Take the fumes and noise out of your mowing routine while doing the planet a favor at the same time by upgrading to the Stihl RMA 370 Battery Powered Mower ($TBA). This walk-behind mower operates on the same KombiSystem as the company's other battery-powered tools, starts with the push of a button, holds up to 10.5 gallons of clippings, and can cut up to 3,200 square feet per charge. It only takes 30 minutes to recharge using the rapid charger, which strikes us as just enough time to do the exhausting work of finding the cooler, opening a beer, and planning the evening ahead.
In one of the greater collaborations in recent memory, legendary scotch makers The Macallan have joined teams with sunglass-makers Oakley, and the result is one hardcore flask. Indeed, the The Macallan x Oakley Flask (£600; roughly $900) draws upon the latter's experience in creating high-end metal objects, with a dark design that brings together food-grade steel, carbon fiber, and aerospace-grade aluminum. Features include a rubberized bottom to keep it from sliding around, a double-sprung cap, and a machined aluminum funnel that threads into the mouthpiece and sports a small air vent on the side. Sure, it's expensive, but so is 25-year-old Macallan.
Freak out your ophidiophobic friends by proudly placing Serpentine ($30) atop your coffee table. Not a serpentine, mind you, but the 200-page collection of dangerously beautiful photographs from Mark Laita. Including such snakes as the albino Honduran milk snake, the Malaysian coral snake, and Kobe's favorite, the black mamba, the book also contains an essay from novelist William T. Vollmann exploring the various associations with the animals that make them so menacing to so many.
Just think of them as an Ikea product for your feet. Like our favorite affordable Swedish furniture, Lasso Flat-Packed Slippers (£27; roughly $40) arrive in a slim box ready to be assembled. Made from a single piece of grey wool felt, they feature a hearty leather sole, and your choice of laces, which you use to build the shoe by sewing them through precut holes. We haven't seen the printed instructions yet, but we're guessing they're not quite as frustrating as the wordless booklets that come from the big blue store.
If you liked the HM4 Thunderbolt, you're going to love the MB&F HM4 Final Edition Watch ($TBA). Inspired by the F-117 Nighthawk, the Final Edition features a black PVD-coated titanium body while retaining the jet-inspired design of the original, including the turbine-like pods for the time and power reserve indicators, which are connected to the power reserve via unique vertical gear trains. Again, as before, each of the 311 components — including the titanium case, regulator, and even the screws — were developed specifically for this watch, only this time there are only eight of them to go around. So if you're interested, you'd best start making purchasing arrangements now.
When we first brought you news of National Lampoon's Vacation on Blu-ray, it was with a heavy heart, knowing that the Amazon reviews said the soundtrack was in mono, the picture sucked, the cover art "looked stupid," and generally "pathetic". We're hoping that the National Lampoon's Vacation: 30th Anniversary ($16) release will fix all of that. If nothing else, you'll get new bonus content like the A&E special, "Inside Story: National Lampoon's Vacation". And let's face it — if you're thinking about buying it and have held off this long, you might as well take the plunge.
Ever feel like your iPhone needs a little more Dieter Rams in its life? Give it some with the T3 Music Player ($1). Inspired by Rams' iconic Braun radio of the same name, it sports a clean white interface with a circle in the middle for controlling playback (sounds familiar)? Not content to simply ape the T3, the music browsing interface takes after Rams' 606 shelving, and lets you sort your playlists alphabetically or by rank.
Forget camera-based gesture controls — if you want complete control wherever you are, you need something like the Myo Gesture Control Armband ($150). This innovative new input device communicates with your Mac, PC, phone or tablet over Bluetooth 4.0, and uses proprietary muscle sensors as well as a 6-axis motion sensor to track your movement. The muscle sensors are advanced enough that it can detect changes in gestures down to the individual finger, and because your muscles pick up the signal to move before they actually do, you may see it respond to your movements before you even move. May be combined with a smartphone, Google Glass, and a jetpack to build a "Superhero Starter Pack". [Scouted by Gershon]
Eat like winter is coming by cooking up some of the delicious grub in A Feast of Ice and Fire: The Official Game of Thrones Companion Cookbook ($20). Created by fans of the series Chelsea Monroe-Cassel and Sariann Lehrer and given a foreword blessing by series author George R. R. Martin, this 200+ page book contains over 100 recipies, helpfully divided by region. So whether you're looking for a pork pie from the Wall or biscuits and bacon from Across the Narrow Sea, it's got you covered.
Yes, the venerable Cherokee is making a comeback — but it isn't quite what you think. Details are still scant on the 2014 Jeep Cherokee ($TBA), but it's believed to be a replacement for the far more feminine Liberty. Word also has it that it's built atop the Dodge Dart's platform, making it at most mid-sized and at worst an oversized hatchback. But none of that's the first thing you'll notice. Instead, you'll be staring at the bent-backward slotted grille and the sleek new headlamps — in fact, you're doing that right now, aren't you? Arriving in Q3 2013.
Unbeknownst to most common folk, many of rock's greatest albums came from a not-so-glamorous part of the San Fernando Valley. Sound City ($10-$13) is dedicated to the studio of the same name, and the rare sound board held within — sound featured on albums by Tom Petty, Nirvana, Fleetwood Mac, Rage Against the Machine, Neil Young, and many more. Directed by Dave Grohl, this full-length documentary features interviews and performances by some of the rockers who held court there, and is a must-watch for true music lovers.
Not every custom bike has to be glitzy or overly rugged. The Bandit9 Hephaestus Motorcycle (RMB 85,000; roughly $13,700) makes its mark by being simple yet sleek. Sitting on standard tires and alloy rims, Hephaestus features a custom handcrafted stainless steel tank, cowl and fender, a custom gas cap, upgraded front and rear disc brakes and suspension, a custom hand-stitched leather seat, custom side covers, a custom exhaust and muffler, and custom turn signals. All the rest of it is a stock Honda Bros 400 — although admittedly, that's not very much.