7 items to help you survive cabin fever
We are coming up to February and this winter has already been enough to make you want to cry. You can’t go outside because you’re afraid that your eyes are going to freeze shut. You’re very concerned that your ears are going to snap off like that horrible scene in Upton Sinclair’s The Jungle. (I’ll bet you $1 million that that’s the very first time The Jungle has been referenced anywhere except a 7th grade social studies class in a long time.) Everyone is blabbering on about the polar vortex, and if you get one more call from your mother telling you that you “really should be wearing more layers when you go out,” you’re going to flip out. You have watched everything on Netflix. You are sick of being cooped up indoors. Congratulations, you have cabin fever.
Great news: we have at least one more month of this stuff (probably two, at the rate we’re going). How are you going to survive without murdering your significant other or falling into a deep psychosis from which you’ll never return? Don’t worry.
Here are 7 items that will help you survive cabin fever.
1. Molecular Mixology Margarita Kit ($30, Uncommon Goods): You know what’s a great activity when you’re cooped up indoors? Drinking! Sure, drinking in your home on a Saturday afternoon may be one of the first indicators of burgeoning alcoholism, but what else are you going to do? This Molecular Mixology kit will eat up a few hours, borrowing techniques from molecular gastronomy for you to fancify your margaritas.
2. Few Barrel Gin ($40, Few Spirits): When you’re done playing around with your fancy margaritas, you can move on to drinking gin. Straight out of the bottle. This particular gin is aged in oak barrels, which is a common practice for tequila and rum, but quite unique for gin. A fun game to play when you’re drinking hard liquor is “The Problem With You Is…” Try it out!
3. Woodbourne Wireless Speaker ($600, Polk Audio): Now that you’re drunk and have possibly alienated everyone in the room with your rousing game of “The Problem With You Is…,” it’s time to try to get everyone back into the fold. What brings a bunch of drunks together better than music? This Woodbourne Wireless Speaker will connect to your audio device wirelessly, allowing you to blast Ke$ha or Beyonce or whatever music helps people forget how much they’ve just irritated their friends.
4. Yakima Camp Blanket ($109, Pendleton): Whether you need something to wrap yourself in while you pass out from too much day drinking or you’re just feeling extra snoozy because you haven’t worked your limbs in several days, this Yakima Camp Blanket is essential, because, basically, if you’re going to lie around for days on end, waiting for the cold to pass and for life to be worth living again, you want a bunch of soft things to lie on, right?
5. Whiskey Tasting Game ($50, Fab): This game will require you to be a bit more civilized than you were when you were sitting cross-legged on the ground, passing a bottle of gin around and telling everyone what bothers you about them. So have a couple of glasses of water and maybe take a nap (wrapped in your Yakima Camp Blanket, perhaps?) before you start this one. This Whiskey Tasting Game will test your knowledge of whiskey, so it’s only a matter of time until you’ll be screaming at each other about whether a particular whiskey comes from Ireland or Scotland while someone storms off to the bedroom saying, “I don’t like playing games with you. You guys get too competitive.”
6. The Simpsons 25th Anniversary Trivia Game ($27, Amazon): If you’re into The Simpsons (and by God, why wouldn’t you be?), this is the perfect trivia game to help you wile away the afternoons. The game’s questions were submitted by fans, so you’re not going to get softball questions like, “Who is Homer married to?” but ones that delve deeper, like “What type of bed does Kirk Van Houten sleep in?” Any Simpsons nerd will love to waste a snow day proving how big of a superfan they are, thus annoying other players who aren’t as devoted to the show.
7. Stanley Kubrick Director’s Series DVD Box Set ($38, Amazon): Okay, watching movies while lounging around the house because it’s too cold to go outside is not a “hot tip.” I know this. It’s why people have TVs in the first place—so they can waste an entire day on the couch watching 37 episodes of Clean House on Netflix for no good reason. But after awhile, you’ve gone through all of the things you want to watch. You have cable, but you don’t want to watch Fox News or ABC Family. Any DVD box set will do. Whether you’re starting Dexter from the beginning or have decided to embark on a journey to watch all three Godfather movies in succession, you’ll emerge blurry-eyed and loose-limbed thinking, “Hey, I accomplished something.” And surely, watching the Stanley Kubrick Director’s Series box set will feel like an accomplishment, soaking in 2001: A Space Odyssey, A Clockwork Orange, The Shining, Eyes Wide Shut, Full Metal Jacket and a special biographical documentary on Kubrick’s life. That’s a whole lot of weirdness. Then, you can use the remaining hours in the day to argue with your significant other about what it all means. That’ll take up a good four hours, at least.
Amanda Waas is the creator of You’re Welcome, a gift guide site for all of life’s awkward occasions. Her writing has appeared in Every Day With Rachael Ray, Glamour, Time Out New York, AOL’s Shelterpop and DIY Life, and various others. Follow her on Twitter, Pinterest, and Facebook and sign up for her succinct, not-annoying weekly e-newsletter for gift suggestions sent right to your inbox.