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Here"s a first look at The Garden of Eden, coming to Cleveland"s Metropolitan at the 9 (PHOTOS)

The concept will join several rooftop bars already open in the city, such as Bar 32 in The Hilton, Alley Cat Oyster, Punch Bowl Social, Velvet Dog and Landshark Bar......»»

Category: topSource: bizjournalsMay 13th, 2022

These photos show how this "homesteading" family lives off their Texas land and preps for emergencies

Homesteaders and peppers are thriving online amid war, pandemic, and disrupted supply chains. One family took us inside their prepping and farm setup. Matt, Sydney, and their two kids.Courtesy company Homesteading and prepping can both help people prepare for disasters and become self-sufficient Homesteaders often grow food and raise animals, and preserve food, while preppers generally try to keep stocks of supplies (homegrown or not).  One family in East Texas took showed Insider their "prepsteader" lifestyle.  Homesteading is a lifestyle where you grow your own food, which often gains traction in difficult times, experts told Insider.The garden of Rachel Kaplan, co-author of a book on urban homesteading.Rachel KaplanOne of its early mentions was the 1862 Homesteading Act, where anyone who had not taken up arms against the government could claim land, which further displaced Native Americans.A family pose with their wagon in Loup Valley, Nebraska, on their way to their new homestead. (Homestead Meadows not pictured.)MPI/Getty ImagesHomesteading is a bit like farming, but it has a specific connotations, especially in modern times.A shot from Kaplan's garden.Rachel KaplanHomesteaders, especially in the modern sense, tend to individually grow their own food or other products.A yield from Nivek Anderson Brown of Leaf and Bean farm in Virginia.Nivek Anderson BrownMost homesteaders have gardens of some kind.The Green Gardens homestead in Washington.Alliyah PerryThey often have land, but not always.Land at the Leaf and Bean Farm homestead in Virginia.Nivek Anderson Brown"It's about growing your food and living a bit more simply," said Alliyah Perry of Green Gardens Homestead in Washington.Yield from the Green Gardens homestead in WashingtonAlliyah PerryHomesteaders will often forage or grow herbs, garden and raise crops, and take care of livestock.Some tomatoes from Standing Pine homestead in Texas.Courtesy company"It's just a beautiful way to live," said Rachel Kaplan, who co-wrote a book on urban homesteading and began the practice after 9/11.Peach, calendula, and sage by Rachel KaplanRachel KaplanWith empty shelves and expensive food driven by inflation, pandemic, and war, the lifestyle has seen increased interest online, social media-homesteaders told Insider.Craig Hastings/Getty ImagesHowever, unlike for a lot of influencers, this often isn't a full-time source of income.Standing Pine Homestead eggsCourtesy companyIt's more of a way to feed your family and connect with the earth.Chickens eating at Standing Pine.Courtesy companyThat's at least the case for Cidni, a homesteader in East Texas.Cidni of Standing Pine.Courtesy company(She doesn't use her last name online for privacy reasons.)Cidni and her husband Matt moved to this half-acre "homestead" in East Texas in September 2020.Standing Pine Homestead.Courtesy companyThey call the place the "Standing Pine Farm" or homestead.Standing Pine Homestead.Courtesy companyHere is Cidni, her husband Matt, and their two kids.Matt, Cidni, and their two kids.Courtesy companyCidni estimates they are about 30% self-sufficient on the homestead with a garden, livestock, and a backup heater and generator.Standing Pines' garden.Courtesy companyThat's because Cidni is also a "prepper," which sometimes brings to mind bunkers like this...Inside a luxury survival bunker.Courtesy of Atlas Survival Shelters...and this. Prepping and homesteading tend to see more interest when crises hit.A bunker installationCourtesy of the Rising S CompanyBut for Cidni, "prepping" often involves preserving the food she and her family grow and buy.Tomatoes getting dehydrated for storage at Standing PineCourtesy companySydney identifies as "prepsteader" -- a blend homesteader and prepper.Standing Pine Farm goods plus some purchases.Courtesy companyPure preppers tend to just store processed food, while most homesteaders end up preserving food in one way or another, Sydney said.Preparing ham from a local pig and beans to store at Standing Pine.Courtesy companyFor Cidni, she grows what they can, barters for some, and buys the rest en masse seasonally, storing it prepper-style.Prepped at Standing Pine.Courtesy companyCidni spends a lot of time on weekends canning and preserving the food they grow.Canned at Standing Pine.Courtesy companyShe uses two types of canners: a pressure canner...Pressure canning at standing pine.Courtesy company... And a water bath cannerWater bath canning.Courtesy company.Cidni said the water bath canner is really simple.Water bath canning.Courtesy company"You don't need any special canner for water bathing," she said. You just boil a jar or can underneath at least an inch of water for a certain period of time to create a vacuum seal, she added.Canned goods from Standing Pine.Courtesy companyIt has to be a high pH mixture or food to kill off bacteria and prevent them from growing for water bath canning. "That's what I usually process my pickles and things in," Cidni said.Cucumbers in a mason jar.Courtesy company"And then my pressure canner is right here," Sydney said. "I cried when my husband bought me that. I was so excited."The top of a pressure canner.Courtesy companyIt uses pressure to create a vacuum seal.Inside the pressure canner.Courtesy company"If I over-pressurize, it will pop and let steam out so the canners no longer blow up like our Grandma's did," Sydney said.Another look inside the pressure canner.Courtesy companySydney uses "rebel canning" recipes, which means they are not precisely USDA-approved but she researches them herself, she said.Canned cornbread at Standing Pine.Courtesy companyCidni's prepper pantry. She grew and preserved the most of the food.A prepper pantry.Courtesy company"If I lost my job tomorrow, we would absolutely be able to feed our family without having to go to the grocery store for several months," Cidni said.Prepper pantry with cans and jars.Courtesy companyCidni got into prepping because of the pandemic, when she ran out of formula for her baby, Emma, now two and a half (left).Emma and Lori playing at Standing Pine.Courtesy company“My milk was not coming in, no matter what I did,” she said.Staring down a chicken at Standing Pine.Courtesy companyHer daughter seemed to dislike milk-based formula, so she put her on goat's milk formula from Europe, which then got caught up in shipping delays.ReutersThe stores were also empty of regular formula, she said.Similac baby formula is displayed on the shelves at Shaker's IGA in Olmsted Falls, Ohio.Mark Duncan/AP PhotoSydney said she then posted in a local mom's group, and a dairy-free mom donated a month's supply. "All I remember was that her name was Heather and she was such a beautiful person," Cidni said.Canned milk.Courtesy companyThe goat's milk eventually came in within that month.Milks at Standing Pine.Courtesy companyMatt and Cidni started prepping in 2016 but, were living in Lubbock, Texas when the pandemic it. The milk shortage accelerated their plans to homestead.Jared Jurkowski's Airbnb in Galveston, TexasJared Jurkowski"We decided we had enough of living in the city and we needed to learn additional skills on how to feed our daughters, aside from just having extra food in the pantry," Cidni said.Life on the homestead.Courtesy companyShe now makes TikTok videos on how to prep for infant formula shortages, Cidni said.Instant milk.Courtesy subject.But the general prepping topics have proved popular on TikTok. "I started posting more about canning, food preservation and prepping your pantry for inflation and the views shot up," she said.Canned grape juice.Courtesy companyCidni juggles canning and TikTok-ing with working remotely as a systems trainer. Matt homesteads and gardens full-time.Matt taking care of the garden.Courtesy company"My husband is wonderful and will distract the kids," Cidni said.Lori, soaking up the homesteading vibes.Courtesy companyMatt works in the garden about two to four hours per day, depending on the season.Matt gardening.Courtesy companyMatt got into prepping and homesteading through his rural childhood and family, plus an appreciation for apocalypse fiction and westerns (But he said he would not identify as a doomsday prepper.)Matt with a chicken.Courtesy companyThis year, he built raised beds for the garden.Matt's raised garden beds.Courtesy companyThis year, they'll get about 200 pounds of vegetables from their garden, Matt added.Standing Pine yield.Courtesy company.“The labor of it is therapeutic. Sometimes, in the garden, I'll just kind of take off my shoes and just kind of let it all sink in,” Matt said.Gardening.Courtesy companyOutside, they also have a pasture and barn for their goats and chickens.Lori feeding the goats.Courtesy company"There is a huge sense of accomplishment when you are able to raise a baby chick from an egg," Cidni said.An apron full of eggs.Courtesy companyOne homesteading endeavor that didn't work out so well for Cidni was cows.A cattle farmer and his cows next to the city sign of Deveselu, Romania, May 12, 2016.Kay Nietfeld/picture alliance via Getty ImagesThey had named the cows Patsy Cline and Dolly Parton -- a Standing Pine tradition of naming animals after famous people.The former Standing Pine cows.Courtesy companyBut, "once she started getting milked, she would kick," Cidni said.Pasty the calf and Dolly the momma.Courtesy companyCows eat about 25 pounds of hay a day, so it's hard to keep one if they're not contributing, she added.It's hard to keep a cow that doesn't contribute, she said. (Even if they're really cute)Courtesy companySo, they gave the cows to a nearby farm.Cows and kids.Courtesy companyCommunity is part of Cidni and Matt's approach to homesteading, such as bartering for elderberry syrup and raw milk with their extra eggs at nearby farms.Standing Pine eggsCourtesy companyOverall, they say their lifestyle is rewarding.Lori (left) and Emma (right).Courtesy company.“There is a peace and a connection to nature with this lifestyle, and it taps into the part of our souls that we always knew was there,” she said.Sydney with a chicken.Courtesy companyIt’s also cheaper.Canned goods.Courtesy companyCidni estimated that they spent $100-$150 a week on food and now try to spend just $150-$200 a month at the grocery store.Berries, some of which they grew.Courtesy companyThey mostly shop for things they can't make, like flour and rice, or the occasional treat, like doughnuts or tortilla chips and try to buy from other farmers whenever possible. You just can't grow all your own food on half an acre, Cidni said.People wear masks at a supermarket in Miami Beach, Florida, on April 19, 2021.Jeff Greenberg/Universal Images Group/Getty ImagesShe noted they have only made about so far $800 from Facebook promotion and Amazon affiliate links -- but do have 96,000 TikTok followers.Mateusz Slodkowski/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images"We learned so much from so many creators, mostly on Youtube, and when we made the decision to homestead on a half-acre, we wanted to share our journey with others," Cidni said.Sydney of Standing Pines.Courtesy company“I think people have a general interest in preserving food and having things on-hand for emergencies. And that's how I approach it, so I think that they respond to my non-panic, fear-inducing [method],” she said.A chicken looking back.Courtesy company.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: worldSource: nytApr 17th, 2022

The 20 best bridal shower gifts, from a fun instant camera to a cooking class for two

Celebrate their upcoming nuptials with these thoughtful and unique bridal shower gifts, including a personalized charcuterie board and luxe cookware. Prices are accurate at the time of publication.When you buy through our links, Insider may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more.Gorkem Yorulmaz/Getty Images A bridal shower is a party to celebrate the bride before the couple's wedding. Bridal shower gifts are usually small but meaningful tokens for the couple's new life together. From home goods to wedding accessories, check out these 20 thoughtful bridal shower gifts. Still looking for a gift? Check out our list of the All-Time Best products we've ever tested. Getting married is an exciting time not only for the couple, but also for their friends and family. A bridal shower is typically held to celebrate the momentous occasion coming up and, although it's held in the bride's honor, bridal shower gifts are meant to help shepherd the lovebirds into their new life stage. That means wedding keepsakes, charismatic home items, and experience gifts that will bond the couple all successfully highlight their marital status. When it comes to bridal shower gifts, thrill the bride and the groom (or the other bride) with something neither will forget.Here are the 20 best bridal shower gifts:A set of mix-and-match dinnerwareFood52Casafina Modern Classic Ceramic Dinnerware & Serveware, available at Food52, from $52The classic wedding gift of dishware offers a fresh start to their next life chapter with new dinnerware that's beautifully crafted and a necessary home good. Mix and match these charming pastel dishes for a picturesque meal.An instant film camera to capture every momentBest BuyFujifilm Instax Mini 11, available at Best Buy, $69.99This Fujifilm camera instantly captures exciting wedding moments and splendid memories, both before and after. The Instax Mini 11 comes with an automatic exposure function and a selfie mode that shows off any great angle.A geometric print throw blanket to keep warmBrooklinenBrooklinen x Pendleton Paths Blanket, available at Brooklinen, $330.65 This striking blanket may be a more costly bridal shower gift, but this collab from two iconic brands makes an impact. This Brooklinen and Pendelton throw features warm, vibrant geometric prints inspired by traditional hand-sewn quilts and cityscapes.A pair of ultra-soft shearling slippersTkeesInes Shearling, available at Tkees, $150The Ines Shearling slippers are as pretty as they are comfortable, making them the perfect pair for getting ready on the big day. These are the go-to soft slides for the big day that she can slip on with ease. You can find our best slippers review here.A romantic silk slip for nights at homeFree PeopleNext Step Slip, available at Free People, $59.95This lovely lingerie is irresistible thanks to the way it romantically frames a silhouette. Her wedding night can't go wrong with this silky slip. You can find our best lingerie review here.A digital picture frame to remember each momentAura FramesCarver Digital Frame, available at Aura Frames, $159Rather than a simple photo frame, update the gift to a digital photo frame that continually displays each treasured memory with its unlimited storage. This innovative frame presents a slideshow of landscape photos and pairs two portraits side-by-side.A luxe dutch oven for home cooksLe CreusetRound Dutch Oven, available at Le Creuset, from $230A Le Creuset dutch oven is the cream of the crop when it comes to wedding gifts — it's an unbeatable, high-quality kitchen appliance coveted by home cooks everywhere and just exudes elegance. Available in various dreamy colors, this popular dutch oven is great for slow cooking, braising, baking, and more. You can find our best dutch oven review here.A journal to write down their love storyUncommon GoodsThe Story of Us, available at Uncommon Goods, $35Starting with the day they met, the bride can write down their entire love story with this thoughtful gift. The fill-in journal includes prompts and photo corners to keep your special memories together alive forever.A milk frother for Sunday breakfast at homeAmazonAphse Milk Foamer, available at Amazon, $15.99This powerful milk frother whips up a creamy base or topping for your coffee that makes it taste more delicious with a professional finish. A fitness tracker to maintain a healthy lifestyleBest BuyFitbit Versa 3 Health & Fitness Smartwatch, available at Best Buy, $179.95The Fitbit Versa 3 makes sure she's accomplishing her pre-wedding fitness goals and feeling her best self in the most productive way possible. The smartwatch features fitness tracking components, Amazon Alexa voice control, and a touch display for notifications and apps. You can find our best Fitbit trackers review here.A virtual pasta cooking class for twoNonna LiveVirtual Pasta Making Experience with Nonna, available at Nonna Live, $49Surprise the happy couple with an entertaining bonding activity like a virtual cooking class taught by Italian nonnas (that's a grandma, y'all). They can learn from scratch how to make delicious homemade pasta and have an unforgettable experience. Modern recipes for the recently married coupleBarnes & Noble"The Newlywed Table: A Cookbook to Start Your Life Together" by Maria Zizka, available at Barnes & Noble, $29.95With forever to spend together, this newlywed cookbook features over 100 recipes of both classic and modern dishes that teach any couple to function as a team in the kitchen. The couple can put in the work together to make modern recipes filled with love. Festive candles to set the moodHomesick CandlesJust Married and Let's Toast Candles, available at Homesick Candles, $34This adorable keepsake candle emblazoned with "Just Married" on the front already feels celebratory, and as an added bonus, the smell features crisp notes of champagne. A rustic cake standAnthropologieGlenna Cake Stand, available at Anthropologie, from $58If anyone in the couple loves baking, they'll appreciate this stand's vintage charm. Plus, it can act as a keepsake to pass to their own children. A coffee machine to brew any beverageAmazonNinja Hot and Cold Brew System, available at Amazon, $159.99A high-quality coffee maker is something that will help the couple get through late-night wedding planning, early morning venue prospects, and every day of the rest of their lives. We love this versatile coffee maker as it brews various brew sizes along with specialty and classic drinks. You can find our best coffee makers review here.An elegant smartwatch that looks timelessFossilHybrid Smartwatch Carlie Rose Gold, available at Fossil, $175The bride probably already has an abundance of wedding day jewelry, but this watch is different. The Fossil hybrid smartwatch has an elegant design that can track your activities, display notifications, and more. You can find our best smart jewelry review here.A personalized glassware pairUncommon GoodsPersonalized Tree Trunk Glassware Duo, available at Uncommon Goods, $85These personalized, hand-engraved glasses show that opposites do attract with a wine and pilsner glassware duo. Also available in separate wine and pilsner duos, these glasses mark their romance with their initials and iconic date. A smart indoor herb gardenAmazonClick and Grow Smart Herb Garden, available at Amazon, $96.95Instead of an outdoor garden, the lovebirds can grow their own fresh herbs and vegetables indoors. Grow anything you like with over 50 pre-seeded plant pods from thyme to wild strawberries.A monogram charcuterie boardUncommon GoodsMonogram Cheese and Crackers Serving Board, available at Uncommon Goods, $85This monogram charcuterie board is not to be overlooked as a bridal shower gift. It's as elegant as it is unique for a signature dining piece. A gold cake serving set with a personalized touchThings RememberedChampagne Gold Cake Serving Set, available at Things Remembered, $42 What better way to celebrate their love in a sweet way than with this stunning cake serving set. The gold set can be engraved with a name, date, or short message for the lovebirds. Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderDec 13th, 2021

68 of the best gifts for dads, from personalized football jerseys to a do-it-all smartwatch

We've rounded up a huge selection of gift ideas for Dad, no matter if he's into personalized football jerseys, the perfect steak, or a pair of boots. Prices are accurate at the time of publication.When you buy through our links, Insider may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more.Harry's Shave Club Dads can be notoriously difficult to shop for, especially if yours doesn't offer many hints of what he wants. We found the best gifts for Dad, whether for Christmas, his birthday, Father's Day, or another milestone.  From a Sirloin of the Month club to a massage gun, these gift ideas are sure to be a big hit.  If you're searching for the perfect gift for Dad but coming up empty, don't stress; we've done the hard work for you and compiled the absolute best gifts that he'll love no matter the occasion. Whether it's a gift for Christmas, an idea for his birthday, or just a thoughtful way to show your love, we found a number of unique gift ideas that are sure to impress even the toughest Dads to shop for.From a monthly steak subscription to a new record player or a comfy pillow, you can't go wrong with any of the gifts on this list.Here are 68 of the best gifts for DadThis list includes a Sponsored Product that has been suggested by REI. It also meets our editorial criteria in terms of quality and value.*Modern over-ear headphonesAntonio Villas-Boas/Business InsiderSony WH-1000XM4 headphones, $349, available at AmazonThese over-ear headphones from Sony are a must-have for frequent travelers as they have incredible noise cancellation that does well to drown out drum of a car engine or airplane. They also deliver clear audio which is perfect for when Dad wants to jam out to his favorite album or catch up on some podcast episodes.A self-filtering water bottleHydrosHydros Water Filter Bottle, $20, via HydrosThe Hydros Water Filter Bottle is like gifting Dad his own portable Brita. The bottle filters any water poured into it, reducing the amount of chlorine and sediment; plus, the filter is reliable through at least 40 gallons of liquid. It'll be any on-the-go Dad's go-to. A gift card for all things outdoorsREIREI Gift Card, from $10, available at REIFrom hiking and biking gear to vital cold-weather staples, REI is home to nearly anything and everything Dad could need this winter. Save up to 30% through December 20 during the Holiday Warm Up Sale.*Sponsored by REICoasters with the classicsUncommon GoodsUpcycled Record Coasters, $18, available at Uncommon GoodsDad can reminiscence about his favorite jams while enjoying a drink with these coasters made from reclaimed records. The discs are specially sealed so moisture won't seep through and damage the surface.An Audible subscriptionAudible/Business InsiderAudiblePlus subscription, from $7.95 per month, available at AudibleWith an Audible subscription, Dad gets unlimited access to thousands of audiobooks and podcasts. Plus, you can even have Dad test it out first with a free trial.A gift subscription to a popular coffee clubAtlas Coffee ClubAtlas Coffee Club 3-Month Gift Subscription, $50, available at Atlas Coffee ClubIf your dad's veins run dark roast, a coffee gift won't go unused. We recommend a subscription to the Atlas Coffee Club, which curates a global selection of single-origin coffee that gets freshly roasted and shipped to your house from $9 per bag. Read our full review of the Atlas Coffee Club here. A massage gun to use after working outTheragunTheragun Mini, from $199, available via TherabodyWhether Dad wants to recover after a grueling workout or just wants to be his own personal, at-home masseuse, a massage gun is an excellent gift. This model, Theragun's Mini, is our pick of the best entry-level massage gun, as it has a modest price tag yet still comes standard with a number of features found on more expensive, premium options. An easy way to open wineConnie Chen/InsiderSecura Electric Wine Opener, $26.99, available at AmazonDad can open his wine hassle-free with this gift. The sleek, fast-charging, and cordless wine opener can pull out 30 corks on one charge, making it our choice for one of the best electric wine openers. All Dad has to do is push a button and it does all the work.A tiny tag to ensure he never loses his valuablesAppleApple AirTag, $29, available at AppleIf dad tends to frequently misplace his key, wallet, or other valuables, help him out by gifting him a handy AirTag. The tags can be placed on just about any item and will connect to his phone so he can easily keep track of his stuff via the Find My app. For an extra personal touch, you can even get it engraved for free.Breathable and machine-washable sneakersAllbirdsAllbirds Wool Runners, $95, available at AllbirdsThese merino wool sneakers from Allbirds, Silicon Valley's favorite shoe brand, are the perfect mix of sporty and stylish. They come in tons of colors and are even machine washable.Read our full review of Allbirds Wool Runners here.A mat to help with dad's short gameAmazonRukket Tri-Turf Golf Hitting Mat, $99.99, available on AmazonFor the dad who loves to golf, this is one of the best golf hitting mats to help improve his short game from home. This compact, portable practice aid features three turf heights, to simulate rough, fairway, and close-cropped "collar" turf.A stylish and sporty fanny packState BagsLorimer Fanny Pack, $85, via State BagsIn case you hadn't heard, fanny packs are back and the Lorimer from State Bags is the best way to get Dad back on-trend. It's water-resistant, available in five colors, and is just understated enough to be a casual yet stylish foray into wearing a funny pack again.A digital picture frame to display his favorite memoriesAuraAura Carver Digital Picture Frame, $169, available at AuraSometimes, all Dad wants is something sentimental and personal. A digital picture frame is the perfect gift for Dad because it means he can view his favorite photos from a single device. As long as the frame is hooked up to WiFi, your dad can enjoy the photos you've carefully curated, all day long in his office or home. You can hear about our experience with another Aura frame, here.A compact gas grillThe Home DepotDyna-Glo 3-Burner Open Cart Propane Gas Grill, $119, available at Home DepotIf owning a grill is one of your dad's long-standing dreams, this one from Dyna-Glo is the one to get him. The best part is that it doesn't cost an arm and a leg. We've also put together a complete guide to grilling products, if you're looking for more grilling gifts for Dad. A monthly subscription for the bookworm dadBook of the MonthBook of the Month Subscription, from $49.99, available at Book of the MonthIf your dad's always on to the next page turner, he'll love getting a new book delivered straight to his doorstep each month. We think it's the ideal gift for Dad and even rank it as the best for bookworms in our guide to the best subscription boxes. A workout shirt he won't want to take offVuoriVuori Strato Tech Tee, $44, available at VuoriRegardless of whether Dad's a fitness guru or novice, an essential part of working out is the gear itself. Vuori makes extremely soft, comfy, and functional activewear. Our team loves the brand and has even dubbed it the best overall in our guide to the best men's workout clothes. Read our full review of Vuori clothing here. A garden tool set for the dad with a green thumbCutcoCutco 4-Piece Garden Tool Set, $103, available at CutcoIf gardening is one of your dad's favorite pastimes, this set has everything he could need when working outside. Each garden tool has a comfortable grip handle, a durable head, and depth marks. Tools are only one part of what he might need for his gardening adventures, so make sure to also check out our guides to the best gardening tools and best gardening tools for beginners.His new go-to summer shortsBuck MasonDeck shorts, $85, available at Buck MasonAvailable in four neutral color options, as well as in a six-inch and eight-inch length, these classic shorts are sure to become a staple wardrobe piece for dad this summer. Made from a lightweight, quick-drying cotton blend, these shorts are comfy and chic on land, but can also get wet and even act as swim trunks.  A pair of durable, all-weather bootsAllen EdmondsHiggins Mill Weatherproof Boot, $445, available at Allen EdmondsThe Higgins Mill Weatherproof Boot from Allen Edmonds is a do-it-all boot that fends off inclement weather, looks good at the office or out on the town, and is built to last for years. It's an investment piece type gift for Dad who will no doubt crown them his new favorite boots after unboxing a pair this holiday season. Personalized vinyl wall artUncommon GoodsPersonalized LP Record, $150, available at Uncommon GoodsCommemorate his birthday, anniversary, or any holiday with this custom record art. Made from an upcycled vinyl LP and suspended in a floating frame, this custom wall art can feature the soundtrack to their life or songs you share together. Choose from two retro designs, title the record, and add up to five personal song titles. A two-step skincare regimenAmazonBrickell Men's Daily Essential Face Care Routine II, $57, available at AmazonTime to up Dad's skincare game. Created specifically for men, the startup has become a favorite skincare brand for Reviews senior reporter Amir Ismael because it's simple and effective. Each product uses high-quality natural and organic ingredients. The charcoal works great for deep pore cleansing without the long, drawn-out process, earning it a spot on our list of the best skincare brands in 2021.An electric toothbrushWalmartPhilips Sonicare ProtectiveClean 4100 Rechargeable Electric Toothbrush, $39.95, available at WalmartHelp him ditch the manual toothbrush with Philips Sonicare, whose brushes are gentler on teeth and give brighter results over time. We recommend this one for its powerful cleaning and movements-per-minute. Plus, the rechargeable toothbrush is better for the environment.A personalized video message from his favorite starCameo/Business InsiderCameo Personalized Video Message, from $10, available at CameoYou can choose from thousands of actors, athletes, and musicians and get Dad a personalized video message from his favorite star. For a gift that also gives back, search for celebrities donating some of the proceeds to charity. Or, opt for a funny and festive option like a Buddy the Elf impersonator. You can read our full breakdown of Cameo here.A leather iPhone wallet caseEtsyLeather Wallet Case, from $28.40, available on EtsyGet Dad a protective and stylish case for his iPhone that can also double as a handy wallet for storing cards. You can even get personalized with Dad's initials for an extra special touch. The case is available for iPhones ranging from the 6S to the 12 Pro Max. A smart watch to track his fitness goalsAmazonSuunto 7, $399, available on AmazonFor a worthy splurge for the fitness-obsessed dad, the Suunto 7 is a feature-rich and highly accurate smartwatch that offers tracking for more than 70 different activities, is comfortable to wear, and offers useful training feedback anyone can benefit from. It can also give alerts for texts, emails, and has numerous other handy smart features dad will surely appreciate. We even named it the best running watch you can buy.Read our full review of the Suunto 7 here.A mask fit for athletesUnder ArmourUA Sportsmask, $30, available at Under ArmourIf Dad loves his fitness routine but is often frustrated by working out with a mask on, the Sportsmask is a useful solution. This mask from Under Armour was specifically designed for high activity, and its water resistance, breathability, and UPF 50+ sun protection all lend well to making his workout routine more comfortable.A handy duffel bagAwayThe Weekender, $215, available at AwayIf your dad is a frequent traveler or gym-goer, he'll love this versatile duffel bag from Away. It's available in canvas or nylon, has a separate compartment for shoes, and a handy sleeve that slips over a carry-on handle.Read our full review of the Away Weekender here. A cookbook from his favorite burger jointAmazon/Business Insider"Shake Shack: Recipes & Stories," $16.38, available at AmazonIf your dad is a fan of Shake Shack, he'll love this cookbook that will teach him how to make his very own ShackBurger.A keepsake he can use for years to comeUncommon Goods/Business InsiderTicket Stub Diary, $14, available at Uncommon GoodsConcerts, museums, sporting events, or movies — regardless of what Dad's passionate about, this handy journal makes for efficient storage of sentimental memories that could otherwise get stained or ruined. With 118 ticket sleeves, there's plenty of room for upcoming memories as well.A set of quality merino wool socksBombasMen's Merino Wool Calf Sock 8-pack, $136.80, available at BombasThey may just seem like a basic, everyday accessory, but socks are among the most underrated gifts you can give. Dad will love these Bombas socks made from soft and warm merino wool. You can hear more about why we love this brand and its products in our review of Bombas socks. A health and ancestry genetic test kit23andme23andMe Health and Ancestry Genetic Test Kit, $199, available at 23andMeThis genetic test kit from 23andMe is great for the dad who's interested in learning more about his family history. You can learn more about all this kit has to offer in our guide to the best DNA test kits. A Disney Plus subscriptionAlyssa Powell/Business InsiderDisney Plus gift subscription, 1-year subscription for $79.99It gives Dad unlimited access to movies and shows from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, National Geographic, and 20th Century Fox. Read everything there is to know about Disney Plus over here.And if he needs some binge-spiration, here are all the new movies available to stream.A colorful swimsuitTom & TeddyTom & Teddy Men's Swim Shorts, from $64.94, available at Tom & TeddyMade from super-soft, quick-dry fabric, these swim trunks will make dad the star of your next beach or pool day. They come in an array of colors and prints, and you can even get matching father-and-son swim short sets.A beer growler for sipping at homeHouzzPersonalized Craft Beer Growler, $43, available at HouzzNow, Dad can take his favorite ales home with him to enjoy. This 64 oz growler comes personalized with his initials on it and includes four mini pilsner glasses.Soft, crisp sheets and beddingBrooklinenBrooklinen Classic Hardcore Sheet Bundle, from $198, available at BrooklinenBrooklinen's luxe sheets are among our favorites for their affordable price, sophisticated look, and unbelievable comfort.The company's Hardcore Sheet Bundles have everything your dad needs to completely makeover his bed — and stay nice and cozy all year long. They include a flat sheet, a fitted sheet, a duvet cover, and four pillowcases. Brooklinen also sells comforters, pillows, candles, and blankets. Read our full review of Brooklinen sheet here. A custom whiskey glassBRVOglass/EtsyPersonalized Whiskey Glass, $18.90, available at EtsyGreat for new dads, this custom, hand-etched whiskey glass can boast his proudest title alongside the year he became a father. Photos from reviewers go to show that this glass isn't just for whiskey, recipients have gotten creative by storing candy and other small gifts in their glasses.A subscription for steaksAmazingClubsSirloin of the Month Club, from $103.95 per month, available at AmazingClubsMeat lovers will enjoy sinking their teeth into a premium cut of sirloin. Each month Dad will receive a mouth-watering selection of premium steaks curated by experts and shipped fresh right to his door. Choose from subscription options of three months, six months, 12 months, or every three months.A SodaStreamAmazonSodaStream Fizzi One Touch Sparkling Water Machine, $86, available at WalmartThe SodaStream Fizzi lets you turn plain water into sparkling water in just a few seconds. Dad can adjust the fizziness and flavor level to his personal taste. We even named it the best overall in our guide to the best soda makers. A classic stovetop espresso makerAmazonBialetti 9-Cup Stovetop Espresso Maker, $49.95, available at Crate & BarrelThis classic kitchen accessory is perfect for the coffee-loving dad who wants to bring cafe-quality coffee home. The Bialetti stovetop espresso maker not only makes great coffee, but it looks great on the counter. We made sure to include its 6-cup counterpart in our guide to the best stovetop espresso makers, as the best overall pick. The Amazon Echo ShowAmazonAmazon Echo Show 5, $49.99, available at AmazonThere's an ever-so-slight learning curve in figuring out what Amazon's Alexa can and can't do, but once that's passed, the Echo Show can forecast the weather, read an audiobook, order a pizza, tell jokes, or any number of things Dad should find charming. Unlike the Echo or Echo Dot, the Echo Show also has a screen for displaying information.A device that improves golfing skillsAmazonArccos Caddie Smart Sensors, $179.99, available at AmazonIf your dad is a big golfer, this performance-tracking system is a fun addition to his golf bag.A durable backpack and cooler comboCarharttCarhartt Medium Pack + 3 Can Insulated Cooler, $74.99, available at CarharttMade from a durable 500 denier Cordura ripstop material, this Carhartt backpack is perfect for outdoorsy dads. The included 3-can cooler is a great addition that'll let him carry a few cold brews on his fishing or camping trips.A custom map posterGrafomapGrafomap Custom Map Poster, from $49, available at GrafomapGrafomap is a website that lets you design map posters of any place in the world. You can make one of your dad's hometown, his college town, his favorite travel destination, or the place where he got engaged or married — you're only limited by your imagination. A gift card for the sports fanFanaticsFanatics gift card, from $10, available at FanaticsIf Dad's nostalgic for his college days or loves gearing up for his favorite sports season, give him the gift of variety with a Fanatics gift card. Fanatics is home to apparel, accessories, and memorabilia for just about every major sports team you can think of. A luxurious shave kitHarry'sHarry's Winston Shave Set, $25, available at Harry's (+ $15 for monogram)This shave set from Harry's is as sleek as it gets at this price. To go the extra mile, you can get his initials engraved into the razor. You can hear more about this set in our guide to the best shaving kits. A freshly scented beard wash and conditioner setThe Art of ShavingThe Art of Shaving Beard Wash and Conditioner Set, $30, available at The Art of ShavingSoap and water can leave his facial hair dry and scratchy. Bearded dads need this soothing beard wash and conditioner set from The Art of Shaving in their lives. A sous-vide device for ambitious home cooksAmazonAnova Nano Sous Vide, $129, available at TargetFor under $100, the Anova sous vide is a reasonably priced investment that just might change Dad's life for the better. Not only will it boil and poach eggs with ease, it'll also produce tender, perfectly cooked meat every time. It's so good that we name it the best overall pick in our guide to the best sous vide machines. A cozy and supportive pillowLeesaLeesa Pillow, $79, available at LeesaGive the gift of a good night's sleep with this luxurious and supportive pillow from mattress startup Leesa. A 10-pack of soft and stylish underwearAmazonMeUndies Men's Boxer Brief 10-Pack, $170, available at MeUndiesMade from MicroModal and elastane, MeUndies claims its underwear is three times softer than cotton. We think its boxers are so comfortable they'll blow Dad's mind. You can learn more about MeUndies in our guide on where to shop for men's underwear. Comfortable and stylish jeansMott & BowMott & Bow Wooster Dynamic Stretch Jeans, $118, available at Mott & BowGive the gift of good style with jeans from Mott & Bow. For more styles from the brand, check out our review of Mott & Bow's stretch-denim jeans. Amazon's new waterproof Kindle PaperwhiteAmazonAmazon Kindle Paperwhite, $129.99, available at AmazonIf your dad is tired of lugging around heavy hardcovers, the Kindle Paperwhite is an extremely thoughtful and practical gift. The latest version is now waterproof too. Read our full review of the Amazon Kindle Paperwhite here. A hot sauce sampler packAmazonThe Good Hurt Fuego Hot Sauces Sampler Pack, $34.99, available at AmazonIf you're not quite sure what kind of hot sauce your dad likes, or if he isn't committed to this or that variety of the spicy stuff, then The Good Hurt Fuego Hot Sauces Sampler is a great gift idea. It features sauces made with peppers that come from India, Mexico, and beyond, and it has flavors ranging from Chipotle Pepper to Garlic Herb to Whiskey Habanero.A personalized sports jerseyMLB ShopMLB Shop Custom Men's Jersey, from $149.99, available at the official MLB ShopNFL Shop Custom Men's Jersey, from $30.24, available at the official NFL Shop The sports-loving dad won't want to take this jersey off. At the MLB Shop and NFL Shop, you can order a personalized jersey with your dad's name on the back.An at-home workout systemTRXTRX Suspension Trainer Basic Kit, $167.95, available at Amazon For the active dad, you can bring the gym home with this TRX trainer.A durable, temperature-maintaining water bottleHydroflask InstagramHydro Flask 32 oz Wide Mouth, from $44.95, available at Hydro FlaskHydro Flasks are great for any situation, from camping to commuting. This durable, insulated water bottle does a masterful job of making sure drinks keep their temperatures.A modern turntableU-Turn AudioU-Turn Audio Orbit Special Turntable, $459, available at U-TurnThis turntable is the sleek home accessory your dad didn't know he needed. He can bring his old records out of storage and enjoy them with this modern record player. A subscription service for new vinyl every monthVinyl MeVinyl Me, Please 3-Month Gift Membership, $119, available at Vinyl Me, PleaseEvery person's vinyl collection is deeply personal, so instead of trying to guess his taste, let him choose the record himself. Each month, he'll choose and receive one LP, pressed exclusively for Vinyl Me, Please, from a collection of Essentials, Classics, and Rap & Hip Hop.The three-month gift membership includes one bonus record, while the six- and 12-month ones include two bonus records.A streaming TV playerAmazonRoku Ultra, $69.99, available at TargetA media streaming device can transform your dad's so-called dumb TV into a smart one that plays shows and movies from Netflix, Hulu, HBO Now, Prime Video, and other streaming services. The best of the bunch is the Roku Ultra with its easy-to-use interface and 4K video streaming.Read our full review of the Roku Ultra here. A nice tieThe Tie Bar/Business InsiderMen's Neckties, from $18, available at Tie BarNeckties might be a cliché gift for dads, but The Tie Bar makes some handsome ties that he'll actually wear on a regular basis. You'll find plenty of colors, patterns, and styles — and the best part is they're all affordably priced.A handy multi-functional toolAmazonLeatherman OHT Multi-Tool, $89.95, available at B&H PhotoThis multi-functional tool does it all, plus it has a 25-year guarantee.A fast wireless charger and accessory trayCourantCatch:3 Charger Tray, $122.50, available at Staycourant.comGive your dad the gift of organization with this accessory tray and wireless charger combo. The pebbled leather is a much-needed upgrade from all the plastic tech accessories he has lying around, and the catchall tray is useful and thoughtful. It also means he'll stop asking you where his keys are three times before leaving the house. Stylish computer glassesFelix GrayFelix Gray Blue Light Computer Glasses, from $95, available at Felix GrayIf he sits in front of a computer every day, he needs these blue light glasses that increase magnification, reduce glare, and filter out blue light in order to reduce eyestrain. They're also available with prescription lenses — we tried them and loved them.Read our full review of Felix Gray blue light computer glasses here. Apple AirPodsAmazonApple AirPods with Wired Charging Case, $128.98, available at AmazonSome of the best gifts are items that can be used every day — and AirPods fall into that category. Whether your dad likes listening to music and podcasts or prefers to talk on the phone hands-free, AirPods will quickly become an essential item for him. You can learn more about the different versions in our guide to the best AirPods. A ceramic pizza stoneWiliams SonomaEmile Henry Pizza Stone, $54.95, available at Williams SonomaHomemade pizza is delicious, but it can be tricky to perfect. This ceramic pizza stone will make sure his pizza comes out perfectly cooked every time.An iPadAppleApple iPad (Latest Model with Wi-Fi, 32GB), $329.99, available at Best BuyTech-obsessed dads will love to get their hands on the latest iPad. For more information on the different iterations, check out our guide to the best iPads. A leather iPad caseLeatherologyLeatherology iPad Portfolio, from $190, available at LeatherologyThis leather iPad portfolio comes in 17 colors, so there's sure to be one that your dad will like. You can even get it monogrammed for an extra personal touch. A durable and waterproof speakerUrbanearsUrbanears Rålis Portable Bluetooth Speaker, $199.99, available at UrbanearsThe Rålis is Urbanears' first portable Bluetooth speaker and it sounds as good as it looks. It's a little pricey, but the sound quality is impressive enough to warrant the cost.An alarm clock that uses light to wake him up gentlyAmazonPhilips Light Alarm Clock, $99.99, available at AmazonJust because Dad has to wake up before the sun rises doesn't mean he has to awaken to the blaring of an obnoxious alarm clock.Philips makes a lovely alarm clock that gradually lights up to mimic the sunrise and wake him up naturally. The light alarm clock also displays the time and has customizable sounds so he can wake up feeling rested and ready for the day. This clock is also one of the top picks in our buying guide, so you can be sure he'll love it.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: worldSource: nytDec 10th, 2021

