but that would probably be a licensing nightmare and take the cars price point way up. This is a definite buy!

Get yours today at: Autoworldstore.com
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  • Publisher: Hasbro
  • MSRP: $7.99
  • Age: 6+

Hasbro’s Kreo Bumblebee

When I was a kid, I had the nasty habit of wanting to know what made my Transformers work… so I would take them apart with a screw driver. If only Kreo’s were around when I was young. Kreo’s are Hasbro’s answer to LEGOs. In fact, the Kreo pieces even work with LEGOs.

There are several levels of Kreo Sets out there for Transformers. We tried the smallest level and it was actually a lot of fun. Unlike a normal transformer, you don’t actually transform the car into a robot. You take him apart and build the robot. However, the car rolls really well on the table and the robot form has great articulation and an excellent robot head. I can only imagine that the bigger sets are even more spectacular. If you have a kid who likes Transformers and likes building toys, there is probably a set that is right for them.

Get yours today at: Hasbro
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  • Publisher:Pleoworld
  • MSRP: $469.00
  • Age: Age: 6 (with supervision) - 60 million years old

PleoRB The Robot Dinosaur
I remember the first time I saw a Pleo, it was way back when I was writing for a magazine called Toy Shop. In the years since, the Pleo, which was cool even back then, has been revamped into one of the sweetest creatures we’ve ever seen. I don’t want to call this thing a toy, that just wouldn’t be fair. Pleo is a robotic companion. He isn’t quite the bear from AI, but he’s the closest thing that you can buy on the consumer market. I could spend pages talking about all the features on a Pleo. First, he’s a super cute dinosaur… like Land Before Time cute. Next, this isn’t just some out of the box robot. When you get him (or her) it is in infant mode. Over the course of several days it matures into a playful, puppy type dino pal. You can teach him tricks, get him to sing for you, he’s got cameras and sensors to recognize touch and shapes. As your owner, you name him and he’ll treat you like a master. if you drop him, he’ll act injured and you’ll have to nurse him back to health. There’s so much that he does, it is really the closest I’ve seen to a real pet. You even have to feed him. Also, if you are mean to him, he gets depressed, so be sure to pet him and be nice and keep him happy.
The cool thing about Pleo is that he works on several levels. He’s a great toy for the whole family. He’s also an excellent training tool for kids who won’t stop yammering about wanting a puppy. Most interestingly, he’s also a great gift for your older relatives who live alone. Because Pleo reacts to emotional touch and stimuli, he makes a great virtual companion for the elderly… also, if they forget to feed him, he won’t die in the corner and stink up the house. We can’t recommend the PleoRB enough!

Get yours today at Pleoworld
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  • Publisher: Hasbro
  • MSRP: $9.99
  • Age: 6+

Nerf Vortex Gun

It isn’t Christmas if there isn’t a Nerf Gun under the tree and the new Vortex Proton is the perfect gift to keep your siblings at bay when they go grabbing for your presents. It seems like every year, Nerf figures out how to shoot their spongy little ammo that much further and this year is no exception. Instead of darts, this gun uses foam discs that are really easy to load and really fun to fire at someone’s forehead when they are not expecting it. If there was one thing that we’d suggest you watch out for on this gun it is the ammo supply. The gun comes with three discs. Anyone who has ever had a Nerf gun knows that three pieces of ammo will disappear pretty quick. If you are going to drop your cash on the gun, go ahead and spend $10 dollars more on a package of extra ammo. That way you’ll know the fun will last for more than 20 minutes!

Get yours today at: Hasbro
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  • Publisher: Knex
  • MSRP: $60.00
  • Age: 9+

Knex Doubleshot Coaster

Is your kid ready for a construction toy that takes them beyond just making buildings and vehicles out of LEGOS? It might be time to start looking at Knex’s really cool roller coaster kits, especially the new Double Shot. The Double Shot is an 1,100 piece kit that builds an amazing working roller coaster that stands over three feet tall and uses over 30 feet of track. We liked the challenge and the fun of this kit. It was great that they actually include a chain life for the coaster cars. It really gives it an authentic coaster feel. We also liked that you could go online and get alternate design plans. Of course, you can also use your imagination and build something totally new. If your kid is a builder… this is a must have.

