A Little Short On Christmas Gift Suggestions

December 19, 2012

GrinchSo ever since switching over to the new site at the beginning of this year, I’ve got to say a lot of things have changed.  My readership has gone down drastically, my posting schedule has dropped off (hard to be as motivated), and I’m not seeing the opportunities to test and review products.  The truth is, without the promotion from the old host site, I’m not getting exposure outside of my circle of regulars (thank you guys!).  I never got paid much, but I’m getting nothing now… neither ads nor pay-per-post.  And without a big audience, the major companies aren’t particularly interested in sending me expensive things to write about.  But I can write what I want, when I want, how I want, and whatever I turn out here is mine and no one else’s.  Freedom isn’t free, I suppose…

It all goes hand in hand, of course, and I’m not gonna bemoan it.  I’m simply pointing this out as my way of saying, I haven’t got a lot of new stuff to recommend for Christmas gifts this year.  And that’s probably OK, because if you haven’t done your shopping by now, nothing I could promote here is likely to get you off of the hot seat.  Seriously, if you’re stumbling around and looking for gift ideas at this point, you’d probably do well to roll on over to one of the big box department stores… or hit your local Cabelas or Bass Pro.

Or, grab the construction paper, glue, and magic markers.

It’s not that I haven’t had any ideas or suggestions, especially when it comes to building out your library.  In February, I reviewed my online friend, Tovar Cerulli’s book, The Mindful Carnivore.  It was a really interesting look at hunting from a really different perspective.  I also reviewed Steve Rinella’s book, Meat Eater, and while I didn’t personally care much for it, I know a lot of other hunters who really enjoyed what Rinella had to say.

For the wannabe gunsmiths out there, the collectors, or the serious afficianados, I also really like the Firearms Guide series of DVDs.  For pure information about pretty much any gun you can think of, this is a great and growing resource.  I also think this disk would be required for anyone who writes about guns, whether you’re a journalist, blogger, or novelist.

If  you’re looking to stuff some stockings, ammo makes a great (and weighty) option to really make those socks sag.  Toss in a box or two of Winchester ETips for their favorite hunting rifle, or some Barnes VorTX handgun loads for that hog pistol.

But if you’re looking for something really new and unique for the hog hunter on your list, I may have the perfect thing.  It arrived in an unsolicited email the other day, and I almost deleted it.  For whatever reason, I clicked on it instead.

There’s something about a nice hip flask that’s always sort of appealed to me.  Maybe it’s the fantasy of the “gentleman hunter” coming through, or Hog Flaskmaybe I just like to have a nip from time to time, but pulling the flask from a convenient pocket, unscrewing that cap, and tipping it up just makes returning to camp at the end of a long day a little nicer.  The introduction to this email suggested that the sender was the manufacturer of a nice hip flask, with a wild boar on the front of it.  I clicked on the attached photo to see what we were dealing with, and I was pleasantly surprised.  This is not the standard, stamped stainless steel, made in Taiwan piece of junk.

I went ahead and visited the web site, Taliesin Pewter, and enjoyed a virtual visit to an English craftsman’s shop.  They make a lot more than just flasks, but since that’s what I came to see, I poked around a bit.  These are some nice pieces, and honestly, I don’t think the prices are too out of line either… in the neighborhood of US $70 (based on current conversion rates).  In addition to the hog, there are several sporting designs, including stags, waterfowl, and grouse.

This is definitely something I’d like to find under my tree on Christmas, and I bet many of you guys know someone who’d like something like it as well.

If you’re still shopping, good luck.  If you’re done… well, good luck anyway.  You know there’s someone you’ve forgotten.



9 Responses to “A Little Short On Christmas Gift Suggestions”

  1. ian on December 20th, 2012 12:12

    Hey Phillip. Love that flask, but I can’t find it on their site. Maybe I’m just bad at the internet!

  2. Phillip on December 20th, 2012 14:06

    Hey, Ian.

    It’s a new design, and not on their site yet. If you contact them and tell them you saw it here, they’ll hook you up.

  3. ian on December 20th, 2012 14:54


  4. Phillip on January 14th, 2013 07:01

    Ian, dunno if you’re still following, but the Hog flask has been added to the Taliesin website now.

  5. ian on January 25th, 2013 00:23

    Hey Phillip,

    I recall a post you did (probably on the old site) about hunting shows, and you weren’t all that impressed with Steven Rinella’s program. I just watched a bunch of them — Meat Eater episodes, and I gotta say, I was pretty entertained. In the back of my mind, I was recalling your post. though. What didn’t you like about them? Not enough tactical detail in each hunt? Move too fast? Stretched too thin geographically? Too gimmicky with the cooking stuff? Curious to know.

  6. Phillip on January 25th, 2013 07:46

    Good morning, Ian.

    Actually, I don’t have much issue with Steve Rinella’s program. Some of the episodes are actually pretty good, though. It was his book that I didn’t care for all that much. But it’s a matter of individual taste, and I know a fair number of folks who liked it a lot.

  7. ian on January 25th, 2013 00:24

    And thanks for the flask update. Didn’t get it for Xmas, but it will be on a birthday list soon

  8. ian on January 25th, 2013 00:31

    forgot to check ‘notify me’

  9. ian on January 25th, 2013 11:07

    I’ll give it a read. Also, got that flask last night. Pumped!