Op-Ed

Op-Ed
The Escapist's Holiday Buyer's Guide

The Escapist Staff | 8 Dec 2009 05:00
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Jillian Michaels' Fitness Ultimatum 2010 (Wii)

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Jillian Michaels is like a drill sergeant with a heart of gold. One of the stars of NBC's "The Biggest Loser," the "get fit" reality show featuring a gaggle of morbidly obese contestants all sweating it out for cash, Michaels' claim to fame is that she was once a fat girl, who turned her life around to become a smoking hot personal trainer. And if you make it on her show, she will beat the living crap out of you until you break down in tears - and then get healthy. How this translates to a Wii game, I have no idea, but I'm willing to bet it's worth at least a laugh or two. And perhaps some tears.

Direct Sound Extreme Isolation EX-25 Headphones

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If you're like me, you hate extraneous noise, but love to hear what you love to hear. Whether this means listening to music - but not your coworkers debating Microsoft vs. Apple, watching a movie without hearing the drone of an airplane engine or looking for minor flaws in an audio recording while trying to drown out the sound of the recycling truck outside your studio window, the challenge is the same: pair high-quality audio reproduction with efficient noise-reduction. Enter the Extreme Isolation series of headphones.

According to the Direct Sound website, these headphones were created by a professional drummer so he could hear every note of the songs he was percussing, without being bowled over by the beat of his own drum. Unlike "noise canceling" headphones, these headphones don't use batteries or generate any white noise. They just block sound. And reproduce it. And they're perfect.

One of our video editors has the high-end version of these and can't even hear someone standing behind him yelling when he's wearing them. Which is not always a good thing. I prefer the mid-price version, which offer comparable performance at a much lower cost.

Titanium Spork

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Maybe you camp, and need a rugged, yet light eating utensil to stow in your pack. Maybe you're a survivalist, and the thought of stocking your bomb shelter with meltable plastic utensils makes you shudder with anxiety. Maybe you're an efficiency freak, and the idea of two utensils, when one better utensil would do, fries your circuits. Or maybe you just like the idea of whipping something awesome out of your lunch pail that's sure to get the cafeteria talking. Whatever your dealio, the titanium spork is a gift that will rock your boat. Part spoon, part fork, all badass, this aircraft-grade eating utensil is the katana of flatware.

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