Zeroes: it sucks to be a teen, even with powers

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Scott Westerfeld's YA canon is huge and varied, from the Uglies books to the excellent vampire parasitology book Peeps to the dieselpunk Clankers trilogy, and the new one, Zeroes, breaks new ground still: it's a collaboration with Margo Lanagan and Deborah Biancotti about teens with powers.

Step Aside, Pops: a new Hark! A Vagrant! collection that delights and dazzles

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Canadian historian turned webcomics god Kate Beaton is back with her second Hark! A Vagrant! collection: Step Aside, Pops. Never before has history been so bitterly funny.

Ugly camera strap like your dad's? $6

Ugly Camera Strap

If you've gone to great lengths, spending big bucks to get a new digital camera that looks like an old film slr, you might as well have the ugly camera strap to match!

This $6 strap from Meco is perfect. These are sturdy, but gaudy, masterpieces of a certainly-not-forgotten-age. That age was documented in Kodak Gold by your Mom or Dad, with a Nikon FMNT or Nikkormat that dangled from a Joseph and the Technicolor Coat-styled camera strap just like this one!

Heck they even call it a "neck belt."

Vintage Soft Multi-Color Universal Camcorder Camera Shoulder Strap Neck Belt via Amazon Read the rest

LEGO Mystery Machine

LEGO Scooby-Doo 75902 the Mystery Machine Building Kit

It is coolest van a bunch of meddling high school kids ever had! The minifigs are awesome too.

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Enchantress, book one in James Maxwell's Evermen series

James Maxwell's Enchantress is an engaging, dense fantasy that drew me right in.

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Little Robot: nearly wordless kids' comic from Zita the Spacegirl creator

Kid or adult, parent or not, you should already be reading Ben "Zita the Spacegirl" Hatke for some of the most rollicking, science-fictional kid-friendly comics between two covers, but now you've got no excuse: Little Robot, a nearly wordless graphic novel about a little girl and a fugitive robot, will fill you with terror, laughter, wonder and joy.

Austin Grossman's CROOKED: the awful, cthulhoid truth about Richard Nixon

Austin Grossman's first-person secret memoir of Richard Nixon sounds like a Lovecraftian gag, but Crooked is a brooding, bitter Cold War novel that gets deep into the psyche of "the funniest president that ever lived."

Tales of the Gold Monkey, another lost tv treasure

Tales of the Gold Monkey: The Complete Series

Join a former flying tiger, his awesome dog and a Grumman G-21 Goose as he explores the south Pacific, fights Nazis, and has a broken relationship with a pretty singer/spy. This should have been my life, not a one season tv show you've never heard of!

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Soda Pop Soldier, a novel of what is far too likely to come, by Nick Cole

I remember the Cola Wars, I lost so many friends. Nick Cole offers a fantastic look at the future of advertising.

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Using magician's thread to make a dancing cane

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I wanted to make my own dancing cane. All you need is a drill, some magicians thread, and a far lighter cane than mine.

Making a dancing cane is pretty simple. As the video above says, just drill a tiny hole about 1/2" above the balance point of your cane and tie on a piece of high strength, nearly invisible magician's thread. Make a loop on the other end of the thread for your thumb, and let the fun begin.

I tried this on a regular walking cane. It is far too heavy to manipulate without lots of practice, and will bruise or break things when mistakes are made. I suggest making your own from doweling, as suggested in the video.

Making the loop slightly over-sized makes changing hands easier.

The wax that comes with this magician's thread is useful for making other, very light objects dance. Like a dollar bill!

Magic Makers Magician's Wax and Invisible Thread via Amazon Read the rest

The Pop Up Art Book

The Pop Up Art book mixes street, comics and fine art with insane paper craft! Amazing artists works are re-imagined in 3D, and explode off the page!

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The best 'budget' barbecue grill I've found: Char-Broil Performance TRU Infrared 480

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I don't expect a $200 grill to last a lifetime. But it has to cook meats and veggies evenly, with good temperature control. And I found a pretty affordable grill that does that reliably.

Baa Baa Black Sheep (Black Sheep Squadron) vol. 1

Baa Baa Black Sheep - Volume 1

"We are poor little lambs, who have lost our way. Baa. Baa. Baa." I loved this show so much as a kid, the opening credits give me chills.

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AboveTEK's crazy useful smart phone stand

A Gumby-style bendable cable mated to an iPhone grip, and a clip that can affix nearly anywhere, make this stand super useful!

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Blue Plague: The Fall, a prepper fantasy

Blue Plague

Preppers vs zombies is a genre sure to keep me laughing. Blue Plague: The Fall, by Thomas A. Watson, is ridiculous and brutal.

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Sena's low-profile bluetooth motorcycle helmet headset

I recently installed Sena's SMH10R bluetooth audio system in one of my motorcycle helmets. Now, it is hard to ride without it!

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Cheap set of jeweler's precision screwdrivers

Jeweler's tools

When I need to tighten my glasses, or put batteries in a children's toy, I can never find a tiny screwdriver. This $2 set is a steal!

With No.1 and 0 phillips heads, 3mm, 2.4mm, 1.8mm and 1.4mm flat head screwdrivers this kit has me covered. I actually ordered two, one I keep on my desk and the other in my tool bag.

If I make sure to put them back in the plastic case, I may not lose them.

Darice Precision Screwdriver Set via Amazon Read the rest

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