A QUIET MOMENT
How to Be Idle
By Tom Hodgkinson ($18.95)
This irreverent guidebook for the inactive from the founder of the British humor magazine The Idler is divided into 24 chapters, each one offering a reason to do nothing for every hour of the day. (Reason No. 1: "Waking up is hard to do.")
By Craig Marberry ($24.95)
Subtitled Wit and Wisdom from Black Barber Shops, these narratives collected by a former TV reporter comprise a poignant and enlightening oral history.
An irresistible Tetris-style puzzle game for Sony's new handheld game system, the PSP. Stack blocks in patterns as DJ Mondo Grosso's techno score keeps you hypnotically entranced.
The Eagles Box ($129.98)
Eagles fans can take their devotion to new limits with this nine-CD set that features all seven albums—including two double discs—the band released from 1972 to 1980.
Beck, Goero ($13.98)
Dad will be grooving in his La-Z-Boy to the très cool alt-rock sounds on this heady, head-tripping pastiche of hip-hop, funk, psychedelia, folk, blues and Latin music.
Craig Morgan, My Kind of Livin' ($17.98)
Morgan's kind of country is perfect for a day of easy Livin'. "That's What I Love About Sunday" will resonate with overworked patriarchs everywhere.
Bruce Springsteen, Devils & Dust ($18.98)
The big daddy of all rockers goes folky on this stripped-down set of dusty ballads and heartland rockers—call it Born to Strum—that shows he's still the Boss.
Marcus Miller, Silver Rain ($17.98)
This Grammy-winning jazz bassist's funky, vibrant disc is a genre-crossing display dripping with virtuosity and savvy collaborations with Macy Gray and Eric Clapton.
John Legend, Get Lifted
His big hit may be titled "Ordinary People," but there's nothing common about this neo-soul man; on his debut, he brings to mind Stevie Wonder and Al Green.
By David Wondrich ($19.95)
This smart illustrated guide can help Dad play the suave host as he mixes perfect martins and foolproof margaritas.
WHAT DO DADS WANT?
Half-Life 2 ($49.99)
Earth is ruled by a puppet government controlled by an alien race. It's up to you to fight back. The cinematic graphics and heart-pounding storyline make this the PC game of the year.
Jade Empire ($49.95)
A brilliant and hypnotic Xbox game that combines the mystical settings of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon with the fierce martial arts action of a Bruce Lee movie.
By Jonathan Kellerman ($26.95)
The latest adrenaline-fueled read from the author of Therapy follows crime psychologist Alex Delaware as he matches wits with a killer who has murdered one of Delaware's patients. Perfect for CS/junkies.
by Michael Connelly ($26.95)
In this deftly paced mystery, Connelly (The Narrows) sends detective Harry Bosch to heat up a cold case. Betrayal and malice abound.
The Right Stuff Illustrated
By Tom Wolfe ($35)
This 25th-anniversary edition of Wolfe's nonfiction classic about the Project Mercury astronauts features evocative photos of the spacemen at work and at home with their families.
National Treasure ($29.99)
Nicolas Cage craftily channels Indiana Jones to find booty hidden by the Founding Fathers in this exciting romp. DVD bonus: Interviews with real treasure hunters.
Sink your teeth into these three films featuring Wesley Snipes (right, with Jessica Biel
and Ryan Reynolds) as a fierce vampire hunter.
In this grisly, gripping film (no, it's not a tool documentary), Danny Glover hunts down a gruesomely creative serial killer. Don't miss the incisive director's commentary.
30th Anniversary Edition ($22.98)
Steven Spielberg's shark tale still has bite, and this new DVD includes a superb documentary on the film's endless production snafus.
Assault on Precinct 13
Cop Ethan Hawke teams up with prisoner Laurence Fishburne when a police precinct comes under siege in this solid action flick. Extras include looks at the film's weaponry and stunts.
PlayStation Portable ($249.99)
Sony's new video-game device is a handheld wonder. In addition to delivering intense gaming action (don't miss Wipeout Pure and Twisted Metal: Head-On), the PSP can also play full-length feature movies (sold on Sony's proprietary UMD discs) as well as store music files and digital photos.
