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Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Daddy gift idea: Forget iPad or Kindle Fire, get him Kindle touch, Nook Simple Touch

Most married dudes know they can get their wife mad at them by playing too much with gadgets. Heck, this is the reason I don't have a smart phone, iPad or Kindle Fire. I know my life would get sucked into their little screen. Every idle moment I had would be filled playing games that require me to put candy in a frog-like monster's mouth with Rube Goldberg-style setups or to help a sewer crocodile take a shower that isn't toxic. While these games are fun, and there are a lot of positive uses for Web-browsing, game-playing gadgets like iPhones, I find the negatives outweigh the positives for me.

When I got married, I initially forsook most digital forms of entertainment and began reading voraciously. I kept a list of the books I had read for a while. In about two years that I kept the list, I had read over 200 books. But I recently slowed down on reading and started substituting gadget time again, much to my wife's chagrin.

But for Christmas, I got a Kindle Touch. This combines two of my favorite things: gadgets and reading. And it does it in a way that helps me like both better. This is a perfect daddy gift. While it reinforces the love of gadgets, it has one task: to make it easy to read. I read way more now that I have it. And with free classics readily available, I find my willingness to read things on the bucket list has expanded significantly. Heck, I downloaded War & Peace and am actually excited to read it. At least I won't be toting around a thick, thousand-page book for a month or more while I struggle through it.

The best part of this gift is my wife can't get nearly as mad at me for using it compared to other electronics I own. It's just picking up a book that happens to have a power switch. Now, my wife and I often read side-by-side on Kindles after our kids have gone to bed. No movies, no video games, no Internet surfing. Just quiet with the occasional click of a button or tap of a finger on the touch screen. Forget the iPad, just get a singularly focused e-reader and do something more worthwhile with Daddy's time.

It's not without its shortcomings, but I love having it. Especially now that the library carries Kindle books.

Get Daddy a Kindle

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