Get yours today at: Knex.com
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  • Publisher: Knex
  • MSRP: $9.00- $100.00
  • Age: 6+

Knex Mario Kart Wii building Sets

Need a way to trick your kid into leaving the video games behind and doing something with their hands? The Knex Mario Kart Wii building sets will be your best friend for a long time to come. Knex has really done something spectacular here. They’ve essentially re-created the entire Mario Kart game in the real world, on a toy level scale. If your kid wants to play this game, they’ve got to actually build it themselves. They assemble the track. The assemble the Mario Kart Vehicles. They even assemble the obstacles and traps from the game. You can either start them out with something simple like just the car and a trap set like Mario Vs the Goombas or you can go all out and get some of the Bowsers’ Castle sets. When it is all together, the motorized karts will run the track and set off all the traps. It isn’t just a great toy for kids who love Mario Kart, it is a great entry point to introduce your kids to the basic physics behind rube goldberg machines.

Get yours today at: Knex
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  • Publisher:Triplogik
  • MSRP: $149.95

Triplogik Mile Logger
Sometimes gifts might not be sexy, but they are super practical. The Triplogik is one of those gifts. At its core, the Triplogik is a simple to use mile logging device that will make your life a lot easier, especially if you are someone who drives a lot for work. We played around with this device for over a week and we were amazed at how well it worked. Hooking it into our cars was beyond simple… like, my techno-challenged 61 year old relative had no problem with it. The hardest part is just finding the right outlet in your car… but I suppose that would have been easier if I had checked my car’s manual.

This isn’t a GPS… it is sort of a reverse GPS. It tracks everywhere that you’ve been in your car with remarkable precision. The applications for it are great. If you are someone who drives a lot for work, this thing does all that stupid math that you wind up having to track and add up at the end of the year when you do taxes. Just push a couple buttons and the software will print out an exact report of your tax deductible miles to either turn into your boss for reimbursement or for you to use directly on your taxes.
We also figured that there are a couple other purposes that make this a great gift for parents of teenagers. Make using it a condition of driving privileges and you’ll learn all kinds of things about where they went when they told you they were at the library… and all sorts of other bits of info.
The Triplogik looks like a simple device… and it is simple to use, but it really is an amazing machine. Everyone around the office agreed that this is one of the top practical gifts of the year.

Get yours today at Triplogik
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  • Publisher: Think Geek
  • MSRP: $29.99

Star Trek Enterprise Pizza Cutter

In past years we’ve had some great Star trek items. Star Trek Sporks, Star Trek Bottle Openers, but this is just a whole different level of awesome. Not only is this possibly the nicest and fanciest Pizza Cutter that we’ve ever seen, but it is shaped like the USS Enterprise! This isn’t some pirate job either. It is an actual licensed item from Star Trek. You know what that means? At 3 AM when Shatner wakes up with the munchies, this is probably what he uses to slice up his Totinos microwave pizza!

We can’t speak enough about how beautiful this thing is. If you weren’t looking closely at it, you would think it was a prop replica, not a kitchen utensil. It has a Laser Etched Stainless steel blade with solid zinc-alloy chromium plated body. Also, it cuts through a crust like a photo torpedo through a Kingon Bird of Prey.

Get yours today at: dea2_enterprise_pizza_cutter_alt.jpg

  • Publisher: Kotobukiya
  • MSRP: $9.99 Per Pair

Star Wars Chop Saber Chopsticks

OK, I really don’t have a lot to say here… just, wow. If you like to use Chopsticks and you like Star Wars, get these now. The look great. Each set is actually modeled off of the look of a specific character’s light saber. You can get them in Darth Vader, Darth Maul, Luke Skywalker, Yoda and Mace Windu. It’s a geeky sushi lover’s dream come true!

Get yours today at Think Geek
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  • Publisher: Gemmy
  • MSRP: $19.99
  • Age: 3+

Gemmy Lightning Bug
Last year we featured a great little interactive butterfly in a jar from Gemmy. This year they’ve stepped it up and put out a lightning bug. It seems like a pretty simple little creation: a mason jar with a little electronic lightning bug on a wire. tap the jar and he lights up and flits around. But, as simple as it sounds, you will find yourself playing with his guy for much longer than you’d expect. kids love it, adults like to zone out with it while they should be working. This is an excellent toy, stocking stuffer or just all around little bit of geekery.

Get yours today at: Gemmy.com
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  • Publisher: Potting Shed Creations
  • MSRP: $30-$50.00

Potting Shed Creations Bonsai Tree Kit

Any fool can buy a bonsai tree and groom it, but it takes a lot of guts to try growing your own from a seed. This is another beautiful kit from Potting Shed Creations that works as a great gift for everyone from the people who seriously like bonsai trees to the hipsters who like them ironically. Along with adults and everyone else who we liked this for, we thought this was a great gift for older kids who have ADD. There’s nothing more centering than nursing and maintaining a bonsai tree from seed to full sized plant.

