Holiday Gift Guide
Shopping ideas from the Chronicle News staff
Doormat: Come Back With a Warrant$17.99 (Target), $25 (EvolveFish)
It's become increasingly difficult to determine whether the Fourth Amendment still exists – you know, that paragraph that's supposed to protect individuals from unlawful search and seizure? From the Austin Police Department's use of Austin Energy data to look for potential pot growers to the Texas Attorney General's Office's trolling for potential pedophiles in chat rooms to the Bush administration's love affair with warrantless wiretapping, it can be hard to tell if, in this Digital Age, we actually pay any heed to the text of such analog documents. The Fourth may be an oldie, but it's still a goodie – and you can show your pride in the words of our founders at your front door with this welcome mat available in slightly different versions at both EvolveFish.com and Target.com. It's unlikely to keep the cops out, but it just might inspire a chuckle as they break down your door. – Jordan Smith
Frost/Nixon: The Original Watergate Interviews$24.95, www.frostnixon.com
Finally on DVD, the original 1977 footage that inspired the play that inspired the Oscar-touted movie: 88 minutes of the meeting between disgraced President Richard Nixon and British satirist turned political interviewer David Frost. This still stands as a blast of hard-hitting and unrelenting journalism, exposing the inner workings of the presidency to the level of scrutiny the voters deserve. Start hoping for the John Oliver/George W. Bush interviews sometime around 2039. – Richard Whittaker
Mama Voted for Obamaby Jeremy Zilber
Little Democrats, 24 pp., $8 (paper)
From the author of Why Mommy Is a Democrat comes this colorful new book. "She didn't vote for an aardvark or a red-winged lark or a hammerhead shark," reads a characteristically Seussian passage. "Mama voted for Obama!" Required reading for young children and Alaskan governors alike. – Wells Dunbar
T-Shirts From Futureman Graphics
This gleefully ribald local graphics concern sells several outrageous Ts, such as the anti-condo "Stop Dallasing Austin," the bike-empowering/anti-automobile "My other car is my fucking legs," and "Austin. A little blue oasis ... in a big red state." Available locally at Parts & Labour (1604 S. Congress, www.partsandlabour.com) and online. – W.D.
Evolving Darwin Playset$11.99, www.thinkgeek.com
Don't know what to get for that sassy creationist on your holiday gift list? Or perhaps you're flummoxed with what to buy for your favorite member of the State Board of Education? Look no further, and wonder no more: With the fight over teaching creationism in Texas public schools brewing yet again, now is the perfect time to snap up an Evolving Darwin Playset, which illustrates the theory of evolution in a simple, straightforward (and so tactile!) manner, appropriate for scientifically challenged bipeds of all ages. – J.S.