Posted by: CJ | November 28, 2010

Christmas Wanty

Here’s a list of things I’d like for Christmas. Ordered vaguely by category. Except that there are basically two categories.


There are tons of books I want. Most are textbooks that I’ll never finish all the way. C’est la vie. Here are some ideas of ones I’m likely to make the time to use. Titles and authors. I’m not really picky about new or used, but I’d like the most recent edition. Ordering is irrelevant and not meant to convey meaning or information.

Panic On Wallstreet: A History of America’s Financial Disasters by Robert Sobel, Hacking: The Art of Exploitation by Jon Erickson, Spectra and Pseudospectra by L. Trefethen and M. Embree, Teaching Introductory Physics by Arnold B. Arons, Microeconomic Analysis by Hal Varian, The Mythical Man-Month: Essays on Software Engineering by Frederick Brooks, Hakcer’s Delight by Henry Warren, and Counter-Hack Reloaded: A Step-by-step Guide to Computer Attacks and Effective Defenses by E. Skoudis and T. Liston.

Of the above, I’d really like to get either the hacking book by Skoudis & Liston or the hacking book by Erickson. I’ve gotten curious about computer security in the past year. I’d also like the Hal Varian book, but I have no idea if I’ll be able to read it sooner than two years from now. Such is the life of an academic bibliophile.


First off, my shirt size is (apparently) small. My pants size is, depending on brand/cut/etc, around 30-30 or 31-30.

There are a few general things I’ve been wanting. No idea how expensive they are. One is a really nice peacoat. I’d like a new pair of really nice hiking books or very nice running shoes. I’d love a good scarf.

I also like socks from smartwool. Their socks are pretty expensive–between $10 to $20 a pair, but I really like them. Currently the only type of sock I could use is thick, knee-high ones. I find they’re good for cold weather. Smartwool’s PhD line of socks–for snow sports–are what I’m looking for.

Good winter gloves–not too thick either, so I can still manipulate things–would also be good. I have a pair right now, so I’m not cold. I just want really nice gloves that are warm but thin, if such a thing exists.

Another idea is a wind proof but not too hot jacket. Like goretex or something. For bicycling in windy or wet or slightly cold days. I have jackets, but they get too warm and too stuffy on long rides in weather like that.

I suppose when I say good quality stuff, I generally mean stuff like you might get at Cabela’s or REI. Think outdoors speciality store, not Target. (Outdoorsy stuff is west coast chic anyways. Everyone wants to give the impression they do important high tech stuff by day and early evening, some social hobby by night, and are mountain men communing with nature on the weekend.)


Isn’t too much else I want. I’d ask for computer games, but I just got Windows 7. Once I have that on my mac I can play all my old computer games on it. And since computer games from between 1990 to 2005-ish are much better than most of the crap from the past 5 years, that suits me fine. I’d ask for music, but I’m not really sure what I want. If my dad put together a list of “Classical Music I should feel embarrassed if I can’t recognize and name within a few measures”, I’d go for that.

I wouldn’t mean an external hard drive with 1TB or more of memory. One can never have too many of those. Or an iPod touch. But both of those are pretty expensive, and not totally necessary.

Gift certificates to restaurants and such aren’t really my family’s style. But even if they were, there aren’t many places around here I’d go to eat where a gift certificate would really feel right. It’s rarely money keeping from good places I meet the dress code for. It’s time and/or lack of interest.



  1. …..why an iTouch? You have an iPhone. The iTouch is for people who live in the hinterlands and can’t make iPhones work….I’m baffled.

  2. Battery life. Can’t use my iPhone for music and still hope to use the 3G internet and phone for a whole day or two.

  3. Referring to this post would be easier if you added a search function to your sidebar, fyi 🙂

    • Yeah, you’re right. So I just made this post sticky, so it’ll stay at the top.

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