Doctor's Review: Medicine on the Move

December 10, 2017
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It’s a wrap

Our top 15 gifts under $150 for everyone on your list

Designer dreidel Add a little modernism to your Judaica with designer Marilyn Davidson’s contemporary Dreidel. It was designed for Santa Fe-based Nambé, a company that has developed a unique eight-metal alloy that is as strong as steel and looks just like silver. This perfectly balanced streamlined dreidel is engraved with the Hebrew letters nun, gimel, hey and shin signifying, “a great miracle happened here.” It slots into a wooden base, making it a good-looking accessory year-round. US$85 (including brokerage fee) at the Jewish Museum. http://shop.thejewishmuseum.org [SL]

Rock star Admit it. The holidays wouldn’t be the same without a sampling, a smidge, just a splash of rum, vodka or whiskey. Spirits to get you in the spirit, yes? Because you can count on them being at any party, count on Teroforma’s Whiskey Stones as a “cool” gift for your hosts. Inspired by a Scandinavian technique, the natural soapstones from Vermont will chill your drink without diluting its flavour like ice would. We followed the instructions on the package (freeze; use three stones for two ounces of liquid; let stand five minutes) and they “chilled” as promised. About $25 for nine stones. For retailers in BC, AB and ON, go to www.teroforma.com . [CC]

Kettle to the metal For tea aficionados, Breville’s Variable Temperature Kettle is a dream come true. This sleekly designed cordless kettle has five pre-set brewing temperatures — from delicate green tea, to white tea, oolong, French press coffee and black tea — which beep when ready. Using the right temperature water allows you to fully steep the tea without bitterness. It will even hold your chosen temperature for up to 20 minutes, allowing you to make multiple brews without waiting. $139.99 at Bed Bath & Beyond. www.bedbathandbeyond.ca [SL]

Camping comfort Style and function meet for campers on your list with the MSR Quick 2 System — plus they’ll think of you each time they gather for a wilderness cookout. Quick Systems are ingeniously designed — the two-person set has a 1.5-litre nonstick pot (think sautéing onions, making sauces and scrambling eggs); a 2.5-litre hard-anodized pot ideal for boiling pastas (it comes with a strainer lid); two insulated mugs and a pair of deep-dish plates. The kit is perfectly modular, fits like a stackable puzzle and weighs a mere pound. $92 at Mountain Equipment Co-op. Can be bought for three or four people. www.mec.ca [AS]

Because of the wonderful things it does Sure, we all know what happens when Dorothy Gale and her dog Toto are swept away by a tornado, but watching the 70th Anniversary Edition of The Wizard of Oz is as exciting as the very first time. Warner’s extensive restoration brings out so many details — you see hair on the Wicked Witch’s mole and freckles on Judy Garland’s face. Film buffs won’t be disappointed by the 16 hours of extra content, while the rest of the family can fight over the collectible watch and books. Blu-ray Hi-Def Collector’s edition, $79.99; DVD Collector’s, $64.99; two-discer, $24.99. http://thewizardofoz.warnerbros.com [AS]

Everywhere DIY For the adventurer in your life, the one who travels far and wide and dares try new things — such as buying a round of unidentifiable raw-milk cheese for lunch — there’s the Leatherman Skeletool CX. It may be the only multi-tool a person needs to fix loose car plugs or do odd jobs around the house. It comes with a 154-centimetre knife, needlenose pliers, regular pliers, wire cutters, hard-wire cutters, a bit driver and a bottle opener. Closed it’s 10-centimetres long and weighs 142 grams. $96 at Mountain Equipment Co-op. www.mec.ca [AS]

Let me take you down… Jealous of your teenagers flailing away at Guitar Hero: Metallica? Treat them to Beatles: Rock Band and show ’em how it was done in your glory days. Thanks to a “no fail” mode, even the clumsiest can simulate rocking along to the beloved tunes of the Fab 4. Up to six people can play at once on controllers modelled after instruments — three mics, two guitars and drums. The game disc has 45 songs, with more available for download. And to look really cool in the eyes of the youngsters, get the Rickenbacker 325 ($99.99) — just like John played. Available for PS3, Wii and Xbox. $59.99 at Future Shop. www.futureshop.ca www.thebeatlesrockband.com [AS]

