Last Minute Shopping Guide 2009

Channel Surfing

For the Special Someone on Any Home Theater Enthusiast’s List

You know we’re always looking out for you, so we’ve decided to revisit the last minute shopping guide we assembled last year. We know you’ve been busy, and so have we, but if you screw up on the gift you get for special someone in your life, you’ll be paying for it for a long, long time. We do recognize that procrastination could be strategic, you need to make sure you get the absolute perfect gift, so we aren’t trying to judge here. Whatever the reason, if you still need a gift, we have some tips for you.

Like last year, these are gift suggestions for that special someone in your life, a person who perhaps doesn’t share your audiophile tendencies or your gadget fetishes.

Top Five Gift Suggestions

5. Gift basket

Pretty much anything that comes in a basket with a little bow on it is a sure-fire hit. Ok, so maybe you should stay away from the sausage and cheese basket, but wine and chocolate should work just fine. There are even special cream and lotion baskets. You don’t need to know why they like it, just that they do.

4. A photo album

Crack open the old hard drive and start uploading pictures to Shutterfly or Snapfish. One of the big bummers in the age of digital photos is that they get stuck on the computer and never looked at. Assemble an album of your memories together. She’ll love it, guaranteed. You’ll need to get cracking on this one, shipping is getting expensive in a hurry. We’d caution against including those risque pictures you took that one time when you…well, you know.

3. Pajamas

Ok, so we know you don’t always want to see your significant other in the old sweats she seems to love so much. Why not buy her some new ones, some that might be a little more visually appealing at the same time? She’ll love getting new PJs and you’ll love seeing her in them. But don’t go too crazy; they actually need to be comfortable and warm so she wants to wear them. If you’re feeling generous, go ahead and throw in a pair of slippers.

2. Flowers

We still aren’t sure why, but nothing says “I love you” like a really expensive bouquet of flowers. Never mind the fact that they’ll be dead in a week and you’ll have completely wasted a ton of hard earned money. Or that she was all over you for spending money on speakers that we all know will last for many, many years. But we digress. Don’t ask us why, but flowers will work.

1. A new car

Ok, so we ran out of ideas. Do you know how hard it is to think of gift ideas that aren’t home theater gadgets? It’s like trying to find a reason to watch Lifetime. But one thing is for sure, if you can pull this one off, she’ll be very thankful. Who knows, maybe she’ll even wear the new PJs and let you get some pictures you can’t put in next years photo album. A guy can dream, can’t he?

Top Five Gifts to Avoid

5. A digital scale

There are some pretty cool digital scales on the market, scales that remember your age and height, and in addition to measuring your weight can automatically calculate your body fat percentage. These things are awesome. Stay away from them. Run from them like they’re carrying the crazy disease the trees inflicted on everyone in The Happening. It’s a very bad idea.

4. A Netflix subscription

Yep, we’re advising you against getting something that we both love, a Netflix subscription. We all know who this is for. You may tell her you want to spend more quality time together, and they have something like 12,000 movies you can instantly watch together. That’s almost three years of movies – imagine the bonding time. It’s a great gift for your brother or a buddy, but if you really want it, just get it for yourself. It’s not that expensive, cheapskate.

3. An electric razor

This is one of those things that she might want, heck electric razors are incredibly convenient, but it’s pretty dicey as a Christmas present. Basically, you’re telling her, “hey Chewbaca, you need to shave more often. I know you abused your last one so bad it finally died, so here’s a new one.” Not sure how well that will go over. Let us know if it works out for you.

2. Exercise equipment

You know that phrase, “you can’t go wrong” well it doesn’t apply to giving exercise equipment for Christmas. Last year when we cautioned you to stay away from gym memberships it wasn’t because most people get them and never go, wasting all the money. Again, your heart may be in the right place, but you’ll be resting your head on the couch for many lonely nights with this one.

