BIRTHDAY GIFTS FOR BROTHER

At a certain point, when you have too much stuff, more things just don’t do it for you anymore. At that point, if you’re smart, you start investing in superpowers. And trust us on this: every single man on the planet was a kid once, and every one of those kids wanted the power to see in the dark. To go where other humans cannot, to walk among the wild nocturnal animals as an equal, and to hide from their parents. They may not need to hide from their parents anymore, but that doesn’t make night vision any less awesome.

We can’t emphasize this enough: you ride the motorized cooler full of drinks to the party, you drink its contents, and then you WALK it back home. Nobody wants to be the guy on the news who got arrested for drunk driving an empty cooler. So stay safe.

They’ve learned about literature, mathematics, and history in school. Their parents taught them right from wrong. And they even know how to cook dinner and change the oil. That’s all well and good, but what use is any of that when they are taken by foreign agents? These emergency survival courses will teach them the truly important things that were left out of their education, like how to escape when they wake up in the trunk of a moving car with their hands and feet bound.

Great art doesn’t always take the form you’re expecting. Twitter gives everyone with a phone and an opinion to spare the chance to reach millions of people with a single ill-conceived utterance. With all that verbal garbage coursing through the airwaves, bizarre gems are certain to arise. Lest they drift away and go to waste, someone had the brilliant idea to start framing them. Move over Picasso, it’s time to make room for the real modern art.

Speed is dangerous, but some kinds are more dangerous than others. This one is mostly just fun. But be careful: once they’ve experienced the feeling of flying around the track, the engine roaring like a wild beast, the smell of smoldering rubber in the air, they may never quite be the same.

Men of discerning tastes should not suffer the indignity of walking back and forth from the couch to the kitchen for a beer. We put a man on the moon for God’s sake. Hand-made by Amish craftsmen and built to last for generations, this is no flimsy Walmart furniture. Class out the wazoo.

Ever since slushies were invented, they’ve been treated like they’re for kids and kids only. But discrimination is never justified, and the creators of this beer slushy maker are out to prove it. Adults want in on the party too, just in a different way. Specifically the beer way. And this machine takes them directly to Beer Way, right down Delicious Street.

The Nintendo Switch combines the best of at-home entertainment with on-the-go gaming. Nintendo has always been at the forefront of portable gaming, going all the way back to the original Game Boy. But portability in gaming isn’t everything. Sure, it’s great for torturously long rides in the back of the minivan, but nobody wants to sit on the couch and play video games on a tiny portable device while there’s a ginormous flatscreen TV six feet away. The Switch’s dual capabilities solve this problem for good, going from handheld device to living-room gaming system in the blink of an eye.

mBerry tablets are a natural product derived from berries that temporarily alter your perception of taste by binding to your taste buds and tricking your brain. It’s a pretty crazy experience and would make a memorable gift that they’ll be telling stories about for years. The tablets make sour and bitter things taste sweet. You can chow down on a lemon and swear it tastes like an orange. Vinegar tastes like apple juice. Hot sauce and spicy foods become sugary and beer tastes like Kool-aid.

Bunster’s Shit the Bed Hot Sauce is a mix of super-hot chilies and healthy superfoods (like goji berries and apple cider vinegar). It’s also a crowdfunding phenomenon and a painfully delicious gift for any health-conscious masochist you might know. There are lots of gourmet hot sauces out there, but this one is unique and strange in a way that true hot sauce connoisseurs find irresistible. Their mouth is bound to have a love-hate relationship with this stuff.

If they stuffed some bacon into this box, this would be Ron Swanson’s dream gift. Offering an assortment of classic manly items like booze, old-time hair paste, leather tote bags, and quite the variety of bladed implements, this is a monthly grab bag of masculine goodies tailored to each recipient’s preferences as determined by a pre-delivery personality test. No guessing here — just solid dude gifts based on hard data and great gift-giving instincts.