Get yours today at: Pottingshedcreations.com
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  • Publisher: Adventure Medical Kits
  • MSRP: $60.00

SOL Origin Tool
Let’s face it, the world is pretty much going to end in the next twelve months. Zombies are coming, people are occupying… pretty much everything, the mayan calendar is coming to an end and apparently there’s a secret planet hiding behind the sun that wants to kill us. That means, the name of the game is survival and the Adventure Medical Kits makes some of the best portable survival gear that we’ve seen around. First, there’s the tool that you’ll always want to have in your pocket when the stuff hits the fan, the Sol Origin. Here’s a list of everything this bad boy packs in its handful-sized case:
Sewing 1 Sewing Needle, #7, Darner
Survival Instructions 1 62 Lifesaving Tools & Techniques
Survival Tools 1 Aluminum Foil, Heavy Duty, 3 Sq. Ft. 1 Combination Knife, LED Light & Whistle 1 Compass, Button, Liquid Filled 1 Fire Lite Fire Striker 4 Fish Hook, #10 1 Fishing Line 1 Safety Wire, Stainless Steel, (6 ft of 0.020″) 1 Signal Mirror, Rescue Flash 2 Snap Swivel, Size 12 2 Split Shot, Lead B 4 Tinder Quick

That is actually more than I had with me when I left home for college. We loved everything about this tool. It was light, durable and so packed it information and tools that you’d have to be dumber than snookie to not survive with it in your hands.

Get yours today at: Adventure Medical Kits
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  • Publisher: Adventure Medical Kits
  • MSRP: $15.00

Sol Survival Medic Kit
When you pick up the Sol Origin for your pocket, the Survival Medic Kit should be your next purchase. When the world ends, this will be one of the first things we pack in our bags. It is just under the size of a Gameboy and it packs all sorts of extra goodies to extend your Sol Origin (and even cover you in ways the sol can’t ). Here’s what comes in this baggy of survival goodness:

The ultralight waterproof pouch is an SOL Emergency Blanket, Fire Lite™ sparker, Tinder-Quik tinder, SLIM Rescue Howler™ whistle, duct tape, and button compass, as well as antiseptic wipes, gauze, and bandages to patch up cuts and scrapes. Each kit in the Medic series features proprietary DryFlex™ bags for the ultimate in ultralight, waterproof storage.

Get yours today at: Adventure medical Kits
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  • Publisher: Adventure Medical Kits
  • MSRP: $15-$40.00

Sol Quick Clot

If you are a klutz, or just smart enough to know that you don’t want to be walking around bleedin when the zombies are a feedin than you’d best be packing some quick clot in your survival pack as well. We were amazed by this stuff, granted, none of us actually caused ourselves an arterial wound to see if Quick Clot really is as good as they say at stopping bleeding, so we just had to take the company’s word on it. Still, they use this stuff on soldiers when they get shot in the field to stop the bleeding and keep them alive. Any survivalist you know would love to have a few packs of this in their stocking.

Get yours today at: Adventure Medical Kits
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  • Publisher: Cufflinks.com
  • MSRP: $65.00

Cufflinks.com USS Enterprise Cuff links

Do you have a Star Trek Fan in your life that wants to find a way to fly their geek flag even when they are in the draconian confines of the workplace? This might be one of the classiest ways to… Make It So! These cuff links will let your loved ones feel like they can boldly go where no man has gone before, even when they are stuck behind a desk in a cubicle more cruel than any Cardassian prison.

Get yours today at: Cufflinks.com
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  • Publisher: Crosley
  • MSRP: $149.95

Crosely Portable USB Turntable

Every gift guide that you read this year will have some sort of media player on it. We have one too, but ours is a little more retro than whatever Apple is pimping this season. Sure, a turn table doesn’t play Angry Birds, but there is nothing like the sound of vinyl. A few years ago we featured a turntable that had a CD burner in it. In the end, it was cool, but clunky. This turntable from Crosely is light, portable and easy to use. It also hooks right up to your computer through a USB port so you can back up all your vinyl to mp3 format. It also does something that a lot of turntables don’t do nowadays, it plays 33 1/3, 45,and 78 RPM records. I love this feature because I inherited all of my grandfather’s old 78’s and most players don’t accommodate them anymore. It really has everything that you want. Decent stereo speakers, all the software you need for backing up the music, it even plays your MP3 player for you through the turn table speakers. This is a great gift for the music lover in your life.

