The Wolf Files' Offbeat Holiday Gift Guide

5. The Piano Video Game: Once your kids get hooked on Grand Theft Auto, is there any hope they'll play the grand piano? While many computer programs teach music, Piano Wizard Premier turns anything from Bach to Billy Joel into a video game in which you'll be guiding a rocket ship with a color-coated keyboard, while picking out a tune and learning chord progressions. Any song in MIDI format can be imported into this $150 system (keyboard included). You may find your Pac-Man is a budding Piano Man.

6. The ButtKicker (and Sore Butt Reliever): Teenagers are apparently not too old to get a little rattle for Christmas. One of the hottest holiday gifts is "The ButtKicker" -- a $150 video game accessory that clamps to your chair and allows you to feel the noise when you play your favorite game, thanks to the power of a 100-watt amplifier and low-frequency transducer, so powerful it actually shakes you. Play an action shooting game like "Counter-Strike" and you might even feel like you're actually getting some exercise.

If your high-powered pogo stick and butt-kicking video games has left you aching, you may want to check out the uZap -- a $200 message belt that straps on to your arms, legs or back. This portable masseur, now available at, can give you a rubdown just about anywhere.

7. Mosquito-Repellent Apparel: Your favorite sportsman probably has a collection of shirts that attract more flies than women. Finally, we have sportswear that promises to have the opposite effect. L.L. Bean, Orvis and Oxford Golf are now offering BUZZ OFF -- the first insect repellent garments registered with the Environmental Protection Agency.

BUZZ OFF shirts, hats and pants and other items come with Permethrin -- a man-made version of a repellent found in chrysanthemums -- bonded into the material. The active ingredient will stay in a $40 polo shirt even through 25 washings, allowing outdoorsmen a good chance of catching something other than Lyme disease.

8: The Ear Drier: It can be so painful to watch someone you love step out of a pool banging on the side of his tilted head as if there's a loose part rattling in his brain. Clearly, water trapped in your ear canal is no laughing matter, and that's why Sahara offers the latest in personal grooming -- DryEar -- a $100 electronic device that tackles the dreaded condition we call swimmer's ear.

9. The Washable Computer Keyboard: If you're a germ-phobe, you've probably heard of the University of Arizona study that found the typical desktop has 400 times more bacteria than the average toilet. One reason: Most computer keyboards can't be cleaned, yet so many office workers eat lunch at their desks.

You don't need to be a neat freak to appreciate the Unotron Washable Keyboard, a $62 device that just dares you to spill coffee over it each day when you arrive at work. Unotron's spill-seal technology makes it the only keyboard that you can take into the shower, and the company now offers an equally squeaky clean mouse.

10: The Speaker Phone Mouse Pad: Tired of interruptions? Maximo's Mouse Pad Speaker Phone allows you to screen callers and speak on the phone as you cruise the Internet. This $29 mouse pad, available at J.C. Penney, comes with a built-in keypad, caller ID display, and speakerphone. You should just hope that three months from now, the person you give this to will still take your calls.

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