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ANOTHER VENTURE IN WALLY WORLD

It’s time Wino Stuff takes another leap into the unknown.  A year or so ago, while I was off on a venture in New Mexico, I finally conned Wino John into putting up my golf links.  Thanks to some golf shop in the Midwest named Wally’s Golf, our wine website is a popular choice for golf hits through Google searches.  There are thousands of companies out there trying to manipulate the system and the two Jersey boys and one Marylander are at the zenith of hits without making a single buck in return.  You gotta love the system, winos!  Anyhow, I have tried to find another source for some of the miscellaneous and random junk that I look for, living life on the edge of Wino stardom.  I can’t find it, so with tonight’s listings, I’m going to start a WinoStuff first, links to sites for stuff that you can use to make you a better/poorer person by shelling out moolah for what you want, when you need it.  No, I’m not vascillating, or generating scintillating discussion like Wino Bob (yes, Bob, we know your discussion is not titillating despite your recent foray with Roget’s).  I’m just trying to organize a few links that will help you expand your collection of must have items, whether it be household stuff or wino stuff.

Baltimore, MD
June 7, 2003

 

LUSH STUFF LINKS

Any Stuff

Ebay – www.ebay.com - You can buy (or sell) just about anything that you want on eBay.  I have a few brothers-in-law that brouse the racks looking for those hard-to-find deals such as dead man golf clubs.

 

Baseball Stuff

Akadema Bats – www.akademapro.com - If you want a wooden bat that is used by the pros, these bats made by the Amish are moving up the line in terms of quality.

Baltimore Orioles – www.TheOrioles.com - Home of the Baltimore Orioles, formerly one of baseball’s best until a plaintiff’s attorney bought the team and figured he knew more about baseball than baseball management.  Peter Angelos should have stuck with asbestos litigation and not baseball.  Wish he could learn from George Steinbrenner who was forced to yield the reins to the pros when he was suspended for a couple of years.

New York Yankees – www.newyork.yankees.mlb.com - The official website of the Yankees.  You either love them or hate them.  Kind of like the college team I preview under basketball.

 

Basketball Stuff

Duke Basketball Report – www.dukebasketballreport.com - This site is not an official site of Duke University, but is run by two graduates who started it back in the early days of the net.  With 104 million visitors, they’re running neck and neck with winostuff for visits by fans of some kind.  Anyhow, check it out for the latest on Duke hoops, ACC hoops, and info on most other major programs in the running for that NCAA title.

 

Beach Stuff

Beach Store – www.beachstore.com - Stocks stuff you need like beach umbrellas, etc.  Neat feature is link to local weather so you’ll know if your day at the beach will be bad, fair, or great.

Comfort1st – www.comfort1st.com - Sells more than beach stuff, but has a strong outdoor living section providing beach stuff.  May want to check out this site for a lot of stuff.  Brags about below retail pricing and insists that they’re competitive with bulk purchasing.

One Step Ahead – www.onestepahead.com - Site specializes in children’s gear but stocks items like cabanas.

ShadeUSA – www.shadeusa.com - Lots of outdoor stuff, particularly beach related like umbrellas, chairs, etc.  Company based in Arizona obviously knows about heat and shade.

Sun Friendly Products – www.sunfriendlyproducts.com - Site offers stuff like children’s swimsuits with sun blocking fabric.

 

Books and Stuff

Amazon.com – www.amazon.com - They’re still the leader in this area (and one of our Winostuff sponsors).  I use them for tough to find business books and for even tougher to find unabridged books on CD (don’t ever get the abridged versions on sale at Costco or BJ’s).  Amazon is also the exclusive distributor of Segways, those human transporter devices that look like you’ll fall over at any minute.  Just $4,950; mere pocket change for one of our readers.

 

Business Stuff

Forbes Magazine – www.forbes.com - A guy that I worked with out of B-School told me that I was wasting my time reading Fortune.  His father had made millons by being an avid devotee of Forbes Magazine.  I subscribed and the rest is history…I made millions… and my wife and kids spent it.  Anyhow, Forbes is a solid publication and makes no effort to hide the fact that the income level of its readers is high enough to afford a lot of the stuff advertised on the pages within.  When you subscribe, tell them Wino Wally sent you.

Fortune Magazine – www.fortune.com - It’s owned by Time Warner, but it was my favorite business magazine before I found out about Forbes and I’ve continued my subscription for years, just to hedge my bets.  Great articles, good research.  Less technical than Forbes, but good insights on what’s happening in industries and with management.

Strategic Finance – www.strategicfinancemag.com - This ain’t a comic book.  If you’re a believer in stuff like activity-based costing, strategic finance in buyouts and acquisitions, and other such stuff, check out this magazine.  Many of the articles are short and sweet, but hard-hitting with thought provoking ideas.  If you can’t figure it out, email me and I may be available for my next financial consulting assignment.