26 best tech gifts for women that she"ll love this holiday season

Tech devices make great gifts. These are the best tech gifts for women that she'll actually want to get this holiday season. When you buy through our links, Insider may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more. The Fitbit Versa 3 makes a great gift for women who want a fitness tracker that doubles as a smartwatch. Fitbit Tech products make great gifts for anyone and everyone - including the women in your life. Ahead of Black Friday, we've found some incredibly useful tech gifts that will best fit her life and style. Still looking for a gift? Check out our list of the All-Time Best products we've ever tested. Gift-giving season is upon us again, and so is the mad scramble to find the perfect present for everyone on your list. Luckily, there are tons of worthwhile gadgets to choose from when coming up with the most ideal gifts for the women in our lives. Forget cute power banks that only have enough juice for one charge, rechargeable heating pads dressed up as llamas that don't really give off enough heat, and jewelry health trackers that don't really work. Women lead busy lives, and they need tech gifts that are reliable, robust, and most importantly, useful and practical. So, if you are seeking the best tech gifts for your wife, daughter, sister, mother, or friend, let us be your guide.From budget options that will set you back less than $50, like a phone wallet, to more expensive items that she'll never stop using, like a compact e-reader, we found the best tech gifts for women this holiday season. A phone wallet and grip PopSocket PopWallet+ Grip, available at PopSocket, from $25While we do love those adorable PopSockets, especially because they're great for preventing our phones from dropping on our faces, we've found the brand's PopWallet+ Grip to be much more useful. She's not just getting a phone grip here; she's getting a phone grip that's attached to a card holder designed to fit up to three credit cards. And, it's just the ticket for traveling light while running quick errands, going to a concert, or going on a hike. It's incredibly secure as well so she'll never have to worry about her cards popping out. A compact streaming device Steven Cohen/Insider Roku Streaming Stick 4K, available at Amazon, from $29.00These days, most of us have smart TVs, but if she needs a standalone streaming player, we adore Roku's new Streaming Stick 4K thanks to its affordable price and simple interface. This is a quality all-in-one streamer that doesn't feel premium in our pockets and comes in a very compact package. This device will let her stream 4K HDR content with Dolby Vision, use voice commands to conveniently find content, and even connect to her Google Assistant or Alexa smart speaker. Plus, because it's so compact, she can take it while traveling and stream anywhere. A leather wireless charger Courant Courant wireless chargers, available at Courant, $56 to $122.50Wireless chargers don't have to be ugly or boring. Courant's wireless chargers and wirelessly charging battery packs are sophisticated and beautiful. They're covered in leather and come in a few classy colors, including off white, black, rose, and light blue. We've used these chargers ourselves, and we're certain she'll love them. We particularly like the catch-all that has a space for keys, wallets, jewelry, and any other small items she may have. You can also personalize it with a short phrase. A funky gaming headset Roccat Roccat Elo 7.1 Air, available at Amazon and Roccat, $79.99For the gamer in your life, we love the Roccat Elo 7.1 Air headset, which looks and feels just as good as it sounds. With its suspension strap headband, soft memory foam ear cushions and lightweight design, she can play for hours without experiencing fatigue. Luckily, it delivers great sound quality, terrific 3D surround sound, and a long battery life of up to 24 hours.  Oh, and it comes in two different colors, with the white version being incredibly appealing. Though what makes it even more so is Roccat's AIMO illumination RGB lighting. A smart display Google Google Nest Hub Max, available at Target, $229If the lady in your life is invested in Google's smart home ecosystem, she'll appreciate having easy control for all her connected devices from this handy 10-inch HD screen. The Google Nest Hub Max also lets her do video calls with loved ones, jump on company video conferences, and access her calendar so she stays right on schedule with her day. A cleaner mode of transport Segway Segway Ninebot ES2, available at Amazon, from $549.99Green commutes are great for running quick errands or just getting a bit of fresh air without taking the car or the metro. For the woman in your life who's all about sustainability, she might just appreciate this solid e-scooter. The Segway Ninebot ES2 is a great time saver with its 12.4 mph top speed and its battery life is rated for up to 13.7 miles.  A solid tablet for reading, productivity, and entertainment Apple iPad 10.2, available at Apple, from $329While most of us use our phones for almost every digital interaction and distraction these days, sometimes a 6-inch screen won't cut it. Apple's newly updated base-level $329 iPad is an excellent gift for anyone seeking a tablet that can do just about anything. This iPad has a sharp display, ultrawide front camera, long battery life, and much-improved performance (for its price) for anyone in your life that's looking for that bridge between their phone and their laptop.  A high-tech hair dryer that delivers salon-like results at home Ebay Dyson Supersonic, available at Dyson, $399.99It may be expensive, but reviews suggest this futuristic hair dryer is worth splurging for. Dyson's Supersonic measures air temperature over 40 times per second to prevent heat damage and operates much more quietly than other hair dryers. But what really makes the Dyson Supersonic worth the high price, is its results. Not only does it dry hair significantly faster than the average hair dryer, but it's also probably the closest thing you'll get to a professional blowout at home. Check out our guide to the best hairdryers in 2021 A stylish keyboard that makes you feel productive Azio Azio Izo Wireless Keyboard, available at Azio, $139.99We've tested our share of keyboards, but we haven't found anything so stylish and retro-looking as Azio's new Izo Wireless Keyboard. It comes in three different colors: white, rose and blue. It also has pearl-colored keycaps, gold trimmings, and 21 backlight modes to choose from — just what every office setup needs to spruce it up. But, it doesn't go by looks alone. Those keys are extremely satisfying to type on, the keycaps themselves are dipped at the center to keep fingers in place, and there's a handy volume knob included. If she spends most of her days typing away at her desk, she'll love opening this present. A smart herb garden Aerogarden AeroGarden Harvest, available at Walmart and Amazon, from $89.97Who doesn't love fresh herbs? AeroGarden's Harvest herb garden isn't super high-tech, but it is techy in that it uses hydroponics to grow delicious herbs and other produce quickly without much effort on her part. All she has to do to get her herbs growing is pop the seed pods in the planter, give it water regularly, and add the included plant food now and then. The planter does the rest, providing light on a schedule, moving the water, and alerting her when it needs more. In our tests, we had great success with this garden, and we're sure she will, too. A portable safe to keep your valuables… well, safe Trova Trova Go, available at Trova, $199Stowing your valuables to keep them away from petty thieves isn't the most glamorous activity, especially when you're traveling. But, Trova Go makes it look so elegant. This robust yet stylish portable safe stores her cash, credit cards, jewelry and other small valuables and keeps them locked in until she opens it with a four-digit pin or her biometric login via the Trova app. That ensures that nobody else can open it (unless they have the pin). The Trova app even has a locator so she can figure out where the device is last seen if someone did attempt to steal it. It's kind of ingenious. A Tile Bluetooth tracker for everything Amazon Tile trackers, available at Tile, from $23.99Everyone has lots of things to keep track of in their lives, and it can be easy to, well, lose track. That's where Tile Bluetooth trackers come in. She can throw one of these on her keys or in her wallet so that she never has to go scrambling for one of those things when it's time for work or an appointment. Tile sells a variety of models in different sizes and form factors.  A cool, artistic smart light Nanoleaf Nanoleaf Lines, available at Nanoleaf, from $199.99Nanoleaf is basically the smart wall light brand that launched a thousand other smart wall lights, and it remains unbeatable. Just in time for the holidays, it added a new model to the family. Instead of wall panels, it went with light bars, appropriately christened Nanoleaf Lines. Available now for preorder and slated for release in late November, these gorgeous looking light bulbs are modular, can display over ​​16 million colors, boast music syncing, and are compatible with all smart home ecosystems — just the ticket to give her home a stylish yet functional flair. A heated vest to keep you warm all-day ewool ewool Pro+ Heated Vest, available at ewool, $478Layers in the wintertime are absolutely required, but so is this brilliant vest from ewool. We've all wished we could wrap ourselves in our heated blankets while out and about during those brisk winter days, and ewool's battery-powered heated vest, the Pro+ Heated Vest, feels like a dream come true. It boasts up to seven hours of battery life and offers a fit so comfortable and stylish she wouldn't even feel the battery and heater inside. If its juice runs out, she could always connect it to a 12V DC power source while the battery recharges. It's just the perfect present this cold holiday season.  An affordable soundbar with Dolby Atmos Soundcore Soundcore Infini Pro, available at Amazon and Soundcore, $219The Soundcore brand produces solid audio solutions, from headphones to soundbars, without the steep price tag. And, if you want an affordable way to add Dolby Atmos to her home theater, the Soundcore Infini Pro might just be your best bet. For how much it costs, this soundbar genuinely feels premium with a lightweight design and a solid build. It sounds great as well, and has enough volume to cover a relatively large room. Its features are just as fancy: 4K HDR and Dolby Vision pass-through, an HDMI ARC port, Bluetooth 5 connectivity, and of course, Dolby Atmos. A fitness tracker that's also a smartwatch Fitbit Fitbit Versa 3, available at Fitbit, $229.95The Fitbit Versa 3 is the best-looking fitness tracker Fitbit has made to date. It looks a bit like a more angular Apple Watch and you can choose from a lot of different bands to personalize it to match her style. The Versa 3 has smartwatch features and apps, but it's best at fitness tracking and keeping tabs on workouts. An instant camera Kodak Kodak Step Touch Instant Print Digital Camera, available at Kodak, $129.99For the woman in your life who loves taking photos, Kodak's Step Touch Instant Print Digital Camera is a step up from Fujifilm's offerings. It prints 2 x 3 sticky-backed images to satisfy her need for instant gratification. However, as a proper digital camera, it also comes with a few other features, notably 1080p video recording capabilities, a 3.5-inch LCD screen, up to 256 GB microSD card support, and Bluetooth connectivity. So, it not only prints memories; it captures and stores them as well. A pretty phone case Case-Mate Case-Mate Phone Cases for iPhone and Samsung, available at Amazon, from $5Case-Mate has a huge range of cases for iPhones and Samsung phones, so you're sure to find one that matches her style. Whether she wants a classic slim leather case, a clear case, or one that's bedazzled, full of glitter, or covered in real pressed flowers, Case-Mate has an option. The most popular e-reader You first have to find your Kindle email address to be able to send emails to your Kindle. Hollis Johnson/Business Insider Kindle, available at Amazon, $89.99Amazon's Kindle is a great e-reader on a budget. The text isn't as crisp or bright as it is on more expensive models, but the device offers a lot of value for the price. Amazon has an unrivaled selection of ebooks available for download and she can get free ebooks or borrow library books on the Kindle. We tested this ebook reader, and consider it one of the best ones you can buy. A good-looking smartwatch Lisa Eadicicco/Business Insider Apple Watch SE, available at Best Buy, from $279The Apple Watch SE is Apple's budget-friendly smartwatch model. It comes in several great finishes including a classic Rose Gold one and she can choose from many different watch band options to suit her style. The 40mm casing is also perfect for smaller wrists. Beyond beauty, the Apple Watch has serious brains, too. It can track fitness, monitor her heart rate and health, and buzz with important notifications. A brilliant bracelet that keeps you nice and toasty this winter Embr Embr Labs Wave 2, available at EmbrLabs, $349Sometimes, you come across a device that you never knew you needed until it came along. Such is the case with Embr Labs' cooling and warming wristband. This bracelet keeps you nice and cool during hot days and warms you up when it's freezing out by giving you precisely calibrated cooling or warming sensations on your wrist. If that sounds impossible to you, trust us: we didn't believe it at first either until we used it at an outdoor concert at night and it chased away the chills. This thing works, and she'll absolutely love using it. A beautiful wireless charger Anker Anker 623 2-in-1 Magnetic Wireless Charger, available at Amazon and Anker, $79.99With the launch of Apple's MagSafe-capable iPhones, Anker is upping its game with a line of attractive wireless solutions aptly called MagGo. There are several chargers in this line, including a MagSafe portable charger, all of them coming in several gorgeous colors (including Lilac and Misty Blue). But, our current favorite is the compact Anker 623 2-in-1 Magnetic Wireless Charger, which literally puts her iPhone 12 or 13 (as well as AirPods Pro) on a pedestal so she can conveniently access it while it's charging. The MagSafe part even turns 360-degrees for landscape and portrait orientations. A pair of touchscreen gloves that are actually warm Ugg UGG Touchscreen Compatible Gloves, available at UGG, $165Touchscreen gloves aren't always attractive, but Ugg makes some very nice ones with genuine leather and shearling for warmth and style. These gloves will make it easy for her to use her phone no matter how cold it gets outside. A mega-popular smart speaker Lisa Eadicicco/Business Insider Amazon Echo, available at Amazon, $99.99If she doesn't have a smart speaker yet, the Amazon Echo will be a game-changer. This speaker has Alexa inside so she can ask it to play music, answer questions, order products, play games, and so much more. If she has some smart home gadgets, Alexa can control many of those, too. We reviewed the latest version and think it's the best one yet. A pair of truly wireless earbuds Apple AirPods (3rd Gen), available on Best Buy and Apple, $179When it comes to convenience, true wireless earbuds are the best. AirPods are very popular with iPhone users since they're designed to pair with Apple's smartphones so seamlessly. They look fairly subtle compared to many other bigger earbuds, and they're incredibly easy to use. What's more, Apple's finally updated them, giving them a fresher look, a longer battery life, and a few new features like spatial audio with dynamic head tracking, sweat and water resistance, and a MagSafe Charging Case. If she loved her old AirPods, she's going to love these even more. A smart mug that keeps drinks hot Simon Hill/Business Insider Ember Mug 2, available at Best Buy, $129.99With the app-controlled Ember Mug 2, her favorite hot drink will never get cold again. In the app, she can choose the exact temperature she likes her beverage to be at for drinking, and the mug will keep it at that temperature for up to 80 minutes per charge. The mug itself is made of stainless steel that's been coated in ceramic. We tested the mug and found it to be a life-changer. Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderNov 9th, 2021

42 gifts for grandparents, from a wine subscription to a custom pet portrait

Give your grandparents the kind of gift that shows your love and appreciation for them. We found 40+ meaningful and useful gift ideas they'll love. When you buy through our links, Insider may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more. JGI/Jamie Grill/Getty Images In this list, you'll find 42 gifts to give grandparents to thank them for the many years of love. For more gift ideas, check out all Insider Reviews gift guides here. Still looking for a gift? Check out our list of the All-Time Best products we've ever tested. Shopping for grandparents can be daunting. They've likely gotten the basics down pat, and if you ask for ideas you'll likely get a genuine "nothing" in response. But these are the people who sat through your band recitals even though they were unbearably boring. They weathered your tantrums and sticky fingers on their furniture, and they probably slipped you candy even when someone else said no. So, what can you do for them?Below are 42 gifts that you can feel good about gifting. They're thoughtful, useful, sweet, and bound to be extremely appreciated by grandmas and grandpas.Check out all 42 cool gifts for grandparents below: Nice tea and a cute infuser Amazon/Business Insider Genuine Fred Duck Tea Infuser, available at Amazon, $12.14Buy a cute tea infuser and your grandparents will think of you every time they use it. Don't forget to pair it with some delicious loose leaf tea blends. A DNA test that lets them delve into family history ancestryDNA AncestryDNA Genetic Test, available at Ancestry, $59Your grandparents are the origins and default architects of much of your life, and AncestryDNA gives them — and you — the chance to explore and appreciate that history. They'll be able to see their heritage and genetic breakdown (aka 50% Irish, 30% Italian, and so on) and can build family trees complete with historical documents and censuses already on the site. If they're interested in history, they'll love this. A bouquet of fresh flowers 1-800-Flowers Fields of Europe Christmas Bouquet, available at 1-800-Flowers, from $39.99What's nicer than getting a gorgeous bouquet of sweet-smelling flowers sent to your home? Probably only getting to walk by them every day. If you want to send grandma and/or grandpa a bouquet of something fresh and beautiful to enjoy, flowers are a thoughtful option that can typically be delivered within days of purchasing. A funny ode to the festive family moments we all know and love Amazon/Business Insider Senior Moments: Christmas, available at Amazon, $8.59If your grandparents love a good joke, this funny seasonal book illustrates festive family moments from the holidays. Just flip through the first few sample pages to make sure it matches their humor before ordering en masse.  A pair of comfortable sneakers Allbirds Shop all Allbirds sneakers hereEveryone deserves comfortable sneakers and if your grandparents aren't familiar with Allbirds, it's time to get them up to speed. The brand makes footwear using sustainable materials like merino wool, recycled trees, sugarcane, and natural rubber. Check out all of our reviews on Allbirds sneakers to choose the best pair for them. A popular vacuum-insulated stainless steel water bottle Hydro Flask Hydro Flask 32-Ounce Wide Mouth Bottle, available at REI, Dick's Sporting Goods, and Hydro Flask, from $33.71This vacuum-insulated stainless steel water bottle works really well. It keeps hot drinks hot for up to six hours, and cold drinks cold up to 24 hours. We also love this $30 mug version. The latest Apple AirPods Apple Apple AirPods 3rd Gen, $179Bluetooth headphones always make a great gift for anyone with a smartphone. If grandma and grandpa are iPhone users, AirPods are the best choice because they're incredibly easy to pair and they're easy to carry. Frame one of your favorite memories with them. Framebridge Framed Photo, from $25Framebridge Gift Card, from $25Framebridge makes custom framing for not-custom-framing prices. You can print or paint something on your own and have it framed for your grandparents, and you can even take advantage of a team of designers if you want help deciding what frame to get. If you want to give them total control, you can give a gift card and help them with the process if needed. A cheeky Anne Taintor wall calendar Amazon/Business Insider Anne Taintor 2021 Wall Calendar, available at Amazon, $15.99If your grandparents love cheeky humor, Anne Taintor's iconic funny wall calendars are a great place to start. Taintor often pokes fun at domestic stereotypes and uses mid-century advertisements as the main images. Another foolproof option is the 2021 "Dog Shaming Calendar" for $12. Fresh coffee beans from all over the world delivered to their door Atlas Coffee Club Atlas Coffee Subscription or Gift Set, available at Atlas Coffee Club, from $60Atlas Coffee sends them fresh beans from across the globe to their door. They'll learn about its flavor profile, tasting notes, suggested brewing methods, a little history lesson in its origins — and each comes in a bag with festive packaging. If they've been coffee buffs for a while — or just love having a morning cup — they'll appreciate both the thought and opportunity to learn something new.  A touching book to read with young grandkids Amazon/Business Insider How to Babysit a Grandma and a Grandpa Boxed Set, available at Amazon, $23.97This New York Times bestselling kids' picture book is written in a how-to style, with the narrator giving important tips for "babysitting" a grandpa and grandma. It's the perfect gift for new grandparents and little grandkids excited to spend time together.  The collectible edition of a favorite book Barnes and Noble Grimm's Complete Fairy Tales (Collectible Editions), available at Barnes & Noble, $25Grab one of your grandparents' favorite books in one of Barnes & Noble's Collectible Editions Classics to gift them a pillar for their home library. These volumes feature authoritative texts by some of the world's most renown authors and come in beautifully designed bonded-leather binding with gilt edging and a ribbon bookmark.  Practical tea towels that look like classic oil painting still lives. Food52 Old Masters Cotton Tea Towel, available at Food52, $30These tea towels more practically display the dramatic still-life scenes that are typically found on oil wall-hangings: fruit, oysters, cheese, etc. They're interesting, beautiful to look at, and great to use around the kitchen.  A salt block that'll make grilled foods taste even better Crated and Barrel Himalayan Salt Block, available at Crate and Barrel, from $34.95A salt block is the multitasking tool more and more kitchens are adopting. They're a stable crystal structure, which means they can hold a temperature very well. It can be chilled to use as a serving platter for sushi, or heated over a grill or stovetop to cook veggies infused with flavor. Himalayan salt is more nuanced than table salt, and the amount of saltiness imparted varies with the type of food (moist foods absorb more salt, fatty foods repel it, etc.). It's also long-lasting and naturally antibacterial. A tiny smart garden that they can grow herbs in easily and year-round Amazon Click and Grow Smart Garden, available at Click and Grow, $149.96If your grandparents love gardening or cooking, this kitchen garden is great for fresh herbs and year-round gardening and comes with pods for mini tomato, basil, and green lettuce. Not all climates and spaces are hospitable to herbs, but Click and Grow maintains one that is. It's low-maintenance so there's not a ton of involvement with tech or even much watering, and they're not likely to already have one.  A good-looking, cleverly designed container for artisan cheeses Food52 Cheese Vault, available at Food52, from $34You can't go wrong with a cute, handy place for storing artisan cheese that looks far nicer than plastic wrap. Grab some tasty options to start them off with, too.  The best socks they'll ever wear United by Blue The Ultimate Bison Sock, available at United by Blue, $38United by Blue makes some of the most comfortable and warmest socks we've ever worn. They're made of merino wool, bison down, and nylon and have reinforced heel and toe areas. We're also big fans of Bombas socks.  A media streaming device - and access to your Netflix Amazon Roku Express HD Streaming Media Player, available at Amazon, $29.99Turn their TV into a smart TV with the Roku. Set it up for them, show them the ropes, and log them into your Netflix and Hulu if they don't already have their own. Call them later to chat about recommendations or great new shows you're watching, so you can enjoy them together. A calendar full of cherished personal photos Artifact Uprising Brass Easel and Calendar, available at Artifact Uprising, from $49Photos of loved ones are an instant source of joy, and structuring our daily life around them with a calendar is a great way to fill each day with more gratitude and happiness. Artifact Uprising has one that comes on a wood clipboard ($35) and a wall calendar ($42) that you can customize. The calendar is updated on a rolling 12-month basis, so you don't have to wait until January to create one. A journal that prompts them to record their own personal history for a new family keepsake Uncommon Goods My Life Story — So Far, available at Uncommon Goods, $30Prompt them to sit down and write about their own life, and make a lasting family keepsake in the process. This journal provides prompts, so it's not as daunting as starting from the beginning. It also shows that you're interested in learning about what they have to say and their own experiences.  A soothing bubble bath from a well-loved brand Amazon L'Occitane Relaxing & Foaming Lavender Bubble Bath, available at Amazon, $39This cult-favorite lavender-scented bubble bath from L'Occitane is a great way to relax, and it takes a while to get through.  A luxe holiday candle that comes in a hand-blown glass container they can reuse Bloomingdale's LAFCO Feu de Bois Ski House Candle, available at Bloomingdales, $65LAFCO candles are over $60 for a reason; they smell incredible, they're made simply from soy with a cotton wick, and the container is hand-blown glass that can be washed and used as a centerpiece for everything from candy to plants. This size has a 90-hour burn time. A photo book or photo calendar you curated for them of their favorite people and places Artifact Uprising Everyday Photo Book, available at Artifact Uprising, from $62Grandparents are often the gatekeepers to the most involved, best-kept baby books. School pictures, spelling tests, and holidays spent with them are all preserved with the genuine, all-encompassing interest reserved only for grandparents. Rarely, however, do we get to do the same for them. Set aside some time and curate a photo book for them from Artifact Uprising with pictures of their favorite places, people, and memories.Or, if you think they'll use it more, a calendar of you, them, your parents, and their grandkids — primed for a happy exhibition the next time their friends come over. A new cookbook from a beloved Italian restaurant in Brooklyn Amazon/Business Insider The Frankie Spuntino Kitchen Companion & Cooking Manual, available at Amazon, $18.43Frankies Spuntino is a tin-ceilinged, brick-walled restaurant in Brooklyn that draws crowds from every walk of life for food that is deeply satisfying. Here, the entire Frankies menu — and it's reimagined Italian American comfort food — is adapted for the home cook. If either of your grandparents loves cooking, they'll probably love this thoughtful — and new — gesture.If you want to gift something that honors your own family recipes, check out this recipe book you or they can write in from Uncommon Goods.  A monthly sampling of some of the tastiest products from around the country Mouth/Instagram Best of Mouth Subscription, available at Mouth, from $54/monthFoodies will love the chance to test small-batch, locally made products from around the country. Mouth sources and curates subscription boxes of their favorites, which they'll receive each month. An Echo Dot that's easy to use and extremely helpful Amazon 4th Generation Echo Dot, available at Amazon, $59.99If your grandparents aren't extremely techy, the Echo Dot is an especially good starter gift. It maximizes convenience, requires little interaction after setup, and takes up minimal space. They can easily ask Alexa for recipes, the weather, the news, and to control things like the lights. You could also grab a few accompanying smart bulbs if they either hate getting up to turn them off or if their knees tend to bother them. Stick around to set it up, and show them a few of the coolest features. Tea from around the world Uncommon Goods Tea From Around the World Set, $55If your grandparents prefer tea over coffee, this set will let them sample some of the best flavors from across the globe. A Nespresso that makes everything from a latte to a cappuccino just the way they like it - and from the comfort of home Nespresso Nespresso Lattissima One, available at Amazon, $449.90This is a pricey gift, but one that makes pretty amazing coffee without much more involvement than dropping a pod into the machine. They can make everything from delicious cappuccinos to lattes right at home, which is probably why it was listed as one of Oprah's Favorite Things in 2018. Long-distance twin lamps that light up when one of you touches it Uncommon Goods Long Distance Touch Lamp, available at Uncommon Goods, from $85These sentimental long-distance lamps are perfect for grandkids that live far away from their grandparents. Keep one in your home and one at your grandparents' home, and whenever you touch it, their lamp will light up too. It's a simple and instantaneous way to say "I love you!" from across the country. A Jo Malone diffuser that smells amazing and looks good in a home Nordstrom Jo Malone Lime Basil & Mandarin Scent Diffuser, available at Nordstrom, $85A diffuser is like the modern take on potpourri, and Jo Malone makes some incredibly good scents. They'll recognize the brand, like the smell, and the clean, minimalist glass container means they won't only bring this out when they know you're coming over. Warm, fluffy slippers they'll love wearing Nordstrom UGG Dakota Water Resistant Slipper, available at Nordstrom, $100Make sure grandma's feet are kept cozy year-round in these plush UGG slippers with rubber soles for indoor or outdoor use.  A gift subscription to a cool wine service they're not likely to already use Vinebox Shop all Vinebox collections here.Vinebox gifts let the recipient try nine of the best wines of the moment every quarter. Their delivery will include nine vials portioned to be full glasses, with each selected based on their personal tastes and preferences. They'll also get a credit for either $15 or $30 to use on full bottles.  A vintage-style record player Amazon Electrohome Kingston 7-in-1 Vinyl Record Player, $199.99Your grandparents probably have a massive collection of records but an outdated record player. With the Kingston 7-in-1, they'll get the vintage feel of old-school record players with additional modern features like Bluetooth, aux, and the ability to turn vinyl into mp3s. A vintage-inspired knit sweater Todd Snyder L.L.Bean x Todd Snyder Bear Sweater, $199Remember all those wonderful knit sweaters you got as gifts over the years? Now it's time to pay it back with a similar gift. Todd Snyder's collaboration with L.L.Bean features several vintage-inspired sweaters that will leave your grandparents feeling nostalgic.  Aura Aura Carver Digital Picture Frame, $169, available at AuraSet up a digital picture frame at Grandma and Grandpa's house and they'll be able to view all of their favorite images from one device. An e-reader with a no-glare screen The Kindle Paperwhite's new, warmer backlight. Amazon Kindle Paperwhite, available at Amazon, $139.99If your grandparents love to read, the first device you should gift is probably the go-anywhere, read-anything Paperwhite. Kindle Paperwhite is waterproof and has a no-glare screen even in direct sunlight — great for long days spent on the porch or at the beach.  A new gadget that lets them preserve wine for years by never technically uncorking it Coravin Coravin Model Two Wine Preservation System, available at Bloomingdale's, $149.95Coravin allows you to pour a glass of wine without ever uncorking the bottle, so you don't have to worry about oxidation ruining the wine. If your grandparents are opening it just for a glass, their wine will stay preserved over weeks, months, and years if they like. It also gives them greater freedom; there's no need to conserve by sharing a bottle, so they can pick their own favorite every time.  A movie night with you, planned out by you Fandango/Business Insider Gift Card, available at Fandango, from $15Once it's safe to do so, take them to a movie — spare no expense on movie popcorn, an unnecessarily huge soft drink, and a candy that is usually gone by the close of previews. Grab a gift card and put it in a nice Etsy card, and set a date for the next blockbuster. They'll probably love just spending time with you, and knowing you went to the trouble to orchestrate this. A comfortable weighted blanket for better rest Gravity Blankets Gravity Blankets, starting at $195Give your grandparents better rest for the holidays with a cult-favorite weighted blanket with a removable cover. By mimicking DPTS (deep pressure touch stimulation), weighted blankets help us calm down, fall asleep faster, stay asleep better and for longer, and feel more rested when we wake up. A high-end shaver for Grandpa Braun Braun Series 9 Pro, $329.99As Braun's most advanced shaver ever, the Series 9 Pro will pro will give Grandpa the best shave he's ever had. A smart frame that allows them to look through photos The Grommet Smart Connected Picture Frame, available at The Grommet, $299If they're tech-savvy, get them a smart picture frame that cycles through family photos from their digital albums or phone. You can also use a built-in family sharing feature to have other people send pictures directly to their frame. A custom painting of their furry best friend Uncommon Goods Custom Painterly Pet Portraits, available at Uncommon Goods, from $250Make sure this is their decor style before committing to it, but a portrait of their pet is probably one of the sweetest and most thoughtful gestures. It's unique, handmade, and pays homage to the little fur-mop that loves lounging in an adjacent sun patch on the couch every day. Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderNov 5th, 2021

SCOTT GALLOWAY: Laws regulating social media haven"t been updated since the 90s - here"s what needs to change to break tech giants" power imbalance