Get yours today at: Crosley Radio
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  • Publisher: Spoonsisters
  • MSRP: $28.00

Obsessive Chopping Disorder
Do you have a friend or family member who likes to cook, but is so OCD that you want to push them into a meat grinder? This might be the perfect gift for them! The Obsessive Chopping Disorder cutting board is just what the doctor ordered for the people out there who obsess about the perfect julienne or dice. It has all the angles, measurements and graphs built in so that the cooking savant in your life can cook without having a panic attack. It measures 9″x12″ and is made from Beechwood. We loved it, but we weren’t sure whether we should cook with it or use it to design an airplane.

Get yours today at: Spoonsisters
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  • Publisher: Spoonsisters
  • MSRP: $19.95

Spink

I have spilled more cups of liquid on or near my computer than I feel comfortable admitting. It is a wonder that I haven’t fried my machine yet. This might be the perfect stocking stuffer for someone klutzy like me. At first, we loved having this in the office, because it sounds funny and led to everyone calling each other “Spinks” for no good reason. The we actually tried it and I’ll be damned if the thing isn’t awesome! What does it do? It uses a suction cup to create an anchoring system for your hot or cold beverage. It is not the prettiest thing in the world, but if you’ve got a friend or workmate who has killed a keyboard with a cup of coffee, they will thank you.

Get yours today at: Spoon Sisters
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  • Publisher: Mangroomer
  • MSRP: $39.99

Man Groomer do-it Yourself Electric Back Hair Shaver
Are you or your loved one so hairy that they are often asked why they are wearing a sweater at the beach? Even worse… when you walk by, do people make Wookiee noises? If the answer is yes than this might be the most important gift you give yourself/them this holiday season. What sets this apart from other back shaving kits? This one is on an adjustable arm so you can really get to all the places you need to groom without killing yourself. Now, it does take a little bit of practice, but once you get the hang of it, it is much easier and less painful (actually painless) than waxing or anything else. It makes a good joke gift, but will actually be appreciated from your friends who swim with their shirts on… you know who I’m talking about.

If you have other, um, areas… that need grooming, they also make a special electric “private body” shaver that you might want to try. In other words, it’s a special electric shaver for your junk.

Get yours today at: mangroomer
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  • Publisher: Zoku
  • MSRP: $36.95

Zoku Duo Quick Pop Maker

Last year, the Zoku Quick Pop maker was one of the most popular items in the guide. This year, the guys from the coolest, nine minute Popsicle making device in the world are back with a smaller version for people who have limited freezer space. The Duo (as you might guess) has two Popsicle slots compared to the original Zoku’s three. It is just as amazing as the original and still yields the tastiest pops in town. We know people who have taken something as simple as fruit yogurt and turned it into their child’s favorite daily treat. We love taking the 100 calorie Jello packs and using them to make Pudding pops that remind us of the golden days of Bill Cosby when everything was better after a Puddin Pop. Anyone who doesn’t like this might not have a soul. It is one of the most perfect all around gifts you can find.

Get yours today at: Zoku
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  • Publisher: Zoku
  • MSRP: $14.95

Zoku Character Kit
One of the coolest things about the Zoku is that they freeze up so fast (around nine minutes)that you can make layers and even designs in your Popsicle. In the past, they’ve offered a limited number of stencils and tools for this, but now they have a full on character kit. If you want to up the ante on your already amazing Popsicles, this kit is an essential add on. We loved how easy it was to use. in just minutes we were making our Popsicles into ghosts, kittens and any manner of mutant awesomeness. If there was ever going to be something neater than a Popsicle, it would be a Popsicle with a face. Everyone loves to eat frozen faces!

Get yours today at: Zoku
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  • Publisher: ThinkGeek
  • MSRP: $12.99

Ice Speed Chess

This is the kind of thing we love… DUAL PURPOSE GIFT! Ya, you can’t go wrong with a dual purpose gift, especially one that can be a game or a beverage enhancer like the Ice Speed Chess Set from Thinkgeek. First, here’s what it comes with: Two silicone ice molds that make enough chess pieces to fill out both sides of a board. We loved this gift for a couple reasons. First, we love oddly shaped ice cubes. Second, we know people who take forever to play a game. Like, we’ve joked that the ice caps will melt before they make their move. This is perfect for them. Want to add some stakes to your game? Make your pieces with an unpleasant beverage and each time you take an opponent’s piece, they have to eat it. Sure, it sounds cruel, but it is a lot of fun.

