{Guest Post} 8 Gifts for Himself

By Mikey J

1. Red Tie: So I replaced my ratty old plaid red tie from last year's post with a red silk tie from a little local tie maker while in Budapest. It’s really nice and well made and all that, but I can’t seem to wear it out; the thing is too damn shiny, and shininess and glitter have been my lifelong nemeses. So I’m still on the hunt for a reddish tie I will actually wear, and this matte cotton one by Oh Good Heavens in I’d say burgundy (they say Plum), will more than do. Available at White Elephant.

2. Science of Good Cooking by Cook's Illustrated / America’s Test Kitchen:  When I had this book out from the library, I felt like a food scientist. It was perfect for how I use cookbooks: more for referencing concepts; but it’s their experiments, which use scientific method to establish findings, that provides readers some really innovative recipe tweaks (Erin’s favourite example: Vodka Pie Dough) and completely won me over. You’re probably bored already, but this is the must have on my list.

3. Coffee Stuff: I’ve been doing french press coffee at home for a while now, and I mostly love it, but sometimes I could do without the sediment, and a-lot-of-the-time I could skip cleaning out the old grinds I neglected to clean out last week because I was busy damn-it! Can’t I just relax?

I’d like a lazy man’s alternative and Detour has got it’s hands on the pour over funnelly thing I’ve always wanted to exist. (Don't forget some #4 coffee filters and medium roast beans while you're there.)

4. Wallet: These days I only keep a wallet in my bag, or as randoms like to comment, my purse, and going out to the bar equals a few cards and some cash in my pockets. Unfortunately, this leads to frantically rummaging through laundry come Monday morning. So yes, I need a slimmer "bar" wallet. Bellroy caught my eye because they added a neat pullout tab, and the instructional videos don’t hurt.

5. Outlier Toque: Outlier bike commuter gear is up there for most well-used clothing I’ve ever owed and remains a Christmas list staple for me. It’s too expensive to expect to receive, but it always looks pretty in the montage and you never know, someone could strike it rich one year.

6. Booze: After our trip to central europe I’ve been scouring LCBO Germany Vintages sections with no luck for some Spätburgunder (german Pinot Noir), and not just because it was so fun to say that we ended up using it as an alternative phrase for cursing the gods. Nearest I found is in Oakville LCBOs

7. Albums: I never seem to be done rating my mp3 collection, but as of today, here’s my top rated albums of 2013...

Born Ruffians - Birthmarks *already b-day gifted, Vampire Weekend - Modern Vampires in the City, Rhye - Woman, The National - Trouble Will Find Me, Haim - Days Are Gone, Chvrches - The Bones of What You Believe, Jesse Lanza - Pull My Hair Back, Arcade Fire - Reflektor, Washed Out - Paracosm,  James Blake - Overgrown

8. Gloves: My merino glove was wounded in action during a particularly treacherous cold weather fishing trip in North Bay. Hooks and wool gloves should never be mingled, and all the duct tape and shoddy stitchwork in the world couldn’t stop the unravelling. It’s been cold enough this year to move to my cashmeres, but I’ve found a good pair of gloves in the more breathable merino are essential for between-seasons biking.

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