Algorithms and personalized feeds break the old comparison of social media being like an impossible-to-regulate bulletin board, Galloway says. To combat growing concerns with Section 230 and social media, new laws may be required to regulate the tech giants. d3sign/Getty Images Scott Galloway is a bestselling author and professor of marketing at NYU Stern. The following is a recent blog post, republished with permission, that originally ran on his blog, "No Mercy / No Malice." In it, Galloway talks about the legal problems caused by Section 230 and potential solutions. Facebook … what to do?Don Draper suggested that when you don't like what's being said, you should change the conversation. Facebook is trying to change the conversation to the Metaverse. But we should keep our eyes on the prize, and not look stage left so the illusionist can continue to depress teens and pervert democracy stage right. In sum, nothing has changed. And something (likely many things) needs to be done to stop the most dangerous person on the planet. I first wrote the preceding sentence three years ago; it seems less novel or incendiary today.So what would change things? We the people are not without tools, so long as the nation remains a democracy. We need only find the will to use them.ToolboxBreak Up. Forty percent of the venture capital invested in startups will ultimately go to Google and Facebook. The real genius of these companies is the egalitarian nature of their platforms. Everybody has to be there, yet nobody can develop a competitive advantage, as Nike did with TV and Williams-Sonoma did with catalogs. Their advertising duopoly is not a service or product that provides differentiation, but a tax levied on the entire ecosystem. The greatest tax cut in the history of small and midsize businesses would be to create more competition, lowering the rent for the companies that create two-thirds of jobs in America. That would also create space for platforms that offer trust and security as a value proposition, versus rage and fear.Perp walk. We need to restore the algebra of deterrence. The profits of engaging in wrongful activities must be subverted to punishment times the chance of getting caught. For Big Tech, the math isn't even close. Sure, they get caught … but it doesn't matter. Record fines amount to weeks of cash flow. Nothing will change until someone is arrested and charged.Identity. Identity is a potent curative for bad behavior. Anonymous handles are shots of Jägermeister for someone who's a bad drunk and has coarsened our discourse. Few things have inspired more cowardice and poorer character than online anonymity. Case in counterpoint, LinkedIn: Its users post under their own names, with their photos and work histories public. Yes, some people need to be anonymous. The platforms should, and will, figure this out. Making a platform-wide policy on the edge case of a Gulf journalist documenting human rights violations is tantamount to setting Los Angeles on fire to awaken the dormant seeds of pyrophilic plants in Runyon Canyon.Age Gating. My friend Brent is the strong silent type. But he said something - while we were at a Rüfüs Du Sol concert, no less - that rattled me, as it was so incisive: "Imagine facing your full self at 15." He went on to say he'd rather give his teenage daughter a bottle of Jack and a bag of marijuana than Instagram and Snap accounts. We age-gate alcohol, driving, pornography, drugs, tobacco. But Mark and Sheryl think we should have Instagram for Kids. We will look back on this era with numerous regrets. Our biggest? How did we let this happen to our kids … Scott Galloway The sword and shield of liabilityIn most industries, the most robust regulator is not a government agency, but a plaintiff's attorney. If your factory dumps toxic chemicals in the river, you get sued. If the tires you make explode at highway speed, you get sued. Yes, it's inefficient, but ultimately the threat of lawsuits reduces regulation; it's a cop that covers a broad beat. Liability encourages businesses to make risk/reward calculations in ways that one-size-fits-all regulations don't. It creates an algebra of deterrence.Social media, however, is largely immunized from such suits. A 1996 law, known as "Section 230," erects a fence around content that is online and provided by someone else. It means I'm not liable for the content of comments on the No Mercy website, Yelp isn't liable for the content of its user reviews, and Facebook, well, Facebook can pretty much do whatever it wants.There are increasing calls to repeal or reform 230. It's instructive to understand this law, and why it remains valuable. When Congress passed it - again, in 1996 - it reasoned online companies were like bookstores or old-fashioned bulletin boards. They were mere distribution channels for other people's content and shouldn't be liable for it.In 1996, 16% of Americans had access to the Internet, via a computer tethered to a phone cord. There was no Wi-Fi. No Google, Facebook, Twitter, Reddit, or YouTube - not even Friendster or MySpace had been birthed. Amazon sold only books. Section 230 was a fence protecting a garden plot of green shoots and untilled soil.Today those green shoots have grown into the Amazon jungle. Social media, a category that didn't exist in 1996, is now worth roughly $2 trillion. Facebook has almost 3 billion users on its platform. Fifty-seven percent of the world population uses social media. If the speed and scale of consumer adoption is the metric for success, then Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok are the most successful things in history. Scott Galloway This expansion has produced enormous stakeholder value. People can connect across borders and other traditional barriers. Once-marginalized people are forming communities. New voices speak truth to power.If it hadn't been for social media, you never would have seen this.However, the externalities have grown as fast as these businesses' revenues. Largely because of Section 230, society has borne the costs, economic and noneconomic. In sum, behind the law's liability shield, tech platforms have morphed from Model UN members to Syria and North Korea. Only these Hermit Kingdoms have more warheads and submarines than all other nations combined.Social media now has the resources and reach to play by the same rules as other powerful media. We need a new fence.Unleash the lawyersWith Section 230, the devil is very much in the details. I've gone through an evolution in my own thinking - I once favored outright repeal, but I've been schooled by people more knowledgeable than me. One of the best things about having a public profile is that when I say something foolish, I'm immediately corrected by world-class experts (and others). This is also one of the worst things about having a platform.I've struggled with Section 230, trying to parse the various reform proposals and pick through the arguments. Then, last week, I had lunch with Jeff Bewkes. He ran HBO in the 1990s and 2000s, then ascended the corporate hierarchy to become CEO of TimeWarner, overseeing not just HBO, but CNN, Warner Bros., AOL, and Time Warner Cable. In sum, Jeff understands media and stakeholder value well. Really well.Traditional media was never perfect, but most media companies, Jeff pointed out, are responsible for harms they cause through liability to those they injure. Similar to factories that produce toxic waste or tire manufacturers whose tires explode, CNN, HBO, and the New York Times can all be sued. The First Amendment offers media companies broad protection, but the rights of people and businesses featured on their channels are also recognized."It made us better," Jeff said. "It made us more responsible and the ecosystem healthier."But in online media, Section 230 creates an imbalance between protection and liability, so it's no longer healthy or proportionate. How do we redraw Section 230's outdated boundary in a way that protects society from the harms of social media companies while maintaining their economic vitality?"Facebook and other social media companies describe themselves as neutral platforms," Jeff said, "but their product is not a neutral presentation of user-provided content. It's an actively managed feed, personalized for each user, and boosting some pieces exponentially more than other pieces of content."And that's where Jeff struck a chord. "It's the algorithmic amplification that's new since Section 230 passed - these personalized feeds. That's the harm, and that's what should be exposed to liability."Personalized content feeds are not mere bulletin boards. Any single video promoting extreme dieting might not pose serious risk to a viewer. But when YouTube draws a teenage girl into a never-ending spiral of ever more extreme dieting videos, the result is a loss of autonomy and an increased risk of self-harm. The personalized feed, churning day and night, linked and echoing, is a new thing altogether, a new threat beyond anything we've witnessed. There's carpet bombing with traditional ordnance, and there's the mushroom cloud above the Trinity test site.This is algorithmic amplification, and it is what makes social media so powerful, so rich, and so dangerous. Section 230 was never intended to encompass this type of weaponry. It couldn't have been, because none of this existed in 1996. Scott Galloway Redrawing the lines of this fence will require a deft hand. Merely retracting the protections of Section 230 is surgery with a chainsaw. It likely won't take a single revision - this goes way beyond defamation, and the law will need to evolve to account for the novel means of harm levied by social media. That evolution has thus far been thwarted by Section 230's overbroad ambit.Supporters of the law correctly highlight that it draws a bright line, easy for courts to interpret. A reformed 230 may not be able to achieve the current level of surgical clarity, but it should narrow the gray areas of factual dispute. There are a number of bills in Congress attempting to address this, which is encouraging.New laws for new mediaMerely declaring "algorithms" outside the scope of Section 230 is not a realistic solution. All online content is delivered using algorithms, including this newsletter. Even a purely chronological feed is still based on an algorithm. One approach is to carve out simple algorithms including chronological ranking from more sophisticated (and potentially more manipulative) schemes. The Protecting Americans from Dangerous Algorithms Act eliminates Section 230 protection for feeds generated by means that are not "obvious, understandable, and transparent to a reasonable user." Alternatively, the "circuit-breaker" approach would punch a hole in 230 for posts that are amplified to some specified level. Platforms could focus their moderation efforts on the fraction of posts that are amplified into millions of feeds.But the most dangerous content isn't necessarily widely distributed, but rather funneled alongside other dangerous content to create in essence new content - the feed. The Justice Against Malicious Algorithms Act targets the personalization of content specifically. That gets at what makes social media unique, and uniquely dangerous. Personalization is the result of conduct by the social media platform; if that's harmful it should be subject to liability.I'm not a lawyer, so I'm not interested in debating the legal niceties of standing or scienter requirements. Law serves policy, not the other way around, and I trust that in addition to taking on the technical details, our friends in the First Amendment legal community will join in a good faith effort at reform. That hasn't always been the case. Anyone who begins an argument by suggesting that Facebook has anything in common with a bulletin board isn't making a serious argument.Some opponents of Section 230 reform would put the burden on users. Give us privacy controls, make platforms publish their algorithm, and caveat emptor. It. Won't. Work. People couldn't be bothered to put on seat belts until we passed laws requiring it. And there's no multibillion-dollar profit motive driving car companies to make seat belts as uncomfortable and inconvenient as possible. The feed is the ever-improving product of a global experiment running 24/7. Soshana Zuboff said it best: "Unequal knowledge about us produces unequal power over us." What's required is the will to take collective action - for the commonwealth to act through force of law.In 1996, when Section 230 was passed, it provided prudent protection for saplings, but that was a different age. In 1996, Jeff was CEO of HBO, the premier cable channel, with 30 million subscribers. Its corporate parent, Time Warner, was a 90,000-employee global colossus. His boss, Gerald Levin, was regarded as "perhaps the most powerful media executive in the world." Meanwhile, on the Internet, the biggest brand was America Online - which had a mere 6 million subscribers and 6,000 employees. Emerging businesses, including AOL, needed the protections of Section 230, and their potential justified it.At the end of our conversation, I asked Jeff if he'd been concerned about the implications of Section 230 or online media in 1996 - back when he was running HBO. He shook his head. "Not at all," he said. "Not until 2000." What happened in 2000? I asked. "AOL bought us."Breakups, perp walks, age gating, identity, and liability. We have the tools. Do we have the will?Life is so rich,ScottP.S. Last December, I predicted Bitcoin would hit $50K - and I was right. We'll see what I'm right about next year. My Predictions 2022 event is coming December 7 at 5pm ET. Register now.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderNov 5th, 2021

43 gifts for grandparents, from a wine subscription to a custom pet portrait

Give your grandparents the kind of gift that shows your love and appreciation for them. We found 40+ meaningful and useful gift ideas they'll love. When you buy through our links, Insider may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more. JGI/Jamie Grill/Getty Images In this list, you'll find 43 gifts to give grandparents to thank them for the many years of love. For more gift ideas, check out all Insider Reviews gift guides here. Still looking for a gift? Check out our list of the All-Time Best products we've ever tested. Shopping for grandparents can be daunting. They've likely gotten the basics down pat, and if you ask for ideas you'll likely get a genuine "nothing" in response. But these are the people who sat through your band recitals even though they were unbearably boring. They weathered your tantrums and sticky fingers on their furniture, and they probably slipped you candy even when someone else said no. So, what can you do for them?Below are 43 gifts that you can feel good about gifting. They're thoughtful, useful, sweet, and bound to be extremely appreciated by grandmas and grandpas.Check out all 43 cool gifts for grandparents below: Gifts for grandparents under $25 Nice tea and a cute infuser Amazon/Business Insider Genuine Fred Duck Tea Infuser, available at Amazon, $12.14Buy a cute tea infuser and your grandparents will think of you every time they use it. Don't forget to pair it with some delicious loose leaf tea blends. The best socks they'll ever wear United by Blue The Ultimate Bison Sock, available at United by Blue, $38United by Blue makes some of the most comfortable and warmest socks we've ever worn. They're made of merino wool, bison down, and nylon and have reinforced heel and toe areas. We're also big fans of Bombas socks.  A funny ode to the festive family moments we all know and love Amazon/Business Insider Senior Moments: Christmas, available at Amazon, $8.59If your grandparents love a good joke, this funny seasonal book illustrates festive family moments from the holidays. Just flip through the first few sample pages to make sure it matches their humor before ordering en masse.  Frame one of your favorite memories with them. Framebridge Framed Photo, from $25Framebridge Gift Card, from $25Framebridge makes custom framing for not-custom-framing prices. You can print or paint something on your own and have it framed for your grandparents, and you can even take advantage of a team of designers if you want help deciding what frame to get. If you want to give them total control, you can give a gift card and help them with the process if needed. A cheeky Anne Taintor wall calendar Amazon/Business Insider Anne Taintor 2021 Wall Calendar, available at Amazon, $15.99If your grandparents love cheeky humor, Anne Taintor's iconic funny wall calendars are a great place to start. Taintor often pokes fun at domestic stereotypes and uses mid-century advertisements as the main images. Another foolproof option is the 2021 "Dog Shaming Calendar" for $12. A new cookbook from a beloved Italian restaurant in Brooklyn Amazon/Business Insider The Frankie Spuntino Kitchen Companion & Cooking Manual, available at Amazon, $18.43Frankies Spuntino is a tin-ceilinged, brick-walled restaurant in Brooklyn that draws crowds from every walk of life for food that is deeply satisfying. Here, the entire Frankies menu — and it's reimagined Italian American comfort food — is adapted for the home cook. If either of your grandparents loves cooking, they'll probably love this thoughtful — and new — gesture.If you want to gift something that honors your own family recipes, check out this recipe book you or they can write in from Uncommon Goods.  A movie night with you, planned out by you Fandango/Business Insider Gift Card, available at Fandango, from $15Once it's safe to do so, take them to a movie — spare no expense on movie popcorn, an unnecessarily huge soft drink, and a candy that is usually gone by the close of previews. Grab a gift card and put it in a nice Etsy card, and set a date for the next blockbuster. They'll probably love just spending time with you, and knowing you went to the trouble to orchestrate this. A touching book to read with young grandkids Amazon/Business Insider How to Babysit a Grandma and a Grandpa Boxed Set, available at Amazon, $23.97This New York Times bestselling kids' picture book is written in a how-to style, with the narrator giving important tips for "babysitting" a grandpa and grandma. It's the perfect gift for new grandparents and little grandkids excited to spend time together.  The collectible edition of a favorite book Barnes and Noble Grimm's Complete Fairy Tales (Collectible Editions), available at Barnes & Noble, $25Grab one of your grandparents' favorite books in one of Barnes & Noble's Collectible Editions Classics to gift them a pillar for their home library. These volumes feature authoritative texts by some of the world's most renown authors and come in beautifully designed bonded-leather binding with gilt edging and a ribbon bookmark.  Gifts for grandparents under $50 Practical tea towels that look like classic oil painting still lives. Food52 Old Masters Cotton Tea Towel, available at Food52, $30These tea towels more practically display the dramatic still-life scenes that are typically found on oil wall-hangings: fruit, oysters, cheese, etc. They're interesting, beautiful to look at, and great to use around the kitchen.  A salt block that'll make grilled foods taste even better Crated and Barrel Himalayan Salt Block, available at Crate and Barrel, from $34.95A salt block is the multitasking tool more and more kitchens are adopting. They're a stable crystal structure, which means they can hold a temperature very well. It can be chilled to use as a serving platter for sushi, or heated over a grill or stovetop to cook veggies infused with flavor. Himalayan salt is more nuanced than table salt, and the amount of saltiness imparted varies with the type of food (moist foods absorb more salt, fatty foods repel it, etc.). It's also long-lasting and naturally antibacterial. A good-looking, cleverly designed container for artisan cheeses Food52 Cheese Vault, available at Food52, from $34You can't go wrong with a cute, handy place for storing artisan cheese that looks far nicer than plastic wrap. Grab some tasty options to start them off with, too.  A media streaming device - and access to your Netflix Amazon Roku Express HD Streaming Media Player, available at Amazon, $29.99Turn their TV into a smart TV with the Roku. Set it up for them, show them the ropes, and log them into your Netflix and Hulu if they don't already have their own. Call them later to chat about recommendations or great new shows you're watching, so you can enjoy them together. A popular vacuum-insulated stainless steel water bottle Hydro Flask Hydro Flask 32-Ounce Wide Mouth Bottle, available at REI, Dick's Sporting Goods, and Hydro Flask, from $33.71This vacuum-insulated stainless steel water bottle works really well. It keeps hot drinks hot for up to six hours, and cold drinks cold up to 24 hours. We also love this $30 mug version. A calendar full of cherished personal photos Artifact Uprising Brass Easel and Calendar, available at Artifact Uprising, from $49Photos of loved ones are an instant source of joy, and structuring our daily life around them with a calendar is a great way to fill each day with more gratitude and happiness. Artifact Uprising has one that comes on a wood clipboard ($35) and a wall calendar ($42) that you can customize. The calendar is updated on a rolling 12-month basis, so you don't have to wait until January to create one. A journal that prompts them to record their own personal history for a new family keepsake Uncommon Goods My Life Story — So Far, available at Uncommon Goods, $30Prompt them to sit down and write about their own life, and make a lasting family keepsake in the process. This journal provides prompts, so it's not as daunting as starting from the beginning. It also shows that you're interested in learning about what they have to say and their own experiences.  A bouquet of fresh flowers 1-800-Flowers Fields of Europe Christmas Bouquet, available at 1-800-Flowers, from $39.99What's nicer than getting a gorgeous bouquet of sweet-smelling flowers sent to your home? Probably only getting to walk by them every day. If you want to send grandma and/or grandpa a bouquet of something fresh and beautiful to enjoy, flowers are a thoughtful option that can typically be delivered within days of purchasing. A DNA test that lets them delve into family history ancestryDNA AncestryDNA Genetic Test, available at Ancestry, $59Your grandparents are the origins and default architects of much of your life, and AncestryDNA gives them — and you — the chance to explore and appreciate that history. They'll be able to see their heritage and genetic breakdown (aka 50% Irish, 30% Italian, and so on) and can build family trees complete with historical documents and censuses already on the site. If they're interested in history, they'll love this. A soothing bubble bath from a well-loved brand Amazon L'Occitane Relaxing & Foaming Lavender Bubble Bath, available at Amazon, $39This cult-favorite lavender-scented bubble bath from L'Occitane is a great way to relax, and it takes a while to get through.  Gifts for grandparents under $75 A luxe holiday candle that comes in a hand-blown glass container they can reuse Bloomingdale's LAFCO Feu de Bois Ski House Candle, available at Bloomingdales, $65LAFCO candles are over $60 for a reason; they smell incredible, they're made simply from soy with a cotton wick, and the container is hand-blown glass that can be washed and used as a centerpiece for everything from candy to plants. This size has a 90-hour burn time. A photo book or photo calendar you curated for them of their favorite people and places Artifact Uprising Everyday Photo Book, available at Artifact Uprising, from $62Grandparents are often the gatekeepers to the most involved, best-kept baby books. School pictures, spelling tests, and holidays spent with them are all preserved with the genuine, all-encompassing interest reserved only for grandparents. Rarely, however, do we get to do the same for them. Set aside some time and curate a photo book for them from Artifact Uprising with pictures of their favorite places, people, and memories.Or, if you think they'll use it more, a calendar of you, them, your parents, and their grandkids — primed for a happy exhibition the next time their friends come over. A monthly sampling of some of the tastiest products from around the country Mouth/Instagram Best of Mouth Subscription, available at Mouth, from $54/monthFoodies will love the chance to test small-batch, locally made products from around the country. Mouth sources and curates subscription boxes of their favorites, which they'll receive each month. An Echo Dot that's easy to use and extremely helpful Amazon 4th Generation Echo Dot, available at Amazon, $59.99If your grandparents aren't extremely techy, the Echo Dot is an especially good starter gift. It maximizes convenience, requires little interaction after setup, and takes up minimal space. They can easily ask Alexa for recipes, the weather, the news, and to control things like the lights. You could also grab a few accompanying smart bulbs if they either hate getting up to turn them off or if their knees tend to bother them. Stick around to set it up, and show them a few of the coolest features. Fresh coffee beans from all over the world delivered to their door Atlas Coffee Club Atlas Coffee Subscription or Gift Set, available at Atlas Coffee Club, from $60Atlas Coffee sends them fresh beans from across the globe to their door. They'll learn about its flavor profile, tasting notes, suggested brewing methods, a little history lesson in its origins — and each comes in a bag with festive packaging. If they've been coffee buffs for a while — or just love having a morning cup — they'll appreciate both the thought and opportunity to learn something new.  Tea from around the world Uncommon Goods Tea From Around the World Set, $55If your grandparents prefer tea over coffee, this set will let them sample some of the best flavors from across the globe. Gifts for under $100 A pair of comfortable sneakers Allbirds Shop all Allbirds sneakers hereEveryone deserves comfortable sneakers and if your grandparents aren't familiar with Allbirds, it's time to get them up to speed. The brand makes footwear using sustainable materials like merino wool, recycled trees, sugarcane, and natural rubber. Check out all of our reviews on Allbirds sneakers to choose the best pair for them. A Jo Malone diffuser that smells amazing and looks good in a home Nordstrom Jo Malone Lime Basil & Mandarin Scent Diffuser, available at Nordstrom, $85A diffuser is like the modern take on potpourri, and Jo Malone makes some incredibly good scents. They'll recognize the brand, like the smell, and the clean, minimalist glass container means they won't only bring this out when they know you're coming over. Warm, fluffy slippers they'll love wearing Nordstrom UGG Dakota Water Resistant Slipper, available at Nordstrom, $100Make sure grandma's feet are kept cozy year-round in these plush UGG slippers with rubber soles for indoor or outdoor use.  Long-distance twin lamps that light up when one of you touches it Uncommon Goods Long Distance Touch Lamp, available at Uncommon Goods, from $85These sentimental long-distance lamps are perfect for grandkids that live far away from their grandparents. Keep one in your home and one at your grandparents' home, and whenever you touch it, their lamp will light up too. It's a simple and instantaneous way to say "I love you!" from across the country. A gift subscription to a cool wine service they're not likely to already use Vinebox Shop all Vinebox collections here.Vinebox gifts let the recipient try nine of the best wines of the moment every quarter. Their delivery will include nine vials portioned to be full glasses, with each selected based on their personal tastes and preferences. They'll also get a credit for either $15 or $30 to use on full bottles.  Gifts for grandparents under $200 A vintage-style record player Amazon Electrohome Kingston 7-in-1 Vinyl Record Player, $199.99Your grandparents probably have a massive collection of records but an outdated record player. With the Kingston 7-in-1, they'll get the vintage feel of old-school record players with additional modern features like Bluetooth, aux, and the ability to turn vinyl into mp3s. The latest Apple AirPods Apple Apple AirPods 3rd Gen, $179Bluetooth headphones always make a great gift for anyone with a smartphone. If grandma and grandpa are iPhone users, AirPods are the best choice because they're incredibly easy to pair and they're easy to carry. A vintage-inspired knit sweater Todd Snyder L.L.Bean x Todd Snyder Bear Sweater, $199Remember all those wonderful knit sweaters you got as gifts over the years? Now it's time to pay it back with a similar gift. Todd Snyder's collaboration with L.L.Bean features several vintage-inspired sweaters that will leave your grandparents feeling nostalgic.  Aura Aura Carver Digital Picture Frame, $169, available at AuraSet up a digital picture frame at Grandma and Grandpa's house and they'll be able to view all of their favorite images from one device. An e-reader with a no-glare screen The Kindle Paperwhite's new, warmer backlight. Amazon Kindle Paperwhite, available at Amazon, $139.99If your grandparents love to read, the first device you should gift is probably the go-anywhere, read-anything Paperwhite. Kindle Paperwhite is waterproof and has a no-glare screen even in direct sunlight — great for long days spent on the porch or at the beach.  A new gadget that lets them preserve wine for years by never technically uncorking it Coravin Coravin Model Two Wine Preservation System, available at Bloomingdale's, $149.95Coravin allows you to pour a glass of wine without ever uncorking the bottle, so you don't have to worry about oxidation ruining the wine. If your grandparents are opening it just for a glass, their wine will stay preserved over weeks, months, and years if they like. It also gives them greater freedom; there's no need to conserve by sharing a bottle, so they can pick their own favorite every time.  A comfortable weighted blanket for better rest Gravity Blankets Gravity Blankets, starting at $195Give your grandparents better rest for the holidays with a cult-favorite weighted blanket with a removable cover. By mimicking DPTS (deep pressure touch stimulation), weighted blankets help us calm down, fall asleep faster, stay asleep better and for longer, and feel more rested when we wake up. A tiny smart garden that they can grow herbs in easily and year-round Amazon Click and Grow Smart Garden, available at Click and Grow, $149.96If your grandparents love gardening or cooking, this kitchen garden is great for fresh herbs and year-round gardening and comes with pods for mini tomato, basil, and green lettuce. Not all climates and spaces are hospitable to herbs, but Click and Grow maintains one that is. It's low-maintenance so there's not a ton of involvement with tech or even much watering, and they're not likely to already have one.  Luxury gifts for grandparents A Nespresso that makes everything from a latte to a cappuccino just the way they like it - and from the comfort of home Nespresso Nespresso Lattissima One, available at Amazon, $449.90This is a pricey gift, but one that makes pretty amazing coffee without much more involvement than dropping a pod into the machine. They can make everything from delicious cappuccinos to lattes right at home, which is probably why it was listed as one of Oprah's Favorite Things in 2018. A high-end shaver for Grandpa Braun Braun Series 9 Pro, $329.99As Braun's most advanced shaver ever, the Series 9 Pro will pro will give Grandpa the best shave he's ever had. A smart frame that allows them to look through photos The Grommet Smart Connected Picture Frame, available at The Grommet, $299If they're tech-savvy, get them a smart picture frame that cycles through family photos from their digital albums or phone. You can also use a built-in family sharing feature to have other people send pictures directly to their frame. A custom painting of their furry best friend Uncommon Goods Custom Painterly Pet Portraits, available at Uncommon Goods, from $250Make sure this is their decor style before committing to it, but a portrait of their pet is probably one of the sweetest and most thoughtful gestures. It's unique, handmade, and pays homage to the little fur-mop that loves lounging in an adjacent sun patch on the couch every day. Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderNov 5th, 2021

85 gifts under $100 for everyone in your life - thoughtful and affordable gift ideas