The professional world is frought with uncertainty, and we all need a backup plan. That plan is, and always has been, gold! While we've been toiling away to make ends meet, the smart folks have been in the hills filling up their pockets with precious metals. And having a blast doing it.

When you were a kid, your mom probably told you not to sit so close to the TV — at least, if you were born way back before parents gave up on that sort of thing. Well, here is the Oculus Go, designed to be the ultimate in sticking it to your parents. It’s also the perfect gift for someone who loves big screen movies but hates sitting next to other people. Pretty much the most immersive personal entertainment system available, designed for people who want to be in the movie, not just watch it.

If given the choice of any imaginable superpower, not many would choose “magnetic wrists.” Except, perhaps, carpenters. And the world would look upon them skeptically, until they tried out one of these magnetic wristbands for themselves. Thankfully, in a world where real superpowers are hard to come by, you can now get your own magnetic wrist for pretty cheap. And better yet, it can be removed at any time, so you’re not collecting stray parts as you go about your day. Simple technology beats superpowers every time.

Alright, enough pussyfooting around. Are you gonna open that damn bottle or not? This authentic 50 caliber shell will definitively end the standoff with any stubborn bottle cap, no matter how strong a fight it’s willing to put up. The Bottle Breacher is made by and supports veterans, and might pique the interest of an ex-military or historically-minded recipient. Using an actual bullet to crack open a well-deserved beer at the end of the day is surely a much nicer use for it than originally intended.

Perhaps your old-time flask was made to be discreet. But we believe that the size of your flask should be determined by the occasion, not by your desire to remain anonymous in your drinking. These days, no one wants to bother trying to hide their vices.

If you're having a hard time figuring out what to get them, why not just let them create what they want themselves? These hand held 3D printers have advanced a lot since they were introduced and the prices have come down. Fair warning, you may end up getting some less than beautiful plastic gifts from them in return at your next holiday or birthday party.

The beer world has truly exploded with breweries over the last decade-plus, which is great for anyone who likes trying new things. However, this proliferation of choice has a dark side. Dyed-in-the-wool beer lovers now face overwhelming anxiety every time they go to pick up a six pack or fill up a growler. The Craft Beer Club removes this pain point by making the necessary choices for all involved, so beer time can go back to being the sweet revelation it used to be.

If they don’t know how to do these things by now, chances are they’re too embarrassed to ask. How to change a tire? How to make scrambled eggs? How can any self-respecting person ask these questions and not be mocked? Give them this book on the sly, and you could save them from their hidden shame.

Let’s face it, they’re going to learn this stuff anyway. You may as well make sure they learn it right, and some of the things in this book are better not learned the hard way. For example, it may be best to beat that lie detector test the first time around. Plus, it’s a gift for you too – after all, who knows when you might need someone who knows how to crack a safe?

If you’re looking for a subtle way to tell them that they always have spinach in their teeth, look no further than these whisky flavored toothpicks. On the plus side, you’ll no longer have to look at the salad growing in their mouth. On the downside, their breath will smell faintly of Scotch forevermore.

Believe it or not, these days gifting shares of stock is as easy as buying a gift card or ordering a certificate online. Stockpile is the leader in this category, and they offer the absolute simplest way to give someone stock in any one of a long list of major corporations. All you do is choose which company you want to buy stock from, load a certain amount of money onto the gift card, and you’re done. You can have a physical card mailed to you, or you can have it delivered through email to either you or the recipient.

They may have achieved elite Girl Scout or Boy Scout status when they were younger, but that badge-covered sash won’t be able to save them from a sinking car. Forget cookies — today’s scouts should be peddling these life-saving gadgets instead. Foolproof and dependable, this indispensable car accessory packs a mean punch and won’t disappoint when imminent danger strikes.

The classic party game where everyone either reveals reputation-demolishing secrets about their past or shamelessly lies to save face. Depending on the temperament of the various participants, it can make for an hour or so of good-natured ribbing, or it can devolve into closet doors being flung open to reveal hideous skeletons beyond anyone’s wildest dreams. In other words, it’s rip-roaring fun. But depending on your own personal history, you may want to sit this one out.

