Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Guilty Pleasure Gifts For Geeks

Shopping for your nerdy pals is an easy task, especially if you yourself identify with "nerd" culture. Buying for these like-minded companions ends up feeling like shopping for yourself ("I would love to have this Indiana Jones bust, thus such-and-such will love it, too!"). There in lies the challenge to find the perfect present, the overlooked specialty item that your Doctor Who loving friend didn't notice. You could go for the obvious Sonic Screwdriver, or you could get the light up Tardis USB hub, with sound effects to boot. It's about finding a gift that isn't just what your loved one would buy for themselves; it's finding something they didn't even know they wanted, and perhaps would be a bit embarrassed to purchase in person. Below are a few items that will surprise even the most devoted fans, and guarantee that the recipient will be more than grateful for your inspired choice.

For the Spider-Man Fan:
 
The Spider-Man Snuggie
Where to Find It: This item was offered in Previews a few months ago, so expect to see it at your local comic book store if you are lucky. If not, several stores are offering it online as well.
 
Let's be honest, any Snuggie is a guilty pleasure. Frequent thrift store trips have shown that this novelty item has made its way through the gift and re-gifted cycles the past few years. Now that they come in colors other than United Airlines Blue and Leopard print, they are worth keeping around for decorative purposes as well as snuggle times. This Spidey Snuggie is too good to pass up! It will also make a great companion gift with Spider-Man coffee mug / hot chocolate combo. (If your friend is more of a DC fan, you can opt for the "Superman Comy Throw Blanket With Sleeves"). 

For the Star Wars Fan:
Star Wars Deluxe 3D Kites
Where to Find It: Amazon may be your best bet, and their supplies are limited!

I genuinely flipped out when I saw these, but guess what? I never ordered one for myself. As an impulse buy they are kind of expensive, especially for an item that has a good chance of getting stuck in your neighbor's tree. But as a gift it's the perfect excuse to fly a kite and mumble to curious passers-by that "I got it for Christmas".

For the Batman Fan:
Adult-size Batman Underoos
Where to Find It: Target, Kohl's, various online vendors
Would I be caught dead buying these in person? No. Would I be caught dead wearing these? More than likely.

For the Scott Pilgrim Fan:
Scott Pilgrim vs. The World: The Video Game
Where to Find It: Currently for download only on PS3 and Xbox 360
This shouldn't really be on the guilty pleasure list, but I'm putting it here just because so very few people seem to appreciate this gaming gem, especially fans of the Scott Pilgrim books. I can see where some may be turned off by the meta aspect of the game-inspired-comic-turned-movie-turned-video-game, but this is one tie in that goes beyond sharing titles. It's as much fun as any great Super NES game from your childhood (think Zombies Ate My Neighbors), and just as challenging, too. Reluctant fans are missing out on a very unique entity by avoiding this downloadable game for PS3 and Xbox 360 (it's truly unfortunate, or rather just plain shitty that this is not available for download on Wii considering how many Nintendo references were in the books). Save your pals the trouble and download it for them; they'll thank you after the countless hours of enjoyment they will receive.

For the Hello Kitty Fan:
The Hello Kitty Personal Massager

Where to Find It: Ebay. Maybe.
Get it? Guilty? Pleasure? I don't think they'd turn you down, but it may be hard to get this rare item since the unintentional vibrator didn't stay on shelves very long. Here's an archived image from when it was still on sale at Amazon.

For the Doctor Who Fan:
Tardis USB Hub
Where to Find It: You'll have to special order it from your comic book store. Otherwise look for it overseas or online (even Sears has it on their website).
I was serious! This UK import would be pretty amazing on just about anyone's desk, even if they aren't a huge fan. If you want to go for a twofer, throw in the 11th Doctor coffee mug!

For the Fan Who Has Everything:

Why, a donation to your favorite nerd related charity, of course! Despite all of the "Digital Monday" shopping madness, giving to a well-deserving charity is a sure fire way to give the best gift of good karma for Christmas. Read more about The Hero Initiative, Can't Stop the Serenity, and the CBLDF at this link.

If you are still looking for the perfect gift, many of these items and several hundred other awesome presents can be found at Sci-Fi Genre. Happy Hunting!

2 comments:

  1. if you're near Portland, Oregon this Sunday you can go to Geek the Halls, a geeky arts & craft fair

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  2. Good to know! I'll actually be attending a craft fair this weekend in Chicago called Renegade Craft Fair. The Geek the Halls one sounds pretty sweet though!

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