From a personalized photo book to an educational cooking class, here are 85 gift ideas under $100 for every type of giftee. When you buy through our links, Insider may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more. Hollis Johnson/Crystal Cox/Alyssa Powell/Business Insider With a $100 budget, you can buy anything from a smart speaker to a fun cooking class. These 80+ gift ideas cover a wide range of interests and needs and are also unique. If your budget changes or you don't have a budget at all, we have guides that hit all price points. Table of Contents: Masthead StickyAlthough gift-giving is a fun way to show the people you care about love and appreciation, it can easily become expensive. Fortunately, with a budget of $100 you can purchase the latest tech accessories; useful kitchen tools; luxury beauty and skincare products; and quirky, just-for-fun goodies. These 80+ gift ideas cover everything your giftee will need and also includes thoughtful, unique finds. We've tested, purchased, and gifted many of these items ourselves, which means they're sure to impress no matter the occasion.We also have guides for gifts under $25 and gifts under $50. If you're not shopping by budget we have gift guides that cover many price points and interests. Shop the 85 best under-$100 gift ideas below:This list includes a Sponsored Product that has been suggested by Casper. It meets our editorial criteria in terms of quality and value.* An artistic swatch collab with MoMA MoMA Design Store Swatch x MoMa watch, available at Moma Design Store, from $80What better way to show off their love for art than a watch inspired by famous paintings. Swatch collaborates with New York's Museum of Modern Art to create these unique watches that resemble artworks from MoMa's collection. A travel photo album Artifacts Uprising Hardcover Travel Photo Book, available at Artifact Uprising, from $72This customizable photo book takes you back to every travel adventure so you'll never forget it. Whether it's a week trip or an extended stay, the travel photo album captures every excursion with charming designs on up to 210 pages. A fresh flower bouquet Urban Stems Urban Stems bouquets, available at Urban Stems from $45If you don't know what to gift, flowers are always appreciated. A beautiful bouquet delivered right to them is the kindest way to say congrats and show you're thinking of them. A set of multipurpose starter seasonings Omsom The Best Seller Set, available at Omsom, $45Spice up their summer with this fun set of four seasoning starters that can be used on everything from barbecue to savory tofu and chicken. The perfect pillow for side sleepers Casper Original Casper Pillow, available at Casper, $65The Original Casper Pillow will help your favorite side sleeper align their neck with their spine while sleeping. We named this pillow the best for side sleepers in our guide to the best pillows. You can customize the pillow even more by choosing its size and height.*Sponsored by Casper A grow it yourself garden kit Uncommon Goods Vegetable Grow Kit & Garden Cookbook, available at Uncommon Goods, $35With this vegetable grow kit, they'll be able to grow their meals right in their backyard. The kit includes a cookbook, step-by-step gardening instructions, and the seeds to grow 11 different vegetables. A mini fireplace Food52 Personal Concrete Fireplace, available at Food52, $99Keep them warm and entertained this summer with this small personal fireplace, which is safe for use indoors and for cooking fun treats like s'mores.  A gift card from Bookshop Bookshop Bookshop gift card, available at Bookshop, from $10Bookshop allows readers to support small bookstores online. The retailer sells gift cards that your recipient will be able to use to shop online from their favorite indie bookstore. The gift cards never expire and can be bought in increments from $10 to $1000. An interactive pottery kit Sculpd Sculpd Pottery Kit, available at Sculpd, $65This pottery kit offers a unique activity to do with your loved ones. Each kit comes with enough supplies for two people, with add-on supplies also available for purchase so that more can participate. The kit also includes a step-by-step instructional booklet. A set of cocktail mixers that taste like summer Williams Sonoma Casamigos Cocktail Gift Set, available at Williams Sonoma, $49.95Co-founded by actor George Clooney, Casamigos is a favorite brand of many tequila lovers. The company's newest addition is a cocktail gift set of uniquely flavored mixers and rimmers. The mixers are exclusively available at Williams Sonoma and include blackberry basil and citrus flavors. A gift card from Hello Fresh Hello Fresh Gift Card, available at Hello Fresh, from $70The best gifts are for items or services your recipient wouldn't think to purchase for themselves. A gift card from Hello Fresh checks all of these boxes, as it offers a welcome reprieve from grocery shopping and meal planning. Choose from four amounts based on your recipient's household size and needs. We also wrote a full guide to Hello Fresh that includes a breakdown of its special features, how to get started with an account, and more. A bag made for hosting mini picnics Amazon Picnic at Ascot Insulated Wine and Cheese Cooler Bag, available at Amazon, $58Our pick for best picnic basket for carrying bottles, this insulated bag is a great gift for those who want to have a small picnic complete with their favorite drinks and small snacks. A set of sustainable coasters Joanna Buchanan Ruffle Edge Straw Coasters, available at Joanna Buchanan, $48Add a pop of color to their indoor and outdoor eating spaces with these colorful straw coasters. The coasters come in a set of four, are handwoven in the Philippines, and are made of sustainable materials. A savory seasoning starter pack Momofuku Pantry Starter Pack, available at Momofuku, $55Spice up their pantry with this flavorful seasoning set. The starter pack includes spicy seasoned salts, restaurant-grade soy and tamari sauces, and chili crunch. Momofuku's site also includes several recipes to make using the ingredients from the set. A mini travel kit Away The Travel Wellness Kit, available at Away, $55Keep them well stocked with travel essentials by gifting them Away's Travel Wellness Kit. The set comes inside of The Mini which is a smaller version of their popular suitcase and is available in multiple colors. Accompanying The Mini is a hand sanitizer, anti-bacterial hand wipes, dissolvable soap leaves, and a mask with five replacement filters. A pair of cozy slippers Zappos Scuffette II Slippers, available at Zappos, $89.95Help them keep their feet warm while working from home with these fuzzy slippers. These high quality slippers are made of suede and have a sheepskin collar, and are a very useful gift that your recipient may not think to purchase for themselves. A wine gift set Amazon Wine Lovers Set with Opener and Preserver, available at Amazon, $49.99Help elevate your recipient's wine experience by gifting this wine lover's set. The included wine preserver is a great gift for those that live alone or like to take their time with their wines. The sleek charging base and modern design make this a gift your recipient will be proud to display on their kitchen counter. A sturdy wallet Amazon Bellroy Low Slim Leather Wallet, available at Amazon, $75Replace their tired and tattered wallet with this slim leather billfold from Insider Reviews' favorite wallet brand Bellroy. It's made with ethically sourced leather that will age wonderfully and last many years. A Disney+ subscription Alyssa Powell/Business Insider Subscription, available at Disney+, $7.99/month or $79.99/yearIt gives you unlimited access to movies and shows from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, National Geographic, and 20th Century Fox, and costs just $7.99 a month or $79.99 a year after a free seven-day trial. Read everything there is to know about Disney+ over here.And if you need some binge-spiration, here are all the new movies available to stream. A sleek fitness tracker that includes heart rate monitoring Fitbit Fitbit Inspire 2, available at Best Buy, $99.95Fitbit's affordable Inspire 2 tracker has no shortage of useful features to keep them informed about their physical activity. The heart rate monitor lets them be more strategic about their workouts by tracking calorie burn, resting heart rate, and heart rate zones. A hair towel that cuts drying time in half Amazon Aquis Original Microfiber Hair Turban, available at Amazon, $20.49Aquis' cult-favorite hair towels have inspired a slew of rave reviews online, including one from our own team of product reviewers.The towels are made from a proprietary fabric called Aquitex that's composed of ultra-fine fibers (finer than silk) that work to reduce the amount of friction the hair experiences while in its weakest state.  A memorable date night option Eatwith/Instagram Gift Card, available at Eatwith, from $30Eatwith offers cool dining experiences that bring together delicious menus, professional chefs, and interesting guests. Typically held in person, in major cities like New York, Paris, and London, Eatwith is now offering online classes you can take from anywhere that bring unique cooking experiences right into your kitchen. In addition to experiences led by professional chefs from around the world, Eatwith has recently added classes taught by MasterChef contestants. A pair of comfortable wool shoes Allbirds Wool Runners, available at Allbirds, $98While Allbirds has hinted that it's on track to become more than just a shoe brand, we'll always be partial to its original sneakers made from merino wool. We've been wearing and loving the comfortable style for more than two years, and you can't go wrong gifting a pair of these shoes.  Coffee from a different country, delivered every month Atlas Coffee Club/Instagram 3-Month Gift Subscription, available at Atlas Coffee Club, $60It's a worldwide coffee tour without the expense of airplane tickets. Atlas Coffee Club delivers single origin coffee and always includes a postcard from the country, brewing tips, and flavor notes with each month's shipment.  A small skincare tool that removes 99.5% of dirt, oil, and makeup residue Amazon Foreo Luna Facial Cleansing Brush, available at Amazon, $99Our team swears by these gentle yet effective cleaning brushes. They have hygienic silicone bristles and come in five different models for different skin types. The Luna is small enough to bring on the go, so your recipient can maintain their skincare routine no matter where they are. A digital photo frame Amazon NIX 8-Inch USB Digital Photo Frame, available at Amazon, $69.99Include a USB stick of your favorite photo memories together with this gift. The high-tech photo frame will shuffle through and display crisp photos and videos, and it can also be mounted on a wall. If you can stretch your budget, the more popular WiFi version is the same idea but more convenient to use because it works right from your phone's gallery.  An easy-to-use trimmer Philips Norelco Philips Norelco OneBlade Face + Body Trimmer, available on Amazon, $39.95What separates the Philips Norelco OneBlade from other trimmers and shavers is the unique blade. It uses a fast-moving OneBlade cutter with a protection system on both sides of the blade to prevent knicks. The base of the blade will contour to his face, allowing for a comfortable shave or trim without irritation — and it works for wet or dry shaving. A convenient wireless charging pad Amazon Anker PowerWave Wireless Charging Pad, available on Amazon, $13.99A wireless charger is a great gift for anyone with a glass-backed smartphone that supports the feature. Our reviewer called this one "the perfect wireless charging pad." It charges quickly, looks nice, and can even accommodate thick phone cases. Membership to a popular nationwide book club Book of the Month 6-Month Subscription, available at Book of the Month, $89.99If they prefer the incomparable feel of a hardcover book, set them up with a Book of the Month membership. It offers five curated titles, mainly from up-and-coming authors, to choose from every month.  A solution to their back pain Amazon Upright Go Posture Trainer, available at Best Buy, $79.99This gift is for anyone who is always complaining about their back pain or poor posture. Upright Go is an innovative and discreet device that sticks to the top of their back and helps them improve their posture, day by day.  A fan-favorite cookbook with original illustrations Amazon "Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat" by Samin Nosrat, available at Amazon, $16.67This is the perfect cookbook for those just getting into cooking. Chef and New York Times columnist Samin Nosrat outlines the foundations of cooking and presents it in a fun, engaging way alongside original illustrations.  Their favorite specialty meals, no matter where they are Goldbelly Meals, available at Goldbelly, from $25Goldbelly makes it possible to satisfy their most specific and nostalgic cravings no matter where they live in the US — a cheesecake from Junior's, deep dish pizza from Lou Malnati, and more. Browse the iconic gifts section for inspiration. Smart bulbs to deck out their home with the best ambiance Amazon Philips Hue White Smart Light Bulb Starter Kit, available at Amazon, $99.99Gift this to a friend who wants to equip a full room or apartment with smart lights. This kit includes four white bulbs, which you can control with Alexa, Google Assistant, and HomeKit, and a Philips Hue Bridge that connects them to your router. You can automate the bulbs with timers and schedules, and create gorgeous lighting effects. With the Philips Hue Sync feature, they can even sync up with the audio of your music, movies, or games. A book about their favorite burger spot Amazon Shake Shack: Recipes & Stories, available at Amazon, $22.03While this book doesn't contain the actual recipes for the burger or the famous sauce, it will get your burger-loving recipient pretty close to the real deal. They can make delicious burgers, fries, and shakes at home, then conduct the classic Shake Shack vs. In-n-Out comparison.  A stylish accessory with a hidden charger Mark & Graham Power Up Lightning to USB Tassel Keychain, available at Mark & Graham, from $44.99The leather keychain is as functional as it is attractive: it has an iPhone lightning input and USB stick so they can charge their phone in their bag. Some colors include free monogramming while others have a $10 monogram fee.  A reusable bag featuring a fun print Baggu Standard Baggu, available on Baggu, $16There are plenty of reusable nylon shopping bag options out there, but where Baggu really stands out from the crowd is its variety of quirky and colorful prints. These useful bags are the perfect gift for everyone in your life. A fun and educational online cooking class Cozymeal/Instagram Gift Card, available at Cozymeal, from $50Gifting experiences is on the rise. With a Cozymeal class, they'll learn how to make anything from fresh pasta to beautiful charcuterie boards. In addition to cooking classes, Cozymeal offers online mixology classes and virtual wine tastings. A set of trackers for the absent-minded Amazon Tile Pro (2-Pack), available at Amazon, $59.99When they can't find their phone, all they have to do is click their Tile button to make their phone ring, even if it's on silent.  An electric toothbrush that you won't want to hide away Goby Moonstone Electric Toothbrush, available at Goby, $85In addition to its sleek design, the Goby Toothbrush stands out for its soft brush head, normal and sensitive brushing speeds, and convenient USB charging shell.  Ready-to-prepare meals that save them time Daily Harvest The 9-Item Gift Card, available at Daily Harvest, $75Your recipient will be able to fill a box with smoothies (including protein smoothies for gym rats), harvest bowls, soup, and more meals that are ready to take on the go. Daily Harvest's healthy offerings are perfect for the busy, wellness-minded people in your life.  A case that sanitizes dirty phones Phone Soap PhoneSoap Smartphone Sanitizer, available at PhoneSoap, $79.95Most of us carry our phones with us everywhere — and we mean, everywhere. PhoneSoap kills 99.9% of common household germs, including bacteria that lead to E.Coli, Salmonella, Staph, the flu, and the common cold. Especially with the pandemic, your recipient will love knowing that their phone is squeaky clean.  A pretty leather wrap for taking chargers and cables on the go Mark & Graham Leather Charger Roll Up, available on Mark & Graham, from $22.99Mark & Graham's Leather Charger Roll Up is made from soft, supple leather and has three separate pockets to stash cables and chargers on the go. Get it monogrammed for free. A delicious and unique hot sauce Truff/Instagram Truff White Truffle Hot Sauce, available at Amazon, $31.49The limited-edition hot sauce is infused with white truffle, packing a sweet heat you'll want to add to burritos, pizza, wings, or any other dish you want to make a little more interesting.  Membership to a huge outdoor co-op Connie Chen/Business Insider REI Membership, available at REI, $20An REI membership offers a lifetime of benefits for a one-time purchase. That includes 10%-back dividends, special offers, access to in-store REI Garage sales, and special pricing on REI classes and events. Find out more here. Extremely comfortable, flattering lounge pants MeUndies MeUndies, Lounge Pants, available at MeUndies, $68These are some of the best lounge pants we've ever tried. If they're spending more time in casual wear, they'll spend an inordinate amount of time in these. We also appreciate that the silky MicroModal and sleek cut make them perfectly acceptable for wearing in public to grab the mail. A bike horn that can go as loud as a car Priority Bicycles Priority High Power Horn, available at Priority Bicycles, $29.99Born out of a research project between Priority Bicycles and Toyota, this bike horn can get as loud as the one in a car. This is an excellent safety accessory for bikers. A silky hand cream La Mer/Instagram La Mer Hand Treatment, available at Nordstrom, $90Of all La Mer's premium skincare products, the Hand Treatment is a brand favorite. This creamy formula is the perfect texture to help heal dry hands. The internet's favorite olive oil Brightland/Instagram Awake Olive Oil, available at Brightland, $37Brightland's olive oils make great gifts for cooks and anyone who loves to entertain. The white bottles protect the EVOO from light damage and look nice displayed on a countertop.  A cool and smooth pajama shirt Ettitude/Instagram Bamboo Lyocell Sleep Shirt, available at Ettitude, from $64.40Luxury sheets will break your budget, but the next best thing to get them a good night's sleep is this comfortable and attractive PJ shirt. It's made from organic bamboo lyocell, which is breathable and moisture-wicking, not to mention more sustainable to produce than traditional cotton.  Premium distilled whiskey Uncle Nearest Whiskey Uncle Nearest Whiskey, available at ReserveBar, starting at $49Founded in Tennessee, Uncle Nearest is an award-winning, Black-owned whiskey brand that was inspired by the first known African-American master distiller, Nathan "Nearest" Green. If you're shopping for someone who enjoys a quality glass of whiskey or a whiskey-based cocktail every now and then, a bottle of Uncle Nearest won't disappoint. A sleek knife block Material Kitchen The Stand, available at Material Kitchen, $90We're big fans of Material Kitchen's minimalist approach to kitchen essentials — like this magnetic, angled knife block made from heavy-duty wood.  Soft and environmentally friendly socks made from hemp United by Blue SoftHemp Sock, available at United by Blue, $16The cozy socks are also sustainably made and made from a hemp yarn that's four times more durable than cotton, a win-win all around.  A simple but luxurious body wash Necessaire Necessaire The Body Wash, available at Sephora, $25New startup Necessaire formulates its body care products with vitamins A, B3, C, E, and omega-6 and omega-9. The subtly scented Body Wash will leave their skin feeling clean, soft, and nourished.  An indoor plant The Nice Plant Blooming Energy Box, available at The Nice Plant, $45.99Indoor plants are much more than an extra responsibility. They help purify the air, have been proven to reduce stress, and look good aesthetically. The Nice Plant's Blooming Energy Box includes a small plant and a few other useful things, like a sage smudge stick, palo santo bundle, and room spray, to make their home more peaceful and relaxing.  A high-quality leather band for an Apple Watch Amazon Bullstrap Full-Grain Italian Leather Watch Band, available at Amazon, $89Bullstrap's Italian Leather Watch Bands are the perfect way to add some elegance to an Apple Watch. They come in several colors of leather and are compatible with all generations of the Apple Watch. A pair of sparkly hoops Mejuri Sapphire Hoops, available at Mejuri, $60Traditional hoops get an embellishment of white sapphire in this affordable piece from Mejuri.  Premium underwear that's worth every penny Tommy John Tommy John Men's Second Skin Boxer Brief 3-Pack, available at Tommy John, $97It's not an exaggeration to say Tommy John could be the most comfortable boxers your recipient has ever worn. The Second Skin, in particular, is a standout — smooth, soft, stretchy, and breathable.  A cool drink accessory worth celebrating Brumate BrüMate 12oz Insulated Champagne Flute, available at BrüMate, from $22.99Brumate's insulated flute prevents the disappointment of bubbly that has gone warm and flat. It holds almost half a bottle of champagne and comes in 30 pretty colors.   A whimsical candle from a new brand Otherland/Instagram 3-Candle Set, available at Otherland, $89As our candle-loving editor points out, "Does the world really need another fancy candle brand?" Otherland's candles are so creative and interesting that you won't be able to resist gifting at least a few.  A travel-friendly vanity case Paravel Mini See All Vanity Case, available at Paravel, $65They can stop using unsightly and wasteful Ziploc bags once they have this stylish and structured case in their possession. The exterior material is resistant to water and stains, and the clear window lets them easily identify the case's contents.  A gold bracelet that displays their zodiac sign Aurate Zodiac Bracelet, available at Aurate, $90The delicate gold vermeil bracelet is a piece they'll want to wear every day. Aurate's beautiful gold jewelry is not only more affordable than traditional fine jewelry, but it's also ethically sourced, representing a new wave of jewelry brands to know about.  A mini duffel crossbody with a distinctive look Dagne Dover Extra Small Landon Carryall, available at Dagne Dover, $110Dagne Dover excels at making functional and versatile bags like work totes and this extra small version of its popular neoprene duffel. Inside, they'll find a compartment just large enough for the day's essentials, pockets to keep them organized, and a detachable key leash.  A streaming stick that gives them access to more than 500,000 movies and TV episodes Amazon Roku Streaming Stick +, available at Amazon, $44.99Roku's Streaming Stick+ is exceptional for its 4K, HDR, and HD streaming, and long-range wireless receiver. Installing it is an easy process and starts by plugging the stick into the TV.  Sweet treats they won't be able to stop eating Milk Bar The Chocolatey Classic, available at Milk Bar, $75Instead of the usual box of chocolates, gift some of the best-known and most delicious treats from NYC institution Milk Bar. The set contains 12 soft and chewy cake truffles, six assorted and an adorable mini birthday cake.  A box that lets them explore the exciting world of sake Tippsy Sake Gift Box, available at Tippsy, $59While online wine clubs abound, Tippsy is quietly cultivating a community of sake lovers. It offers an abundance of knowledge and premium sake options to anyone who's interested in exploring this underrated alcohol further.   A compact and lightweight hand mixer Amazon Kitchenaid 5-Speed Ultra Power Hand Mixer, available at Target, $49.99Not all baking tasks require a full stand mixer. KitchenAid's hand mixer doesn't take up a lot of space but gets a variety of jobs done by offering five-speed options. You'll also have fun picking out a unique color for your recipient.  A game that tests their penchant for puns Amazon Pun Intended Game, available at Amazon, $24.99It's a battle of who can devise the most clever puns in this family-friendly card game that requires a quick mind and even faster writing skills. Game on.  A custom map of a special location Grafomap Custom Map Poster, available at Grafomap, $49Grafomap is the site where you can commemorate important places, be it their hometown, college town, or the city where you two met. The custom design function is easy to use and you can choose to get the final map poster framed or printed on canvas.  A waterproof outdoor speaker Amazon Ultimate Ears Wonderboom Speaker, available at Amazon, from $99.99The surprisingly powerful speaker fits in the palm of their hand and can go swimming with them in the pool or ocean. It's also dustproof and therefore suitable for hikes and other outdoor adventures.  A sleep mask made with high-quality mulberry silk Nordstrom Slip Slipsilk Sleep Mask, available at Nordstrom, $50Few things are more luxurious than sleeping with a silk mask. Thanks to its all silk construction, your recipient's face will feel cool all night long.  A plush bathrobe Parachute Classic Bathrobe, available at Parachute, $99It's all too tempting to stay wrapped up in this Turkish cotton bathrobe long after they've stepped out of the shower. The thick robe is our pick for the best bathrobe you can buy.  A chai sampler Amazon Vadham Chai Tea Reserve Set, available at Amazon, $29.99This set of loose-leaf teas made it into Oprah's Favorite Things back in 2018. It's filled with three variations of chai that any tea lover will appreciate.  A cult-favorite fragrance Le Labo/Instagram Le Labo AnOther 13 Eau de Parfum, available at Nordstrom, from $86Le Labo is famous for its distinctive packaging and subtle yet inviting scents. The AnOther is musky and woodsy, but it's balanced out with ingredients like jasmine petals.  The outdoor game you see everyone playing at the park Amazon Spikeball Game Set, available at Dick's Sporting Goods, $69.99It's a gorgeous day out and you can't help but notice a few groups having fun while playing some kind of new ball game. Chances are it's Spikeball, the volleyball-esque game that your recipient can set up in any large outdoor space. It takes just 10 minutes to learn the rules.  A pair of blue light-blocking glasses that look good enough to wear outside of the house MVMT Ingram Crystal Everscroll Glasses, available at MVMT, $62.40Help them protect their eyes from harsh screens with a pair of blue-light-blocking glasses. Their eyes won't feel as strained, and they might be able to drift off to sleep more quickly.  A set of monogrammed hand towels Weezie Stitched Edge Hand Towels, available at Weezie, $30The extra time and thought put into a personalized gift are worth it. You can add custom embroidery (+$15 per towel) to Weezie's fluffy and absorbent towels.  Smart plugs that let them control their appliances with their phone Amazon Kasa Smart WiFi Plug, available at Amazon, $17.68Through the corresponding app, they can schedule when their lights turn on and off, or use voice commands with Alexa, Google Assistant, and Cortana. It's a suitable entry-level smart plug for someone looking to get into home automation.  A personalized photo book Artifact Uprising Color Series Photo Book, available at Artifact Uprising, from $22Photo books are a great gift for anyone in your life and can be used to commemorate vacations, weddings, special events, or even just everyday life. With three book sizes, multiple color and theme options, and the opportunity to choose a cover image, this gift is sure to make your recipient feel special. A flavorful seasoning collection Spicewalla The Grill & Roast Collection, available at Spicewalla, $18.99With grill and BBQ season slowly approaching, a set of tasty seasonings is key to making delicious foods. They can use the spices in this collection to add flavor to meats, seafood, vegetables, and even rice. The coziest moccasins we've ever worn L.L.Bean Women's Wicked Good Moccasins, available at L.L.Bean, $79Can you practically feel the soft fluffiness of these slippers through your screen? L.L.Bean supposedly sells a pair of these cushioned sheepskin shoes every seven seconds during December, proving that they are worth the purchase. An everyday stainless steel frying pan that professional cooks love Made In Frying Pan, available at Made In, $65Pros like Tom Colicchio trust Made In's cookware to perform in some of the country's top kitchens, so rest assured it's good enough for your recipient. The quickly growing startup is behind a couple of our favorite pieces of cookware.  A gorgeous coffee table book that helps cure their travel bug Amazon 1,000 Places to See Before You Die (Deluxe Edition): The World as You've Never Seen It Before, available at Barnes & Noble, $50.99Patricia Schultz's original "1,000 Places" captured imaginations with its compelling curation of experiences all over the world. The newly released deluxe edition features a beautiful gold-embellished cover and more than 1,000 new photographs.  A fun, cult-favorite board game Amazon Settlers of Catan Board Game, available at Walmart, $35.20The Settlers of Catan relies upon strategy and sometimes luck to build civilizations — and it can last for hours.  A beautiful piece of handmade drinkware JFR Glass Antique Silver Glass, available at JFR Glass, $45Each hand blown glass from JFR Glass is unique. The glasses aren't just pretty — they're also functional and sturdy. They're dishwasher-safe and UV-resistant, so your recipient can enjoy the pieces forever.  An interactive state park map UncommonGoods State Parks Explorer Map, available at UncommonGoods, $28This state park map is sure to come in handy this spring and summer as many of us will be venturing into the outdoors. Choose from ten maps that each list over 30 parks in states such as New York, California, and Connecticut. The map includes a sheet of gold stickers so you can mark your progress after each park visit. Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderOct 25th, 2021

