Written by Lori Thiessen

Sorry about the 2 weeks of silence, kids, but I’m back in the saddle now. Nasty flu. ‘Nuff said.

So we’re heading into the whirlwind of Christmas and if you still have a few gaps in your gift-buying list, I’ve got a few suggestions for you. Naturally, they are aimed at the café commuter or commuters in your life. Instead of the obvious gift card to Starbucks or other coffee shop, these gifts are a bit “out of the box”.


  • Samsonite iMobile Spinner Low end gift – a usb key or thumb drive (approx $25) –  a great useful gift for those on the go.
  • High end gift – Samsonite iMobile Spinner (approx $160)  – help save your special cafe commuter from permanent back problems.

Mountain Equipment Co-op (MEC)

For the cycling cafe commuter

  • Low end gift Led light for nighttime commuting (approx $10) – though this rear light has mixed customer reviews, I think some light is better than no light at all.mec-rear-light3
  • High end gift – cycling jacket (approx $130 (sale price)) – keep your cafe commuter safe and dry during the wet winter months ahead.whoosh-cycling-jacket10

If your beloved café commuter is cycling at night, please do us all a favour and get reflective gear for them if they don’t have some already. Note: pale blue may look cool in the shops but it is almost as bad as black for nighttime visibility. Trust me on this one. Bright yellow and orange are the colours to choose.

Think bright, sunshiny yellow.

Hammacher Schlemmer

Funny name but they carry some extremely funky and functional stuff.best-travel-mug5

  • Low end gift – the travel mug (approx $30) – listed as the best travel mug on the market, it doesn’t leak even when fully inverted. You can drink from anywhere around the rim. It even comes with a strainer for loose tea.

  • High end gift – cordless mobile electronics charger (approx $65) – about the size of a deck of cards, this small charger provides auxiliary power wherever you are.mobile-electric-charger1
    No need for those pesky extension cords!

Think Geek

Think Geek is for the truly geeky on your Christmas list. My husband is an uber-geek according to an online test he took (in which you received extra points for being proud of your high geek score). He bought an Air Cannon or AirZooka which is a simple plastic device for forcing air at a high speed in a particular direction. My life and the lives of our two cats weren’t worth living for the next few months until the novelty wore off. Sigh.lucky_golden_poo1

  • Low end gift – Japanese Lucky poo cell phone charm (approx. $5) – interesting conversation piece for the coffee shop office. Apparently, the kanji symbols for luck and poo are very similar, hence, lucky poo. Keep this clipped onto your cell phone so you only receive lucky calls. No shit.
  • High end gift – Sanctuary Charging Heaven (approx $125) – Trying to keep track of where to re-charge all of your electronics? Here’s a dandy way to keep all your devices in one cozy place.


Think Geek also has a section on their website dedicated to caffeine so here are some strictly caffeine items.

Spazzstick – caffeinated lip balm (approx $3.00) – keep your lips kissably smooth and keep yourself awake when a kiss comes your way! 😉

Not a Paper Cup – looks like a paper cup but it ain’t. It’s a ceramic, dishwasher safe, environmentally friendly version of  the landfill unfriendly paper cup. (approx. $20)


This short list should give you a few gift-buying notions if you’ve run out.

At the risk of sounding twee, I would like to tell you what I think is the best gift of all: happy face time with your friends and family.

Q: What are you giving the café commuters in your life this Christmas?

Thanks for dropping by and I’ll save your seat until next time.