for gender

With all the portability we enjoy with our electronic doodads, the big thorn in the side of convenience is what to do with the damn earbuds? Tangles, pullouts, loose cable that snags on corners – all tend to diminish the excellence of the experience. Now comes Budtrap, which is so small and elegantly simple it would be hard to fathom what it was for if you didn't know. It simultaneously holds the plug in the jack, relieves the strain on the cable, secures the cable to the gadget the way you like it, and picks up the slack. With no moving parts. Brilliant!

Road ID

Possible the best insurance against medical mishaps you can get. Fashionable leather straps with metal badges engraved with your name and important contact numbers, as well as a serial number and PIN that responders can go online with and find out your complete medical history. Because when you're knocked for a loop, it's hard to keep your data straight. And correct data in a medical emergency is essential to survival. If you're traveling or doing something strenuous outdoors, it's a must-have.

Victorinox Swissflash 4GB

Ye Olde Swiss Army Knife, updated for the twenty-first century by including a USB flash drive into the mix. It has the little nail file, the little pen knife, the mini-flashlight and scissors, but it also has up to sixteen gigs of clean Swiss data storage. Who knows, maybe some fat cat has his entire secret bank account right there on his keychain?

Forget-Me-Not Ring

Light gauge braided brass cable tied in knots to form rings for your fingers, and then powder-coated with muted pastels, to make them indestructible and beautiful.

Tie Tea Cup

Tea bag, meet tea cup. Tea bag, fall to the bottom of tea cup and make the tea drinker fish around in scalding water to find the string. Not anymore. This tea cup has two little cuts side by side near the handle, making a belaying pin around which to lash your tea bag string. Tea bag, steep, be lifted tidily from cup when finished, and be discarded with no fuss.

Mom & Child Bag

A capacious canvas tote with three handles – two at the top and one at about the middle of the side of the bag, for your little one to grab onto and stay tethered to you while you get your keys out or open the car door. Simple, and a balm to the anxious parent with an energetic child. Let him or her actively decide to hold the handle, and they'll never let go.

President Block Set

Children's building blocks, with each side printed with either a president's portrait, what number president he was, his political party, his name and dates of service, or a part of an American flag. Put them all together with the last mentioned side up, and you get a complete American flag. Might just be the answer to the general ignorance Americans have about their history. Hey, it's a start.


A silver square of cloth to fold your cell phone into, that displays the legend "my phone is off for you," for when you decide actually spending time with another interesting or romantically possible person is worth turning the little tyrant off and letting it lay there in your pocket for awhile instead of dominating your life and relationships. And if the pair of you turn your phones off at the same time, well, then there's another connection to make....

Film Festival in a Box

Who needs to fly to Cannes and be a recognized critic to weigh in on the quality of today's movies? This game sends you a DVD with four short films, and you and your friends vote for their favorites. Then go online and register your pick and your vote will count towards a cash prize for the winning filmmaker. I got your film festival right here, Gene Siskel!

Fortune Cookie Coin Purse

When life gives you leather scraps, make coin purses! Words to live by, and you can buy such purses in various tones and textures, all dictated by what scraps were available at the time. Looking just like fortune cookies with a brass clasp where the edges come together, you'll know just how fortunate you are by the amount of coin you come across inside.