Transcript: Soraya Darabi

     The transcript from this week’s, MiB: Soraya Darabi, TMV, is below. You can stream and download our full conversation, including the podcast extras on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher, Google, Bloomberg, and Acast. All of our earlier podcasts on your favorite pod hosts can be found here. ~~~ BARRY RITHOLTZ, HOST, MASTERS IN BUSINESS: This… Read More The post Transcript: Soraya Darabi appeared first on The Big Picture.      The transcript from this week’s, MiB: Soraya Darabi, TMV, is below. You can stream and download our full conversation, including the podcast extras on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher, Google, Bloomberg, and Acast. All of our earlier podcasts on your favorite pod hosts can be found here. ~~~ BARRY RITHOLTZ, HOST, MASTERS IN BUSINESS: This week on the podcast, I have an extra special guest. Her name is Soraya Darabi. She is a venture capital and impact investor who has an absolutely fascinating background working for, first with the New York Times Social Media Group then with a startup that eventually gets purchased by OpenTable, and then becoming a venture investor that focuses on women and people of color-led startups which is not merely a way to, quote-unquote, “do good” but it’s a broad area that is wildly underserved by the venture community and therefore is very inefficient. Meaning, there’s a lot of upside in this. You can both do well and do good by investing in these areas. I found this to be absolutely fascinating and I think you will also, if you’re at all interested in entrepreneurship, social media startups, deal flow, how funds identify who they want to invest in, what it’s like to actually experience an exit as an entrepreneur, I think you’ll find this to be quite fascinating. So with no further ado, my conversation with TMV’s Soraya Darabi. VOICEOVER: This is Masters in Business with Barry Ritholtz on Bloomberg Radio. My special guest this week is Soraya Darabi. She is the Co-Founder and General Partner of TMV, a venture capital firm that has had a number of that exits despite being relatively young, 65 percent of TMV’s startups are led by women or people of color. Previously, she was the cofounder of Foodspotting, an app named App of the Year by Apple and Wire that was eventually purchased by OpenTable. Soraya Darabi, welcome to Bloomberg. SORAYA DARABI; GENERAL PARTNER & FOUNDER; TMV: My goodness, Barry, thank you for having me. RITHOLTZ: I’ve been looking forward to this conversation since our previous discussion. We were on a Zoom call with a number of people discussing blockchain and crypto when it was really quite fascinating and I thought you had such an unusual and interesting background, I thought you would make a perfect guest for the show. Let’s start with your Manager of Digital Partnerships and Social Media at the “New York Times” when social media was really just ramping up. Tell us about what that was like. Tell us what you did in the late aughts at The Times. DARABI: Absolutely. I was fresh faced out of a university. I had recently graduated with mostly a journalism concentration from Georgetown and did a small stint in Condé Nast right around the time they acquired Reddit for what will soon be nothing because Reddit’s expecting to IPO at around 15 billion. And that experience at Reddit really offered me a deep understanding of convergence, what was happening to digital media properties as they partnered for the first time when nascent but scaling social media platforms. And so the “New York Times” generously offered me a role that was originally called manager of buzz marketing. I think that’s what they called social media in 2006 and then that eventually evolved into manager of digital partnerships and social media which, in essence, meant that we were aiming to be the first media property in the world to partner with companies that are household names today but back in the they were fairly unbalanced to Facebook and Twitters, of course, but also platforms that really took off for a while and then plateaued potentially. The Tumblers of the world. And it was responsibility to understand how we could effectively generate an understanding of the burgeoning demographics of this platform and how we could potentially bring income into The Times for working with them, but more importantly have a journalist that could authentically represent themselves on new media. And so, that was a really wonderful role to have directly out of University and then introduce me to folks with whom I still work today. DARABI: That’s quite interesting. So when you’re looking at a lot of these companies, you mentioned Facebook and Twitter and Tumbler, how do you know if something’s going to be a Facebook or a MySpace, so Twitter or a Tumbler, what’s going to survive or not, when you’re cutting deals with these companies on behalf of The Times, are you thinking in terms of hey, who’s going to stick around, wasn’t that much earlier that the dot-com implosion took place prior to you starting with The Times? DARABI: It’s true, although I don’t remember the dot-com implosion. So, maybe that naivete helped because all I had was enthusiasm, unbridled enthusiasm for these new companies and I operated then and now still with a beta approach to business. Testing out new platforms and trying to track the data, what’s scaling, what velocity is this platform scaling and can we hitch a ride on the rochet ship if they will so allow. But a lot of our partnerships then and now, as an investor, are predicated upon relationships. And so, as most, I think terrific investors that I listen to, who I listen to in your show, at least, will talk to you about the importance of believing and the founder and the founder’s vision and that was the case back then and remains the case today. RITHOLTZ: So, when you were at The Times, your tenure there very much overlapped the great financial crisis. You’re looking at social media, how did that manifest the world of social media when it looked like the world of finance was imploding at that time? DARABI: Well, it was a very interesting time. I remember having, quite literally, 30-second meetings with Sorkin as he would run upstairs to my floor, in the eighth floor, to talk about a deal book app that we wanted to launch and then he’d ran back down to his desk to do much more important work, I think, and — between the financial crisis to the world. So, 30-second meetings aside, it was considered to be, in some ways, a great awakening for the Web 2.0 era as the economy was bottoming out, like a recession, it also offered a really interesting opportunity for entrepreneurs, many of whom had just been laid off or we’re looking at this as a sizeable moment to begin to work on a side hustle or a life pursuit. And so, there’s — it’s unsettling, of course, any recession or any great awakening, but lemonade-lemons, when the opening door closing, there was a — there was a true opportunity as well for social media founders, founders focusing on convergence in any industry, really, many of which are predicated in New York. But again, tinkering on an idea that could ultimately become quite powerful because if you’re in the earliest stage of the riskiest asset class, big venture, there’s always going to be seed funding for a great founder with a great idea. And so, I think some of the smartest people I’d ever met in my life, I met at the onset of the aftermath of that particular era in time. RITHOLTZ: So you mentioned side hustle. Let’s talk a little bit about Foodspotting which is described as a visual geolocal guide to dishes instead of restaurants which sounds appealing to me. And it was named App of the Year by both Apple and Wired. How do you go from working at a giant organization like The Times to a startup with you and a cofounder and a handful of other coders working with you? DARABI: Well, five to six nights a week after my day job at the “New York Times,” I would go to networking events with technologists and entrepreneurs after hours. I saw that a priority to be able to partner from the earliest infancy with interesting companies for that media entity. I need to at least know who these founders were in New York and Silicon Valley. And so, without a true agenda other than keen curiosity to learn what this business were all about, I would go to New York tech meetup which Scott Heiferman of meetup.com who’s now in charge LP in my fund would create. And back then, the New York Tech Meetup was fewer than 40 people. I believe it’s been the tens of thousands now. RITHOLTZ: Wow, that’s … DARABI: In New York City alone. And so, it was there that I met some really brilliant people. And in particular, a gentleman my age who’s building a cloud-computing company that was essentially arbitraging AWS to repopulate consumer-facing cloud data services for enterprises, B2B2C play. And we all thought it would be Dropbox. The company ultimately wasn’t, but I will tell you the people with whom I worked with that startup because I left the “New York Times” to join that startup, to this day remain some of the most successful people in Silicon Valley and Alley. And actually, one of those persons is a partner at our firm now, Darshan. He was the cofounder of that particular company which is called drop.io. but I stayed there very quickly. I was there for about six months. But at that startup, I observed how a young person my age could build a business, raise VC, he was the son of a VC and so he was exceptionally attuned to the changing landscape of venture and how to position the company so that it would be attractive to the RREs of the world and then the DFJs. And I … RITHOLTZ: Define those for us. RREs and BFJs. DARABI: Sorry. Still, today, very relevant and very successful venture capital firms. And in particular, they were backing a lot of the most interesting ideas in Web 2.0 era when I joined this particular startup in 2010. Well, that startup was acquired by Facebook and I often say, no, thanks to me. But the mafia that left that particular startup continues to this day to coinvest with one another and help one another’s ideas to exceed. And it was there that I began to build the confidence, I think, that I really needed to explore my own entrepreneurial ideas or to help accelerate ideas. And Foodspotting was a company that I was advising while at that particular startup, that was really taking off. This was in the early days of when Instagram was still in beta and we observed that the most commonly posted photos on Instagram were of food. And so, by following that lead, we basically built an app as well that activity that continues to take place every single day. I still see food photos on Twitter every time I open up my stream. And decided to match that with an algorithm that showed folks wherever they were in the world, say in Greece, that might want spanakopita or if I’m in Japan, Okinawa, we help people to discover not just the Michelin-rated restaurants or the most popular local hunt in New York but rather what’s the dish that they should be ordering. And then the app was extremely good was populating beautiful photos of that particular dish and then mirroring them with accredited reviews from the Zagats of the world but also popular celebrity shots like Marcus Samuelsson in New York. And that’s why we took off because it was a cult-beloved app of its time back when there were only three geolocation apps in the iTunes apparently store. It was we and Twitter and Foursquare. So, there was a first-mover advantage. Looking back in hindsight, I think we sold that company too soon. OpenTable bought the business. A year and a half later, Priceline bought OpenTable. Both were generous liquidity events for the founders that enabled us to become angel investors. But sometimes I wish that that app still existed today because I could see it being still incredibly handy in my day-to-day life. RITHOLTZ: To say the least. So did you have to raise money for Foodspotting or did you just bootstrapped it and how did that experience compare with what that exit was like? DARABI: We did. We raised from tremendous investors like Aydin Senkut of Felicis Ventures whom I think of as being one of the best angel investors of the world. He was on the board. But we didn’t raise that much capital before the business is ultimately sold and what I learned in some of those early conversations, I would say, that may have ultimately led to LOIs and term sheets was that so much of M&As about wining and dining and as a young person, particularly for me, you and I discussed before the show, Barry, we’re both from New York, I’m not from a business-oriented family to say the least. My mom’s an academic, my father was a cab driver in New York City. And so, there are certain elements of this game, raising venture and ultimately trying to exit your company, that you don’t learn from a business book. And I think navigating that as a young person was complicated if I had to speak economically. RITHOLTZ: Quite fascinating. What is purposeful change? DARABI: Well, the world purpose, I suppose, especially in the VC game could come across as somewhat of a cliché. But we try to be as specific as possible when we allude to the impact that our investment could potentially make. And so, specifically, we invest in five verticals at our early stage New York City-based venture fund. We invest in what we call the care economy, just companies making all forms of care, elder care to pet care to health care, more accessible and equitable. We invest in financial inclusion. So this is a spin on fintech. These are companies enabling wealth creation, education, and most importantly literacy for all, that I think is really important to democratization of finance. We invest in the future of work which are companies creating better outcomes for workers and employees alike. We invest in the future of work which are companies creating better outcomes for workers and employers alike. We invest in purpose as it pertains to transportation. So, not immediately intuitive but companies creating transparency and efficiency around global supply chain and mobility. I’m going to talk about why we pick that category in a bit. And sustainability. So, tech-enabled sustainable solutions. These are companies optimizing for sustainability from process to product. With these five verticals combined, we have a subspecies which is that diverse founders and diverse employee bases and diverse cap table. It is not charity, it’s simply good for business. And so, in addition to being hyper specific about the impact in which we invest, we also make it a priority and a mandate at our firm to invest in the way the world truly look. And when we say that on our website, we link to census data. And so, we invest in man and women equally. We invest in diverse founders, almost all of the time. And we track this with data and precious to make sure that our investments reflect not just one zip code in California but rather America at large. RITHOLTZ: And you have described this as non-obvious founders. Tell us a little bit about that phrase. DARABI: Well, not obvious is a term you hear a lot when you go out to Silicon Valley. And I don’t know, I think it was coined by a well-known early PayPal employee turned billionaire turned investor who actually have a conference centered around non-obvious ideas. And I love the phrase. I love thinking about investment PC that are contrary because we have a contrary point of view, contrarian point of view, you often have outlier results because if you’re right, you’re taking the risk and your capturing the reward. When you’re investing in non-obvious founders, it should be that is the exact same outcome. And so, it almost sort of befuddled me as a person with a hard to pronounce name in Silicon Valley, why it was that we’re an industry that prides itself on investing in innovation and groundbreaking ideas and the next frontier of X, Y, and Z and yet all of those founders in which we were investing, collectively, tended to kind of look the same. They were coming from the same schools and the same types of families. And so, to me, there was nothing innovative at all about backing that Wharton, PSB, HBS guy who is second or third-generation finance. And what really excites me about venture is capturing a moment in time that’s young but also the energy is palpable around not only the idea in which the founder is building but the categories of which they’re tackling and that sounded big. I’ll be a little bit more speficic. And so, at TMV, we tried to see things before they’re even coming around the bend. For instance, we were early investors in a company called Cityblock Health which is offering best in class health care specifically for low income Americans. So they focus on the most vulnerable population which are underserved with health care and they’re offering them best in class health care access at affordable pricing because it’s predominantly covered through a payer relationship. And this company is so powerful to us for three reasons because it’s not simply offering health care to the elite. It’s democratizing access to care which I think is absolutely necessary in term out for success of any kind. We thought this was profoundly interesting because the population which they serve is also incredibly diverse. And so when you look at that investment over, say, a comparable company, I won’t name names, that offers for-profit health care, out-of-pocket, you can see why this is an opportunity that excites us as impact investors but we don’t see the diversity of the team it’s impact. We actually see that as their unfair advantage because they are accessing a population authentically that others might ignore. RITHOLTZ: Let me see if I understand this correctly. When you talk about non-obvious find — founders and spaces like this, what I’m hearing from you is you’re looking at areas where the market has been very inefficient with how it allocates capital … DARABI: Yes. RITHOLTZ: … that these areas are just overlooked and ignored, hey, if you want to go on to silicon valley and compete with everybody else and pay up for what looks like the same old startup, maybe it will successful and maybe it won’t, that’s hypercompetitive and hyper efficient, these are areas that are just overlooked and there is — this is more than just do-goodery for lack of a better word. There are genuine economic opportunities here with lots of potential upside. DARABI: Absolutely. So, my business partner and I, she and I found each other 20 years ago as undergrads at Georgetown but we went in to business after she was successful and being one of the only women in the world to take a shipping business public with her family, and we got together and we said we have a really unique access, she and I. And the first SPV that we collaborated on back in 2016 was a young business at the time, started by two women, that was focused on medical apparel predominantly for nurses. Now it’s nurses and doctors. And they were offering a solution to make medical apparel, so scrubs, more comfortable and more fashionable for nurses. I happen to have nurses and doctors in my family so doing due diligence for this business is relatively simple. I called my aunt who’s a nurse practitioner, a nurse her life, and she said, absolutely. When you’re working in a uniform at the hospital, you want something comfortable with extra pockets that makes you look and feel good. The VCs that they spoke to at the time, and they’ve been very public about this, in the beginning, anyway, were less excited because they correlated this particular business for the fashion company. But if you look back at our original memo which I saved, it says, FIGS, now public on the New York Stock Exchange is a utility business. It’s a uniform company that can verticalize beyond just medical apparel. And so, we helped value that company at 15 million back in 2016. And this year, in 2021, they went public at a $7 billion market cap. RITHOLTZ: Wow. DARABI: And so, what is particularly exciting for us going back to that conversation on non-obvious founders is that particular business, FIGS, was the first company in history to have two female co-founders go public. And when we think of success at TMV, we don’t just think about financial success and IRR and cash on cash return for our LPs, of course we think about that. But we also think who are we cheerleading and with whom do we want to go into business. I went to the story on the other side of the fence that we want to help and we measure non-obvious not just based on gender or race because I think that’s a little too precise in some ways. Sometimes, for us non-obvious, is around geography, I would say. I’m calling you from Athens, as you know, and in Greece, yesterday, I got together with a fund manager. I’m lucky enough to be an LP in her fund and she was talking about the average size of a seed round in Silicon Valley these days, hovering around 30 million. And I was scratching my head because at our fund, TMV, we don’t see that. We’re investing in Baltimore, Maryland, and in Austin, Texas and the average price for us to invest in the seed round is closer to 5 million or 6 million. And so, we actually can capture larger ownership of the pie early on and then develop a very close-knit relationship with these founders but might not be as networked in the Valley where there’s 30 VC funds to everyone that exist in Austin, Texas. RITHOLTZ: Right. DARABI: And so, yes, I think you’re right to say that it’s about inefficiencies in market but also just around — about being persistent and looking where others are not. RITHOLTZ: That’s quite intriguing. Your team is female-led. You have a portfolio of companies that’s about 65 percent women and people of color. Tell us how you go about finding these non-obvious startups? DARABI: It’s a good question. TMV celebrates its five-year anniversary this year. So the way we go about funding companies now is a bit different than the way we began five years ago. Now, it’s systematic. We collectively, as a partnership, there are many of us take over 50 calls a month with Tier 1 venture capital firms that have known us for a while like the work that we do, believe in our value-add because the partnership comprised of four more operators. So, we really roll up our sleeves to help. And when you’ve invested at this firms, enough time, they will write to you and say I found a company that’s a little too early for us, for XYZ reason, but it resonates and I think it might be for you. So we found some of our best deals that way. But other times, we found our deal flow through building our own communities. And so, when I first started visit as an EM, an emerging manager of a VC firm. And roughly 30 percent of LP capital goes to EM each year but that’s sort of an outsized percentage because when you think about the w-fix-solve (ph) addition capital, taking 1.3 billion of that pie, then you recognize the definition of emerging manager might need to change a bit. So, when I was starting as an EM, I recognize that the landscape wasn’t necessarily leveled. If you weren’t, what’s called the spinout, somebody that has spent a few years at a traditional established blue-chip firm, then it’s harder to develop and cultivate relationships with institutional LPs who will give you a shot even though the data absolutely points to there being a real opportunity in capturing lightning in a bottle if you find a right EM with the right idea in the right market conditions which is certainly what we’re in right now. And so, I decided to start a network specifically tailored around helping women fund managers, connecting one another and it began as a WhatsApp group and a weekly Google Meet that has now blown into something that requires a lot of dedicated time. And so we’re hiring an executive director for this group. They’re called Transact Global, 250 women ex-fund managers globally, from Hong Kong, to Luxembourg, to Venezuela, Canada, Nigeria, you name it. There are women fund managers in our group and we have one of the most active deal flow channels in the world. And so two of our TMV deals over the last year, a fintech combatting student debt and helping young Americans save for retirement at the same time, as an example, came from this WhatsApp deal flow channel. So, I think creating the community, being the change, so to speak, has been incredibly effective for us a proprietary deal flow mechanism. And then last but not least, I think that having some sort of media presence really has helped. And so, I’ve hosted a podcast and I’ve worked on building up what I think to be a fairly organic Twitter following over the years and we surprise ourselves by getting some really exceptional founders cold pitching us on LinkedIn and on Twitter because we make ourselves available as next gen EMs. So, that’s a sort of long-winded answer to your question. But it’s not the traditional means by any means. RITHOLTZ: To say the least. Are you — the companies you’re investing in, are they — and I’ll try and keep this simple for people who are not all that well-versed in the world of venture, is it seed stage, is it the A round, the B round? How far into their growth process do you put money in? DARABI: So it is a predominantly seed fund. We call our investments core investments. So, these are checks that average, 1 and 1.5 million. So for about 1.25 million, on average, we’re capturing 10-15% of a cap payable. And in this area, that’s called a seed round. It will probably be called a Series A 10 years ago. RITHOLTZ: Right. DARABI: And then we follow on through the Series A and it max around, I think, our pro rata at the B. So, our goal via Series B is to have, on average, 10% by the cap. And then we give ourselves a little bit of wiggle room with our modeling. We take mars and moonshot investments with smaller checks so we call these initial interest checks. And initial interest means I’m interested but your idea is still audacious, they won’t prove itself out for three or four years or to be very honest, we weren’t the first to get into this cap or you’re picking Sequoia over us, so we understand but let’s see if we can just promise you a bit of value add to edge our way into your business. RITHOLTZ: Right. DARABI: And oftentimes, when you speak as a former founder yourself with a high level of compassion and you promise with integrity that you’re going to work very hard for that company, they will increase the size of their round and they will carve out space for you. And so, we do those types of investments rarely, 10 times, in any given portfolio. But what’s interesting in looking back at some of our outliers from found one, it came from those initial interest checks. So that’s our model in a nutshell. We’re pretty transparent about it. What we like about this model is that it doesn’t make us tigers, we’re off the board by the B, so we’re still owning enough of the cap table to be a meaningful presence in the founder’s lives and in their business and it allows us to feel like we’re not spraying and praying. RITHOLTZ: Spraying and praying is an amusing term but I’m kind of intrigued by the fact that we use to call it smart money but you’re really describing it as value-added capital when a founder takes money from TMV, they’re getting more than just a check, they’re getting the involvement from entrepreneurs who have been through the process from startup to capital raise to exit, tell us a li bit about how that works its way into the deals you end up doing, who you look at, and what the sort of deal flow you see is like. DARABI: Well, years ago, I had the pleasure of meeting a world-class advertiser and I was at his incredibly fancy office down in Wall Street, his ad agency. And he described to me with pride how he basically bartered his marketing services for one percent of a unicorn. And he was sort of showing off of it about how, from very little time and effort, a few months, he walked away with a relatively large portion of a business. And I thought, yes, that’s clever. But for the founder, they gave up too much of their business too soon. RITHOLTZ: Right. DARABI: And I came up with an idea that I floated by Marina back in the day where our original for TMV Fund I began with the slide marketing as the future of venture and venture is the future of marketing. Meaning, it’s a VC fund where the position itself more like an ad agency but rather than charging for its services, it’s go-to-market services. You offer them free of charge but then you were paid in equity and you could quantify the value that you were offering to these businesses. And back then, people laughed us even though all around New York City, ad agencies were really doing incredible work and benefiting from the startups in that ecosystem. And so, we sort of changed the positioning a bit. And now, we say to our LPs and to our founders, your both clients of our firm. So, we do think of ourselves as an agency. But one set of our marketplace, you have LPs and what they want is crystal clear. The value that they derive from us is through a community and connectivity and co-investment and that’s it. It’s pretty kind of dry. Call me up once a year where you have an exceptional opportunity. Let me invest alongside you. Invite me to dinners four times a year, give me some information and a point of view that I can’t get elsewhere. Thank you for your time. And I love that. It’s a great relationship to have with incredibly smart people. It’s cut and dry but it’s so different. What founders want is something more like family. They want a VC on their board that they can turn to during critical moments. Two a.m. on a Saturday is not an uncommon time for me to get a text message from a founder saying what do I do. So what they want is more like 24/7 services for a period of time. And they want to know when that relationship should start and finish. So it’s sort of the Montessori approach to venture. We’re going to tell them what we’re going to tell them. Tell them what they’re telling them. Tell them what we told them. We say to founders with a reverse pitch deck. So we pitch them as they’re pitching us. Here’s what we promise to deliver for you for the first — each of the 24 months of your infancy and then we promise you we’ll mostly get lost. You can come back to use when your business is growing if you want to do it tender and we’ll operate an SPV for you for you or if you simply want advice, we’re never going to ignore you but our specialty, our black belt, if you will, Barry, is in those first 24 months of your business, that go-to-market. And so, we staffed up TMV to include, well, it’s punching above our weight but the cofounder of an exceptionally successful consumer marketing business, a gross marketer, a recruiter who helps one of our portfolio companies hire 40 of their earliest employees. We have a PR woman. You’ve met Viyash (ph), she’s exceptional with whom, I don’t know, how we would function sometimes because she’s constantly writing and re-editing press releases for the founders with which we work. And then Anna, our copywriter who came from IAC and Sean, our creative director, used to be the design director for Rolling Stone, and I can go on and on. So, some firms called us a platform team but we call it the go-to-market team. And then we promise a set number of hours for ever company that we invest into. RITHOLTZ: That’s … DARABI: And then the results — go ahead. RITHOLTZ: No, that’s just — I’m completely fascinated by that. But I have to ask maybe this is an obvious question or maybe it’s not, so you — you sound very much like a non-traditional venture capital firm. DARABI: Yes. RITHOLTZ: Who are your limited partners, who are your clients, and what motivates them to be involved with TMV because it sounds so different than what has been a pretty standard model in the world of venture, one that’s been tremendous successful for the top-tier firms? DARABI: Our LP set is crafted with intention. And so, 50% of our investors are institutional. This concludes institutional-sized family offices and family offices in a multibillions. We work with three major banks, Fortune 500 banks. We work with a couple of corporate Fortune 500 as investors or LPs and a couple of fund to funds. So that’s really run of the mill. But 50 percent of our investors and that’s why I’m in Athens today are family offices, global family offices, that I think are reinventing with ventures like, to look like in the future because wealth has never been greater globally. There’s a trillion dollars of assets that are passing to the hands of one generation to the next and what’s super interesting to me, as a woman, is that historically, a lot of that asset transferred was from father to son, but actually, for the first time in history, over 50 percent, so 51% of those asset inheritors are actually women. And so, as my business partner could tell because she herself is a next gen, in prior generations, women were encouraged to go into the philanthropic or nonprofit side of the family business … RITHOLTZ: Right. DARABI: And the sons were expected to take over the business or the family office and all of that is completely turned around in the last 10 years. And so, my anchor investor is actually a young woman. She’s under the age of 35. There’s a little bit of our firm that’s in the rocks because we’re not playing by the same rules that the establishment has played by. But certainly, we’re posturing ourselves to be able to grow in to a blue-chip firm which is why we want to maintain that balance, so 50 percent institutional and 50 percent, I would call it bespoke capital. And so, the LPs that are bespoke, we work at an Australian family office and Venezuelan family office and the Chilean family office and the Mexican family office and so on. For those family offices, we come to them, we invite them to events in New York City, we give them personalized introductions to our founders and we get on the phone with them. Whenever they’d like, we host Zooms. We call them the future of everything series. They can learn from us. And we get to know them as human beings and I think that there’s a reason why two thirds of our Fund I LPs converted over into Fund II because they like that level of access, it’s what the modern LP is really looking for. RITHOLTZ: Let’s talk a little bit about some of the areas that you find intriguing. What sectors are really capturing your attention these days? What are you most excited about? DARABI: Well, Barry, I’m most excited about five categories for which we’ve been investing for quite some time, but they’re really being accelerated due to the 2020 pandemic and a looming recession. And so, we’re particularly fascinated by not just health care investing as has been called in the past but rather the care economy. I’m not a huge fan of the term femtech, it always sounds like fembot to me. But care as it pertains to women alone is a multitrillion dollar opportunity. And so, when we think of the care economy, we think of health care, pet care, elder care, community care, personal care as it pertains to young people, old people, men, women, children, we bifurcate and we look for interesting opportunities that don’t exist because they’ve been undercapitalized, undervalued for so long. Case in point, we were early investors Kindbody, a reproductive health care company focused on women who want to preserve their fertility because if you look at 2010 census data, you can see that the data has been there for some time that women, in particular, were delaying marriage and childbirth and there are a lot of world-famous economists who will tell you this, the global population will decline because we’re aging and we’re not necessarily having as many children as we would have in the past plus it’s expensive. And so, we saw that as investors as a really interesting opportunity and jumped on the chance to ask Gina Bartasi who’s incredible when she came to us with a way to make fertility preservation plus expenses. So she followed the B2C playbook and she started with the mobile clinic that helps women freeze their eggs extensively. That company has gone on to raise hundreds — pardon me — and that company is now valued in the hundreds of million and for us, it was as simple as following our intuition as women fund managers, we know what our peers are thinking about because we talk to them all the time and I think the fact that we’re bringing a new perspective to venture means that we’re also bringing a new perspective to what has previously been called femtech. We invest in financial inclusion. Everyone in the world that’s investing fintech, the self-directed financial mobile apps are always going to be capitalized especially in a post Robin Hood era but we’re specifically interested in the democratization of access to financial information and we’re specifically interested in student debt and alleviating student debt in America because not only is it going to be one of the greatest challenges our generation will have to overcome, but it’s also prohibiting us from living out the American dream, $1.7 trillion of student debt in America that needs to be alleviated. And then we’re interested in the future of work, and long have been, that certainly was very much accelerated during the pandemic but we’ve been investing in the 1099 and remote work for quite some time. And so, really proud to have been the first check into a company called Bravely which is an HR chatbot that helps employees inside of a company chat a anonymously with HR representatives outside of that company, that’s 1099. That issue is like DEI, an inclusion and upward mobility and culture setting and what to do when you’re all of a sudden working for home. So that’s an example of a future of work business. And then in the tech-enabled sustainable solutions category, it’s a mouthful, let’s call that sustainability, we are proud to have been early investors of a company called Ridwell, out of Seattle Washington, focused on not just private — privatized recycling but upcycling and reconnaissance. Where are our things going when we recycle them? For me, it always been a pretty big question. And so, Ridwell allows you to re and upcycle things that are hard to get rid of out of your home like children’s eyeglasses and paints and battery, single-use plastic. And it shows you where those things are going which I think is super cool and there’s good reason why it has one of the highest NPS scores, Net Promoter Scores, of any company I’ve ever worked with. People are craving this kind of modern solution. And last but not least, we invest in transportation and part because of the unfair advantage my partner, Marina, brings to TMV as she comes from a maritime family. And so, we can pile it, transportation technology, within her own ecosystem. That’s pretty great. But also, because we’re just fascinated by the fact that 90 percent of the world commodities move on ship and the biggest contributor to emissions in the world outside of corporate is coming from transportation. SO, if we can sort of figure out this industry, we can solve a lot of the problems that our generation are inheriting. Now, these categories might sound massive and we do consider ourselves a generalist firm but we stick to five-course sectors that we truly believe in and we give ourselves room to kick out a sector or to add a new one with any given new fund. For the most part, we haven’t needed to because this remain the categories that are not only most appealing to us as investors but I think paramount to our generation. RITHOLTZ: That’s really intriguing. Give us an example of moonshot or what you called earlier, a Mars shot technology or a company that can really be a gamechanger but may not pay off for quite a while. DARABI: We’ve just backed a company that is focusing on food science. Gosh, I can’t give away too much because they haven’t truly launched in the U.S. But maybe I’ll kind of allude to it. They use crushed produce, like, crush potato skins to make plastic but biodegrades. And so, it’s a Mars shot because it’s a materials business and it’s a food science business rolled off into both the CPG business and an enterprise business. This particular material can wrap itself around industrial pellets. Even though it’s audacious, it’s not really a Mars shot when you think about the way the world is headed. Everybody wants to figure out how do we consume less plastic and recycle plastic better. And so, if there are new materials out there that will not only disintegrate but also, in some ways, feed the environment, it will be a no-brainer and then if you add to the equation the fact that it could be maybe not less expensive but of comparable pricing to the alternative, I can’t think of a company in the world that wouldn’t switch to this solution. RITHOLTZ: Right. So this is plastic that you don’t throw away. You just toss in the garden and it becomes compost? DARABI: Yes, exactly. Exactly. It should help your garden grow. So, yes, so that’s what I would call a Mars shot in some ways. But in other ways, it’s just common sense, right? RITHOLTZ: So let’s talk a little bit about your investment vehicles. You guys run, I want to make sure I get this right, two funds and three vehicles, is that right? DARABI: We have two funds. They’re both considered micro funds because they’re both under 100 million and then we operate in parallel for SPVs that are relatively evergreen and they serve as opportunistic investments to continue to double down on our winners. RITHOLTZ: SPV is special purpose investment … DARABI: Vehicles. Yes. RITHOLTZ: Right. DARABI: And the PE world, they’re called sidecars. RITHOLTZ: That’s really interesting. So how do these gets structured? Does everything look very similar when you have a fund? How quickly do you deploy the capital and typically how long you locked for or investors locked up for? DARABI: Well investors are usually in private equity are VC funds locked up for 10 years. That’s not usual. We have shown liquidity faster, certainly, for Fund I. It’s well in the black and it’s only five years old less, four and a half years old. So, how do we make money? We charge standard fees, 2 on 20 is the rubric of it, we operate by. And then lesser fees for sidecars or direct investments. So that’s kind of how we stay on business. When you think about an emerging manager starting their first fund, management fees are certainly not so we can live a lavish rock and roll life on a $10 million fund with a two percent management fee, we’re talking about 200K for the entire business to operate. RITHOLTZ: Wow. DARABI: So Marina and I, not only anchored our first fund with their own capital but we didn’t pay ourselves for four years. It’s not glamorous. I mean, there’s some friends of mine that thing the venture capital life is glam and it is if you’re on Sand Hill Road. But if you’re an EM, it’s a lot more like a startup where you’re burning the midnight oil, you are bartering favors with your friends, and you are begging the smartest people you know to take a chance on you to invite you on to their cap table. But it somehow works out because we do put in that extra effort, I think, the metrics, certainly for Fund I have shown us that we’re in this for the long haul now. RITHOLTZ: So your fund 1 and Fund 2, are there any plans of launching Fund III? DARABI: Yes. I think that given the proof points between Fund I and Fund II and a conversation that my partner and I recently had, five years out, are we in this? Do we love this? We do. OK. This is our life’s work. So you can see larger and more demonstrable sized funds but not in an outsized way, not just because we can raise more capital now but because we want to build out a partnership and the kind of culture that we always dreamed of working for back when we were employees, so we have a very diverse set of colleagues with whom we couldn’t operate and we’ll be adding to the partnership in the next two or three years which is really exciting to say. So, yes, the TMV will be around for a while. RITHOLTZ: That’s really interesting. I want to ask you the question I ask any venture capitalist that I interview. Tell us about your best and worst investments and what did you pass on that perhaps you wish you didn’t? DARABI: Gosh. The FOMO list is so long and so embarrassing. Let me start with what I passed on that I regret. Well, I don’t know she really would have invited me to invest, but certainly, I had a wonderful conversation a peer from high school, Katrina Lake, when she was in beta mode for Stitch Fix. I think she was still at HBS at the time or had just recently graduated from Harvard. When Katrina and I had coffee in Minneapolis were we went to high school and she was telling me about the Netflix for clothing that she was building and certainly I regret not really picking up on the clues that she was offering in that conversation. Stitch Fix had an incredible IPO and I’m a proud shareholder today. And similarly, when my friend for starting Cloudflare which luckily they did bring me in to pre-IPO and I’m grateful for that, but when they were starting Cloudflare, I really should have jumped on that moment or when my buddy Ryan Graves whom I still chat with pretty frequently was starting out Uber in beta with Travis and Garrett, that’s another opportunity that I definitely missed. I was in Ireland when the Series A term sheet assigned. So there’s such a long laundry list of namedropped, namedropped, missed, missed, missed. But in terms of what I’m proud of, I’d say far more. I don’t like Sophie’s Choice. I don’t like to cherry pick the certain investments to just brag about them. But we’ve talked about someone to call today, I’d rather kind of shine a light — look at my track record, right? There’s a large realized IRR that I’m very proud of. But more on the opportunity of the companies that we more recently backed that prevent damages (ph) of CRM for oncology patient that help them navigate through the most strenuous time of their life. And by doing so, get better access to health care. And we get to wrote that check a couple of months ago. But already, it’s becoming a company that I couldn’t be more excited about because if they execute the way I think Shirley and Victor will, that has the power to help so many people in a profound way, not just in the Silicon Valley cliché way of this could change the world but this could actually help people receive better care. So, yes, I’m proud of having been an early investor in the Caspers of the world. Certainly, we’re all getting better sleep. There’s no shame there. But I’m really excited now today at investing in financial inclusion in the care economy and so on. RITHOLTZ: And let’s talk a little bit about impactful companies. Is there any different when you’re making a seed stage investment in a potentially impactful company versus traditional startup investing? DARABI: Well, pre-seed and seed investing isn’t a science and it’s certainly not a science that anyone has perfected. There are people who are incredibly good at it because they have a combination of luck and access. But if you’re a disciplined investor in any asset class and I talk to my friends who run hedge funds and work for hedge funds about 10 bets that they take a day and I think that’s a lot trickier than what I do because our do due diligence process, on average, takes an entire quarter of the year. We’re not making that many investments each year. So even though it sounds sort of fruity, when you look at a Y Combinator Demo Day, Y Comb is the biggest accelerator in Silicon Valley and they produce over 300 companies, three or four times a year. When you look at the outsized valuations coming out of Y Comb, it’s easy to think that starting company is as simple as sort of downloading a company in a Box Excel and running with it. But from where we sit, we’re scorching the earth for really compelling ideas in areas that have yet to converge and we’re looking for businesses that may have never pitched the VC before. Maybe they’re not even seeking capital. Maybe it’s a company that isn’t so interested in raising a penny eventually because they don’t need to. They’re profitable from day one. Those are the companies that we find most exciting because as former operators, we know how to appeal to them and then we also know how to work with them. RITHOLTZ: That’s really interesting. Before I get to my favorite question, let me just throw you’re a curveball, tell me a little bit about Business Schooled, the podcast you hosted for quite a while. DARABI: So, Synchrony, Sync, came to me a few years ago with a very compelling and exciting opportunity to host a podcast with them that allowed me a fortunate opportunity to travel the country and I went to just under a dozen cities to meet with founders who have persevered past their startup phase. And what I loved about the concept of business school is that the cities that I hosted were really focused on founders who didn’t have access to VC capital, they put money on credit card. So I took SBA loans or asked friends and family to give them starter capital and then they made their business work through trying times and when you pass the five-year mark for any business, I’m passing it right now for TMV, there’s a moment of reflection where you can say, wow, I did it. it’s incredibly difficult to be a startup founder, more than 60 percent of companies fail and probably for good reason. And so, yes, I hosted business school, Seasons 2 and 3 and potentially there will be more seasons and I’m very proud of the fact that at one point we cracked the top 20 business podcasts and people seem to be really entertained through these conversations with insightful founders who are vulnerable with me about what it was like to build their business and I like to think they were vulnerable because I have a good amount of compassion for the experience of being founder and also because I’m a New Yorker and I just like to talk. RITHOLTZ: You’re also a founder so there’s going to be some empathy that’s genuine. You went through what they’re going through. DARABI: Exactly. Exactly. And so, what you do, Barry, is quite similar. You’re — you host an exceptionally successful business podcast and you’re also an allocator. You know that it’s interesting to do both because I think that being an investor is a lot like being a journalist. In both professions, you won’t succeed unless you are constantly curious and if you are having conversations to listen more than you speak. DARABI: Well, I’ll let you in on a little secret since it’s so late in the podcast and fewer people will be hearing this, the people I invite on the show are essentially just conversations I want to have. If other people come along and listen, that’s fantastic. But honestly, it’s for an audience of one, namely me, the reason I wanted to have you on is because I’m intrigued by the world of venture and alternatives and impact. I think it’s safe to say that a lot of people have been somewhat disappointed in the results of ESG investing and impact investing that for — it’s captured a lot more mindshare than it has captured capital although we’re seeing signs that’s starting to shift. But then the real question becomes, all right, so I’m investing less in oil companies and more in other companies that just happen to consume fossil fuels, what’s the genuine impact of my ESG investing? It feels like it’s sort of de minimis whereas what you do really feels like it has a major impact for people who are interested in having their capital make a positive difference. DARABI: Thank you for saying that. And I will return the compliment by saying that I really enjoyed getting to know you on our one key economist Zoom and I think that you’re right. I think that ESG investing, certainly in the public markets has had diminished returns historically because the definition has been so bizarre and so all over the place. RITHOLTZ: Right. DARABI: And I read incredible books from people like Antony Bugg-Levine who helps coin the term the Rockefeller Foundation, who originally coined the term you read about, mortgage, IRR and IRS plus measurement and it’s so hard to have just standardization of what it means to be an impact investor and so it can be bothered but we bother. Rather, we kind of come up with our own subjective point of view of the world and we say what does impact mean to us? Certainly, it means not investing in sin stocks but then those sin stocks have to begin somewhere, has to begin with an idea that somebody had once upon a time. And so, whether we are investing in the way the world should look from our perspective. And with that in mind, it doesn’t have to be impact by your grandpa’s VC, it can be impact from modern generation but simply things that behave differently. Some folks with their dollars. People often say, well, my ESG portfolio is underperforming. But then if you dig in to the specifics, are you investing in Tesla? It’s not a pretty good year. Did you back Beyond Meat? Had a great year. And so, when you kind of redefine the public market not by a sleeve and a bank’s version of a portfolio, but rather by company that you think are making demonstrable change in the world, then you can walk away, realizing had I only invested in these companies that are purpose driven, I would have had outsized returns and that’s what we’re trying to deliver on at TMV. That’s the promise. RITHOLTZ: Really, really very, very intriguing. I know I only have you for a few minutes so let’s jump to my favorite questions that I ask all of our guests starting with tell us what you’re streaming these days. Give us your favorite, Netflix, Amazon Prime, or any podcast that are keeping you entertained during the pandemic. DARABI: Well, my family has been binging on 100 Foot Wave on HBO Max which is the story of big wave surfer Garrett McNamara who is constantly surfing the world’s largest waves and I’m fascinated by people who have a mission that’s sort of bigger than success or fame but they’re driven by something and part of that something is curiosity and part of it is insanity. And so not only is it visually stunning to kind of watch these big wave surfers in Portugal, but it’s also a mind trip. What motivates them to get out of bed every day and potentially risk their lives doing something so dangerous and so bananas but also at the same time so brave and heroic. So, highly recommend. I am listening to too many podcasts. I listen to, I don’t know, a stream of things. I’m a Kara Swisher fan, Ezra Klein fan, so they’re both part of the “New York Times” these days. And of course, your podcast, Barry. RITHOLTZ: Well, thank you so much. Well, thank you so much. Let’s talk a little bit about who your early mentors were and who helped shape you career? DARABI: It’s going to sound ungrateful but I don’t think, in like a post lean in definition of the word, I ever truly had a mentor or a sponsor. Now, having said that, I’ve had people who really looked at for me and been incredibly gracious with their time and capital. And so, I would absolutely like to acknowledge that first and foremost. I think about how generous Adam Grant has been with his time and his investments for TMV in Fund I and Fund II and he’s a best-selling author and worked on highest-rated business school professor. So shout out to Adam, if he’s listening or Beth Comstock, the former Vice Chair of GE who has been instrumental in my career for about a decade and a half now. And she is also really leaning in to the TMV portfolio and has become a patient of Parsley Health, an early investment of ours and also an official adviser to the business. So, people like Adam and Beth certainly come to mind. But I don’t know, I just — I’m not sure mentors really exist outside of corporate America anymore and part of the reason why we started Transact Global is to kind of foster the concept of the peer mentor, people who are going through the same thing as you at the same time and allowing that hive mentality with an abundance mentality to catalyze people to kind of go further and faster. RITHOLTZ: Let’s talk about some of your favorite books and what you might reading right now. DARABI: OK, so in the biz book world, because I know your listeners as craving, I’m a big fan of “Negotiation Genius.” I took a crash course with one of the authors, Max Bazerman at the Kennedy School and it was illuminating. I mean, he’s one of the most captivating professors I’ve ever had the pleasure of hearing lecture and this book has really helped me understand the concept of the ZOPA, the Zone of Possible Agreement, and how to really negotiate well. And then for Adam whom I just referenced, of all of his incredible books, my favorite is Give and Take because I try to operate with that approach of business. Give more than you take and maybe in the short term, you’ll feel depleted but in the long term, karma pays off. But mostly, Barry, I read fiction. I think the most interesting people in the world or at least the most entertaining at dinner parties are all avoid readers of fiction and history. So I recently reread, for instance, all of my favorite short stories from college, from Dostoyevsky’s “A Gentle Creature” to “Drown” Junot Diaz. “Passing” by Nella Larsen, “The Diamond as Big as the Ritz” by Fitzgerald. Those are some of my very favorite stories of all time. And my retirement dream is to write a book of short stories. RITHOLTZ: Really, really quite intriguing. Are they all available in a single collection or these just, going back to your favorites and just plowing through them for fun? DARABI: Those are just going back to my favorites. I try to re-read “Passing” every few years which is somehow seems to be more and more relevant as I get older and Junot Diaz has become so incredibly famous when I first read “Drown” about 20 years ago which is an original collection of short stories that broadened my perspective of why it’s important to think about a broader definition of America, I guess. And, yes, no, that’s just — that was just sort of off the top of my head as the offering of a few stories that I really love, no collection. RITHOLTZ: That’s a good collection. And we’re down to our final two questions. What sort of advice would you give to a recent college grad who was interested in a career in either venture capital or entrepreneurship? DARABI: Venture capital or entrepreneurship. Well, I would say, learn as early as possible how to trust your gut. So, this could mean a myriad of things. As an entrepreneur, it could mean under the halo effect of an institution, university or high school or maybe having a comfortable day job, tinker with ideas, get feedback on that idea, don’t be afraid of looking or sounding dumb and build that peer network that I described. People who are rooting you on and are also insatiably curious about wonky things. And I would say that for venture capital, similar play on the same theme, but whether it’s putting small amounts of money into new concept, blockchain investing, or whether it’s meeting with entrepreneurs and saying maybe I only have $3,000 save up but I believe in you enough to bet amongst friends in Brooklyn on your concept if you’ll have me as an investor. So, play with your own money because what it’s really teaching you in return is how to follow instincts and to base pattern recognition off your own judgement. And if you do that early on, overtime, these all become datapoints that you can point to and these are lessons that you can glean while not taking the risk of portfolio management. So, I guess the real advice to your listeners is more action, please. RITHOLTZ: Really very, very intriguing. And our final question, what do you know about the world of venture investing today that you wish you knew 15 or 20 years ago when you first getting started? DARABI: Twenty years ago, I was a bit of a Pollyanna and I thought every wonderful idea that simply is built by smart people and has timed the market correctly will work out. And I will say that I’m slightly more jaded today because of the capital structure that is systematically allowing the biggest firms in the world to kind of eat up a generous portion of, let’s call it the LP pie, which leaves less capital available to the young upstart VC firms, and of course I’m biased because I run one, that are taking outsized risks on those non-obvious ideas that we referenced. And so, what I wish for the future is that institutional capital kind of reprioritizes what it’s looking for. And in addition to having a bottom line of reliable and demonstrable return on any given investment, there are new standards put into play saying we want to make sure that a portion of our portfolio goes to diverse managers. Because in turn, we recognize that they are three times more likely to invest in diverse founders or we believe in impact investing can be broader than the ESG definitely of a decade ago, so we’re coming up with our own way to measure on sustainability or what impact means to us. And if they go through those exercises which I know is hard because, certainly, I’m not trying to add work to anyone’s plate, I do think that the results will more than make up for it. RITHOLTZ: Quite intriguing. Thank you, Soraya, for being so generous with your time. We have been speaking with Soraya Darabi who is the Co-Founder and General Partner at TMV Investments. If you enjoy this conversation, well, be sure and check out any of the prior 376 conversations we’ve had before. You can find those at iTunes or Spotify, wherever you buy your favorite podcast. We love your comments, feedback, and suggestions. Write to us at MIB podcast@bloomberg.net. You can sign up for my daily reads at ritholtz.com. Check out my weekly column at bloomberg.com/opinion. Follow me on Twitter @ritholtz. I would be remiss if I did not thank the crack team that helps me put these conversations together each week. Tim Harrow is my audio engineer. Paris Walt (ph) is my producer. Atika Valbrun is our project manager, Michael Batnick is my head of research. I’m Barry Ritholtz, you’ve been listening to Masters in Business on Bloomberg Radio.   ~~~     The post Transcript: Soraya Darabi appeared first on The Big Picture......»»

