Dave Barry Gift Guide

Remote-controlled Shocking Tanks


$59.95 plus shipping and handling from Edmund Scientific, 60 Pearce Ave., Tonawanda, N.Y. 14150; 800-728-6999; http://scientificsonline.com

Suggested by Deb Rowley of Davenport, Iowa

The trouble with most games is that even when you win, you cannot inflict physical pain on your opponent. Take Monopoly. You spend all that time throwing dice and moving your little board piece around, and you finally win, and what do you have to show for it? A hotel on Ventnor Avenue? That’s not enough! You want your opponent to suffer. And now that dream can come true, thanks to this fine product manufactured in some foreign nation where life is cheap. This is a set of two remote-controlled tanks, each equipped with a cannon that shoots little wads of light called "infrareds." If you hit your opponent’s tank, your opponent gets a shock, which, according to Internet reports, can be pretty strong. The manufacturer says you should not use this product "if you have epilepsy, a heart condition, or related illness." It’s also a bad idea to play Shocking Tanks against your children, because they will use their vastly superior manual dexterity to convert you into a human circuit breaker.

This year, give the most precious gift of all: voltage.

Next gift: Hand-Crank Siren