Everyone, from Elon Musk to your next door neighbor, is straight-up terrified of the robot takeover, envisioning all kinds of post-apocalyptic horrors being visited upon us by our own creations. But then one of them offers to mow the lawn and everyone’s like, “Well, they can’t be that bad.” And it’s true - there might be a few bad apples coming down the assembly line, but you won’t find any in the lawn mower category. Just helpful, friendly, sort-of-intelligent mini landscapers who just want you to give them a place to lay low and recharge in between jobs. Nothing to be scared of here.

With professional quality drones now becoming affordable, the average schlub can make cinema-quality videos for the first time in history. Those epic sky shots that used to be exclusively available to Hollywood-level film crews are attainable for anybody. All it takes is a simple drone copter like this one armed with a professional quality video camera. And this thing brings all kinds of mischief within the user’s reach, even the kind that might land them on the news. What more inspiration could a bored tech nerd need?

Every big shot needs a set of these to take their big shots from. Help them flex their drinking muscles or show their military/hunting roots. A perfect gift for that person who really goes in for the kill at the drinkin’ hour.

Replicating bloody warfare between kingdoms, and played by some of the most brilliant minds in the world, chess stands large in the human game-o-sphere. Yet it carries such a small physical footprint. Something had to give. This giant chess set makes its players feel like Roman gods directing the earthly battles of royal dwarves. It also serves as a stunning piece of landscape art, like something straight out of Alice in Wonderland. The last word in life-size board games.

Natural materials exude a timeless class that never goes out of style. In fact, it’s almost impossible to look bad when you’re wearing a wooden watch (that’s not an invitation to try). These beautiful accessories go with just about every wardrobe style - all the way from yuppie to hippie, and everything in between. Even a clown suit. And really, that’s the true measure of style: does it look good on a clown suit?

Keeping practical supplies in the car in case of emergency is something we all should do – yet many people out there on the road haven't added so much as a band-aid to their car’s inventory. That’s right, in the event of a blizzard, those store receipts and empty fast food bags won’t save you. Shocking, we know. This Auto Survival Kit on the other hand…

Craft brewing has definitely taken over the beer industry. But with so many microbreweries and so much competition, it sometimes gets hard to keep up. And who knows what to make of the bizarre varieties taking over liquor store shelves? Orange pickled hibiscus springtime lager? Porcupine quill Mongolian stout? Good lord. Time to look into the homebrew options.

The sounds of imaginary laser gun battles has filled homes across the world since the freakin' 1970s. Did the audio effects creator on the original Star Wars movie, Ben Burtt, have any idea the sound he used for blasters, the sound of a rock hitting a radio tower's support cables, would be mimicked for decades by millions of hyperactive kids and adults? Unlikely, but it was a genius idea anyway. Here's a gift that appeals to the interplanetary freedom fighting kid in all of us.

People love venturing into nature for the near mystical experience of being connected with our pre-civilized roots. We feel a strong, implacable pull toward wild places like the desert and the forest. The problem is, nature really just wants to eat you. This book tells you how not to let that happen.

The DJI Osmo Pocket takes handheld personal videos to a whole new level. Sure, smartphones have always included video capabilities. But in case you haven’t noticed, the videos are so terrible as to be basically unusable. The Osmo Pocket’s main feature is its revolutionary stabilizing system, which allows even the clumsiest, shakiest, or drunkest person to create professional-quality videos. The only drawback? Whoever you buy this for is definitely going to think they’re Steven Freaking Spielberg, so get ready.

Most people think you have to get dirty in order to make money, but the inventors of money soap want you to know that’s just a cynical myth. In fact, they want you to know that sometimes the fastest and easiest way to make money is to get really clean. For anyone who needs a little encouragement to get in the shower, a nice fat bar of soap with a rolled up treasury note in the middle should do the trick.