Category: blogSource: TheBigPictureOct 20th, 2021

51 Christmas gifts for mom that cost $50 or less

You don't need to blow your budget to get Mom something she'll truly appreciate. We did the research and found 51 Christmas gifts for mom under $50. When you buy through our links, Insider may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more. Book of the Month Instagram With all she does for you, Mom deserves to be treated to something nice. You don't have to spend a lot to make her feel special. We found plenty of Christmas gifts for mom that all come in under $50. Check out more great gift ideas for her here. She's your confidante, rock, mentor, and built-in best friend. She's been there through it all, and now she deserves something special. But coming up with gift ideas for Mom can be one of the hardest tasks. After all, what do you give someone who literally gave you life?The good news is that the perfect gift for mom is out there, and, best of all, it doesn't have to break the bank to be special. When it comes to Christmas gifts for mom, whether you want to go with something big or small, thoughtfulness is key. That's why we scoured the web and collected unique gifts that show your mom you care, all for under $50.Pick a gift that embraces nostalgia, mom's favorite hobbies, or some quality time with you - whatever you give, Mom will love it. Keep reading for 51 Christmas gifts for Mom under $50: A sweet floral tea set for one Anthropologie Annie Tea-For-One-Set, available at Anthropologie, $38A sip from this adorable floral print teapot is as enjoyable as it is soothing. The stackable teapot lets you savor each taste for longer with the teapot included with a teacup. A cozy robe to keep warm Target Stars Above Cozy Plush Robe, available at Target, $30There's no better sleepwear to relax in than this plush, velvet robe for the breezy evenings or mornings. This cozy polyester robe brings extreme comfort and warmth whether you're layering or covering up. A personalized video message from her favorite celebrity Cameo Personalized video message, starting at $1, available at CameoWhen trying to think of a unique gift for Mom, one that might not immediately come to mind is Cameo. The online service has tons of famous people she might want a personalized video message from. Whether it's for her birthday, Mother's Day, or a different milestone, there's something for everyone on Cameo, with prices as low as $1. You can get Jay Jackson from "Parks and Recreation" or James Cosmo from "Game of Thrones," each for $50 or less. Read more about Cameo and how to use Cameo. A meal from mom's favorite restaurant Goldbelly Goldbelly Restaurant Meal Kits, available at Goldbelly, from $25Though dining out at restaurants is harder right now due to COVID-19, you can still treat mom to her favorite restaurant foods delivered right to her door. From lobster rolls to bagels, Goldbelly ships food gifts from famous eateries nationwide.  A dainty jewelry holder Catbird Catbird Swan Ring Holder, $32, available at CatbirdThis dainty piece of decor is as pretty as it is practical. It can hold rings, necklaces, and any other small trinkets.  A cool, minimalist puzzle Food52 Areaware Gradient Puzzle, $35, available at Food52This 1,000-piece puzzle has an aesthetically pleasing gradient pattern that's nice to look at, but hard to put together. If mom loves a challenge, she'll enjoy trying to get this one right.  A luxe body lotion Nécessaire Nécessaire The Body Lotion, $25, available at NordstromWe love this super hydrating, skin-smoothing body lotion. It's filled with nourishing, clean ingredients that will keep dry skin at bay. The sleek packaging and skin-soothing formula are sure to upgrade her post-shower routine.  A streaming stick to up mom's binge-watching experience Amazon Roku Streaming Stick +, available at Amazon, $39Upgrade mom's next Netflix marathon without needing to splurge on a new TV. The Roku Streaming Stick + features 4K, HD, and HDR streaming in a small but mighty package. A cute set of washcloths that'll hide stains Weezie Makeup Towels (Pair), $40, available at WeezieThese gentle and fluffy towels were made to help her wash off the day's makeup with ease, and the dark navy color hides stains. Choose from three different embroidery options, all of which are adorable. A box filled with Japanese treats Bokksu Bokksu Classic Gift Box, from $39.95, available at BokksuShe may not be able to travel the world, but a Bokksu Box can give Mom a fun cultural experience from the comfort of her own kitchen. The classic gift box is filled with a selection of 20-25 unique Japanese snacks, sourced directly from family-run businesses in Japan, so she can get a little more adventurous at snack time.  A high-end manicure mom can give herself Amazon The Starter Set, $28, available at Olive & JuneFor many of us, achieving a salon-quality manicure at home feels impossible. Olive & June is trying to change that. The Poppy is an innovative bottle handle that makes it easy to apply your polish smoothly and evenly. This set has everything Mom needs for an easy, at-home mani: The Poppy, a top coat, and a bottle of Olive & June polish in a sheer shade.  An organic facial steam Amazon Belier Handmade Organic Facial Steam, $12, available at EtsyWhen there's no time for a trip to the spa, this facial steam will upgrade her typical skincare routine. All she has to do is boil some water, steep the dried leaves, and hold her face over the steaming herbs — it'll enhance blood flow and open her pores, so her skin will easily absorb whatever product she puts on next.  A book subscription service for an exciting new read every month Book of the Month Instagram Book of the Month Membership, starting at $49.99 for 3 monthsIf she's always asking you for new book recommendations, she's going to love this service that curates great books and sends them to subscribers once a month. Each monthly delivery will be an exciting surprise as she discovers a new read she might not have found otherwise. Our editor tried the service herself and loved it. Refreshing and decadent bubble bath L'Occitane L'Occitane Lavender Foaming Bath, $39, available at SephoraA little luxury goes a long way. Aid your mom in getting some true relaxation with this rich bubble bath made with fresh, calming lavender.  A fancy bottle of olive oil Brightland Alive Olive Oil, available at Brightland, $37A bottle of high-quality olive oil is the perfect gift for any mom who enjoys cooking, or just eating great food. Alive from Brightland adds a vibrant, zesty flavor to any dish, and she'll appreciate the beautiful bottle.  A Disney+ subscription Alyssa Powell/Business Insider Subscribe to Disney+, $6.99/month or $69.99/year, available at Disney+Give Mom unlimited access to movies and shows from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, National Geographic, and 20th Century Fox. She'll have more than enough great content for movie marathons at home. Learn everything there is to know about Disney+ over here. And if you need some binge-spiration, here are all the new movies available to stream. Flavor-infused cubes for mom's next brunch Uncommon Goods Minute Mimosa Sugar Cube Trio, $30, available at Uncommon GoodsMom will love these flavor-infused cubes that turn any glass of champagne into an elevated mimosa or bellini. To take it to the next level, add a bottle of bubbly to your gift. A practical and chic multipurpose pouch Nordstrom Rack Madewell Leather Pouch Clutch, $49.50, available at MadewellA bag that multitasks as well as she does makes for a great gift. This pouch will keep her little things organized in her purse during the day but can pull double-duty as a clutch come nighttime.  Tea with some extra love Uncommon Goods Heart-Shaped Tea Bags, $30, available at Uncommon GoodsThis gift for mom lets her enjoy a good cuppa while also showing her some extra love. Each set contains five English Breakfast, five Earl Grey, and five White Berry teabags.   A smart speaker mom will get a kick out of talking to Amazon Echo Dot (4th gen), $49.99, available at Best BuyWhether she's a smart home wizard or completely inept at tech, Mom will love this smart speaker that she can control with her own voice.  A T-shirt that shows off her values Everlane 100% Human Tees, $25, available at EverlaneGive mom a shirt she can feel good about wearing. When you buy a tee from this collection, Everlane will make a donation to the ACLU — an organization promoting equal rights for all. A heart-shaped succulent The Sill Hoya Heart Plant, $32, available at The SillBring some life to their space with this adorable heart-shaped succulent. With little attention needed, it's a great gift for amateur plant parents and experienced ones alike. A silk eye mask for when mom really needs some sleep Ahalife Silk Sleep Eye Mask, $50, available at SephoraMom seriously deserves some quality sleep. Make it a little easier for her to get it with this comfortable, silky smooth eye mask. A map that reminds mom of her favorite place Grafomap Custom Map, starting at $49, available at GrafomapSome things just breed nostalgia. Grafomap will make a custom map of a location of your choice — you can even add personalized labels. Choose the place she grew up, a place where you have fond memories together, or a family favorite vacation spot. It's a great piece of home decor that means something to her, too.  Textured planters that mom can fill with her favorite plants CB2 3-Piece White Loom Planter Set, $12.99, available at CB2After all those years taking care of you, caring for her plants is nothing. These planters, which can stay indoors or outdoors, are a pretty and practical way to hold some greenery.  A set of soaps that smell like a bouquet of fresh flowers Uncommon Goods Box of Flowers Soaps, $30, available at Uncommon GoodsThere's something so wonderful about the smell of fresh flowers. That mood-lifting smell, combined with all-natural, soothing ingredients, make these soaps a unique and welcomed addition to her bathroom.  A framed photo she’ll always cherish Framebridge The Aiden Frame, $39, available at FramebridgeNothing can compare to a gift that she can keep hung up forever as a reminder of the great memories you've shared together — that's what makes this framed photo so special. A candle that smells like mom's favorite place Amazon Homesick Candles, from $34, available at HomesickTake her back to her favorite place with these nostalgia-inducing candles. Whether it's the scents of spring in New York City like flowers, concrete, and fine department store fragrances, or the salty seaweed, morning coffee, and ocean air of the beach cottage she frequented as a child — these Homesick candles are sure to bring back fond memories. A cookbook from a home cook icon Amazon "Cook Like a Pro" by Ina Garten, $17.46, available at AmazonIna Garten, the icon of home cooks everywhere, just released a new cookbook — and you know your mom will want to add this one to her shelf. With new recipes and techniques, you might even get to benefit from what she learns with a delicious meal.   A set of wines she’s probably never tried before Wine.com Italian Wine Gift Set, $39.99, available at Wine.comIf she loves to try new wines, make it easy with this trio of three Italian varietals. It's no trip to Tuscany, but it still tastes pretty darn good.  A personalized T-shirt she’ll love to show off Known Supply Personalized Women's Fitted Crew, $32 + $10 for customization, available at Known SupplyMom, Mommy, Mama — whatever you call her, make it official with this personalized crew-neck T-shirt.  A vintage-looking indoor herb garden Uncommon Goods Mason Jar Indoor Herb Garden, $22, available at Uncommon GoodsThese mason jar make growing fresh herbs easy. All she has to do is plant the seeds, add water, place the jars in a sunny spot, and let the herbs grow. It takes little effort on her part, but having fresh herbs will make all the difference in adding flavor to her favorite dishes. A mortar and pestle to up mom's guac game Crate & Barrel Molcajete 8-Inch, $34.95, available at Crate & BarrelMom's guac game just got a lot stronger with this molcajete. The mortar and pestle are made of volcanic stone to grind out everything to the perfect texture — so she can claim the title of best dip on the table.  A pair of plush slippers she can wear in and out of the house Pottery Barn Minnetonka Chesney Scuff Slippers, $49.95, available at ZapposLet her treat her feet right with these slippers. They're cozy and cute, so she'll love lounging in them all day long. A spiralizer that’ll help her get inventive with cooking vegetables Amazon Mueller Multi-Blade Spiralizer, $19.97, available at AmazonChances are, she was the one telling you to eat your vegetables growing up — but that doesn't mean you can't share the same sentiment for her with this spiralizer, which can grate, slice, spiralize, and shred her favorite vegetables for all different kinds of uses.  Adorable animals to hold her rings Wayfair Umbra Origami 3-Pack Ring Holder, $20, available at UmbraWhether she wants to show her rings off or make sure she doesn't lose them, these little animals do the trick. They look super cute as a piece of decor, but are undoubtedly practical. You could even pair these with a cute ring to start. A bath caddy with room for everything she might need Amazon Luxury Bathtub Caddy Tray, from $49.97, available at AmazonThe only thing that could make a bath more relaxing than some luxurious bubbles is this bathtub caddy. It can hold everything she needs — a device so she can watch her favorite show, a glass full of her favorite drink, and even a candle she can light for ambiance.  A fitting diffuser for the tastemaker of your house Snowe Tastemaker Diffuser, $40, available at SnoweWith scents of shiso leaf, wild mint, and meyer lemon, this diffuser will look and smell great anywhere in the house. A stylish water bottle that will become her go-to S'well S'well Stainless Steel Bottle, $35, available at AmazonWith a variety of shapes and sizes, S'well vacuum insulated water bottles do a great job of keeping all kinds of beverages hot (for 12 hours) or cold (for 24 hours). They come in a bunch of fun colors and patterns, which makes using a reusable water bottle a lot more fun.  A bouquet of fresh flowers to liven up her space The Bouqs Instagram Floral Bouquets, starting at $39, available at The BouqsThere's a reason flowers are a classic — bursting with color and lovely scents, they bring life to every space. The Bouqs is one of our favorite places to order flowers online for their wide variety of vibrant, fresh arrangements to choose from. A cozy throw she’ll love to cuddle up in Kohl's Madison Park Ruched Faux Fur Throw, $44.99, available at Kohl'sThis cozy throw is something she'll want to snuggle up with all winter long, and then some. It's not too heavy, so it's great for all times of year, but this super plush faux fur is just what she needs for your family movie marathons over the holidays. Bookends that also function as flower vases PortlandHomeGoods/Etsy Vase Bookends, $24.97, available at EtsyPretty and practical — what could be better? Mom will love keeping her favorite books sandwiched between these sturdy concrete vases which she can fill with her favorite flowers. A fun game that your whole family will crack up playing Amazon What Do You Meme?, $29.99, available at Target and WalmartShe might not even know what a meme is, but there's no doubt she'll be laughing for hours creating funny memes with this card game. It's perfect for a family game night, but if you family members who err on the much younger side, go for something a little more PG. A decorative way to repurpose her old wine corks Uncommon Goods Wine Cork States, $35, available at Uncommon GoodsShe insists on keeping the corks from some of her favorite wines, so give her somewhere to actually show them off. This state-shaped display board turns her keepsake wine corks into a piece of art worthy of being seen.  A dainty necklace with meaningful initials KESTJewelry/Etsy Custom Initial Necklace, starting at $27, available at EtsyWhether it's her own initials, you and your siblings' first names, or any other combinations of letters that matter to her — this necklace is a little but thoughtful way to keep those important to her close. A cool tote bag she'll use everyday Baggu Duck Bag, from $34, available at BagguFrom a grocery bag to a work bag, this canvas tote can do it all. It can fit a 15-inch laptop and has adjustable straps so she'll be comfortable carrying it around all day.  A subscription that lets her discover new beauty products Birchbox/Instagram Birchbox three month subscription gift, $45, available at BirchboxBirchbox is a subscription service that sends a box full of five makeup and skincare samples for her to use each month. It's easy to buy full-size versions on the site, in case she falls in love with any one product and wants more. Plus, it'll be exciting for her to receive the beauty surprises each month.  A convenient charging port for her most-used devices Amazon Elago 3-in-1 Charging Hub, $26.99, available at AmazonShe has an iPad, Air Pods, and Apple Watch — it might seem like there's nothing else you could get your Apple-loving mom. This is a great gift for loyal Apple fans — it's a three-in-one charging hub that looks much nicer than an average extension cord, and it'll fit all of her devices perfectly.  A custom phone case made with a collage of family photos Casetify Custom Phone Case, starting at $45 (prices vary depending on your device), available at CasetifyThere's nothing she loves more than family, so let her show it off every day with a personalized phone case. Upload some of your favorite family photos to put on this super cute case — there are plenty of options for different layouts and cases for all kinds of smartphones. A customizable and challenging puzzle Uncommon Goods New York Times Custom Front Page Puzzle, $49.95, available at Uncommon GoodsWork Mom's brain with this sentimental and interactive gift. Pick a special date (birthday, anniversary, etc.), and it'll be turned into a puzzle made of the actual front page of The New York Times from that day.  A chic mug to brighten up her morning routine Nordstrom Anthropologie Bistro Monogram Mug, $14, available at AnthropologieThis chic mug will instantly transport Mom to her favorite cafe, sipping on a cappuccino while trying to figure out how to rotate her camera as she's FaceTiming you. Choose the first letter of her name, or better yet, choose yours.  Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderOct 5th, 2021

64 of the best gifts for dads, from personalized football jerseys to a do-it-all smartwatch

We've rounded up a huge selection of gift ideas for Dad, no matter if he's into personalized football jerseys, the perfect steak, or a good book. When you buy through our links, Insider may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more. Tom & Teddy Dads can be notoriously difficult to shop for, especially if yours doesn't offer many hints of what he wants. We found the best gifts for Dad, whether for Christmas, his birthday, Father's Day, or another milestone. From a Sirloin of the Month club to a massage gun, these gift ideas are sure to be a big hit. If you're searching for the perfect gift for Dad but coming up empty, don't stress; we've done the hard work for you and compiled the absolute best gifts that he'll love no matter the occasion. Whether it's a gift for Christmas, an idea for his birthday, or just a thoughtful way to show your love, we found a number of unique gift ideas that are sure to impress even the toughest Dads to shop for.From a monthly steak subscription and an at-home golf hitting mat to a new record player or a comfy pillow, you can't go wrong with any of the gifts on this list.Here are 72 of the best gifts for Dad Coasters with the classics Uncommon Goods Upcycled Record Coasters, $18, available at Uncommon GoodsDad can reminiscence about his favorite jams while enjoying a drink with these coasters made from reclaimed records. The discs are specially sealed so moisture won't seep through and damage the surface. Modern over-ear headphones Antonio Villas-Boas/Business Insider Sony WH-1000XM4 headphones, $349 via AmazonThese over-ear headphones from Sony are a must-have for frequent travelers as they have incredible noise cancellation that does well to drown out drum of a car engine or airplane. They also deliver clear audio which is perfect for when Dad wants to jam out to his favorite album or catch up on some podcast episodes. An Audible subscription Audible/Business Insider AudiblePlus subscription, from $7.95 per month, available at AudibleWith an Audible subscription, Dad gets unlimited access to thousands of audiobooks and podcasts. Plus, you can even have Dad test it out first with a free trial. A gift subscription to a popular coffee club Atlas Coffee Club Atlas Coffee Club 3-Month Gift Subscription, $50, available at Atlas Coffee ClubIf your dad's veins run dark roast, a coffee gift won't go unused. We recommend a subscription to the Atlas Coffee Club, which curates a global selection of single-origin coffee that gets freshly roasted and shipped to your house from $9 per bag. Read our full review of the Atlas Coffee Club here.  A massage gun to use after working out Theragun Theragun Mini, from $199, available via TherabodyWhether Dad wants to recover after a grueling workout or just wants to be his own personal, at-home masseuse, a massage gun is an excellent gift. This model, Theragun's Mini, is our pick of the best entry-level massage gun, as it has a modest price tag yet still comes standard with a number of features found on more expensive, premium options.  An easy way to open wine Connie Chen/Insider Secura Electric Wine Opener, $26.99, available at AmazonDad can open his wine hassle-free with this gift. The sleek, fast-charging, and cordless wine opener can pull out 30 corks on one charge, making it our choice for one of the best electric wine openers. All Dad has to do is push a button and it does all the work. A tiny tag to ensure he never loses his valuables Apple Apple AirTag, $29, available at AppleIf dad tends to frequently misplace his key, wallet, or other valuables, help him out by gifting him a handy AirTag. The tags can be placed on just about any item and will connect to his phone so he can easily keep track of his stuff via the Find My app. For an extra personal touch, you can even get it engraved for free. Breathable and machine-washable sneakers Allbirds Allbirds Wool Runners, $95, available at Allbirds These merino wool sneakers from Allbirds, Silicon Valley's favorite shoe brand, are the perfect mix of sporty and stylish. They come in tons of colors and are even machine washable.Read our full review of Allbirds Wool Runners here. A mat to help with dad's short game Amazon Rukket Tri-Turf Golf Hitting Mat, $99.99, available on AmazonFor the dad who loves to golf, this is one of the best golf hitting mats to help improve his short game from home. This compact, portable practice aid features three turf heights, to simulate rough, fairway, and close-cropped "collar" turf. A digital picture frame to display his favorite memories Aura Aura Carver Digital Picture Frame, $169, available at AuraSometimes, all Dad wants is something sentimental and personal. A digital picture frame is the perfect gift for Dad because it means he can view his favorite photos from a single device. As long as the frame is hooked up to WiFi, your dad can enjoy the photos you've carefully curated, all day long in his office or home. You can hear about our experience with another Aura frame, here. A compact gas grill The Home Depot Dyna-Glo 3-Burner Open Cart Propane Gas Grill, $119, available at Home DepotIf owning a grill is one of your dad's long-standing dreams, this one from Dyna-Glo is the one to get him. The best part is that it doesn't cost an arm and a leg, which is why we've named it the best budget option in our guide to the best gas grills. We've also put together a complete guide to grilling products, if you're looking for more grilling gifts for Dad.  A monthly subscription for the bookworm dad Book of the Month Book of the Month Subscription, from $49.99, available at Book of the MonthIf your dad's always on to the next page turner, he'll love getting a new book delivered straight to his doorstep each month. We think it's the ideal gift for Dad and even rank it as the best for bookworms in our guide to the best subscription boxes.  A workout shirt he won't want to take off Vuori Vuori Strato Tech Tee, $44, available at VuoriRegardless of whether Dad's a fitness guru or novice, an essential part of working out is the gear itself. Vuori makes extremely soft, comfy, and functional activewear. Our team loves the brand and has even dubbed it the best overall in our guide to the best men's workout clothes. Read our full review of Vuori clothing here.  A garden tool set for the dad with a green thumb Cutco Cutco 4-Piece Garden Tool Set, $103, available at CutcoIf gardening is one of your dad's favorite pastimes, this set has everything he could need when working outside. Each garden tool has a comfortable grip handle, a durable head, and depth marks. Tools are only one part of what he might need for his gardening adventures, so make sure to also check out our guides to the best gardening tools and best gardening tools for beginners. His new go-to summer shorts Buck Mason Deck shorts, $85, available at Buck MasonAvailable in four neutral color options, as well as in a six-inch and eight-inch length, these classic shorts are sure to become a staple wardrobe piece for dad this summer. Made from a lightweight, quick-drying cotton blend, these shorts are comfy and chic on land, but can also get wet and even act as swim trunks.   Personalized vinyl wall art Uncommon Goods Personalized LP Record, $150, available at Uncommon GoodsCommemorate his birthday, anniversary, or Father's Day with this custom record art. Made from an upcycled vinyl LP and suspended in a floating frame, this custom wall art can feature the soundtrack to their life or songs you share together. Choose from two retro designs, title the record, and add up to five personal song titles.  A two-step skincare regimen Amazon Brickell Men's Daily Essential Face Care Routine II, $57, available at AmazonTime to up Dad's skincare game. Created specifically for men, the startup has become a favorite skincare brand for Reviews senior reporter Amir Ismael because it's simple and effective. Each product uses high-quality natural and organic ingredients. The charcoal works great for deep pore cleansing without the long, drawn-out process, earning it a spot on our list of the best skincare brands in 2021. An electric toothbrush Walmart Philips Sonicare ProtectiveClean 4100 Rechargeable Electric Toothbrush, $39.95, available at WalmartHelp him ditch the manual toothbrush with Philips Sonicare, whose brushes are gentler on teeth and give brighter results over time. We recommend this one for its powerful cleaning and movements-per-minute. Plus, the rechargeable toothbrush is better for the environment. A personalized video message from his favorite star Cameo/Business Insider Cameo Personalized Video Message, from $10, available at CameoYou can choose from thousands of actors, athletes, and musicians and get Dad a personalized video message from his favorite star. For a gift that also gives back, search for celebrities donating some of the proceeds to charity. Or, opt for a funny and festive option like a Buddy the Elf impersonator. You can read our full breakdown of Cameo here. A leather iPhone wallet case Etsy Leather Wallet Case, from $28.40, available on EtsyGet Dad a protective and stylish case for his iPhone that can also double as a handy wallet for storing cards. You can even get personalized with Dad's initials for an extra special touch. The case is available for iPhones ranging from the 6S to the 12 Pro Max.  A smart watch to track his fitness goals Amazon Suunto 7, $399, available on AmazonFor a worthy splurge for the fitness-obsessed dad, the Suunto 7 is a feature-rich and highly accurate smartwatch that offers tracking for more than 70 different activities, is comfortable to wear, and offers useful training feedback anyone can benefit from. It can also give alerts for texts, emails, and has numerous other handy smart features dad will surely appreciate. We even named it the best running watch you can buy.Read our full review of the Suunto 7 here. A mask fit for athletes Under Armour UA Sportsmask, $30, available at Under ArmourIf Dad loves his fitness routine but is often frustrated by working out with a mask on, the Sportsmask is a useful solution. This mask from Under Armour was specifically designed for high activity, and its water resistance, breathability, and UPF 50+ sun protection all lend well to making his workout routine more comfortable. A handy duffel bag Away The Weekender, $215, available at AwayIf your dad is a frequent traveler or gym-goer, he'll love this versatile duffel bag from Away. It's available in canvas or nylon, has a separate compartment for shoes, and a handy sleeve that slips over a carry-on handle.Read our full review of the Away Weekender here.  A cookbook from his favorite burger joint Amazon/Business Insider "Shake Shack: Recipes & Stories," $16.38, available at AmazonIf your dad is a fan of Shake Shack, he'll love this cookbook that will teach him how to make his very own ShackBurger. A keepsake he can use for years to come Uncommon Goods Ticket Stub Diary, $14, available at Uncommon GoodsConcerts, museums, sporting events, or movies — regardless of what Dad's passionate about, this handy journal makes for efficient storage of sentimental memories that could otherwise get stained or ruined. With 118 ticket sleeves, there's plenty of room for upcoming memories as well. A set of quality merino wool socks Bombas Men's Merino Wool Calf Sock 8-pack, $136.80, available at BombasThey may just seem like a basic, everyday accessory, but socks are among the most underrated gifts you can give. Dad will love these Bombas socks made from soft and warm merino wool. You can hear more about why we love this brand and its products in our review of Bombas socks.  A health and ancestry genetic test kit 23andme 23andMe Health and Ancestry Genetic Test Kit, $199, available at 23andMeThis genetic test kit from 23andMe is great for the dad who's interested in learning more about his family history. You can learn more about all this kit has to offer in our guide to the best DNA test kits.  A Disney Plus subscription Alyssa Powell/Business Insider Disney Plus gift subscription, 1-year subscription for $79.99It gives Dad unlimited access to movies and shows from Disney, Pixar, Marvel, Star Wars, National Geographic, and 20th Century Fox. Read everything there is to know about Disney Plus over here.And if he needs some binge-spiration, here are all the new movies available to stream. A colorful swimsuit Tom & Teddy Tom & Teddy Men's Swim Shorts, from $64.94, available at Tom & TeddyMade from super-soft, quick-dry fabric, these swim trunks will make dad the star of your next beach or pool day. They come in an array of colors and prints, and you can even get matching father-and-son swim short sets. A beer growler for sipping at home Houzz Personalized Craft Beer Growler, $43, available at HouzzNow, Dad can take his favorite ales home with him to enjoy. This 64 oz growler comes personalized with his initials on it and includes four mini pilsner glasses. Soft, crisp sheets and bedding Brooklinen Brooklinen Classic Hardcore Sheet Bundle, from $198, available at BrooklinenBrooklinen's luxe sheets are among our favorites for their affordable price, sophisticated look, and unbelievable comfort.The company's Hardcore Sheet Bundles have everything your dad needs to completely makeover his bed — and stay nice and cozy all year long. They include a flat sheet, a fitted sheet, a duvet cover, and four pillowcases. Brooklinen also sells comforters, pillows, candles, and blankets. Read our full review of Brooklinen sheet here.  A custom whiskey glass BRVOglass/Etsy Personalized Whiskey Glass, $18.90, available at EtsyGreat for new dads, this custom, hand-etched whiskey glass can boast his proudest title alongside the year he became a father. Photos from reviewers go to show that this glass isn't just for whiskey, recipients have gotten creative by storing candy and other small gifts in their glasses. A subscription for steaks AmazingClubs Sirloin of the Month Club, from $103.95 per month, available at AmazingClubsMeat lovers will enjoy sinking their teeth into a premium cut of sirloin. Each month Dad will receive a mouth-watering selection of premium steaks curated by experts and shipped fresh right to his door. Choose from subscription options of three months, six months, 12 months, or every three months. A SodaStream Amazon SodaStream Fizzi One Touch Sparkling Water Machine, $86, available at WalmartThe SodaStream Fizzi lets you turn plain water into sparkling water in just a few seconds. Dad can adjust the fizziness and flavor level to his personal taste. We even named it the best overall in our guide to the best soda makers.  A classic stovetop espresso maker Amazon Bialetti 9-Cup Stovetop Espresso Maker, $49.95, available at Crate & BarrelThis classic kitchen accessory is perfect for the coffee-loving dad who wants to bring cafe-quality coffee home. The Bialetti stovetop espresso maker not only makes great coffee, but it looks great on the counter. We made sure to include its 6-cup counterpart in our guide to the best stovetop espresso makers, as the best overall pick.  The Amazon Echo Show Amazon Amazon Echo Show 5, $49.99, available at AmazonThere's an ever-so-slight learning curve in figuring out what Amazon's Alexa can and can't do, but once that's passed, the Echo Show can forecast the weather, read an audiobook, order a pizza, tell jokes, or any number of things Dad should find charming. Unlike the Echo or Echo Dot, the Echo Show also has a screen for displaying information. A device that improves golfing skills Amazon Arccos Caddie Smart Sensors, $179.99, available at AmazonIf your dad is a big golfer, this performance-tracking system is a fun addition to his golf bag. A durable backpack and cooler combo Carhartt Carhartt Medium Pack + 3 Can Insulated Cooler, $74.99, available at CarharttMade from a durable 500 denier Cordura ripstop material, this Carhartt backpack is perfect for outdoorsy dads. The included 3-can cooler is a great addition that'll let him carry a few cold brews on his fishing or camping trips. A custom map poster Grafomap Grafomap Custom Map Poster, from $49, available at GrafomapGrafomap is a website that lets you design map posters of any place in the world. You can make one of your dad's hometown, his college town, his favorite travel destination, or the place where he got engaged or married — you're only limited by your imagination.  A gift card for the sports fan Fanatics Fanatics gift card, from $10, available at FanaticsIf Dad's nostalgic for his college days or loves gearing up for his favorite sports season, give him the gift of variety with a Fanatics gift card. Fanatics is home to apparel, accessories, and memorabilia for just about every major sports team you can think of.  A luxurious shave kit Harry's Harry's Winston Shave Set, $25, available at Harry's (+ $15 for monogram)This shave set from Harry's is as sleek as it gets at this price. To go the extra mile, you can get his initials engraved into the razor. You can hear more about this set in our guide to the best shaving kits.  A freshly scented beard wash and conditioner set The Art of Shaving The Art of Shaving Beard Wash and Conditioner Set, $30, available at The Art of ShavingSoap and water can leave his facial hair dry and scratchy. Bearded dads need this soothing beard wash and conditioner set from The Art of Shaving in their lives.  A sous-vide device for ambitious home cooks Amazon Anova Nano Sous Vide, $129, available at TargetFor under $100, the Anova sous vide is a reasonably priced investment that just might change Dad's life for the better. Not only will it boil and poach eggs with ease, it'll also produce tender, perfectly cooked meat every time. It's so good that we name it the best overall pick in our guide to the best sous vide machines.  A cozy and supportive pillow Leesa Leesa Pillow, $79, available at LeesaGive the gift of a good night's sleep with this luxurious and supportive pillow from mattress startup Leesa.  A 10-pack of soft and stylish underwear Amazon MeUndies Men's Boxer Brief 10-Pack, $170, available at MeUndiesMade from MicroModal and elastane, MeUndies claims its underwear is three times softer than cotton. We think its boxers are so comfortable they'll blow Dad's mind. You can learn more about MeUndies in our guide on where to shop for men's underwear.  Comfortable and stylish jeans Mott & Bow Mott & Bow Wooster Dynamic Stretch Jeans, $118, available at Mott & BowGive the gift of good style with jeans from Mott & Bow. For more styles from the brand, check out our review of Mott & Bow's stretch-denim jeans.  Amazon's new waterproof Kindle Paperwhite Amazon Amazon Kindle Paperwhite, $129.99, available at AmazonIf your dad is tired of lugging around heavy hardcovers, the Kindle Paperwhite is an extremely thoughtful and practical gift. The latest version is now waterproof too. Read our full review of the Amazon Kindle Paperwhite here.  A hot sauce sampler pack Amazon The Good Hurt Fuego Hot Sauces Sampler Pack, $34.99, available at AmazonIf you're not quite sure what kind of hot sauce your dad likes, or if he isn't committed to this or that variety of the spicy stuff, then The Good Hurt Fuego Hot Sauces Sampler is a great gift idea. It features sauces made with peppers that come from India, Mexico, and beyond, and it has flavors ranging from Chipotle Pepper to Garlic Herb to Whiskey Habanero. A personalized sports jersey MLB Shop MLB Shop Custom Men's Jersey, from $149.99, available at the official MLB ShopNFL Shop Custom Men's Jersey, from $30.24, available at the official NFL Shop The sports-loving dad won't want to take this jersey off. At the MLB Shop and NFL Shop, you can order a personalized jersey with your dad's name on the back. An at-home workout system TRX TRX Suspension Trainer Basic Kit, $167.95, available at Amazon For the active dad, you can bring the gym home with this TRX trainer. A durable, temperature-maintaining water bottle Hydroflask Instagram Hydro Flask 32 oz Wide Mouth, from $44.95, available at Hydro FlaskHydro Flasks are great for any situation, from camping to commuting. This durable, insulated water bottle does a masterful job of making sure drinks keep their temperatures. A modern turntable U-Turn Audio U-Turn Audio Orbit Special Turntable, $459, available at U-TurnThis turntable is the sleek home accessory your dad didn't know he needed. He can bring his old records out of storage and enjoy them with this modern record player.  A subscription service for new vinyl every month Vinyl Me Vinyl Me, Please 3-Month Gift Membership, $119, available at Vinyl Me, PleaseEvery person's vinyl collection is deeply personal, so instead of trying to guess his taste, let him choose the record himself. Each month, he'll choose and receive one LP, pressed exclusively for Vinyl Me, Please, from a collection of Essentials, Classics, and Rap & Hip Hop.The three-month gift membership includes one bonus record, while the six- and 12-month ones include two bonus records. A streaming TV player Amazon Roku Ultra, $69.99, available at TargetA media streaming device can transform your dad's so-called dumb TV into a smart one that plays shows and movies from Netflix, Hulu, HBO Now, Prime Video, and other streaming services. The best of the bunch is the Roku Ultra with its easy-to-use interface and 4K video streaming.Read our full review of the Roku Ultra here.  A nice tie The Tie Bar/Business Insider Men's Neckties, from $18, available at Tie BarNeckties might be a cliché gift for dads, but The Tie Bar makes some handsome ties that he'll actually wear on a regular basis. You'll find plenty of colors, patterns, and styles — and the best part is they're all affordably priced. A handy multi-functional tool Amazon Leatherman OHT Multi-Tool, $89.95, available at B&H PhotoThis multi-functional tool does it all, plus it has a 25-year guarantee. A fast wireless charger and accessory tray Courant Catch:3 Charger Tray, $122.50, available at Staycourant.comGive your dad the gift of organization with this accessory tray and wireless charger combo. The pebbled leather is a much-needed upgrade from all the plastic tech accessories he has lying around, and the catchall tray is useful and thoughtful. It also means he'll stop asking you where his keys are three times before leaving the house.  Stylish computer glasses Felix Gray Felix Gray Blue Light Computer Glasses, from $95, available at Felix GrayIf he sits in front of a computer every day, he needs these blue light glasses that increase magnification, reduce glare, and filter out blue light in order to reduce eyestrain. They're also available with prescription lenses — we tried them and loved them.Read our full review of Felix Gray blue light computer glasses here.  Apple AirPods Amazon Apple AirPods with Wired Charging Case, $128.98, available at AmazonSome of the best gifts are items that can be used every day — and AirPods fall into that category. Whether your dad likes listening to music and podcasts or prefers to talk on the phone hands-free, AirPods will quickly become an essential item for him. You can learn more about the different versions in our guide to the best AirPods.  A ceramic pizza stone Wiliams Sonoma Emile Henry Pizza Stone, $54.95, available at Williams SonomaHomemade pizza is delicious, but it can be tricky to perfect. This ceramic pizza stone will make sure his pizza comes out perfectly cooked every time. An iPad Apple Apple iPad (Latest Model with Wi-Fi, 32GB), $329.99, available at Best BuyTech-obsessed dads will love to get their hands on the latest iPad. For more information on the different iterations, check out our guide to the best iPads.  A leather iPad case Leatherology Leatherology iPad Portfolio, from $190, available at LeatherologyThis leather iPad portfolio comes in 17 colors, so there's sure to be one that your dad will like. You can even get it monogrammed for an extra personal touch.  A durable and waterproof speaker Urbanears Urbanears Rålis Portable Bluetooth Speaker, $199.99, available at UrbanearsThe Rålis is Urbanears' first portable Bluetooth speaker and it sounds as good as it looks. It's a little pricey, but the sound quality is impressive enough to warrant the cost. An alarm clock that uses light to wake him up gently Amazon Philips Light Alarm Clock, $99.99, available at AmazonJust because Dad has to wake up before the sun rises doesn't mean he has to awaken to the blaring of an obnoxious alarm clock.Philips makes a lovely alarm clock that gradually lights up to mimic the sunrise and wake him up naturally. The light alarm clock also displays the time and has customizable sounds so he can wake up feeling rested and ready for the day. This clock is also one of the top picks in our buying guide, so you can be sure he'll love it. Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderOct 5th, 2021

I lived in the "best airport in the world" for 48 hours and saw why its lounges, shops, and swimming pool make it perfect for travelers