The perfect laptop disguise Spanish website Mitemite.es bills itself as a site that sells “unnecessary objects designed to make your life a little more fun.” Very true. But there’s a functional side to its Laptop Case Against Crime. If you’ve got a university student on your list, the whole family may sleep easier knowing your kid can travel without screaming “mug me” in Paris’s Métro. After all who wants to steal a newspaper? It’s not like people read print anymore. The laptop is lined, with a plastic exterior, made for a Macbook Pro, but can take a regular-sized PC laptop with a bit of squeeze. €60 plus €10 for packing and postage. www.mitemite.es [AS]

A slice of Canadiana Modern Karibou is a Canadian online store that sells furniture and accessories by up-and-coming designers, many of whom are Canadian and/or environmentally bent. The Centrifuge Pepper Mill (from $70) and Salt Shaker ($50) comes from a single piece of Canadian-sourced walnut or maple. The mills feature stainless-steel mechanisms made in the US by Chef Specialities (http://chefspecialties.com); it’s not adjustable but a darn good grinder, producing medium-ground pepper. The mills come in small, medium or large. www.modernkaribou.ca or en Français at www.KaribouModerne Orders over $100 are shipped free. [AS]

Wowo wow! Thanks to Canadian designers Vurv, your pooch, kitty or minou can feel and look like they’re eating and drinking from an Eames original. Wowo bowls can come as one or two bowls, large or small, and in a variety of finished materials including bamboo. Vurv’s Maow line also puts the streamlined look on a convenient wall mount. Their pet beds look seriously plush and comfy — so much so, you may want one just for yourself. The feeders start at $98. www.vurv.ca [AS]

Into the heart of darkness No more running only in daylight. The Sprinter is a rechargeable headlamp made exclusively for runners. It has a fore-aft balance and a low profile to reduce bounce, a safety strobe and an oval to help your vision focus. US$79.95. www.blackdiamondequipment.com . Search for a Canuck dealer at the bottom of the page. [AS].

Big on style The coolest thing about LaCie’s Sound2 Speakers? Their look, obviously. They’re basically big, big earbuds that are, admittedly, more Mac than PC in style, but I’ll look past that… for now. Almost brainless to install, they make beautiful music with a Mac, PC and MP3 player via the line-in cable or built-in USB. The outcome of a partnership with Cabasse, the duo feature a Class-D digital amplifier, magnetic shielding, bass reflex system and 30W peak output. An A/C adapter is included so you can also juice up through a power supply. The techy in your life will thank you. $99.99 plus $11 shipping through www.lacie.com/ca/index.htm [CC]

Dress for success Three words: knitted Olympic sweater. She’ll love it. Trust us. After all, it’s one of the four iconic items in HBC’s Canadian Olympic Team apparel collection. The others? Well, the toque, the parka and buffalo plaid, of course. A modest nod to the aboriginals of Vancouver Island, the lamb’s wool, machine-knit full zip resembles a Cowichan sweater in style. It features two opposing stag heads and the national leaf. In case that’s not identifiable enough, the word “Canada” is splashed on the back. Boy’s and girl’s $75; men’s and women’s $100. Only at the Bay, Zeller’s and www.hbc.com (free shipping when you spend over $100). [CC]

A companion for life A bag is a bag is a bag, right? Wrong. Especially when talking about one of Pacific Outdoor Equipment’s commuter bags. When their apple-green, just-the-right-size Sitka arrived at our office, we were immediately impressed. It, and all of their bags, are made of 420 denier nylon that’s been thermally welded together. The seams are so strong that their bond has a higher tear threshold than the fabric itself. Also, welded in? The zippers — tough to open, but they sure keep the rain out. In addition to the shoulder strap, there’s one that tightens around your waist. The buckles and flaps are outfitted with reflectors. $139.99. An agent in MTL can be reached at (514) 761-1425. www.pacoutdoor.com [CC]

Easy in the pocket A 12-megapixel digicam with a 2.7-inch LCD screen and 3x optical zoom for $150? Yep, it’s possible and, nope, you won’t have to sacrifice style for substance. Fujifilm’s FinePix J30 comes in black, blue and pink. Its body is coated with a glossy laminate, which is shiny and sleek. It isn’t much bigger than, say, an iPod Nano and at 20 millimetres wide, it fits nicely in your pocket. A basic point-and-shoot, it features scene recognition auto, face detection technology, auto red-eye removal, picture stabilisation and an ISO sensitivity of up to 3200 (at 3MP). It also allows you to combine three consecutive shots to create a panoramic one. $149.99 at Best Buy (www.bestbuy.ca) and The Source( www.thesource.ca). www.fujifilm.ca [CC]

This article was accurate when it was published. Please confirm rates and details directly with the companies in question.

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