1. Home beer tap system

It’s for the kitchen, it makes it easier for her to serve beer to you and your buddies when they’re over watching football, we get it. To us, it makes perfect sense. If you already bought one, don’t worry, just send it to us. We’ll love it. Your significant other, on the other hand, may beat you with it. We know you just want to make her life easier and add some high tech flair to her kitchen, but we don’t think she’ll see it that way.

Movies & TV

Star Wars series 'The Mandalorian' adds 'Deadpool' actress Gina Carano

The Mandalorian, Jon Favreau's live-action Star Wars series planned for Disney's streaming video service, will be one of the most expensive television shows ever made. Here's everything we know about it so far.
Movies & TV

How to watch NFL games online, with or without cable

The NFL's 2018 season is here, and we know you don't want to miss a moment of the action. Our comprehensive streaming guide will show you all the best options to watch the games online so you can make the right choice.
Social Media

Going incognito: Here's how to appear offline on Facebook

How do you make sure your friends and family can't see if you're on Facebook, even if you are? Here, we'll show you how to turn off your active status on three different platforms, so you can browse Facebook without anyone knowing.

Everything we know about 'Anthem', including new details on Javelin classes

BioWare announced an upcoming action role-playing game called 'Anthem' at EA Play 2017. Here's everything we know about the game so far, including gameplay, DLC, and when you'll be able to play it.

TWB Podcast: iPhone price cut rumor; smart home hack; delivery robot

Apple lawsuits and iPhone price drops; Smart Home Devices hacked remotely; Autonomous Delivery Robots may be closer to reality.

TWB Podcast: CES preview; LG 8K television; Home assistant takeover

CES Preview and Digital Trends coverage; LG 88" 8K television; Home assistants will be taking over everything; the strange tech of CES.
Movies & TV

Between the Streams: A brutal ‘Sicario 2’ trailer, 10 more years of Star Wars

It's lightsabers, polka kings, and sequels galore this week on Between the Streams, as we look at a wide variety of new content hitting screens, including everything from a Bright sequel to Star Wars Episode IX news.

Trends With Benefits podcast: Our favorite tech from CES 2018

It's our annual episode from CES! We've seen a lot of great tech this year, and have been surprised by a few announcements as well, so we discuss our favorite products and announcements this year.

TWB Podcast: Best TVs of CES; emerging tech; Amazon/Apple 2nd HQ; Falcon X

We'll cover the Best TVs of CES, some of more fringe emerging tech, Amazon and Apple's 2nd Headquarter statuses and the Falcon X Heavy rocket may finally be launching.
Movies & TV

Between the Streams: Apple and Kristen Wiig, ‘Solo’ synopsis, Black Widow movie?

This week on Between the Streams: A comedy series with Kristin Wiig and Reese Witherspoon from Apple, a Catch 22 miniseries from George Clooney, rumors of a Spider-Man and Venom meet-up, a Black Widow stand-alone film, and much more.

TWB Podcast: iPhone X discontinued?, Galaxy S9 first look, 50 Cent’s bitcoins

Apple iPhone X discontinued: After a week of rumors, it seems that Apple may indeed be discontinuing the current version of the iPhone X. KGI Securities predicts that this will occur later this year, when potential replacements for the X…

TWB Podcast: Amazon Echo vs. Google Home vs. Apple HomePod, Galaxy X

With the three big names in Home Assistants all taking aim at each other, we break down the Amazon Echo, Google Home, and Apple HomePod. Samsung may be debuting a foldable phone this year and we'll recap some highlights from Outdoor…
Movies & TV

Between the Streams: CBS’ desperate ‘Murphy Brown’ revival, Super Bowl trailers

This week on Between the Streams, we'll be discussing all the weird new sitcom reboots (and how desperate they are), Netflix's new series Altered Carbon, all the new trailers we expect to see during the Super Bowl, and so much more.

TWB Podcast: SpaceX triumph, Spotify vs. Apple Music, Apple Watch health

After the success of the Falcon launch, what's next for SpaceX and Tesla? Spotify is the kind of streaming music, but Apple Music is hot on the trail. The Apple Watch may soon provide your doctor with valuable information.