I could not resist posting this keeping in mind Christmas is upon us, the malls are jammed and what can we buy that’s different and that’ll satisfy not only the geek within us but the geek in our family or our geeky friend.

Books, ties, shirts, sweaters…you went to the mall at the last minute, didn’t you? This year, don’t get caught buying the same old bland gifts out of desperation. You can find loads of unusual and entertaining items online–if you know where to look. The Web was surveyed for cool and unique stuff. Following are 15 favorites.

ComputerGear

In addition to offering a Duct Tape wallet and tie, not to mention T-shirts with geeky designs (such as a circuit board), ComputerGear now offers do-it-yourself bling. The kit includes crystals with adhesive backing so you can stick them on your cell phone, MP3 player, or any other device. Now you’re looking fabulous…

ThinkGeek

ThinkGeek carries a variety of nerdy gifts, including Star Wars light sabers, a hydrogen-powered model car, and an ant farm that’s filled with edible gel and lit with blue LED lights. The site has something for every room in the house, including a titanium spork, a

USB beverage cooler, and a shower curtain that displays the periodic table. Pictured is the electromagnetic levitating desk globe.

Entertainment Earth

Entertainment Earth specializes in action figures and other adventurous gifts, including prop replicas like the Star Trek phaser. Humorous spins on StarWars include the Spud Trooper Mr. Potato Head. But sci-fi isn’t the site’s only shtick. If your difficult-to-please gift recipient isn’t a Trekkie, try the talking action figure of a South Park character.

T-shirts, Bobbleheads, and Action Figures

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CafePress.com

You’d be hard pressed to find a larger T-shirt selection than that featured on Caf é Press.com. Under the Geek and Nerd Gifts heading alone are roughly two dozen subcategories to help you find the ideal gift. Fans of the movie Office Spacewill appreciate the multiple T-shirts emblazoned with “I believe you have my stapler.”

Curmudgeonly geeks might prefer “No, I will not fix your computer” (right); or a depiction of humans evolving into robots (above). If you can’t find a suitable present among the site’s 35 million items, you can opt to design your own.

WickedCoolStuff.com

Fans of superheroes, cartoon antiheroes, and classic movies are well served at Wicked Cool Stuff. The site offers a wide selection of bobbleheads, lunch boxes, action figures, and other novelties. Pictured is the bobblehead set of Snow Miser and Heat Miser from the Christmas special, The Year Without A Santa Claus. If that’s too quaint, you might consider the Donnie Darko–Frank the Bunny action figure.

Whoopass Enterprises

Give that irrepressible narcissist what he really loves–himself! Just upload a photo and choose a body style, clothing, etc., and Whoopass Enterprises will make a bobblehead in his likeness.

If he’s prone to delusions of greatness, have AndGor Toy Company make a custom action figure of him wearing his favorite superhero’s outfit.

Funny Posters, Novelties

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Despair.com

For the cynic who can’t be inspired, try a mock motivation poster or calendar. As a send-up of the corny calls to action that corporations use in an attempt to rally the troops, Despair.com offers a number of tongue-in-cheek responses such as “Losing: If at first you don’t succeed, failure may be your style.” Another poster (pictured) has a photo of skydivers and is titled “Idiocy: Never underestimate the power of stupid people in large groups.” The same images are available on coffee mugs, on note cards, and as a screen saver.

The Unemployed Philosophers Guild

Lost those college-year notions of living a life full of lofty thoughts? Help is on the way at The Unemployed Philosophers Guild. Though padding around the house in a pair of Freudian slippers may not pass for deep thought, watching the continents shrink on a global warming coffee mug just might prompt a bright idea (once the caffeine kicks in, of course).

Archie McPhee & Company

It’s tough to resist a Web site that offers bandages made to look like bacon and eggs, and has pages dedicated to pirates, unicorns, and ninjas. Other items include a ceramic smoking baby and the donkey cigarette dispenser (press the ears, and a smoke pops out the backside).

Pimp My Roomba, Pranks, and a Fish Tank

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iRobot

Why stop at accessorizing your audio player to assert your individuality? If you have a Roomba scooting across your floor, you can give it a unique look as well. Patterns include a large eye, Hawaiian flowers, and a tachometer. Pictured is a pizza design for the Roomba Discovery. Who knew watching a robotic vacuum cleaner could make you hungry?

Fish ‘n Flush

When I was kid, the only fish that neared my toilet were the ones headed for that great big sewage treatment plant in the sky. So for a touch of irony, how about having live fish swimming in your toilet? No threat of a Nemo-like adventure here.

PrankPlace

Toilet humor springs eternal at PrankPlace. Yes, the Whoopee Cushion is still around–and now there’s a self-inflating version. You won’t likely find more varieties of fake poop anywhere else on the Web. One of my favorite items on PrankPlace is the fake security camera; when it detects motion, it swivels from side to side and its LED light flashes. More useful perhaps is the covert TV clicker keychain, which purportedly can adjust the volume, change the channel, and turn on and off 90 percent of all TV sets.

Stupid.com

If you find the selection at PrankPlace too highbrow, try Stupid.com. This site offers gems like the smoking, pregnant trailer-trash doll; but it also offers more useful items, like this one pictured here for your favorite technophobe: an oversize handset straight out of 1950 that you plug into a cell phone. If you’d rather ruin someone’s appetite, you might get the Peter Petrie egg separator: You crack your eggs into the ceramic container, and then pour the egg whites out its nose.

Chia.com

You know you’ve gotten that silly TV jingle stuck in your head (“Ch-Ch-Ch-Chia Pet”). All these years later, the funny-shaped pot with the growing hair is still sprouting. You could try to find your 20-year-old Chia that’s buried in the attic. Or you could get your friend a new one. Current Chia models include a Bugs Bunny and a Homer Simpson (who knew Homer could grow hair?). I’m still waiting for someone to make a Chia PC case mod (water-cooled, of course). Credit: Washington Post; PC World.

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