Celebrate the holidays with Gator gifts
Dec. 9, 2010 -- This holiday season, treat friends and family to a gift with a Gator connection. The following gift ideas include entertaining DVD's, design innovations and inspiring reads -- all showcasing the talent of SF State alumni and faculty.
Movie lovers will enjoy the stunning visuals and epic story that unfolds in "Avatar." Now available on DVD, this blockbuster hit earned alum Christopher Boyes (B.A. '85) two Oscar nominations for sound editing and mixing. Gator talent created "Invictus," which follows Nelson Mandela's quest to use the 1995 Rugby World Cup to help unify South Africa. Alum Anthony Peckham (M.A. '87) crafted the screenplay for "Invictus," which is available on DVD.
Award-winning filmmaker Arthur Dong (B.A. '82) has released a limited edition DVD box set of his documentaries about the Chinese American experience. "Stories from Chinese America: The Arthur Dong Collection, Volume 2" contains six films, including the Oscar-nominated short "Sewing Woman" and "Hollywood Chinese," a cultural history of Chinese Americans in the film industry.
For the outdoor enthusiast choose an inflatable kayak designed by Charles Hall (B.A. '67), a design and industry alum who is best known as the inventor of the waterbed. The AirFusion inflatable kayak, which Hall designed with alums Clayton Haller (B.A. '95) and Ryan Pugh (B.A. '08), received an honorable mention in I.D. Magazine's 2010 Annual Design Review and is designed to rival the performance and speed of typical skin-on-frame kayaks.
Surprise the person who has everything with a custom-made bobblehead figure, made by alum Tan Tseng's company HeadBobble. Customers provide photos of the loved one that they want to depict in figurine form and Tseng's firm uses 3-D technology to create a bobblehead in their likeness -- perfect as a cake topper or desk ornament.
Introduce the fashion aficionado to the creations of alum and recent Project Runway contestant Christopher Collins (B.A. '03). Collins launched his ready-to-wear women's line in 2008, together with alum Erica Tanamachi (M.F.A., '07). His feminine yet practical designs can be purchased at boutiques nationwide, including Neiman Marcus in San Francisco.
Buying The Great Sunflower Project Calendar will support a study that is helping scientists understand the nationwide decline in bee populations. Associate Professor of Biology Gretchen LeBuhn's Great Sunflower Project involves nearly 100,000 "citizen scientists" who have planted sunflowers in their yards and counted the number and kinds of bees that have visited them. The calendar includes bee photos snapped by project participants across the U.S.
Treat poetry fans to a gift filled with wit and wordplay in the form of Professor of Creative Writing Toni Mirosevich's latest book "The Takeaway Bin" (2010, Spuyten Duyvil). Mirosevich's poetry collection uses well-worn phrases and idioms to address the dilemmas of modern life. Also from the Creative Writing Department is "Suck on the Marrow" (2010, Red Hen Press), in which Associate Professor of Creative Writing Camille Dungy uses poetry to chronicle the experiences of African Americans, both slaves and free, in the 19th century.
Give the deep thinker a copy of Michael Krasny's new book "Spiritual Envy: An Agnostic's Quest" (2010, New World Library). In this memoir, Krasny, professor of English and host of KQED's Forum, explores belief and doubt and recounts his lifelong search for spiritual certainty.
In "East Eats West: Writing in Two Hemispheres" (2010, Heyday), Vietnamese-American writer Andrew Lam (attended '89-'91) reflects on how U.S. culture is becoming more Asian and how Asian countries are becoming more American. This collection of personal essays explores topics as diverse as cuisine, self-esteem, sex and kung fu.
Bookstore gift cards
A gift card for the SFSU Bookstore allows friends or family members to select their own gift, whether it's books, electronic gadgets or stocking up on essential supplies.
Help the SF State alum stay connected to their alma mater with an Alumni Association membership. Members enjoy a range of benefits including Library and Career Center access, discounted medical benefits and events at which to reconnect with fellow alums.
-- Elaine Bible
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