If you’re going to do something, do it the right way. That goes for buying a knife too. The last thing you want is to be in a life and death situation and have to say, “If only I had a fine-toothed miniature saw and I knew what time it was.” This pocket knife has you covered on both fronts. The only way we could imagine this knife being more loaded is if they added a miniature cannon or gave it time travel capabilities. The perfect gift for the survivalist who likes that extra layer of security against that “what-ifs”.

A long time ago, in the distant past, kids used to put baseball cards in the spokes of their wheels to turn their bikes into motorcycles. We’ve come a long way since then. Now, we modify our bikes to actually make them self-powered, not just sound like it. The GeoOrbital Wheel is super easy to install - just remove the front wheel of your bike and hook this thing up in its place, and the next thing you know, you’re leaving the other bikes in your dust.

DIY

If you decide to do this, go all out. Show up at 5 in the morning dressed impeccably in a tuxedo. Proceed to handle all unpleasantness with quiet grace, never faltering, never betraying any emotion save unswerving loyalty to the person whom it your your honor to serve. Take care of them the way that they think they deserve. Really buttle them good.

Sometimes we hear that life is short. Here is a calendar that proves that this isn’t necessarily the case. Instead of fretting over the small mistakes in life, like telling your boss to go stick it, gain solace by looking at this calendar and seeing all of the weeks you have open to go look for a new job after being fired. Like so many things, it’s all a matter of perspective. Only a really big mistake is going to eat up a significant chunk of your life calendar. Everything else you can totally overcome.

The old-fashioned wooden whiskey barrel has become a symbol of class and refinement. Big change from the old days when having one of these in your basement meant the feds might crash in any day and haul you off to prison for moonshining. There’s nothing like tasting the sweet fruit of your own labors, and these handmade barrels allow the owner to age spirits to their exact specifications. Now, even bottom-shelf bathtub whiskey can be turned into dusky gold in a few weeks time.

Knowledge is the lifeblood of commerce, and sharing knowledge is how the human race continues its noble march toward destruction. But these days, people would just as soon carry a stone tablet as a paperback. An Amazon Kindle is the best way to look smart in public without seeming like a relic.

Your friend or loved one may have already started to suspect something about the inherent absurd futility of life. If not, then perhaps you can inform them with this gift, which is an extraordinarily apt illustration of the horrifying predicament in which we the living find ourselves. Doing exactly what it says on the package, this box has no purpose other than to instantly turn itself ‘off’ when you try to turn it ‘on’. Despite being useless, we have to admit it does have a certain charm.

Phones actually have more germs on them than a typical public restroom. This smart cleansing machine might not eliminate the dirty content sucking up the data on their phone, but it will be sure to return sterile swiping to their wired existence. Personal device hygiene should not be overlooked by today’s touch-screen fanatics. A high-tech disinfectant, this ingenuous accessory will decontaminate wireless communication and restore cleanliness to the digital age. Oh, and it also charges while it cleans!

Mainstream wine snobbery has never taken hold in the New World like it did in Europe, so we use coffee and beer as vehicles to look down on each other in its place. Your grandpa may have been more than happy with a cup of Maxwell House every day for 70 years, but that was a different time. The masses have developed a palate, and there’s no looking back. But with all the thousands of artisan roasters out there, anyone trying to keep up on their own is likely to go insane. Luckily, some already insane person has taken on the job of curating, so the rest of us can pretend we’re experts.

Different people learn in different ways. Not respecting those differences is a major reason the public education system has failed us so terribly. Some people learn visually, some learn by mimicking, and some learn by beer. This book is for the last group.

Card games are a staple of the drunken party scene for a reason. They help break the ice and give people something to do through those long awkward moments early in the night when everyone is still mostly sober. They also keep those same people occupied and out of mischief later on when their inhibitions have been loosened up and they start getting ideas. Best of all, this game is simple and straightforward enough to keep anyone entertained for hours in between shots.

