Unique Christmas Gifts


In this it’s-almost-Christmas season, how many gift catalogs have you received? 30, 40, 50? More? Did you receive one from Hammacher Schlemmer? (see above)  They provide a wide variety of gifts –all of them unique (and some very expensive, too). They have been in existence since 1848. They claim to have “America’s Longest Running Catalog.” Plus, they have offered “the Best, the Only and the Unexpected for 169 years.”   They have a large store in NYC. (FAO Schwarz is in NYC, too. If you are close by, kids might enjoy a visit.)

Among Hammacher Schlemmer’s 12 best sellers are: a Turkish Bathrobe ($130), a white noise generator to help you sleep ($55), a VHS to DVD Converter ($300), a Space Saving 18 Pair–Holding Shoe Rack ($50), and Sheepskin Slippers ($80).

Here is a sample of a dozen of the store’s more unique items for sale:


Two authentic Yankee Stadium seats ($1,500) (see above)


An authentic Baseball glove leather chair ($6,200) (see above)


A rideable, three-wheeled cooler (with a speed of 12 mph and a range of 10 miles) ($999.95) (see above)


A Rolling Stones autographed guitar ($3,900) (see above)


An R2-D2 Coffee Press (9+ inches tall) ($39.95) (see above)


Three Silent Squeaking Dog Toys (your dog can hear these 3 squeaking toys, but not you!) ($39.95) (see above)


The Feline’s Laser Chasing Scratch Post (“a yarn covered scratch post topped with a device that projects a red laser dot in random patterns at one of 4 speeds”) ($79.95) (see above)


The World’s Smallest Quadcopter (Only 1.1” square and requiring a launching platform no larger than the tip of a finger; can travel up to 65’) ($39.95) (see above)


A Remote Controlled Abrams Tank (moves left and right making 360 degree turns, fires plastic pellets) ($279.95) (see above)


The Fish Catching Remote Controlled Boat (This 17 and a half inch boat can catch up to a 2 pound fish!) ($69.95) (see above)


The Tabletop Fireplace (It rests on any stable surface, producing a 7” flame which can heat a 325’ square area for two and a half hours.) ($159.95) (see above)


The Long Range Laser Blaster Set (This laser tag set allows 2 players to fire 100’ away) ($59.95) (see above)


Among the most expensive gifts are: The World’s Largest Scrabble Game (The wall-mounted game is 88” high and 99” wide. One of only 9 in existence. Comes with 100 tiles) ($12,000)

The Amphibious ATV (The all-terrain vehicle moves on land and water at a speed of 45 mph.) ($49,000)

The Authentic 1966 Batmobile (“This is the officially licensed, roadworthy replica of the Batmobile featured in the 1960s TV show. Built on a Lincoln chassis with a 430 horsepower engine and automatic transmission”) ($200,000)

Obviously, these are special gifts intended for special people. So, if YOU receive a gift from Hammacher Schlemmer, you must be a special person. And if you do not receive such a gift, you are still special to me for reading this article. Merry Christmas!!











About rcarmean

Two things... First, why have I decided to establish this blog? I like to put essays together. I research an idea or topic looking for information, statistics, stories, quotes, pictures, etc. I enjoy the process and seeing a finished product. I’m told that as I get older, new activities can help maintain energy and keep my brain alert. In other words, I am not doing this for money or fame. Second, regarding the gentleman in the collage of pictures above...it's not me. Those are photos of Christy Mathewson. Why him? When I was young, my primary activity was being sick. It took up much of my time. Eczema (a case so bad I was written up in a medical journal showing doctors what their patients COULD look like), asthma, and allergies. You know allergies: don’t eat this, don’t wear that, and, for Heaven’s sake, don’t touch any of these things (eg, dogs, cats, horses --I only saw horses in cowboy movies and TV shows, dust, swimming pools, my brother --OK, that’s an exaggeration, Rick was a fine brother). In my spare time between doctors' appointments, pills, and ointments, baseball kept me sane. In the 1940s and 1950s, when I grew up, pro footballI and basketball had not yet become extremely popular. Baseball truly was “the national pastime.” I listened to games on the radio (remember it? TV without the picture). I read magazines, books, and newspaper accounts of games. I collected baseball cards. I learned about the game’s history, as well as present. The same with its stars. One man stood out: Christy Mathewson. He was a great pitcher for the New York Giants in the early 20th century. But there was much more to him. At a time when professional athletes made little money (yes, there was such a time) and ball players were considered on the same level as actors, artists, and prostitutes, Mathewson stood out. One of his nicknames was: “The Christian Gentleman.” Most men is baseball drank, smoked, cursed, and fought —with other players, umpires, and fans. The fights were physical, not just verbal. Mathewson did none of these things. But he earned the respect of other players who did them all. Even Ty Cobb and John McGraw. There’s more. He was a college graduate (Bucknell University) when most men were lucky to have a high school diploma. He played other sports, including pro football which you wouldn’t recognize. He was handsome. He played in New York City, then as now, the largest city in the country. Excellence and popularity there meant fame and money. He dressed well. Today, his commercials would rival LeBron’s. And, finally, a hero’s life must have tragedy. After his playing career ended, WWI arrived. He suffered from influenza and was exposed to mustard gas. Chemical warfare. His lungs were damaged and he required treatment for the rest of his life. (Like my Grandfather who also fought in The Great War.) He died in 1925. He was 45 years old. I have his picture here because you need to know more about him than me. He was what an athlete could be. Players like him and their accomplishments got me through a sickly, painful childhood and can still sustain me in difficult times. *****
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1 Response to Unique Christmas Gifts

  1. Marc Kuhn says:

    I want the Remote Controlled Abrams Tank…but I think that’s what I asked for last year. I guess Santa doesn’t trust me with it.


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