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North Hills Monthly

For the Person Who Has Everything… SkyMall has the Answer

Oct 30, 2015 03:08PM ● By Larry Richert
It certainly isn’t too early to be making a list and checking it twice. The annual Christmas shopping phenomenon is well underway for some diligent do-gooders who always get a jump on the rest of us, but there is still plenty of time to put it off, at least until tomorrow. Bah, humbug!

However, if you are ready to get down to it, consider this—SkyMall. On a recent charter flight in my travels with the Pitt Panther football team, it came to my attention that the United Airlines jet we occupied was not equipped with the latest edition of SkyMall magazine. In fact, there were no editions; none. The horror! Certain unnamed Pitt athletic department personnel were lamenting this air travel travesty. When I asked the flight attendant where the SkyMall magazines were, she appear dumbfounded. She scurried away and never answered my question.

My fear was that head coach Pat Narduzzi would find out that there were no SkyMall magazines, and a negative wave would overtake the team that could alter their focus on the game. With no on-board Wi-Fi, I couldn’t even do a search to find out if a digital version existed. With great anxiety I waited, staring straight ahead into the stratosphere until we landed. Once safely on the ground and on the team bus I found the answer…a full digital version of SkyMall online.

The magazine is actually 25 years old and has been entertaining air travelers for a quarter of a century. A standard part of what’s in the seat pocket behind the emergency diagram and the airline’s magazine, half the fun of looking at the gifts is wondering who actually invents these things. For example, Volt Heated Men’s jackets claim that you get:

“Heat on command without the bulk. Composed with a compressible insulation that is not only very lightweight but is also breathable, water resistant and thermally efficient. By combining these 80 grams of insulation with our Zero Layer heating system, we are able to increase the insulation factor by over 200 percent, making it the best warmth-to-weight jacket in the market place.”

Just what I need for $249…a jacket with a battery that needs to be recharged. With my luck, when I need it the most, it would probably run out of juice.

There is even a section with a list of gifts for the person who has everything, including ‘Man Cave’ signs, one of which costs $160 and is made from the bottom of an old barrel with a personalized place for your man’s name. $160? Really? How about a portable gel pack for your derriere to keep your backside warm for only $79.99? Now we’re talking.

But there’s more…who doesn’t want an engraved NFL barbecue spatula with your favorite team logo? Just $40…what self-respecting griller can live without it? For that special someone, there is the CPAP pillow for $60. Or you can buy a double customized bobble-head set, (his and hers for a mere $199) or a jewelry spa for $99.

The magazine is just too rich and too entertaining to pass up. While I have never purchased anything from SkyMall, I have enjoyed endless hours while flying looking to see what others are obviously clamoring to own. Wait…the perfect gift…I’ve got it…a subscription to the magazine! Now I’m done.