Wall Street Journal – www.wsj.com - This venerable old paper has an online version that gives you a lot of the updated financial news on a daily basis for free.  However, certain stuff is reserved strictly for subscribers.  If you subscribe to the paper, the online version is about half the price for non-paper subscribers.  Even for non-subscribers, the online version is half the price of the paper and you can get it even when you’re out of town.

 

Car Stuff

Aston Martin – www.astonmartin.com - I’d have to finalize my divorce first, since S.A.W. Sharon wouldn’t let me have one of these.  Too much of a distraction if you know what I mean.  Just the type of vehicle for someone who has a few hundred K to spare.

BMW – www.bmwusa.com - The ultimate driving machine.  I owned one of these back when all BMW owners flashed their headlights at each other to acknowledge the distinctive nature of being a Bimmer owner.  The brand’s a lot more popular now, but still an attractive product.  In fact, I think Wino John sports one of these around town (oops, don’t want to reveal his identity).

Cadillac – www.cadillac.com - Wino John likes their fancy SUV since the Shaq drives one.  I like their new XLR convertible.  Buy one on your GM card and get a substantial discount.

Garmin – www.garmin.com - Get a Garmin StreetPilot Global Positioning System.  You can move it from car to car and not need separate hookups.  You can buy these at Best Buy, Circuit City and CompUSA.

Hummer – www.hummer.com - The new H2 looks slick, but I hear it has a terrible maintenance record.  That’s too bad.  That machine looks like the ultimate device to keep those idiots from riding on your butt.  Turnabout is fair play.  Just let me know when the maintenance record improves.  $51,000 for starters.

Jaguar – www.jaguarusa.com - Jaguar is improving its quality under Ford’s tutelage, but will it be enough?

Lexus – www.lexus.com - Makes a sissy SUV, but the ladies like it.

Volvo – www.volvoxc90.com - I wouldn’t send anyone to Volvo’s site as a rule, right Wino John?  However, a retired military buddy of mine swears by his new Volvo SUV, the XC90.  I’ll add this link on his word, try it out, and then add some pro verbiage if it stays up and won’t say a word if we remove it.

 

Electronic Stuff

Bose – www.bose.com - Bose continues to innovate in the stereo speaker line.  The latest innovation that I bought, the Bose Free Space 51 Environmental speakers which are waterproof and designed for extreme temperatures.

Crutchfield – www.crutchfieldcatalog.com - I used to order stereo equipment from these guys when I was in college and that was a while ago.  Great buys, wide variety of equipment.  Not always the cheapest, but reliable and customer focused.

 

Exercise Stuff

Ferno Performance Pools – www.fernoperformancepools.com - Swim against a variable speed current and get a workout without needing an Olympic sized pool.

Sports Tutor – www.sportstutorinc.com - High end equipment for fanatics.  You can buy your own tennis ball machine like you see in those ads on television.   Prices range from $1,145 to $3,600.  I have two or three on hold.

 

Gadget Stuff

Craftsman Tools – www.craftsman.com - When I was younger, Sears’ craftsman tools were the best.  They had a lifetime warranty, and you could exchange a broken one for a new one just about anywhere in the country.  Sears is struggling to find its place as a retailer, but Craftsman tools are still going strong.  Check out the latest in inventions, the Craftsman Grip Master pliers.  Didn’t thing you could reinvent a simple tool like pliers?  Look again.

FYICool.com – www.fyicool.com - Forbes Magazine is looking for the ultimate gadget king and wants you to take an online survey.  First prize is a stay at a French Chateau.

Sharper Image – www.sharperimage.com - The Sharper Image got a little bit away from its original guy-oriented, gadget lover’s catalog when it opened up retail sites in malls a few years ago.  However, the company has closed more than a few of the retail sites and tried to return its catalog to glory.  Featured in the recent Father’s Day issue was the new Turbo-Groomer 5.0 which is designed to trim more than just that unsightly hair in the ears and nose.  This version also has an attachment that can trim eyebrows, mustaches, beards, and sideburns.  Some of Wino Bob’s buddies are holding out until the 6.0 which can handle the thick Jersey back hair.  They also have a neat mini fridge that can hold four bottles of wine or a six pack and snacks and which plugs into AC or DC outlets.

NauticalNiche.com – www.nauticalniche.com - Based in Fort Lauderdale, this company markets some stuff that we winostuffers yearn for.  Just reduced, the Personal Submersible is now $2 million instead of $4 million.  A seaplane is also available for $200k or just $50k if you buy the kit.  Worth checking this one out.  I’ll wait for the lottery win before I think about assembling my own plane.

 

Golf Stuff

See Wally’s Golf Links – no need to repeat that here!

 

House Stuff

Frontgate – www.frontgate.com - I think I might have gotten on this company’s mailing list by ordering stuff from the Wine Enthusiast or subscribing to Wine Spectator or who knows what random act.  Anyway, this company provides top of the line stuff for the house, and I mean top of the line.  Don’t expect a discount, they’re hoping that you need whatever they’re selling fast, and don’t have time to look for a sale.  My favorite item in the recent Father’s Day issue was a 48” grill with integrated rangetop burners, $3,995.00.  John, I’m sure this grill would show up everyone in the neighborhood’s except our brother-in-law, Mark, who has the pimp daddy island grill which can handle 50 steaks at a time, just in case you’re entertaining half the nurses in the hospital.  The Mosquito Magnet Pro, a device that manufactures carbon dioxide which attracts mosquitos and traps them, is a runner up and goes for $1,295.  Winos, you too can find something awfully attractive at Frontgate.