The squirrels have been playing tricks on us for years, and most of us don’t even know it. In fact, squirrels often go way over the line. From house fires to divorces, they are responsible for untold misery, suffering, and property loss. It’s time we start giving them a taste of their own medicine. Start small. Start here.

They’ve survived this far living outside the bubble, but why push their luck? Give them this insanely fun inflatable bubble ball, and hope they’re inside it the next time they do something indescribably stupid. A great way to insulate themselves against life’s hard uncertainties.

In the land of the drunk, there are two categories: the worldly and the degenerate. Everyone else is sober. This old world globe bar sends a not-so-subtle signal which one they belong to. Help them appear wise and fascinating by appropriating the air of an intrepid explorer, even if they’ve never left the state.

Having to repeat yourself is such a bore. These comfortable foam sandals leave a clear message behind you, so you can give the command without opening your mouth. Trips to the beach will get a lot cheaper and easier now that your minions know exactly what to do.

Get them started on that Bucket List while there’s time and health to finish it, with a tangible, physical bucket. They can pick an adventure whenever life permits. It's a gift that gives them the opportunity to make memories, rather than giving them a reason to make more closet space.

Put away childish things, then seal them up into an air and water tight steel container, dig a hole deep into the ground and bury them under a sidewalk. Put a plaque nearby or something like that, wait a few decades, and then have them return to open an archive of their former self. No big deal.

As far as unusable real estate goes, this isn’t a bad deal. Buy swampland in Florida and everyone thinks (actually, knows) you’re a poor, sad, gullible boob who’s open to being taken advantage of. Own some land on the moon, on the other hand, and you’re sort of a lazy pioneer. It’s a long way to go for a vacation, and whoever you give this to probably can’t afford to make the trip, but if they ever figure out how to make this whole space taxi thing work, their great grandkids might just get some use out of it.

The Echo Spot might look like the Echo’s little cousin, but that doesn’t mean that it lacks in features. This is the all-in-one smart speaker with video screen for the space-conscious person on your gift list. It makes a great bedside alarm/smart home companion, and does virtually everything the full size echo can do, plus it makes video calls. So they can basically run their whole life without ever getting out of bed.

Sure, it will be strange when you have to get that cheek swab from them without them knowing what you’re up to, but it will all make sense when you reveal this custom portrait that showcases their unique DNA. Or you could just give them the DNA collection kit as the gift if that’s easier. Or just swab your dog. They’ll never know the difference.

Don’t just give them one piece of art, build them a gallery. We’re not expecting you to go and build an actual gallery complete with gift shop but we think they’ll be just as impressed with this gift. A digital art museum lets them curate a unique art collection and makes the perfect gift for any art enthusiast. They can even upload their own artistic creations if they’re handy with a paintbrush themselves.

Pepper is an in-your-face spice, and its essence has nothing to do with subtlety. Here is the perfect vessel for the preeminent seasoning at the table. Let this beautifully crafted ebony grinder tower over the other lowly flavors, including its eternal rival, salt. Any other symbolism we’ll leave up to your imagination.

Bacon is the official food of the month, every month of the year. Now somebody has gone a step further and made a delivery service with a special kind of bacon for every month. Every time we go a level deeper with bacon it just gets better. Rumor has it Elon Musk is working on a bacon replicating machine. It’s about time he did something useful.

Sometimes a mirror just isn’t enough. You’ve heard it said that you are what you eat, so it stands to reason that it’s easier to digest things that already look like you. The selfie toaster is here to revolutionize your relationship to food.

The original smart speaker and still the reigning king (or queen) of the market, the Amazon Echo invented a new category and has been dominating it ever since. The Echo’s virtual assistant, Alexa, is kind of like Hal from 2001: A Space Odyssey, except she’ll never kill your friends and lock you out of the house to die.