WHAT DO DADS WANT?
A SPORTING CHANCE
NASCAR: The IMAX Experience ($19.98)
Originally created for oversize IMAX screens, this pedal-pushing look at everything NASCAR holds up remarkably well Narrated by Kiefer Sutherland, the documentary includes interviews with drivers, with bonus footage of nail-biting photo finishes.
The Longest Yard
: Lockdown Edition ($14.99)
The Adam Sandler remake is a hit, but Dad might prefer the gritty 1974 original, with a buff Burt Reynolds as the incarcerated quarterback who leads a group of inmates in a game against the prison guards. Reynolds also looks back in a revealing commentary and interview.
One Magical Sunday
By Phil Mickelson with Donald T. Phillips ($29.98)
In this five-disc audiobook, the story of Mickelson's come-from-behind win at the 2004 Masters is thoughtfully narrated by the veteran golf star.
Fight Night Round 2 ($49.99)
Landing haymakers on real-life bruisers including middleweight champ Bernard Hopkins will require fancy button work in this brutally realistic boxing game. Available for Xbox, PlayStation 2 and GameCube.
Golf Courses of the World
By Robert Sidorsky ($29.95)
Dad can dream about hitting the links with this photobook offering panoramic shots of courses from Dallas to Dubai.
By Jeff MacGregor ($25.95)
In 2002 the author followed the 40-week NASCAR season across the U.S. to research this wickedly funny look at America's fastest-growing spectator sport.
By Jeremy Schaap ($24)
ESPN anchor Schaap tells the inspiring true story of James J. Braddock, the Depression-era boxer whose career inspired the new film with Russell Crowe and Renée Zellweger.
Fishing on the Edge
By Mike Iaconelli ($22)
The tattoo-and hip-hop-loving bass fishing champ tells the story of his unlikely rise to the top of the sport and offers tips for anglers.
Coach Gene Hackman leads a tiny Indiana high school hoops team to the 1952 state championship in one of the all-time great sports films. The cast and crew look back on the making of this 1986 movie in a touching documentary.
National Geographic: The Nature Collection ($54.92)
Outdoorsmen will get a buzz from this six-disc showcase of National Geographic's most spectacular programs. Also included: bonus segments and interactive quizzes.
WHAT DO DADS WANT?
A GOOD LAUGH
The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou
In this delightfully quirky film, oceanographer Bill Murray makes waves while bonding with long-lost son Owen Wilson
. The DVD's two-disc set includes a production intern's amusing on-set video journal.
: Season 2 Uncensored ($36.99)
The future of Dave Chappelle's sidesplitting sketch series is still in doubt, but there are plenty of laughs to be found in its irreverent second season (two words: Rick James). Chappelle also brings the funny in outtakes and deleted scenes.
Season 4 ($49.95)
With some of the series' all-time best episodes, including "The Junior Mint," this is a must for any Seinfeld
fan. The cast contributes new interviews and commentaries. Not that there's anything wrong with that.
: The Complete First Season ($49.99)
This sharply funny hospital comedy is so fast-paced, you'll need to watch it twice to catch all the joke—which makes it perfect For the DVD treatment.
By Jon Winokur ($23.95)
From the author of The Rich Are Different
, this A to Z anthology of all things anxious takes a wry look at stressed-out behaviors including cell yell ("loud talking on cell phones in public") and pronoia ("the irrational belief that people like you").
Drive By Shooting
By Max Forsythe ($42)
Witty title, even better idea. An award-winning Irish photographer snaps photos around the world from inside various vehicles. Notable frames include an Indian carnival truck populated by plastic gypsies.
Steinberg at The New Yorker
By Joel Smith ($50)
For the dad with an urbane sense of humor, this collection of illustrations from artist Saul Steinberg's 60-year career at the magazine is a real treat.
The National Lampoon's Encyclopedia of Humor
A deliciously sophomoric compendium of art depicting real-life oddities.