I have a Pinterest board that is entitled, simply, “Just Cool.” It includes beautiful and unusual things, wild and wacky things, and things that are so brilliant that I can’t even stand it. Some of the things I’d really like to have. Some of the things I’d just really like to see in real life. And some of the things I don’t need myself but they’re just so cool I want everyone who might be able to use them to see them.
Here are a few of my favorite “Just Cool” items.
A Bubble Tent
This transparent lawn tent lets you escape the bugs and the marauding chipmunks/ants/raccoons/yeti that might pay you a nighttime visit if you tried sleeping under the stars sans tent, but still gives you a gloriously clear view of the stars. You could even stick it in your backyard on a drizzly day and enjoy the outdoors without getting wet. It doesn’t give you much privacy, but seriously, if you owned one of these babies, wouldn’t you want everyone and their brother to be watching you with envy?
It can be yours for a mere $1,400 (plus $660 shipping – it’s apparently heavier than it looks). From Amazon.com.
Pool Climbing Wall
If you prefer swimming to camping, here’s a cool pool accessory that I bet no-one else on the block has: a poolside climbing wall! No need for safety harnesses or gear; a fall off this wall will land you softly (if splashily) right back in the pool. You can change the orientation of each panel to adjust the level of difficulty. The deeper the pool, the higher the wall can go. Available in light and dark blue or yellow/orange/red combination. Bell to ring when reaching the top not included.
Prices are not listed on the AquaClimb website, which is probably a sign that you can’t afford it.
I love to relax by soaking in the tub. I often play soft music, turn off all the lights, and light a candle or two. I’m fortunate to have a skylight in my bathroom, but unfortunately the angle from the tub is such that I can’t really see much of the sky while I’m soaking. But this nifty little gadget brings the stars right into your bathroom, even if it’s cloudy.
Conveniently water resistant, it comes in your choice of four fashion colors: black, blue, pink, or white. At only $48.84 each, you could get one in all four colors! FromTakeMyPaycheck.com.
This canoe/kayak is essentially the cockpit canopy from a supersonic fighter jet, flipped upside-down. It comes with two adjustable seats, one flotation device (apparently you and your fellow paddler have to flip for it), a pair of paddles, and a drop-down skeg (I don’t know what that is, either, but it sounds cool). If you spend most of your time in places that have gorgeously clear blue water and happy rainbow-colored tropical fishes swimming by, this is the vessel for you! If you hang out in muddy swamps with snapping turtles and tadpoles, you might not reap the same benefits. But at a cool $2,500 (plus $350 shipping), if you can afford this canoe, you can afford to fly it to the Caribbean with you in your private jet.
Every geek worthy of the name should own a pair of these. Not only are they ridiculously affordable at (mostly) less than 15 bucks, but you get your choice of Darth Vader red, Luke Skywalker Blue, Yoda green, Darth Maul red, Obi-Wan Kenobi blue, or Mace Windu purple. But be warned: age recommendations vary with each color. The Skywalker version is appropriate for ages 12-44, but Darth Vader is only for 14-15 year-olds, and Yoda is only for (I am not making this up) ages “15 years – 16 years 4 months”. Don’t try to sneak in an extra month, 16-year-olds. Yoda WILL FIND YOU.
Astronaut Phone Charger
If you prefer your space accessories to be less science fiction and more, well, science, here’s a fun yet practical item for you: an astronaut phone charger. Able to hold either a smartphone or a tablet, this realistic little astronaut will keep you powered up and cheered up. Available in both standing and sitting models.
Loch Ness Monster Ladle
Last but not least, my “Just Cool” list includes this fabulous Loch Ness Monster kitchen ladle. This mysterious cutie pie will happily slink around your soup, conveniently ducking under whenever camera-toting tourists walk through your kitchen. With four little legs, there’s no need for a spoon rest, as she will happily stand on the countertop and watch you cook when she’s not in use.
For the low, low price of only $15.99, you could even buy a couple, so they won’t be lonely – Nessie and Champy, perhaps? From Animi Causa.
Christmas is only about 100 days away, so start your shopping early with some of these items and YOU'LL be the one who's "Just Cool"!!