How is it possible the holidays are upon us already? It seems like summer just ended, and the new class at the Army War College arrived just a few weeks ago.
Never fear, the War Room editorial team is here to help with your last-minute shopping needs for your favorite GI, national security aficionado, staffer or strategist. Some suggestions are geared towards serious study and growth, while others might be a little more tongue-in-cheek. There might even be a few that are just plain useful.
Whatever holidays you and yours celebrate, everyone at War Room hopes they are happy and filled with friends and family time. And sure, we say it every year, but here’s to a Happy (and better) New Year in 2024!
Did you have a rough year? Well, there’s no better way to cheer yourself or somebody else up than by laughing at somebody else’s misfortune. Alright, that sounds terrible, but what if we’re talking about ancient history? That’s not as bad, right?
Are you a huge history nerd like most of our staff, and do you also love Halloween? Are you also lazy and trying to be as comfortable as possible? Then this one is for you. Gearhumans has a line of hoodies and t-shirts that let you dress up as your favorite historical figure. Whether it’s George Washington or Daniel Boone, Aaron Burr or Audie Murphy, take a look at their costume line and if you want to indulge your other nerdly passions, we can confirm they have Star Wars, Star Trek and TMNT designs as well.
We’ve mentioned before that we have a bunch of dog lovers on the editorial staff. And much of the work of our nearly all-volunteer staff happens in the quiet hours at home. Whenever possible, we love to have our dogs by our sides, but keeping them occupied while we toil away on our editorial tasks usually ends up in a mad squeakfest once Fido finds his favorite toy. This ingenious chewtoy operates in the 20 KHz range, well above typical human hearing but still in your dog’s hearing range. You hear nothing; your dog still gets that satisfying squeak; Bob’s your uncle, everybody’s happy.
Military families are always moving. Are you missing the burger from that great restaurant in the city you lived in eight years ago? Maybe it’s that baked goat cheese with garden lettuces or the strawberry cobbler. The magazine Eater has compiled some of the best recipes from spots across the country in its new cookbook, and now you can make them in your own kitchen.
At War Room, we try to avoid taking a stand on the whole pen vs. sword debate. Though we clearly appreciate the power of the written and spoken word, there is also a certain persuasiveness to a…say…AC-130. This handy sword pen allows you to have both at the same time. Perfect for those toiling away in a less than supportive workplace.
Ask any vet what they miss most about their time in uniform and nearly everyone will tell you the camaraderie. And with camaraderie comes the friendly rivalries, the ribbing, and the trash talking. Let your barware do the talking the next time your favorite grunt, squid or zipper-suited sun god stops by for libations. It’s all in good fun, and it will remind you of the good ole days or enhance the conversation while you’re still serving.
One of the first lessons most military members learn is that no one will look out for you and your career like you will. We’re not advocating for careerism, but once you’ve taken care of the troops, sometimes you need to be reminded to take care of yourself. What better way than to have mini-me staring back at you from the desktop or shelf? Or maybe you just need a discreet reminder of your favorite soldier, sailor, airman, marine or guardian while they’re away. Either way, it’s great to have that friendly face nodding back at you in all their uniformed glory.
While we’re talking about personalized items, do you have that one person in your life who acts like or thinks that they are King William III of the Netherlands or the Duchess of Orléans? Well, whether you want to let them know you’ve got their number or it’s time to let the world know you agree, you can get their head placed on a fine reproduction of the potentate of their choosing.
We have to give a shout out to the fantastic folks at the USAWC Alumni Foundation. It’s through their generous support that we’re able to bring you the great articles and episodes we publish each week. Whether it’s something to commemorate your time in Carlisle as a student or faculty member, or you just want to support a great organization that gives back so much to the War College, go check out their online store or stop in and see them in the main lobby of Root Hall on Carlisle Barracks.
Just in case you didn’t find anything to your liking in this year’s list, you can always check out our recommendations from other years here.
The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the U.S. Army War College, the U.S. Army, or the Department of Defense. The recommendations in this list are for entertainment purposes and do not suggest any endorsement of the retailers by the government.
Photo Credit: Image generated by AI via Image Creator from Microsoft Bing