Finding the 'Two and a Half Men' Coffee Mugs

After watching Two and a Half Men for several years, I reached a point where I had to hunt down the cool coffee mugs that Charlie Sheen and Jon Cryer use on the show. The sitcom spends a lot of time in the kitchen, and Charlie and Alan Harper each drink from their own distinctive striped mugs. I'm not alone in my obsession. A discussion on TV.Com led to Tabletop Lifestyles on Amazon, which sold Charlie's mug under the name Sedona 16-Ounce Mug. I ordered four, and I'm still searching for the ... (read more)

I Fill Random Target Employees with Rage

The seven-week break I took on Workbench, which just ended 11 words ago, is the longest since I began my personal blog in 1999. I'm doing some work in social media these days and thinking about launching a new company to commercialize software I've been developing for my own use the past six years. I also am deep into the manuscript for a new edition of Sams Teach Yourself C++ in 24 Hours. My absence did not make Target employees fonder, as a recent comment to my five-year-old tale of shopping ... (read more)

Feelin' Glum? Cheer Up with Beech-Nut Gum

An old black-and-white hepcat commercial for Beech-Nut Gum made me curious if the gum -- available in five flavors including Chlorophyll "for the breath" -- is still being sold anywhere. Hometown Favorites, an online store that sells 2,000 well-known old-time products that are difficult to find today in stores, claims that Beech-Nut Spearmint and Wintergreen Gum is no longer being made. Beechies are available in spearmint and peppermint. ... (read more)

Black Friday No Longer Consumes Me

Paul Stamatiou pens an extremely detailed article on how to make the most of Black Friday, the annual day in which Americans race to stores before dawn to resupply themselves with enough consumer goods to last the winter. I have simpler advice for how to make the most of Black Friday: Don't go shopping. I'm a recovering doorbuster who has been clean for two years. As I told a reporter for the Chicago Tribune, I decided that no price was too high to avoid standing armpit-deep in a crowd of ... (read more)