As a former guitar player, I know very well the pain of taking your instrument from one place to another. I still remember the days of trying to take the subway in Milan with one of those gigantic hard cases that seemed to always get in the way of some nervous passenger who would start yelling insults at me. Back then, I had welcomed the padded guitar cases with shoulder straps as one of the best inventions ever; at least that would allow me to bike to my guitar lesson or band practice and avoid the hostile subway crowd. But when it comes to traveling on a plane, even the padded shoulder strap case won’t help as, in most cases, the guitar is still too big to be allowed as carry-on luggage.
It's precisely this situation that inspired airline pilot and guitar player Fredrik Johansson to design Centerfold, the first ever foldable guitar. Johansson is also the founder of DeVillain, the Swedish guitar manufacturing company responsible for Centerfold.
This is just what I need for self-protection: the "Immobilizer", a stun gun disguised as a cell phone. While sounding very Rambo-ish, it could come in handy with its impressive charge of 900,000 volts. "Take that, Bad Guy!"
Besides, it also doubles as a LED flahlight. It comes with holster, so assuming your assailant is fine with you making a call, you're home free. I'd be worried about setting it off accidentally, but to prevent accidental discharge it has two levels of safety.
For $100, you can get a 10-inch character from Dig Dug, a 12-inch Pac-Man, and four 7.8-inch tall Pac-Man ghosts (Blinky, Pinky, Inky, and Pokey to prospective buyers; red, pink, blue, and orange to the rest of us). They look soft and huggable, but there's probably no way to tell for sure: anyone buying will keep them under glass and in their original packaging. Don't you know how destructive your finger oils can be?
More Namco plushhere .
Via Shiny Shiny.
Personally, I think that the iPhone and most phones look pretty terrific naked. But, if you lust for all that glitters Fashion Cell Shop carries a complete line of snap-on face plates. Each plate is made from hard plastic, decorated with over 1,300 hand-set rhinestones, and attaches to the front, back, and sides of your phone. My favorite is the skulls, but there are many other designs.
Designs for the new Sidekick III, Sidekick ID, Motorola Razr, Blackberry, Treo, and more.
Price: $39.95 at fashioncellshop.com.
My daughter and I have been on a Dim Sum kick lately, and that means lots of fried dumplings (if only because that's the kind we like best) along with doses of high fat guilt. So I'm happy and relieved to know that there's an alternative way to have fried food that doesn't involve a deep fryer. The Tefal Actifry uses a small amount of oil and circulating hot air to cook foods like french fries so that they're crunchy on the outside, moist on the inside, and only 3% fat. You can also use it to cook other vegetables and meat (fried chicken sounds good). All pieces, except the base, can go in the dishwasher.
No information on whether this product is available in the U.S., but UK store Lakeland sells it for £150.
I don't know if Hungry Girl would approve of this since the food coming out of this fryer isn't completely devoid of fat, but it definitely meets my looser low-fat standards.
Via Kitchen Contraptions.
I'm one of those people who would love smoking to be banned from all public places, but I do feel some sympathy for my smoking friends who get twitchy by dessert in a smoke-free restaurant. There are patches and gum, of course, but no hard-core smoker would be caught chewing some fruity Nicorette. So I'm curious to know what a real smoker would think of the Crown 7 electric cigarette.
The Crown 7 cigarette (also available in cigar and pipe styles) is an electronic cigarette which uses nicotine cartridges which also contain water for creating smoky looking vapor to simulate the puffs of carcinogens without the public health concerns. You can watch a video here. There is a tobacco "flavor" but the product claims there is no odor. There's a rechargeable battery for making the vapor, and a nicotine cartridge lasts for the equivalent of two packs of regular cigs.
SpiralFrog, an ad-supported website that allows visitors to download music and videos "free" of charge, was scheduled to launch this Monday in the U.S. and Canada. Here's how it works: you have to register on the site, giving (up) demographic filters such as age, gender and zip code. The site requires only that users register on the site and log in once a month, otherwise your DRM'd files are vaporized.
For all that, SpiralFrog's content won't work on your Mac or your iPod, and can only be placed on two media players or phones at a time. At launch, the service was offering more than 800,000 tracks and 3,500 music videos for download. Of all the major labels, only Universal Music Group, has licensed its music and videos to SpiralFrog.
SpiralFrog plans to give a cut of its advertising revenue to the labels, and to attract music fans who normally use online file-swapping networks to share and download music for free.
The only way I could see using the site is if SpiralFrog gave ME a share of the ad revenue.
I have no problem sleeping. Seriously. It's the opposite of insomnia, the waking up part that really gets to me. I have two alarms and my cell phone to thank for the fact that I make it to work every day. Flipping through my L.L. Bean Christmas magazine (yep, it's here already!) I discovered what may just be the greatest alarm clock ever -- the "moonbeam" clock.
The "moonbeam" clock wakes sleepers up with a gently illuminating light. Just in case you fall back asleep, a bell sounds. It's retro shape is playful for any room. It's available in five colors, has a snooze feature, fully lighted dial, and battery backup (uses two AA batteries, not included).
Perfect for the heavy sleeper in your life.
Price: $39.50 at LLbean.com.
After several years of stacking up books by my bedside, books that I never read beyond the first 150 pages, I went through a period when I would only buy books that were no more than 200 pages long (about the length of my attention span plus a few pages beyond that - on the theory that I couldn't possibly be so lazy as to put aside a book that I was almost finished with ). I would go to the bookstore and scan the shelves for thin books, preferably paperbacks that would fit inside my purse. Alas, my narrow set of interests ensured that this self-imposed restriction wouldn't last very long; after a few months, I usually left the book store empty-handed. Now I have a new stack of fat books that I've read through page 150 or so.
I'm relieved to know that I'm not the only person out there with this kind of attention deficit, that there are other people who find that many books are unnecessarily long. Why else would someone have come up with LazyLibrary, a web search tool that finds books on Amazon that are under 200 pages long? You might suspect that people who use this search site (which appears to sell books as an Amazon affiliate) tend to go there to look for non-fiction books on fairly dry topics; popular subjects are finance, investing, productivity, business, and . . . magic (huh?). But then you'll notice that among the popular search terms are "sex," "Harry Potter," and "Oscar Wilde." Interesting.
What a nice educational toy for kids … no wait! What a FUN toy for ME! For $19.95 you can get this talking magnifying glass that will help you identify bugs. It comes with three plastic bugs to train your identification skills, and it will warn you when you're examining dangerous bugs. And here are the toy’s features in all its absolute coolness:
Magnifies specimens 2X their actual size
Answer "yes" or "no" questions to identify bugs in nature
400 fun trivia questions and scientific facts
Alert warning sounds when dangerous bugs are found
Includes 3 plastic bugs to practice identification
Kid's Bug Field Guide contains photos, facts, and trivia
Includes full-color parent's "Lab Assistant" guide
Available at Amazon.