For centuries artisans have toiled away, diligently refining their skills until becoming masters, so that they can create exquisitely detailed work of the highest craftsmanship. Well, there’s a much easier way now. 3d printing technology has rapidly advanced over the past few years, to the point that they’ve begun printing just about anything. Even houses. The kind people live in. We’re not suggesting that you need to invest in a home-building 3d printer, as those are rather large and might be out of your budget. But 3d printing can be used for all kinds of smaller things as well, from artistic models to home furnishings. And 3d printers are really fun to play with. If you know someone who needs a new hobby to keep them out of trouble, this could be just the thing. And if they’re lucky enough to get this as a gift from you, you will in turn be the recipient of printed thingamajigs for the rest of your time on Earth.

Nobody wants to be forced to act responsibly at a barbecue. That defeats the purpose. Yet the grilltender holds everyone’s happiness hostage to his attention span. After five or six beers that doesn’t work so well. This wireless grill thermometer will send an alert to your phone that the steak you’re ignoring is ready for your mouth.

Are you being watched as you read this? Is your every move being documented for later use against you in the form of blackmail or worse? Probably. And that paranoid friend who’s always going on and on about being watched? They’re most likely right too. But now there’s something they can do about it. With a hidden camera detector, they can foil the plans of even the most ingenious spies, rapscallions, government agents, and other invaders of privacy. A necessary weapon in the modern digital jungle.

Our brains are already wrong about plenty of things, so there’s no harm in throwing some flavor confusion on top of the mess of sensory data. Actually, it’s really fun. And considering that water is basically tasteless and really couldn’t be any more boring, this is a perfect way to spice up the act of hydration. Sort of like potable virtual reality, but not really. It just makes your water taste different. Isn’t that enough?

Some might consider it the ultimate display of human privilege to begin claiming faraway stars just because we have a few extra dollars in our pockets. But once you realize that the universe is far bigger than you think it is, you’ll cool off a little. There’s more than enough to go around for everybody. Several billion times over. So go ahead and give someone a little piece of the cosmic pie. Nothing to get all riled up about.

If you think that intoxicating substances and baseball don’t mix, consider that Doc Ellis once pitched a no-hitter while tripping on acid, and old time icons like Mickey Mantle, Babe Ruth, and Harry Caray were pretty much drunk all the time. This unique and meticulously crafted centerpiece is more proof of the divine intersection between the national pastime and…the other national pastime.

For the true art connoisseur, sometimes a poster reproduction of a famous work just isn’t enough. And no, you’re not going to fool them with a “really nice” giclée print off Amazon. These are real, one-of-a-kind, straight from the hand of the artist genuine pieces. Whether it’s a canvas painting, a piece of modernist furniture, or an $18,000 metal balloon dog, there’s something for everyone here (and, believe it or not, for any budget if you’re willing to dig a little).

If m&ms were a person, you would have choked the crap out of them by now because all they do is say the same thing over and over again. Thankfully, we now live in the infinitely customizable iCulture, where you don’t have to put up with that kind of nonsense anymore. Say everything you ever wanted to say, in the sweetest way possible.

The ultimate guide to what they should have learned already, with a title that communicates what you can’t bring yourself to say out loud. The world may be a nicer place than the one you grew up in, but it still can’t help punishing dumbasses. Help them get it together.

Just give it to them. Don’t make a big deal about it, or give them diet books or a lecture or anything like that. They know. They have figured out for themselves that their body is not quite the well-tuned machine that it once was. Just give the Fitbit, and leave the rest to them.

Sure, we lived for hundreds of thousands of years without electricity, but that’s not the point. The next time they’re in the middle of baking a casserole and a squirrel falls in the wires at the power plant, don’t make them resort to eating lettuce and raw cookie dough for dinner. Every house needs one of these.

The future of food is all about making weird shapes with your dinner. Or at least that’s what the modernist chefs will have you believe. And some of the things you can make with this molecular gastronomy kit are enough to make you feel like you’re eating with the Jetsons. Spheres, foams, and chocolate spaghetti are a few of the strange treasures that await inside this bizarre culinary kit.