So, whether you need an interesting accent in the glasses at your next party ort you are a hard core chess fan who likes the idea of trying to beat the melting clock… or playing in the snow, this is a great gift for this holiday season.

Warning, don’t be the idiot who puts these chess pieces on a fancy wooden board. Don’t be that guy. No.

Get yours today at: Thinkgeek
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  • Publisher: Thinkgeek
  • MSRP: $19.99

Rubik’s Mirror Cube Blocks
To this day, Rubik’s puzzles to me remain as big a mystery as bra straps were to me when I was 16. Impossible to solve, but you are guaranteed a great sense of achievement if you ever manage it. With that said, the new Rubik’s Mirror Blocks Cube makes me feel like that same stupid teenager, fumbling around in the dark and getting nowhere. This is not an easy puzzle, but the twist of having the blocks inside the puzzle be different sizes really adds a nice new dimension that sets this puzzle apart from its predecessors. Drop this bad boy in someone’s stocking and they will both love and hate you for it. Just watch the expression on their face as they begin to play with it and it goes from innocent cube to twisted crystalline shape. Add some eggnog and you have hours of fun.

Get yours today at: Think Geek
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  • Publisher: Thinkgeek
  • MSRP: $7.99

Caffeinated Chocolate Milk Straws
Because sometimes crack cocaine with a Four Loko Chaser just doesn’t have the kick you want in your beverage, Thinkgeek has released straws full of caffeinated chocolate milk mix that packs 200 mg of caffeine per serving. Just in case you are wondering, that’s like two and a half energy drinks. We tried it and after we finished bouncing off the walls and building a LEGO Death Star in just under 20 minutes we were able to take a minute and realize that this magic elixir of energy and pain is actually pretty tasty. Slide this into the stocking of any consenting adult. They will love the taste and the buzz. It sure beats crushing and snorting candy canes! One final thought. Imagine that you are caught in the path of a herd of walkers. You are tired. You just don’t have the strength to run. Just mix up a little bit of chocolate milk and before you know it, you’ll be running so fast you’ll be leaving tracks behind you like you were the road runner.

Get yours today at: Think Geek
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  • Publisher: Thinkgeek
  • MSRP: $16.99

Pentominoes 3d Puzzle Cubes
I know what you are thinking… eww, math puzzle. Well, don’t be so quick to poo poo this game. These are actually fun. Pentominoes has often been described 3D Tetris. Pentominoes is a game that we like for all ages. Kids will just stack them, grown-ups will break their brains trying to solve the same math puzzles that attracted Arthur C. Clarke to the game. No matter what skill level you approach them from, you’ll find yourself getting sucked into them, and then wanting to throw them against the wall and then weeping with joy when you solve the puzzle that’s been messing with you for hours. If you have someone on your list who loves a good puzzle, this one is perfect for them.

Get yours today at: Think Geek
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  • Publisher: ThinkGeek
  • MSRP: $17.99

Plush Beating Heart
Not all stuffed animals need to be cute little teddy bears. Sometimes the coolest plush critters are the things you’d never expect, like a cuddly little… beating heart. We thought this was one of the coolest plush items that we saw this year. ThinkGeek’s plush beating heart is a genuinely cuddly plush toy, but it also happens to look and beat like a real human heart. Who would want a gift like this? Doctors, med students, people with a sense of humor, serial killers… the list is endless!

Get yours today at: Think Geek
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  • Publisher: Think Geek
  • MSRP: $6.99

Zombie Brain Gelatin Mold

You ever sit down to watch a new episode of The Walking Dead or one of your favorite zombie movies and you suddenly feel the urge to snack on brains? Sadly, that is still illegal. Also, it is kind of messy and it probably smells pretty bad. Good thing Thinkgeek has given us a tasty way to eat something cold and jiggley that squishes like brains but won’t give you mad cow disease.

This is a great gift for the Jello lover in your family who has a darker sense of humor. This simple, yet awesome gift is a Jello mold shaped like a brain! We played around a bit with this and had a lot of fun. If you really know how to work with Jello, you can even get layers or a hidden bloody center in there. Also, let’s not forget, this could be the best way ever to kill real brain cells… a giant brain shaped Jello shot!

Get yours today at: Thinkgeek.com
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