Hamad International Airport in Doha, Qatar was named 2021's "best airport in the world" by Skytrax, and there are few better places to be trapped for two days. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Hamad International Airport in Doha, Qatar was just voted the "best airport in the world" by Skytrax. I spent 48 hours in the airport on a recent trip to Doha and got to explore nearly every crevice. The airport is incredibly traveler-friendly with amenities for every type of flyer, including families. See more stories on Insider's business page. Aviation rating company Skytrax has crowned Hamad International Airport in Doha, Qatar as the "best airport in the world" for 2021, with the airport beating out rivals in Singapore, Japan, South Korea, and more. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Home to fellow Skytrax favorite Qatar Airways, the Middle Eastern mega-hub serves both as Qatar's gateway to the world and an intercontinental transit point for global travelers. From Doha, travelers can fly as far as Auckland, New Zealand; São Paulo, Brazil; and San Francisco. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider And in 2022, the FIFA World Cup will bring even more travelers through Hamad International's doors. Qatar is scheduled to host the games and stadiums are popping up around the country as a result. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider On a recent trip to Doha to see the new Gulfstream G700 private jet, I was forced to stay at the airport for around 48 hours and got to see just what makes it the world's best. Here's what it was like. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Read More: Gulfstream just debuted its new $75 million ultra-long-range plane that's also the world's largest purpose-built private jet: Meet the G700 I landed at Hamad International expecting to enter Qatar and go straight to my hotel after a 16-hour journey from New York. Qatar Airways invited Insider to the G700's unveiling and had arranged a visa for us to enter the country, as well as given us instructions on what we'd need to do to comply with pandemic travel regulations. Flying on Qatar Airways from Madrid, Spain to Doha, Qatar. Thomas Pallini/Insider We landed at a remote gate where passengers were shuttled to the main terminal on busses. As I walked into the terminal, I never expected it to be my last time breathing fresh outdoor air for the next two days. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Read More: I flew on Qatar Airways and saw why it's one of the best airlines in the world even in economy Instead of going through Qatar passport control, I was brought to the Oryx Airport Hotel and discovered that it was to be my new home from Saturday to Monday. For the second time this year, I was virtually trapped in an airport. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Read More: I was stranded in Bogotá airport for 10 hours and it taught me the true value of credit card perks and not taking no for an answerQatar Airways is providing Insider with a discounted rate for the hotel stay given the last-minute change of plans The airport hotel is located in the transit area of the terminal and is intended to house travelers and flight crews visiting on long layovers. Case in point, an Air Canada flight crew was checking in at the same time as I was. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Wanting to get some rest after the long journey, I made my way to my room for a sleep and a shower. The hotel is arranged in a horseshoe pattern around the main atrium and all the rooms are on one floor. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Many airports have airport hotels in the terminal but this was my first time having a room actually overlooking the terminal. The blinding lights of the massive LED screens in the terminal made it impossible to keep the shades open, almost like staying above Times Square. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider But the room itself was quite nice and came was a king-size bed, TV, desk, and all the other standard hotel amenities. I could even order room service if I wanted. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Once rested, I got dressed up for my big Saturday night out on the terminal and headed out. I also made sure to be cognizant of the window overlooking the entire terminal when getting dressed. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider This was my second time at Hamad International but I never stopped to really look around on my last visit. Little did I know that I'd get more than my fill on this trip. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider There's only one terminal at the airport and it's divided into five concourses -A, B, C, D, and E. I found it surprisingly walkable for a 600,000-square-meter building. Moving walkways are in no short supply and I was able to get from top to bottom in around five minutes by using them. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider A total of 37 jetway-equipped gates can be found in the airport and an expansion plan is currently underway. The airport will soon double its capacity to more than 60 million annual passengers. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Source: Hamad International Airport I started in the main atrium, home to the famous 23-foot tall "Untitled Lamp Bear" sculpture, which the airport describes as "a playful piece that humanizes the space around it and reminds travelers of childhood or precious objects from home." Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Source: Hamad International Airport Lamp Bear is a natural attraction in the terminal and countless visitors were having their photos taken with it, including me. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Flanking the atrium was the airport's next great attraction, the duty-free shops. Qatar Duty-Free is the largest retailer at the airport with nearly 100 duty-free shops and boutiques, in addition to more than 30 restaurants and cafes. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider It felt like I was walking through a shopping mall rather than an airport and nearly every luxury brand was represented. Brands like Bulgari, Gucci, and Hublot all had storefronts, among many others. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Even Qatar Airways had its own store, selling airline-branded merchandise. It was hard to resist not buying some model airplanes for my collection. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider The airport truly comes alive at night with the evening bank of passengers. I was walking around well past midnight and the terminal was still buzzing. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider After a few hours of my night out on the town, jet lag set in and hit me pretty hard so I headed back to the hotel. One cool feature of the airport's elevators is that they are touchless and buttons can be selected by waving a hand over them. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider But of course, I only ended up sleeping for a few hours before being up at the ripe hour of 4 a.m. In just a few hours, the morning rush would bring travelers from around the world to the airport. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider My airport tour later that day began in the exclusive Al Safwa First Lounge, intended for Qatar Airways' top clients include those flying first class and the airline's Privilege Club Platinum members flying in business class. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider I could immediately see why this is the most exclusive lounge at the airport. It felt as if we were walking into a museum rather than an airport lounge. In fact, the lounge has artwork and artifacts on loan from the Islamic Museum of Art in Doha. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider There are four main aspects of the lounge including shopping, working, relaxing, and eating. Armchairs dot the lounge for those that want to sit and relax in privacy as they await their flights. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider And for even more relaxation, the lounge has its own spa with treatments including massages, facials, and more. Unlike other premium airport lounges, the treatments are not free and start at around $40. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Treatment rooms are specific to the type of service being provided. And attached are shower rooms where guests can get changed into their robes and freshen up afterward. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider I was surprised to see a spa open during the pandemic, especially one with working showers. Most airport lounges in the US still keep their showers closed. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Lounge patrons looking to eat before their flights have two dining areas from which to chose. The larger dining room offers sit-down a-la-carte dining from an expansive menu with local and international dishes. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Alcohol is also served in the lounge, with a selection of wines and spirits available from the bar. Mocktails are also available for non-drinkers. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider We had a chance to try some of the food and it lived up to Qatar Airways standards, right up to the presentation and quality. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider The other dining area in the lounge is geared towards more casual dining. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Smaller items such as salads, sandwiches, and sushi were primarily on offer. And in both dining areas, QR codes replaced paper menus. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Those looking to get work done before a flight could make use of the business center, with Apple iMac desktop computers and printers available in private offices. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider And finally, Qatar Duty Free has a private location in the lounge, taking the best of what's for sale in the terminal below. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider The selection wasn't as vast as the shops below but it was carefully curated. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Al Safwa is one of nine airport lounges at Hamad International. Others include the Al Mourjan Business Lounge for business class customers, Mariner Lounge for traveling seafarers, and the Oryx Lounge for any customers that want to buy access to a lounge. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider But the airport is more than its lounges. The Oryx Airport Hotel, for example, actually has a spa and fitness center of its own. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Located on the top floor of the hotel, the centerpiece of the facility is a 25-meter pool ideal for lap swimming or just idle floating. I wanted to go for a dip but didn't bring my swimsuit. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Other notable features include a full gym... Hamad International Airport in Doha, Qatar Thomas Pallini/Insider Squash court... Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Spa... Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider And golf simulator. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider All facilities except the spa, golf simulator, and squash court are complimentary for hotel guests; though, non-guests can pay to use the facilities. Hamad International Airport in Doha, Qatar Thomas Pallini/Insider Back in the terminal. the artwork continues in the concourses where towering sculptures double as children's play areas. Though tempting, I did not get to go down the slides. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Smaller playground-style children's areas can also be found in parts of the terminal. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Entertainment and connectivity are also surprisingly big themes. Private television areas allow travelers to sit down on a living room-style couch and watch content on a high-definition TV. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Apple computers are also stationed throughout the terminal, offering complimentary web browsing. Using the computers felt like I was in the Apple Store. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider For those without access to a lounge, the terminal has a variety of food options ranging from high-end restaurants like Harrods Tea Room to a food court with Burger King and Red Mango. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider In terms of pandemic safety features, masks are required in the airport and social distancing messaging is prominently displayed. Seats are still blocked off for distancing in the gate areas. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider But the smoking areas are still open, in which groups of people blow clouds of smoke into the air. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider After the tour, I wandered towards the back of the terminal to see how the new expansion was coming along. The construction didn't seem to impact the operation too much and I couldn't see too much from inside. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider There was only so much that could be seen from inside the airport. Luckily, I got a better look the next day on a demonstration flight with Qatar Executive onboard a Gulfstream G650ER. Flying on a Qatar Executive Gulfstream G650ER. Thomas Pallini/Insider Read More: I flew on a $65 million Gulfstream G650ER private jet and saw why it's a favorite of tech billionaires like Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos Concourses D and E will be extended and linked by a connector concourse to add more gate capacity. Hamad International Airport in Doha, Qatar Thomas Pallini/Insider The centerpiece will be a 10,000-square-meter tropical garden with a 268-square-meter water feature to rival Singapore Changi Airport's "Jewel." A rendering of the expansion at Hamad International Airport in Doha, Qatar. Qatar Airways/Hamad International Airport Read More: Look inside the new $1.3 billion complex at Singapore's Changi Airport, with a 130-foot indoor waterfall More shops, restaurants, and lounges will also be added. A rendering of the expansion at Hamad International Airport in Doha, Qatar. Qatar Airways/Hamad International Airport Freedom finally came on Monday night at around 7 p.m. With the stamp of a passport, I was officially allowed to enter Qatar. Hamad International Airport in Doha, Qatar Thomas Pallini/Insider Just a few hours later, I found myself back at Hamad International for my flight home to New York through London. As the saying goes, who says you can't go home (to the airport)? Hamad International Airport in Doha, Qatar Thomas Pallini/Insider It could've been worse. I could've been stuck at the old LaGuardia Airport. Doha, Qatar's Hamad International Airport. Thomas Pallini/Insider Read More: I flew out of the new LaGuardia Airport terminal 2 weeks after it opened and couldn't believe it was the same airport I hated. Here's what it was like. Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: nytOct 3rd, 2021

The wild life of billionaire Twitter founder and "Block Head" Jack Dorsey, who"s officially left the social network"s board, eats one meal a day, and takes ice baths

Jack Dorsey, famous for his unusual life of luxury, stepped down as Twitter CEO in 2021 but continues to lead Block as its "Block Head." Jack Dorsey onstage at a bitcoin convention on June 4, 2021 in Miami, Florida.Joe Raedle/Getty Images Jack Dorsey cofounded Twitter in 2006 and the company made him a billionaire. He's famous for his unusual life of luxury, including a daily fasting routine and regular ice baths. He stepped down as Twitter CEO in November 2021 but continues to lead Block as its "Block Head." Visit Business Insider's home page for more stories. From fighting armies of bots to quashing rumors about sending his beard hair to rapper Azealia Banks, Twitter founder Jack Dorsey leads an unusual life of luxury.Dorsey has had a turbulent career in Silicon Valley. After cofounding Twitter on March 21 2006, he was booted as the company's CEO two years later, but returned in 2015 having set up his second company, Square — which he rebranded as Block in 2021.He led Twitter through the techlash that has engulfed social media companies, testifying before Congress multiple times.And Dorsey announced on November 29, 2021, he had stepped down as the CEO of Twitter. He continues to lead Block, where in April 2022 he changed his title from "CEO" to "Block Head." And on Wednesday, Dorsey officially stepped down from Twitter's board of directors amid Elon Musk's bid for the company, a move that has been expected since fall 2021.Dorsey has provoked his fair share of controversy and criticism, extolling fasting and ice baths as part of his daily routine. His existence is not entirely spartan, however. Like some other billionaires, he owns a stunning house, dates models, and drives fast cars.Scroll on to read more about the fabulous life of Jack Dorsey.Rebecca Borison and Madeline Stone contributed reporting to an earlier version of this story.Dorsey began programming while attending Bishop DuBourg High School in St. Louis.VineAt age 15, Dorsey wrote dispatch software that is still used by some taxi companies.Source: Bio. When he wasn't checking out specialty electronics stores or running a fantasy football league for his friends, Dorsey frequently attended punk-rock concerts. @jackThese days Dorsey doesn't favour the spiky hairdo.Source: The Wall Street JournalLike many of his fellow tech billionaires, Dorsey never graduated college.edyson / FlickrHe briefly attended the Missouri University of Science and Technology and transferred to New York University before calling it quits.Source: Bio.In 2000, Dorsey built a simple prototype that let him update his friends on his life via BlackBerry and email messaging.joi / FlickrNobody else really seemed interested, so he put away the idea for a bit.Source: The Unofficial Stanford BlogFun fact: Jack Dorsey is also a licensed masseur.Getty Images/Bill PuglianoHe got his license in about 2002, before exploding onto the tech scene.Sources: The Wall Street JournalHe got a job at a podcasting company called Odeo, where he met his future Twitter cofounders.Jack Dorsey, Biz Stone and Evan Williams took home the prize in the blogging category at SXSW in 2007.Flickr via Scott Beale/LaughingSquidOdeo went out of business in 2006, so Dorsey returned to his messaging idea, and Twitter was born.On March 21, 2006, Dorsey posted the first tweet.Jack Dorsey's first tweet.Twitter/@jackDorsey kept his Twitter handle simple, "@jack."Dorsey and his cofounders, Evan Williams and Biz Stone, bought the Twitter domain name for roughly $7,000.Khalid Mohammed / AP ImagesDorsey took out his nose ring to look the part of a CEO. He was 30 years old.A year later, Dorsey was already less hands-on at Twitter. Evan Williams and Jack Dorsey.Wikimedia CommonsBy 2008, Williams had taken over as CEO, and Dorsey transitioned to chairman of Twitter's board. Dorsey immediately got started on new projects. He invested in Foursquare and launched a payments startup called Square that lets small-business owners accept credit card payments through a smartphone attachment.Sources: Twitter and Bio.In 2011, Dorsey got the chance to interview US President Barack Obama in the first Twitter Town Hall.President Obama talks to the audience next to Jack Dorsey during his first ever Twitter Town Hall.ReutersDorsey had to remind Obama to keep his replies under 140 characters, Twitter's limit at the time.Source: TwitterTwitter went public in November 2013, and within hours Dorsey was a billionaire.APIn 2014 Forbes pegged Dorsey's net worth at $2.2 billion. On the day it was reported he was expected to resign, Bloomberg's Billionaires Index calculated his net worth at $12.3 billion.Source: Bio. and ForbesIt was revealed in a 2019 filing that Dorsey earned just $1.40 for his job as Twitter CEO the previous year.Twitter and Square founder Jack Dorsey, who doesn't earn anything from his primary day job.David Becker / GettyThe $1.40 salary actually represented a pay rise for Dorsey, who in previous years had refused any payment at all.He's far from the only Silicon Valley mogul to have taken a measly salary - Mark Zuckerberg makes $1 a year as CEO of Facebook.Source: Insider He might have been worth more had he not given back 10% of his stock to Square.Jack Dorsey with Hollywood producer Brian Grazer, Veronica Smiley, and Kate Greer at the annual Allen and Co. conference at the Sun Valley, Idaho Resort in 2013.ReutersThis helped Square employees, giving them more equity and stock options. It was also helpful in acquiring online food-delivery startup Caviar.Sources: Insider and CaviarWith his newfound wealth, he bought a BMW 3 Series, but reportedly didn't drive it often.Alex Davies / Business Insider"Now he's able to say, like, 'The BMW is the only car I drive, because it's the best automotive engineering on the planet,' or whatever," Twitter cofounder Biz Stone told The New Yorker in 2013.Source: The New YorkerHe also reportedly paid $9.9 million for this seaside house on El Camino Del Mar in the exclusive Seacliff neighborhood of San Francisco.The Real Estalker via Sotheby'sThe house has a view of the Golden Gate Bridge, which Dorsey views as a marvel of design.Source: InsiderBefore the pandemic, Dorsey said he worked from home one day a week.Jack Dorsey's home setup.Twitter/@jackIn an interview with journalist Kara Swisher conducted over Twitter, Dorsey said he worked every Tuesday out of his kitchen.He also told Kara Swisher that Elon Musk is his favorite Twitter user.Elon Musk is a prolific tweeter.PewDiePie/YouTubeDorsey said Musk's tweets are, "focused on solving existential problems and sharing his thinking openly."He added that he enjoys all the "ups and downs" that come with Musk's sometimes unpredictable use of the site. Musk himself replied, tweeting his thanks and "Twitter rocks!" followed by a string of random emojis.Both Musk and Dorsey are crypto enthusiasts, and appear to have developed a good public relationship.Source: InsiderFacebook CEO and rival Mark Zuckerberg once served Jack Dorsey a goat he killed himself.Gene KimDorsey told Rolling Stone about the meal, which took place in 2011. Dorsey said the goat was served cold, and that he personally stuck to salad.Source: Rolling StoneHis eating habits have raised eyebrows.Phillip Faraone/Getty Images for WIRED25Appearing on a podcast run by a health guru who previously said that vaccines caused autism, Dorsey said he eats one meal a day and fasts all weekend. He said the first time he tried fasting it made him feel like he was hallucinating."It was a weird state to be in. But as I did it the next two times, it just became so apparent to me how much of our days are centered around meals and how — the experience I had was when I was fasting for much longer, how time really slowed down," he said.The comments drew fierce criticism from many who said Dorsey was normalizing eating disorders.In a later interview with Wired, Dorsey said he eats seven meals a week, "just dinner."Sources: Insider, The New StatesmanIn the early days of Twitter, Dorsey aspired to be a fashion designer.Cindy Ord / Getty Images, Franck MichelDorsey would regularly don leather jackets and slim suits by Prada and Hermès, as well as Dior Homme reverse-collar dress shirts, a sort of stylish take on the popped collar.More recently he favors edgier outfits, including the classic black turtleneck favored by Silicon Valley luminaries like Steve Jobs.Sources: CBS News and The Wall Street JournalHe also re-introduced the nose-ring and grew a beard.GettyDorsey seems to care less about looking the part of a traditional executive these days.Singer Azealia Banks claimed to have been sent clippings of Dorsey's beard hair to fashion into a protective amulet, although Dorsey denied this happened.Azealia Banks.GettyIn 2016, Banks posted on her now-deleted Twitter account that Dorsey sent her his hair, "in an envelope." Dorsey later told the HuffPo that the beard-posting incident never happened.Sources: Insider and HuffPoDorsey frequently travels the world and shares his photos with his 6 million Twitter followers.Jack Dorsey meeting Japanese Prime Minister Sinzo Abe.Twitter/@JPN_PMOOn his travels, Dorsey meets heads of state, including Japan's former Prime Minister Shinzō Abe.Source: TwitterTweets about his vacation in Myanmar also provoked an outcry.Bagan, Myanmar.Shutterstock/Martin M303Dorsey tweeted glowingly about a vacation he took to Myanmar for his birthday in December 2018. "If you're willing to travel a bit, go to Myanmar," he said.This came at the height of the Rohingya crisis, and Dorsey was attacked for his blithe promotion of the country — especially since social media platforms were accused of having been complicit in fuelling hatred towards the Rohingya.Source: InsiderHowever, Dorsey says he doesn't care about "looking bad."FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Trump welcomes South Korea’s President Moon to the White House in WashingtonReutersIn a bizarre Huffington Post interview in 2019, Dorsey was asked whether Donald Trump — an avid tweeter — could be removed from the platform if he called on his followers to murder a journalist. Dorsey gave a vague answer which drew sharp criticism.Following the interview's publication, Dorsey said he doesn't care about "looking bad.""I care about being open about how we're thinking and about what we see," he added.In September 2018, Jack Dorsey was grilled by lawmakers alongside Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg.Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg and Jack Dorsey are sworn-in for a Senate Intelligence Committee.Drew Angerer/Getty ImagesDorsey and Sandberg were asked about election interference on Twitter and Facebook as well as alleged anti-conservative bias in social media companies.Source: InsiderDuring the hearing, Dorsey shared a snapshot of his spiking heart rate on Twitter.AP Photo/Jose Luis MaganaDorsey was in the hot seat for several hours. His heart rate peaked at 109 beats per minute.Source: InsiderDorsey testified before Congress once again on October 28, 2020.Jack Dorsey tuning into the hearing with the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation.U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation/Handout via REUTERSDorsey appeared via videoconference at the Senate hearing on Section 230, a part of US law that protects internet companies from legal liability for user-generated content, as well as giving them broad authority to decide how to moderate their own platforms.In prepared testimony ahead of the hearing, Dorsey said stripping back Section 230 would "collapse how we communicate on the Internet," and suggested ways for tech companies to make their moderation processes more transparent. During the hearing, Dorsey once again faced accusations of anti-conservative biasJack Dorsey appearing virtually at the hearing.Michael Reynolds-Pool/Getty ImagesThe accusations from Republican lawmakers focused on the way Twitter enforces its policies, particularly the way it has labelled tweets from President Trump compared to other world leaders.Dorsey took the brunt of questions from lawmakers, even though he appeared alongside Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Google CEO Sundar Pichai.Source: ProtocolDuring the hearing, the length of Dorsey's beard drew fascination from pundits.Dorsey had to address accusations of censorship.Greg Nash/Pool via REUTERSSome users referred to Dorsey's facial hair as his "quarantine beard," while others said it made him look like a wizard.—rat king (@MikeIsaac) October 28, 2020—Taylor Hatmaker (@tayhatmaker) October 28, 2020"Jack Dorsey's beard is literally breaking Twitter's own face detection," posted cybersecurity blogging account @Swiftonsecurity.—SwiftOnSecurity (@SwiftOnSecurity) October 28, 2020 Dorsey also addressed the way Twitter dealt with a dubiously sourced New York Post story about Hunter Biden.Jack Dorsey appearing on-screen at the hearing.Greg Nash/Pool via REUTERS TPX IMAGES OF THE DAYWhen the New York Post published a report about Hunter Biden on October 14 that threw up red flags about sourcing, Twitter blocked users from sharing URLs citing its "hacked materials" policy.Dorsey subsequently apologized publicly, saying it was wrong of Twitter to block URLs.—jack (@jack) October 16, 2020During the Senate hearing, Sen. Ted Cruz accused Twitter of taking the "unilateral decision to censor" the Post.Dorsey said the Post's Twitter account would remain locked until it deleted its original tweet, but that updated policies meant it could tweet the same story again without getting blocked.Source: InsiderDorsey had to appear before another hearing on November 17 2020 — this time about how Twitter handled content moderation around the 2020 presidential election.U.S. Senate Judiciary Committee via REUTERS/File PhotoDorsey was summoned alongside Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg by Republicans who were displeased with how the platforms had dealt with then-President Donald Trump's social media accounts. Both CEOs defended their companies, saying they are politically neutral.When he's not in Washington, Dorsey regularly hops in and out of ice baths and saunas.This is not Dorsey's sauna.ShutterstockDorsey said in the "Tales of the Crypt" podcast that he started using ice baths and saunas in the evenings around 2016.He will alternately sit in his barrel sauna for 15 minutes and then switch to an ice bath for three. He repeats this routine three times, before finishing it off with a one-minute ice bath.He also likes to take an icy dip in the mornings to wake him up.Source: CNBCDorsey's dating life has sparked intrigue. In 2018, he was reported to be dating Sports Illustrated model Raven Lyn Corneil.Sports Illustrated Swimsuit / YouTube / GettyPage Six reported in September 2018 that the pair were spotted together at the Harper's Bazaar Icons party during New York Fashion Week. Page Six also reported that Dorsey's exes included actress Lily Cole and ballet dancer Sofiane Sylve.Source: Page SixHe's a big believer in cryptocurrency, frequently tweeting about its virtues.Teresa Kroeger/Getty ImagesIn particular, Dorsey is a fan of Bitcoin, which he described in early 2019 as "resilient" and "principled." He told the "Tales of the Crypt" podcast in March that year that he was maxing out the $10,000 weekly spending limit on Square's Cash App buying up Bitcoin.In October 2020 he slammed Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong for forbidding employee activism at the company, saying cryptocurrency is itself a form of activism.—jack (@jack) September 30, 2020 Source: Insider, Insider and CNBC Dorsey said Square was launching a new bitcoin business in summer 2021.Square CEO Jack Dorsey speaks at the Bitcoin 2021 Convention, a crypto-currency conference held on June 4, 2021 in Miami, Florida.Joe Raedle/Getty ImagesDorsey announced the new venture in a tweet on July 15, 2021 and said its name was "TBD." It wasn't clear whether that was its actual name, or Dorsey hadn't decided on a name yet.—jack (@jack) July 15, 2021 Dorsey said he hopes bitcoin can help bring about "world peace."Jack Dorsey on stage at the Bitcoin 2021 Convention, a crypto-currency conference in Miami.Joe Raedle/Getty ImagesDorsey appeared alongside Elon Musk and Ark Invest CEO Cathie Wood during a panel called "The B Word" on July 2021. He said he loves the bitcoin community because it's "weird as hell.""It's the only reason that I have a career — because I learned so much from people like who are building bitcoin today," Dorsey said.At the end of 2019 Dorsey said he would move to Africa for at least three months in 2020.AP Photo/Francois MoriDorsey's announcement followed a tour of Ethiopia, Ghana, Nigeria, and South Africa. "Africa will define the future (especially the bitcoin one!). Not sure where yet, but I'll be living here for 3-6 months mid 2020," he tweeted. Dorsey then came under threat of being ousted as Twitter CEO by activist investor Elliott Management.Paul Singer, founder and president of Elliott Management.REUTERS/Mike Blake/File PhotoBoth Bloomberg and CNBC reported in late February 2020 that major Twitter investor Elliott Management — led by Paul Singer — was seeking to replace Dorsey. Reasons given included the fact that Dorsey split his time between two firms by acting as CEO to both Twitter and financial tech firm Square, as well as his planned move to Africa.Source: InsiderTesla CEO and frequent Twitter user Elon Musk weighed in on the news, throwing his support behind Dorsey.Tesla CEO Elon Musk.REUTERS/Hannibal Hanschke"Just want to say that I support @jack as Twitter CEO," Musk tweeted, adding that Dorsey has a good heart, using the heart emoji.Source: InsiderDorsey managed to strike a truce with Elliott Management.AP Photo/Jose Luis MaganaTwitter announced on March 9, 2020 that it had reached a deal with Elliott Management which would leave Jack Dorsey in place as CEO.The deal included a $1 billion investment from private equity firm Silver Lake, and partners from both Elliott Management and Silver Lake joined Twitter's board.Patrick Pichette, lead independent director of Twitter's board, said he was "confident we are on the right path with Jack's leadership," but added that a new temporary committee would be formed to instruct the board's evaluation of Twitter's leadership.In April 2020, Dorsey announced that he was forming a new charity fund that would help in global relief efforts amid the coronavirus pandemic.Dorsey.Matt Crossick/PA Images via Getty ImagesDorsey said he would pour $1 billion of his own Square equity into the fund, or roughly 28% of his total wealth at the time. The fund, dubbed Start Small LLC, would first focus on helping in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic, he said.Dorsey said he would be making all transactions on behalf of the fund public in a spreadsheet.In July 2020, hackers compromised 130 Twitter accounts in a bitcoin scam.TwitterThe accounts of high-profile verified accounts belonging to Bill Gates, Kim Kardashian West, and others were hacked, with attackers tweeting out posts asking users to send payment in bitcoin to fraudulent cryptocurrency addresses.As a solution, Twitter temporarily blocked all verified accounts — those with blue check marks on their profiles — but the damage was done.  Elon Musk said he personally contacted Dorsey following the hack.Elon Musk (left) and Dorsey.Susan Walsh/AP; Getty ImagesDuring a July 2020 interview with The New York Times, Musk said he had immediately called Dorsey after he learned about the hack."Within a few minutes of the post coming up, I immediately got texts from a bunch of people I know, then I immediately called Jack so probably within less than five minutes my account was locked," said Musk.Source: The New York TimesIn March 2021 Dorsey put his first-ever tweet up for auction.Jack Dorsey and Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook COO, off camera, testify during a Senate (Select) Intelligence Committee hearing in Dirksen Building where they testified on the influence of foreign operations on social media on September 5, 2018Tom Williams/CQ Roll CallAs the craze for Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) gathered momentum, Dorsey announced he was auctioning his first tweet for charity. It was bought for $2.9 million by Hakan Estavi, chief executive at at Bridge Oracle. Dorsey said proceeds from the auction would go to Give Directly's Africa response.Twitter announced on November 29 Dorsey had stepped down as CEO.Jack Dorsey co-founder and chairman of Twitter and co-founder and CEO of Square.Joe Raedle/Getty ImagesCNBC was the first to report on Dorsey's expected resignation, citing unnamed sources.Twitter confirmed the story the same day, announcing Chief Technology Officer Parag Agrawal would take over as CEO with immediate effect.Dorsey posted on his Twitter account saying: "Not sure anyone has heard but, I resigned from Twitter."In his tweet he included a screenshot of the email he sent to Twitter staff announcing his resignation.—jack⚡️ (@jack) November 29, 2021And in May 2022, his time on the board of directors officially came to an end, an anticipated move that coincides with the company's stockholder's meeting. Two days after Dorsey stepped down as Twitter CEO, Square changed its name to Block.Block's revamped logo.Block"The name change creates room for further growth," the company said in a statement."Block references the neighborhood blocks where we find our sellers, a blockchain, block parties full of music, obstacles to overcome, a section of code, building blocks, and of course, tungsten cubes," it added.The line about tungsten cubes was an apparent reference to a craze among crypto enthusiasts of paying as much as $3,500 for novelty tungsten cubes.In April 2022, Dorsey changed his official title at Block from CEO to "Block Head."Jack Dorsey's official job description on the Block website was changed to say Block Head.BlockThe title change was made official in a regulatory filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission on April 20, 2022."There will be no changes in Mr. Dorsey's roles and responsibilities," the filing said.Block's website was also updated to list his new title as Block Head.Musk tweeted in response to the news using fire emojis to signal his approval for Dorsey's title.—Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 23, 2022 Musk officially added the title of "Technoking" to his role at Tesla in March 2021.Dorsey said in an April 2022 tweet his "biggest regret" was Twitter shutting down Vine.Jack Dorsey, CEO of Twitter and co-founder & CEO of Square, attends the crypto-currency conference Bitcoin 2021 Convention at the Mana Convention Center in Miami, Florida, on June 4, 2021.Marco Bello/AFP/Getty ImagesDorsey replied to a Twitter user lamenting Vine's demise saying: "I know. Biggest regret," accompanied by a sad face emoji.Twitter acquired short-form video app Vine in 2012 but shut it down in 2016.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderMay 25th, 2022

23 thoughtful yet inexpensive Father"s Day gifts for $25 or less

For Father's Day this year, you don't have to spend more than $25 to show your dad you're thinking of him and appreciate him. Prices are accurate at the time of publication.When you buy through our links, Insider may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more.For Father's Day this year, you don't have to spend more than $25 to show your dad you're thinking of him and appreciate him.YETI/Harry'sYour parents might say to you every year that they don't need a gift for Mother's or Father's Day. Chances are, you still want to get them a gift for everything they do for you, even if it's something simple.For Father's Day this year, you don't have to spend more than $25 to show your dad you're thinking of him and appreciate all that he does. Fresh herbs he doesn't have to babysit, a gourmet hot sauce, and pampering grooming products are all gifts that he'll use all the time — that and won't break the bank. The 23 best Father's Day gifts under $25 in 2022:A curated coffee subscriptionBean BoxGift a Bean Box coffee subscription, starting at $16.50, available at Bean BoxBest for: Dads who get bored with the same coffee every dayChoose how often your dad will receive a fresh bag of whole bean coffee from this popular artisanal brand. A coffee-tasting subscription lets him discover four expertly curated coffees while the coffee bag subscription makes sure a cup of joe is never far from his cupboard.A movie-themed cookbookUncommon GoodsGift "Eat What You Watch" Cookbook, $25, available at Uncommon GoodsBest for: Dads who love movies *and* cookingRemember the heavenly double-decker New York-style pizza from "Saturday Night Fever" or the blueberry pie in "Stand By Me?" Now, movie buff dads can flip through over 40 recipes inspired by their favorite iconic moments on the big screen. A low-key herb gardenUncommon Goods; Business InsiderGift the Mason Jar Indoor Herb Garden, $24, available at Uncommon GoodsBest for: Dads who sprinkle fresh herbs on everythingThese planters, which can grow popular herbs such as basil or mint, use a passive hydroponic system that makes it easy for him to maintain his mini garden. All he has to do is pick the seeds, plant them, put water in its reservoir, plop the jars near a sunny window, and the rest is magic.A non-fussy phone chargerAmazonGift the Anker Wireless Charging Stand, $15.99, available at AmazonBest for: Dads who appreciate convenienceWhen he uses this wireless charger, he can drop his phone (phone case and all) onto it and let it charge by touch.A set of dice to inspire easy workoutsUncommon GoodsGift Fitness Dice, $19, available at Uncommon GoodsBest for: Dads who never skip a workoutAt-home workouts have never been more fun than with this fitness dice set. Every roll is one in 45,000 possible routines, without any equipment required. An upgrade to plastic takeout containersUncommon GoodsGift Handmade Noodle Bowl with Chopsticks, $25, available at Uncommon GoodsBest for: Dads who love takeout (but not the packaging)Ditch the plastic or paper takeout containers and serve food in this handmade bowl. The glazed bowl and chopstick set will be Dad's new go-to when he prepares his favorite noodle, soup, and rice dishes. A Wi-Fi range extender to prevent any pesky service disruptionsAmazonGift the TP-Link AC750 WiFi Range Extender, $24.99, available at AmazonBest for: Dads who hate Wi-Fi outagesWi-Fi signals sometimes fail to reach every corner of your home, and if the whole family is at home, that can be frustrating and challenging. The TP-Link AC750 WiFi Extender can plug into most common outlets to cover up to 1,500 square feet in Dad's home. After he hits the WPS button on the home router, he'll have to hit the range extender on the TP-Link device. After that, he'll be able to get dual-band speeds of up to 750 Mbps in otherwise difficult-to-reach areas in his home.A high-quality thermos he'll take everywhereYETIGift the YETI Rambler 10 oz Lowball, $20, available at YETIBest for: Dads who hate a lukewarm anythingAn insulated, stainless steel cup that will keep cold drinks cold in the summer and hot ones hot in the winter, the YETI Rambler Lowball was made for campfire and lakeside gatherings. If he's hanging out in the great outdoors, he'll want to keep this cup close at hand. A truly unique hot sauceSmall Axe Peppers Hot SauceGift The Bronx Greenmarket Hot Sauce (Green, 5 oz), $7.99, available at AmazonBest for: Dads who love a bit of spiceThis all-natural, tangy hot sauce is part of the lineup on the popular YouTube series "Hot Ones" and is made from Serrano peppers grown in over 30 community gardens throughout the Bronx. A ticket stub album to collect his favorite memoriesUncommon GoodsGift Ticket Stub Diary, $14, available at Uncommon GoodsBest for: Dads who cherish every live eventWhether Dad loves a good Broadway show, frequents Yankee games, or went to every showing of the "Avengers" movies, this sleeved ticket stub book preserves his favorite memories. A luxury shaving kitHarry'sGift the Harry's Truman Shave Set, $15, available at Harry'sBest for: Dads who love a nice self-care routineThis shave set from Harry's is as sleek as it gets. The kit includes a signature handle with a textured rubber grip, three German-engineered blade cartridges, foaming shave gel for a rich lather, and a travel cover to protect the blades when he's on the move.A set of ski-themed glassesUncommon GoodsGift the Ski Resort Map Glass, $20, available at Uncommon GoodsBest for: Dads who love to skiRemind Dad of his favorite days skiing backcountry on mountains with fresh powder and bright blue skies. If he's really more of a National Parks kind of Dad, there's an equally good option here. A box of goodies tied to his favorite fandomLoot CrateGift a Loot Crate, from $24.99, available at Loot CrateBest for: Dads who belong to fandomsA well-curated gift box, like a geek culture "crate" from Loot Crate, is far from a cop-out. The gift crates contain collectibles and merch related to fandoms like Marvel, "Harry Potter," and "Star Trek," and the under-$25 options contain socks, shirts, and underwear featuring a variety of pop culture icons. A milk frother for perfect lattesAmazonGift the Powerlix Milk Frother, $15.95, available at AmazonBest for: Dads who love coffee a latteWe love this inexpensive milk frother for creating cafe-level drinks at home, and Dad will too. We actually think it's the best overall milk frother you can buy. A moisture-repelling golf capNikeGift the Nike Legacy91 Golf Hat, $20, available at Dick's Sporting GoodsBest for: Dads who will play all 18 holesNike's special Dri-FIT technology keeps his head dry and comfortable under the glaring sun, while the interior sweatband is soft and absorbent. Whether he's on the first or 18th hole, he'll stay cool and collected. A fun, beer-themed planterEtsyGift the IrishGlass Beer Bottle Glass Planters, from $10, available at EtsyBest for: Dads loyal to their brand of beerHere's a unique indoor garden idea: Choose any beer bottle brand you'd like to be cut, sanded, and polished into a unique planter.A card game that'll become his new favoriteAmazonGift the Exploding Kittens Card Game, $19.99, available at AmazonBest for: Dads who live for game nightIf he's a kid at heart who loves kittens, explosions, and laser beams, then he'll love the cult-favorite, Kickstarter sensation of Exploding Kittens. Buying this gift is almost like a gift to yourself since he'll need to enlist multiple players to enjoy the game. Beard oil that reduces flakiness or itchinessOars + AlpsGift the Oars + Alps Cedarwood Forest Beard Oil, $20, available at Oars + AlpsBest for: Bearded dadsContaining nourishing oils like jojoba and argan, this beard oil will revive his scruff in no time. It quickly relieves any flaky, itchy skin under his hair and smells good while doing it. A fresh set of Allbirds lacesAllbirdsGift the Allbirds Runner Lace Kit, $10, available at Allbird'sBest for: Dads with well-worn AllbirdsIf he owns a pair of Allbirds already, a simple lace refresh will make them feel brand new. This kit contains gray, white, and black, but check out its four limited-edition packs with brighter colors. A custom photo bookArtifact UprisingGift the Artifact Uprising 5"x 5" Instagram Photo Book, $14, available at Artifact UprisingBest for: Dads who insist they just want "time with the kids"Bring all your mobile photos with Dad to life in this softcover book that looks like a classy coffee table magazine. It has a textured eggshell cover and interior matte pages, which bring out the best of your favorite memories. Comfy socks specifically designed for golfingBombasGift the Men's Performance Golf Ankle Socks, $16.50, available at BombasBest for: Dads who love to golfSocks are a universally pleasing gift. A cult favorite among direct-to-consumer brands and the Insider Reviews team, Bombas socks offer cushioned support and practicality. This pair is designed especially for performance wear when playing golf.A gift card to see all the summer blockbustersFandangoGift a Fandango Gift Card, from $15, available at FandangoBest for: Dads who love a movie nightNothing beats going to the movies with his kids. If you're unable to make a trip to the local movie theater right now, Fandango gift cards also work for movie and TV show rentals found on Fandangonow.com.A simple yet supremely useful money clipLeatherologyGift the Leatherology Money Clip, $30, available at LeatherologyBest for: Dads who have everything elseThis simple but chic full-grain leather clip can hold up to 20 bills. An added plus is that Leatherology will take care of the gift packaging for you for free. Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderMay 23rd, 2022

