This holiday season, we’re asking the toughest people to shop for — from a grandmother to a 16-year-old to a cat lady to a gourmand — the simple question: “What do you want for the holidays?” Here, Bernie supporter Blake Rego (who still has a Bernie bumper sticker on his car) on his highly curated wish list.
Tell me, what do you most want for the holidays?
One big-ticket item on my list is the Nest, which is now in its third-generation model. It keeps the house comfortable and also reduces the amount of energy it uses. The environment’s an important issue, obviously, so anything I can do to help it out without having to think about it would be a good thing.
What else do you have your eye on?
I saw on Kickstarter this piece of luggage that would actually be awesome. It’s the Trunkster, and it’s a zipperless piece of luggage — you open and close it using the sliding top of the case. It’s GPS-enabled and connected to your phone so it’ll tell you where it is if you lose it, and you can lock it remotely just in case. The app also tells you whether your trunk is overweight, and the luggage can charge your phone battery, too [Editor’s note: Away and BlueSmart have similar options, too.]
What else do you want?
Well there’s something else that I found on Kickstarter that would be a great gift, too. It’s the Big Skinny wallet, and it’s pretty much the thinnest wallet that exists on the market. It takes up practically zero space when it lies flat but holds everything you need it to.
Was a fat wallet a problem for you?
My wife would bother me about the wallet I used to have because the bulge of my old one would hurt her thigh and bruise her, so I saw this wallet and it’s really changed my life. It’s so thin that there’s no more jabbing her.
Do you prefer Kickstarter items?
Yeah, I generally like to support grassroots movements when I can rather than anything that’s been created by some corporation that’s outsourcing everything.
What else do you want?
Well, I’m a cord-cutter so one thing we just bought that I love is the 4th-gen Apple TV that came out last year. I had the Chromecast before, and I just had all these sync and connectivity problems with it and the Apple TV is such a massive upgrade — it lets you download apps and channels instead of having to search for every individual thing. You don’t have to deal with a dumb click wheel anymore because you can just request something through Siri. To go along with that, a Netflix gift card would be nice too.
You don’t have that already?
Well, I do, but it’d be nice to have a year of it for free, you know? I’d use it to watch a lot of documentaries. I love putting on nature documentaries in the background on silent. I actually just watched this doc called Who Killed the Electric Car? all about how large corporations kill progress in the technology sphere, which is so irritating because it sets the country back decades. Have you heard of the new media outlet TYT? The Young Turks?
That sounds vaguely familiar. Is that a record label?
So it’s actually a progressive American news site that I listen to, and it’s really on the forefront of new media — it has a large YouTube presence and it did commentary on debate and election nights. They talk issues that are important. There’s a free site, but there’s also a membership you could buy a Bernie supporter or some swag. I’d be really into that actually.
What else are you into? Maybe just simple day-to-day thing?
Oh, there’s this great reusable water bottle called Lifefactory that my wife and I both have. A reusable water bottle cuts down your plastic consumption — this one is made of glass and has a grippy rubber casing, so you don’t get the metallic aftertaste from aluminum bottles.
Do you drink anything besides water?
I love coffee. You know Keurigs? Well it’s kind of well-known now that the inventor of Keurigs regrets inventing them because of all the waste those K-cups create. A great inexpensive gift would be these reusable K-cups that are on the market now. You can put coffee — freshly ground from your local coffee shop — into them and eliminate your K-cup footprint.
Do you have a Keurig?
I received one as a gift, but I didn’t like the coffee the Keurig produced so I just stopped buying the K-cups. Now I don’t have to stick with them, though these days I am loving my French press.
What kind of thing would you not want?
Anything with the term “Bernie bro.”
Is that a pejorative?
Totally. It infantilizes and discredits the genuine anger people have at Establishment politics by dismissing them as, essentially, crybabies.
That’s totally fair. What would you prefer?
Just Bernie supporter. Bernie supporter is fine. —as told to Jason Chen
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