John Deere Tractors – www.JohnDeere.com/homeowners - For those of us who yearn to own one of those 200 plus horsepower, John Deere ag tractors, get real.  Rather, get a real John Deere,sized to cut your lawn.  You’ll pay more for a Deere, but just like a Bimmer, it’s about the ultimate ride (nothing runs like a Deere).  Still at the top of Consumer Reports ratings.  A Wino Wally recommended product.  I quaff a glass or two of California Cabs while cutting my back 40 on my Deere.

Weber – www.weber.com - The original high tech grill, before gas grills became the rage.  Check out their latest outdoor ovens.

 

If You Hate to Buy the Wrong Stuff Stuff

Consumer Reports – www.ConsumerReports.org - This non-profit still has what it takes evaluating just about every major product purchased in America.  You may have to be a subscriber to access all areas of their website, but the info available is invaluable when you’re shopping for those occasional purchases like washer/dryers, televisions, etc.  A recent issue rated PDA’s.

 

Jewelry Stuff

Tiffany & Co – www.tiffany.com - Sometimes you just need that distinctive robins egg colored box to hit the mark when you’re in the doghouse.  Order online and expedite the delivery.

 

Mutual Funds Stuff

TIAA-CREF – www.tiaa-cref.org - TIAA-CREF was founded to provide a safe and secure place for teachers’ retirement funds.  Over the years, their funds have had some of the lowest fees and highest returns in the mutual fund industry.  A few years ago, TIAA-CREF opened up its funds for non-teachers.  You may want to check them out.

The Vanguard Group – www.vanguard.com - Just about the lowest administrative fees in the business plus the added benefit of being a no-load fund manager.

 

PC Stuff

Apple – www.apple.com - Steven Jobs is continuing to gin ideas.  The company that made it cool to have a personal computer and then lost the market by staying proprietary, continues to innovate.  The latest, iTunes, an online store for downloading music legally.  Check it out.

Dell – www.dell.com - Michael Dell dropped out of college to sell PC’s.  Dell specializes in customizing your pc to order, but all the advertised deals are for packaged products.  I like their service on the intake side, but am not an admirer of the quality of their products.

IBM – www.ibm.com - Got to have a plug for the company that accelerated the PC rage.  IBM hasn’t made money on their PC line for years, but they make an excellent product, particularly in the laptop arena.  Their service capabilities usually wins them corporate accounts and accolades.

PC Connection – www.pcconnection.com - PC Connection has been around since the first IBM PC.  Their prices are competitive and their selection is fairly diverse.  I usually find the best prices on software here and I don’t have to pay sales tax with the Internet order.

 

Sunglasses and Stuff

Robert Marc Boutiques – www.robertmarc.com - When you’re looking for the latest eyewear that will keep you in sync with the stars (Hollywood, that is), check out the selection here.

 

Ties and Stuff

Vineyard Vines – www.vineyardvines.com - This company makes distinctive silk neckties for their own account.  Evidently, two guys got tired working in Manhattan every day so they retired to Greenwich, CT to start this company.  Definitely hip designs.  Wino Bob would love one of these ties, ladies!

 

Travel Stuff

Expedia.com – www.expedia.com - Microsoft started this company.  I’ve used it for years and it’s tough to beat unless you’ve got the time to jockey around with auctions on Priceline.  I use it for personal and business trips and it keeps separate itineraries and credit card numbers.

Gemutlichkeit – www.gemut.com - Gemutlichkeit is the publication for travelers to Germany, Austria, and Switzerland.  Chock full of great travel tips to those areas, they have an online site which is mainly accessible to subscribers after the first month of access.  I followed up their recommendation on staying at The Hotel in Lucerne last year and it was a great find.

 

Watch Stuff

Cartier – www.cartier.com - Their Roadster chronograph is their latest, but I still like the Tank watch, originally issued around 1915.

Jorg Hysek – www.hysek.com - Their watches look very high tech and avant garde.  Just the type that Wino Bob needs to accompany his black suits.

Rado – www.rado.com - Another high end, Swiss watch company.  Very sleek designs.

Rolex – www.rolex.com - Used to be the power watch of choice.  Now, the less bulky, sleek look is in.  Still, their Chronometer Oyster Perpetual is the classic that all other standards are measured by.  I have one stashed in my dresser since there were muggers on the look out for these.

Tag Heuer – www.tagheuer.com - An awesome watch company.  Won’t sell direct, but their website can direct you to the nearest dealer.  The watch that Wino Wally wears (also, Tiger Woods, but I can vouch that I owned mine while Tiger was still an amateur).


 

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