Leaked photos show Boris Johnson drinking at lockdown-breaching leaving party

The pictures, revealed by ITV News, appear to show Boris Johnson raising a glass at a leaving do for aide Lee Cain when such gatherings were banned. Boris Johnson raising a glass at a party thrown during one of England's lockdownsITV News Pictures of Boris Johnson raising a glass at an aide's leaving do were published by ITV News. The prime minister, who repeatedly said no rules were broken, is seen toasting colleagues. It came ahead of the hotly anticipated Sue Gray report into so-called partygate. Photos of Boris Johnson raising a glass at a party during one of England's coronavirus lockdowns were published on Monday, heaping fresh pressure on the prime minister ahead of the full partygate report. In images published by ITV News, Johnson is pictured apparently joining a toast at a leaving party on November 13, 2020, with bottles of alcohol and party food on the table in front of him. The series of photographs shows a ministerial red box on a chair by the table, on which are two bottles of sparkling wine, four other wine bottles and half a bottle of gin. Boris Johnson gives a toast at the party, thrown during one of England's lockdownsITV NewsThey were taken at a gathering in honour of the Downing Street's then Director of Communications Lee Cain, with eight people pictured standing closely together, as well as the photographer, ITV News reports. The rules at the time allowed a maximum of two people from different households to mix indoors. Johnson has received a single fine from the police following their investigation into multiple lockdown-breaking incidents. In total, 126 fines were handed out. A full report by Sue Gray, a senior civil servant, is expected to be published imminently, which MPs believe could be more damaging for the prime minister. Many Tories have already called for him to quit.Parliament's Privileges Committee is also due to begin an investigation into whether he knowingly misled MPs by denying knowledge of the parties. That would be a breach of the ministerial code – usually a resigning matter. Johnson repeatedly insisted that he was unaware of any lockdown breaches and that he had been assured "that there was no party and that no Covid rules were broken". He also said that "all the evidence I can see is that people in this building have stayed within the rules." Boris Johnson talks to attendees of a lockdown-breaching gatheringITV NewsAngela Rayner, Labour's deputy leader, said: "Boris Johnson said repeatedly that he knew nothing about law-breaking – there's no doubt now, he lied. Boris Johnson made the rules, and then broke them."The Prime Minister has demeaned his office. The British people deserve better. While Labour has a plan for tackling the cost-of-living crisis, Tory MPs are too busy defending the indefensible actions of Boris Johnson."A Number 10 spokesman told Insider: "The Cabinet Office and the Met Police have had access to all information relevant to their investigations, including photographs."The Met have concluded their investigation and Sue Gray will publish her report in the coming days, at which point the Prime Minister will address Parliament in full."Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: dealsSource: nytMay 23rd, 2022

Zelensky Urges ‘Maximum’ Sanctions on Russia in Davos Talk

The Ukrainian leader also pushed for the complete withdrawal of foreign companies from Russia Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky called for “maximum” sanctions against Russia during a virtual speech Monday to corporate executives, government officials and other elites on the first day of the World Economic Forum gathering in Davos. He said sanctions need to go further to stop Russia’s aggression, including an oil embargo, blocking all of its banks and cutting off trade with Russia completely. He said that it’s a precedent that would work for decades to come. “This is what sanctions should be: They should be maximum, so that Russia and every other potential aggressor that wants to wage a brutal war against its neighbor would clearly know the immediate consequences of their actions,” Zelensky said through a translator. [time-brightcove not-tgx=”true”] He also pushed for the complete withdrawal of foreign companies from Russia to prevent supporting its war and said Ukraine needs at least $5 billion in funding per month. “The amount of work is enormous: we have more than half a trillion of dollars in losses, tens of thousands of facilities were destroyed. We need to rebuild entire cities and industries,” Zelensky said, coming days after the Group of Seven leading economies agreed to provide $19.8 billion in economic aid. He said that if Ukraine had “received 100% of our needs at once, back in February” in terms of weapons, funding, political support and sanctions against Russia, “the result would be tens of thousands of lives saved.” Zelensky’s speech is a key focus Monday at Davos, the village in the Swiss Alps that has been transformed into a glitzy venue for the four-day confab ostensibly dedicated to making the world a better place. The event is resuming in person after a two-year hiatus because of the COVID-19 pandemic, which also delayed this year’s meeting from its usual winter slot. For the attendees, there’s much to tackle amid soaring food and fuel prices, Russia’s war in Ukraine, climate change, inequality and persistent health crises. But it’s hard to predict if the high-minded discussions will yield substantial announcements that make headway on the world’s most pressing challenges. “This war is really a turning point of history, and it will reshape our political and our economic landscape in the coming years,” said the event’s founder, Klaus Schwab. Zelensky, who received a standing ovation after this remarks, reiterated that Russia was blocking critical food supplies, such as wheat and sunflower oil, from leaving its ports. Ukraine, along with Russia, is a major exporter of wheat, barley and sunflower oil, and the interruption of those supplies is threatening food insecurity in countries in Africa, the Middle East and parts of Asia that rely on those affordable supplies. The head of the U.N.’s World Food Program said in a panel that “the failure to open the ports is a declaration of war on global food systems.” He told The Associated Press that the region’s farmers “grow enough food to feed 400 million people.” If such supplies remain off the market, the world could face a food availability problem in the next 10 to 12 months, and “that is going to be hell on earth,” WFP Executive Director David Beasley told the AP in an interview. He warned that there are “49 million (people) knocking on famine’s door right now in 43 countries,” including Yemen, Lebanon, Mali, Burkina Faso, Egypt, Congo, Guatemala and El Salvador. Beasley called on the world’s top mega-billionaires to aid efforts to prevent hunger: “The world is in real serious trouble. This is not rhetoric and B.S. Step up now, because the world needs you.” Besides Zelensky’s speech, a sizable Ukrainian government delegation is attending in person, making their case for more Western support in the country’s fight against Russia. Kyiv Mayor Vitali Klitschko pointed to the audience during a panel with his brother, Wladimir, and said, “We are defending you personally.” “We are fighting, first of all, for values” and to be part of the democratic world, Vitali Klitschko said. “And right now everyone has to be proactive because we pay for that—the biggest prize, human lives every day.” Russian officials have not been invited to Davos this year, with what was dubbed the “Russia House” having been transformed by critics—including Ukrainian tycoon Victor Pinchuk and the country’s Foreign Ministry—into what they call the “Russia War Crimes House.” The venue features photos of crimes and cruelties that Russian forces are accused of perpetuating. Meanwhile, the head of the International Energy Agency urged countries and investors not to see energy shocks from the war as a reason to increase fossil fuel investments—connecting the invasion to another major theme at Davos, climate and environmental issues. “We should not try to justify a new wave of long-term fossil fuel investments on the basis of what (Russian President Vladimir) Putin did,” Fatih Birol said on an energy panel. Instead, efficiencies, such as reducing leaked methane and even lowering thermostats by a few degrees this winter in Europe would help ensure adequate energy supply. Russia is a major supplier of oil and natural gas, with the invasion sending European countries scrambling to reduce their reliance on Moscow’s supplies. —Additional reporting by Kelvin Chan and Peter Prengaman from Davos......»»

Category: topSource: timeMay 23rd, 2022

Sri Lanka is running out of food, medicine, gas, and money — but the tourists just keep coming

"I was just there, didn't even notice. I had an amazing three weeks," one woman wrote on Facebook in response to a question about protests and safety. Burned buses near Sri Lanka's former prime minister Mahinda Rajapaksa's official residence, a day after they were torched by protesters in Colombo on May 10, 2022.NurPhoto / Contributor / Getty Images Sri Lanka is experiencing its worst economic crisis on record. Grocery-store shelves are empty, medicine is running out, and people are waiting hours to get gas. Even so, tourists keep coming — and the locals keep encouraging it. Maumita Sarkar flew from India to Sri Lanka in mid-April. It was Sinhala New Year when she arrived, which is traditionally a time of renewal and celebration: People clean their homes, carry out rituals, and set off firecrackers. But by April this year, Sri Lankans were taking to the streets to protest soaring prices, food and gas shortages, and a life they could no longer afford to keep living.Against the backdrop of growing discontent in the country, Sarkar considered her travel options. The blogger spoke to the Sri Lankan embassy, a friend who had recently returned from the country, and a handful of local travel agents. They all assured her that things were, as she put, "absolutely fine."She decided to go forward with her trip."As soon as I landed there, the airport had so many foreigners, it seemed all normal," Sarkar told Insider."While the media kept showing all the protests, I saw nothing except a handful of people in Colombo," Sarkar said of her impressions of the Sri Lankan capital. "The whole place was very calm."She spent the next 10 days traveling around the country, taking trains across Sri Lanka's lush landscapes, catching sunsets in the beach town of Mirissa, and Instagramming her way through mangrove wetlands and sacred temples.Even as the country buckles under the weight of its worst economic crisis on record, tourists continue to flock to Sri Lanka. While photos from the capital show the burned-out shells of cars and buses toppled over into lakes, international visitors continue to fly in, hoping to take advantage of a cheap tourism market still in post-pandemic recovery mode.In April, the Sri Lankan rupee hit a record low; food, medicine, and gas are in short supply; and the country is seeing rolling blackouts. On May 10, the government ordered troops to shoot anyone on sight if they were seen destroying property.And still, the tourists just keep coming.Motorists queue along a road to buy petrol at a Ceylon petroleum corporation fuel station in Colombo on May 17, 2022.ISHARA S. KODIKARA / Contributor / Getty ImagesA country in crisisIn recent years, Sri Lanka's relationship with tourism has been one of turbulent symbiosis. The island nation off the southeastern tip of India is home to 22 million people. With its white-sand beaches, temple ruins, and tea plantations, it draws in tourists searching for adventure, spirituality, and off-the-beaten path itineraries. The country's tourism scene had been on a steady, decade-long upward trend that culminated in 2.5 million internationals arrivals in 2018, data from the World Bank shows. In 2019, before the pandemic, travel and tourism accounted for 12% of Sri Lanka's GDP.With its white-sand beaches, temple ruins, and tea plantations, Sri Lanka draws in tourists searching for adventure, spirituality, and off-the-beaten path itineraries.NurPhoto / Contributor / Getty ImagesBut on Easter Sunday in April 2019, coordinated attacks carried out by suicide bombers across the country killed more than 250 people. In the immediate aftermath of the attacks, international arrivals to the country dropped by as much as 70%. Arrivals in 2019 fell to 2 million and plummeted to barely more than half a million in 2020 as the pandemic gripped the world, per the World Bank.Sanjaya Sri Chandra Kumara is a Sri Lankan who, first as a tuk-tuk driver and now as a tour operator, has had a front seat to the country's many tourism swings."When I started in 2017, tourism was a good job, it was my only income," he told Insider. "The money was good everywhere in Sri Lanka. We had a good life.""In 2019 after the terror attack, tourism was torn down again, but all over the world people wanted to help Sri Lanka, so people wanted to visit," Kumara added.The country's dependent relationship with tourism, as evidenced by authorities' interaction with travelers, is still on display in the current crisis."There is a police presence and road blocks occasionally. We have been stopped once," Clair Louise Todd, a Brit currently on a monthlong trip across Sri Lanka, told Insider. "The police were very friendly, even happy to have a photo taken."Now, as many countries across the globe reopen their borders and reap the financial benefits of welcoming back tourists, Sri Lanka is facing a fresh crisis. With its foreign reserves at a record low, the country is on the brink of bankruptcy, and the economic crisis has become a political crisis. The country's leadership has declared a state of emergency twice since the beginning of April. Sri Lanka is also facing a food crisis, with imports down and domestically grown food on a decline thanks to a fertilizer ban.People have taken to the streets by the thousands in protest. As protests deepened and the death toll rose to five with another 190 people injured, Prime Minister Mahinda Rajapaksa resigned from his post on May 9. On May 14, Ranil Wickremesinghe, the newly elected prime minister, told the BBC he would ensure families get three meals a day — but also said the crisis was going to get worse before it got better. Three days later, he said the country was down to its last day of gasoline.Sri Lankan university students run away from water cannon and tear gas as the protesters clash with police against the government near the president Gotabaya Rajapaksa's official residence at Colombo, Sri Lanka. 19 May 2022.NurPhoto / Contributor / Getty Images"This has been building for years and years," said Gary Bowerman, a travel analyst who runs a weekly podcast called the South East Asia Travel Show. "It's the perfect storm after COVID-19. Sri Lanka hasn't had any foreign exchange reserves for three or four years. The year before COVID there were the bombings, which really hit tourism hard, and tourism is such a vital source of foreign exchange in Sri Lanka."Bowerman stressed that government mismanagement is at the root of the problem: "It's been debt mismanagement for decades."'I was just there, didn't even notice'But you probably wouldn't glean the severity of the situation from looking at the Facebook groups where travelers swap tips.One of these, called "Sri Lanka Travel and Tourism," has 47,000 followers. The page keeps lighting up with comments from people trying to suss out whether or not they should currently visit Sri Lanka, looking for rides out of the airport, and seeking advice on getting gas in the fuel-strapped country."I'm thinking of buying tickets this week for 20-30 June. I read on the internet that there is no electricity in the country, there is a curfew. The prime minister resigned today," wrote a woman from Turkey on May 10. "Can the tourists currently in the country provide information about this?""Is it possible (through Uber) to go to one city to another due to the petrol shortage?" a French member of the group asked on May 17.The comments on these questions are full of travelers chiming in with their own advice, name-dropping gas stations and convenience stores where they managed to refuel. Consistently, tourists and locals alike encourage people to keep visiting."I was just there, didn't even notice. I had an amazing three weeks," one woman wrote on May 11 in response to another user's question about protests and safety. "There are protests but as soon as you're out of Colombo you're in a holiday bubble."A series of disconnectsThe story of traveling and living in Sri Lanka right now reads like a series of disconnects. Visitors don't describe the same reality locals do; some locals say they don't see the version of life the media is portraying.Bowerman, the travel analyst, said the disconnect could be partially attributed to geography. "Sri Lanka is very small, and the protests do seem to be contained in the capital of Colombo. Tourists tend to head out of Colombo and not spend huge amounts of time there.""If you head down to one of the resorts in the south of the country, you may not notice it quite so much," he added, referring to the shortages and blackouts.Mount Lovina beach, Colombo, Sri Lanka.John Harper / Getty ImagesCaroline Crowder, an American who lives in Singapore and works in education tech, booked a flight to Sri Lanka in January. While her visit ended before the protests began, she said she experienced fuel and food shortages even back then."Every place I ate had something crossed off their menu that they couldn't provide because they couldn't get the food imported," Crowder told Insider. "At a nice Japanese restaurant at Galle Face mall, they had no liquor and no meats with the exception of chicken."Since then, things have gotten worse.Sarkar, the blogger, left the country in May. "The only change I had to do in itinerary was to take the shortest route to optimise fuel usage," Sarkar said of her trip.Soldiers stand guard at a road checkpoint in Colombo on May 11, 2022. Sri Lankan police have been ordered to go on the offensive and use live ammunition to stop rioting.ISHARA S. KODIKARA / Contributor / Getty ImagesLike Sarkar, Clair Louise Todd, the Brit who described the police presence, researched the trip before going through with it. Todd and her partner arrived in Sri Lanka on May 10 and found protests, burning hotels, and looting: "We were quite shocked and were stopped four times in Negombo by protesters as we were traveling to our first hotel."The couple rented a tuk-tuk for the entirety of their trip. While gas lines can stretch kilometers long, Todd said locals keep helping them out. In the central town of Dambulla, the owner of a closed garage gave them fuel out of his own car; elsewhere, they bought five liters off a local man who had some gas to spare."Another time, a garage that was closed had a small amount so they let us fill up," Todd said. "Within minutes, hundreds of people started queuing when they saw us filling up. The owner closed up again and told everyone, 'no more fuel.'"Authorities urge travelers to reconsider their plansThe US Embassy has been publishing demonstration alerts on its site consistently since the beginning of April. It issued a level 3 "reconsider travel" advisory in mid-April due to fuel and medicine shortages. As of mid-May, countries including the UK, Ireland, and New Zealand have all advised against non-essential travel to Sri Lanka."If you're a tourist and you're thinking, 'well, I can help the country, I can bring in my dollars,' there is an element of truth in there, but there are also a number of dangers," Bowerman said."From a tourism standpoint, there are a lot of issues you need to think about, and this is definitely going to get worse," he added.Some travelers say they are changing their plans. A woman from Greece in the Sri Lanka Facebook group told Insider she's leaning towards canceling the flight she'd booked for the end of May, and some Facebook commenters are suggesting travelers cancel or delay their trips.MAY 19: Sri Lankan riot police officers fire tear gas and water cannons during the university students anti-government protest amid the economic crisis on May 19, 2022 in Colombo, Sri Lanka.Buddhika Weerasinghe / Contributor / Getty ImagesMeanwhile, multiple Sri Lankans described a state of crisis that's bled into their own lives — but it's not stopping them from welcoming tourists.For some, it's practical.Kumara, the tuk-tuk driver, said that having tourists in his car is one of the only ways he has a shot at getting gas or getting through protestor-blocked roads: "When I have tourists in my car, they give me a chance, every place in Sri Lanka — but only when tourists in my car. If I go alone, they don't give me a chance."Others view tourism as the way out of the country's economic crisis.Sachintha Lakpriya, a Sri Lankan who described himself as a full-time traveler, said he's spent as much as six hours waiting in gas lines: "In some cases, despite waiting in line for a long time, there were times when I finally had to go home without gas or fuel."Even so, Lakpriya said he was "really happy" to see tourists in Sri Lanka right now: "Currently we are facing lack of foreign reserves, and tourism will help us to raise them again."Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderMay 23rd, 2022

Bullwhip Effect Ends With A Bang: Why Prices Are About To Fall Off A Cliff

Bullwhip Effect Ends With A Bang: Why Prices Are About To Fall Off A Cliff It was exactly a year ago, when Deutsche Bank strategist Luke Templeman said that amid the panicked scramble by US wholesalers to stock up on scarce inventory as a result of snarled supply chains, it was only a matter of time before the US economy was roiled by a "bullwhip" (or whiplash) effect. Some details for those unfamiliar with this concept: the bullwhip effect occurs when a drop in customer demand causes retailers to under stock. In turn, wholesalers respond to a lack of retail orders by understocking themselves. That then causes manufacturers to slow production. Eventually the reverse occurs. As customer demand comes back, retailers quickly order more goods, often too much, and wholesalers and factories are caught short. Shortages occur, prices increase. Eventually production ramps up at levels that are far beyond equilibrium levels and this cascades down the chain. These violent swings in availability of goods then continue back and forth until an equilibrium is eventually established. Last May, the beginning of the bullwhip effect was seen in the way retailers and wholesalers managed their inventory levels since the outbreak of covid. Specifically, retailers kept a supply of inventory at a relatively constant level, above that of wholesalers. As covid hit, supply chains from Asia were cut which caused a fright amongst retailers in the West who immediately began to put in orders for more inventory. A whole lot more of it. Subsequent lockdowns saw demand plummet and inventories along with it. In both cases, the actions of wholesalers followed those of retailers by a month or so. In the context of a starting bullwhip effect, Templeman's conclusion was accurate: "As inventory levels have fallen to multi-decade lows at retailers, there are likely many businesses that will not have enough inventory to satisfy customers as economies recover and pent-up demand is unleashed. This is particularly the case as retailers are far more reliant on just-in-time supply chains than they were in decades past." Among other things, this is also why last May is when a historic bout of inflation was unleashed (one which not a single career economist or Fed official predicted correctly) as collapsing inventories and lack of restocking by jammed up supply chains meant that prices for goods would keep rising and rising and rising. And they did. Of course, for much of the past year, the big story was the congestion at west coast ports due to both external (China covid breakouts, port closures, changing legislation) and internal factors (lack of port workers, downstream supply jams including trucking and trains, etc) but that has now changed and as the latest Supply Chain Congestion Monitor report from JPMorgan (available to pro subscribers in the usual place) shows, the number of ships at anchor and on approach to L.A. and Long Beach has collapsed since the January high mark, and is back to levels first seen at the start of the covid pandemic. Why does this matter? Well, for a simple but critical reason: if one year ago we saw the hyperinflationary start of the bullwhip effect, we have entered the terminal phase of the "bullwhip effect", where plunging inventory-to-sales ratios reverse violently higher, where supply chains unclog suddenly and rapidly amid a sudden chill in the economy, and where prices for so-called "core" goods collapse almost overnight, even as non-core prices (food and energy) explode even higher. This is how Freight Waves discussed this effect on Friday when commenting on the recent dire earnings (and outlook) from the largest US retailers such as Walmart and Target, which saw their prices crater as management warned that inflation is now crippling demand and snuffing profit margins: "furniture, home furnishings and appliances, building materials and garden equipment, and a category known as “other general merchandise,” which includes Walmart and Target, among others, reported higher inventory-to-sales ratios, according to government data analyzed by Michigan State." How much higher? A quick look at the latest data reveals the following stunning chart of the Inventory to Sales ratio at the Walmarts of the world at the highest level since just before the deflationary flashbang that was the Global Financial Crisis: Think: widespread inventory liquidations. As Freight Waves continues, "the change has happened fast, according to Jason Miller, logistics professor at MSU’s Eli Broad College of Business. As of November, inventory-to-sales ratios were at pre-COVID levels, Miller said. They have since exploded upward. Miller said he expects a “cooldown” in retailer order volumes, even if inflation-adjusted sales stay constant, as retailers look to reduce their existing stock." And here is the punchline: Miller "also expects retailers to launch major discounting programs to expedite the inventory burn." In short: we are about to see the mother of all liquidations as retailers scramble to unload inventory in a time off rampant demand destruction. The immediate result is the freight recession that was first (correctly) forecast by FreightWaves CEO Craig Fuller at the end of March and which is now coming true as the crashing stock price of countless trucker and other freight stocks has demonstrated. Some more on this: high inventory levels are an expected occurrence and should be welcomed. In a Tuesday note, Amit Mehrotra, transport analyst at Deutsche Bank, said rising buffer stock is part of retailers’ desire to have goods available when consumers scan the shelves. Mehrotra added, however, that the data points translate into a likely slowdown in freight flows in the coming months and quarters. He said that a recession is already priced into most transportation equities, noting that the shares of most trucking companies are higher over the past 30 days while the broader market is about 7% lower. The latest data also confirms what FreightWaves' Fuller said in a subsequent post when he wondered if "Deflation Was Next" as "the Bullwhip was about do the Fed's job on inflation." To be sure, not every product will see its price cut: commodities, whose bullwhip effect take much longer to manifest itself, usually lasting several years in either direction, are only just starting to see their price cycle higher. However, other products - like those carried by the Walmarts and Targets of the world - are about to see a deflationary plunge the likes of which we have not seen since the global financial crisis as retailers commence a voluntary destocking wave the likes of which have not been seen in over a decade. Tyler Durden Sun, 05/22/2022 - 21:45.....»»

Category: blogSource: zerohedgeMay 22nd, 2022

Bloated Inventories Hit Walmart, Target And Other Retailers" Profits, Trucking Demand

Bloated Inventories Hit Walmart, Target And Other Retailers' Profits, Trucking Demand By Mark Solomon of FreightWaves There’s little in retailing that Walmart and Target aren’t prepared to handle. So it was jarring that over a 24-hour period the two scions of the trade posted weak first-quarter profits that appeared to blindside management at both. Part of the bottom-line blowup was due to fuel, which soared to record highs following Russia’s Feb. 24 invasion of Ukraine. Part of it was due to margin pressures caused by an unfavorable sales mix as consumers shifted their buying from higher-margin goods like electronics to less profitable items like groceries. An extension of that was an overshoot of inventory-stocking activity, which came back to bite the retailers after waning concerns over the COVID-19 pandemic pushed more consumer buying toward services and “experiences” and away from goods. There’s little that retailers can do about fuel prices. It can be argued they should have expected the pandemic-driven buying spree from March 2020 until the end of 2021 to peter out and that they should have planned their inventory strategies accordingly. Yet demand forecasting has always been a tough nut to crack, and the market is where it is. Inventory build may also have been the result of supply chain delays at the start of the year that resulted in some late deliveries of impaired freight. Inventory levels as of March, when compared to activity in March 2019 after inventories stabilized following a major pull-forward in 2018 ahead of the Trump administration’s China tariffs, produce a mixed bag of results. Unsurprisingly given the current dearth of motor vehicles, the ratio of vehicle and parts inventories to sales has fallen considerably, according to federal government data analyzed by Michigan State University. Apparel inventories to sales also declined over those periods, as did e-commerce.  However, furniture, home furnishings and appliances, building materials and garden equipment, and a category known as “other general merchandise,” which includes Walmart and Target, among others, reported higher inventory-to-sales ratios, according to government data analyzed by Michigan State.  For the latter sectors, the change has happened fast, according to Jason Miller, logistics professor at MSU’s Eli Broad College of Business. As of November, inventory-to-sales ratios were at pre-COVID levels, Miller said. They have since exploded upward. Miller said he expects a “cooldown” in retailer order volumes, even if inflation-adjusted sales stay constant, as retailers look to reduce their existing stock. He also expects retailers to launch major discounting programs to expedite the inventory burn. Fewer orders within certain categories bodes ill for carriers whose networks are strongly tied to inbound lanes to retailers’ distribution centers, Miller said. In a Friday note, Bascome Majors, analyst for Susquehanna Investment Group, said that the spread between year-over-year sales and inventories — a rough barometer of the impact of higher sales on restocking activity — turned positive in spring 2020 and accelerated in favorable territory for four consecutive quarters. Gradually, however, the spread has turned negative, according to Majors. In this year’s first quarter, inventory growth exceeded sales growth by 200 basis points. The recent surge in inflation, Majors wrote, has severely distorted inventory and sales trends. Freight recession priced in? For some, high inventory levels are an expected occurrence and should be welcomed. In a Tuesday note, Amit Mehrotra, transport analyst at Deutsche Bank, said rising buffer stock is part of retailers’ desire to have goods available when consumers scan the shelves. Mehrotra added, however, that the data points translate into a likely slowdown in freight flows in the coming months and quarters.  He said that a recession is already priced into most transportation equities, noting that the shares of most trucking companies are higher over the past 30 days while the broader market is about 7% lower. In an unusual world, Walmart, Target and other retailers are likely to turn to the one area where they’ve traditionally found leverage: their shipping bill. During the quarter, Target faced freight and transportation costs that were hundreds of millions of dollars above already-elevated expectations, COO John Mulligan said on the company’s Wednesday analyst call. It was essentially the same story at Walmart. Retailers’ efforts to rein in transportation costs will translate into an unprecedented third and even fourth round of truckload contract negotiations, with users getting more aggressive in their bids to extract greater cost savings, according to industry experts.  The discussions could get contentious. In a LinkedIn post on Friday, Jason Ickert, president of trucking firm Sonwil Logistics, said a large shipper that Ickert wouldn’t identify suggested on a conference call this week with truckload carriers that they were “artificially propping up their rates” above accepted market levels. The shipper “stated clearly” that the carriers were expected to adjust their rates during what would be an “unprecedented and unplanned” third round of request for proposals, Ickert wrote. A potential shift to intermodal Pressures to drive down transport expenses will also trigger increased interest in intermodal, whose all-in costs are cheaper relative to contract truckload than at any time since 2018. Intermodal rates have risen at a slower pace than truckload contract rates, a turnabout from the 2019 freight recession when higher intermodal rates allowed over-the-road transport to gain market share. The shift to intermodal, if it happens, would benefit the railroads and intermodal marketers like J.B. Hunt Transport Services, Hub Group and Schneider. However, experts caution that intermodal capacity remains constrained, as does warehouse space needed to store the stuff.  “Walmart, Target and other retailers will soak up every drop of intermodal capacity that Hunt, Hub, Schneider and the rails deliver in 2022 and probably in 2023,” said Majors of Susquehanna Investment Group. The elevated level of activity, he said, should occur even if retailers are working through a multiquarter process of de-stocking. Tyler Durden Sun, 05/22/2022 - 20:30.....»»

Category: blogSource: zerohedgeMay 22nd, 2022

Home Depot just crushed earnings. We visited a store and saw first-hand why.

Rising home prices are good for Home Depot's business because homeowners invest in improving their homes. Mary Meisenzahl/Insider Home Depot reported a successful first quarter with $1.4 billion in sales growth year over year. The chain caters to both professionals and home improvement DIYers. Executives say rising home prices are good for Home Depot's business because homeowners invest in improving their homes. Home Depot just reported a successful quarter with $38 billion in sales, blowing away analyst expectations. I headed to my local store to understand why it's continuing to dominate.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderSource: CNBCThe parking lot was busy on a Tuesday afternoon, and as I walked in I noticed a sign directing curbside pickup customers.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderMany retailers, including Home Depot, added or expanded curbside offerings that experts credit with helping them survive the pandemic.ALEX EDELMAN/AFP/Getty ImagesSource: InsiderWalking up to the store, I was struck by how much greenery was everywhere, from flowering plants to vegetable seedlings.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderHome Depot, at least at my location, essentially doubles in size in the spring, when the nursery spills outside into a large uncovered area, plus the gardening section and in front of the store.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderHome Depot is typically associated with home improvement, but there was plenty to look at for a completely non-handy person with a green thumb.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderPlants were arranged by variety and growing zone, which is helpful for anyone from experts to novices.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderThe rows and rows of plants looked nearly endless.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderThe planting season is important for Home Depot. CEO and president Ted Decker said the the company expects " tremendous" sales in the garden business to report next quarter.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderAs you walk through the patio plant area, you enter the garden section, which is covered but still open to the outside.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderThat section stocks all kinds of gardening supplies, like pots, fertilizers, and garden hoes.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderThat section also contains mulch and other landscaping supplies.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderThe garden center also has its own cashier, so customers only interested in the outdoor area don't have to go in the main store.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderNext I walked into the main part of the store.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderHome Depot is a huge warehouse store with dozens of aisles stacked to the ceiling with home improvement supplies.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderAisles are divided by the area of the home they pertain to.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderBesides standard light bulbs, all different kinds of light fixtures hang from the tall shelves on display.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderYou could get everything to outfit a house besides furniture there, from flooring to ceiling light fixtures.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderCarpet samples are available to touch and make color comparisons.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderThe same goes for flooring, which has multiple aisles dedicated to the different types.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderThere are more practical, less design-oriented elements of home improvement too, like caulking.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderA section in the center of the store is dedicated to appliances, with mock setups showing how different cupboards, cabinets, and light fixtures look alongside them.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderThere are also ovens, microwaves, and dishwashers.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderSide by side refrigerators make it easy to compare specifications and find the right one.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderHome Depot replicates that with washing machines and other appliances, with desks for sales people to work with customers nearby.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderThe far end of the store seems more oriented towards contractors and other home improvement professionals, with aisles containing piles and piles of wood.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderThere are carts and ladders all over.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderLumber prices have been highly impacted by inflation, and Decker said in the earnings call that he expects lumber sales to go up in the second quarter.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderHome Depot markets and sells to both professional and amateur home improvement customers.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderFor both types of customers, the "vast majority" of purchases are for homes, rather than rentals or other projects, Decker said.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderOver 90% of DIY customers are homeowners, Executive VP and CFO Richard McPhail said in the call.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderClimbing home prices are good for Home Depot's bottom line, McPhail said.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderAccording to McPhail, Home Depot's homeowner customers are more likely to invest in improving their homes as values increase, and prices have increased at the fastest rate in over 40 years.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderSource: InsiderEnd caps and smaller sections near the checkout seem more aimed towards amateurs, like different types of toolsets.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderThere's a selection of vacuums in that area, too.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderAcross from the vacuums, there are push lawn mowers out on display.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderThere are also a few patio furniture displays set up, with other accessories like fire pits.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderThe grills are lined up beside the lawn furniture, showing off how a backyard could be arranged.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderAfter my visit, I can see why the chain is so successful.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderThe chain is able to successfully appeal to both professionals and amateurs by having small, accessible displays and higher-end materials.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderThere were many Home Depot workers around the store available to answer questions and help customers, which likely also makes it less intimidating for the DIY customers.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderIn the future, however, some experts are predicting a slowdown coming for the housing market, which could have an impact on Home Depot's bread and butter business of home improvement.Mary Meisenzahl/InsiderSource: CNBCDo you have a story to share about a retail or restaurant chain? Email this reporter at mmeisenzahl@businessinsider.com.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderMay 20th, 2022