11 holiday gift ideas for the person impossible to shop for

From coffee makers and headphones to a calming weighted blanket, something here should appeal to just about anyone on your list.

  • Check out 11 awesome holiday gift ideas, each up 75% off.
  • Options include an ultrasonic cleaner, a portable video projector and a weighted blanket.
  • You can save an extra 15% off each item with the coupon code MERRYSAVE15.

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    Open academic culture, more crucial than ever, is in peril

    Why campuses are becoming polarized — and what we can do about it.

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    Sponsored by Charles Koch Foundation
    • The narrowing of academic freedom is a major problem for institutions of higher education.
    • Social media, external pressures, and increasingly diverse student bodies — while providing some positives — create more opportunity for misunderstanding and miscommunication.
    • Reaffirming the value of and commitment to open debate ensures a more vibrant academic culture.
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    Jeannie Gaffigan: Finding comedy in a brain tumor

    Here's how a pear-sized tumor on Jeannie Gaffigan's brain stem became an unexpected comedy gold mine.

    • It was only by chance that Jeannie Gaffigan found out she had a pear-sized tumor on her brain stem. During a visit to her kid's pediatrician, the doctor noticed something off about Jeannie Gaffigan's hearing, which led to the diagnosis.
    • She needed to have immediate brain surgery. Gaffigan describes this highly stressful and uncertain time in her as traumatic—and deeply hilarious, says Gaffigan. Comedy, she says, can be used to process your traumas.
    • A comedy writer by trade, she obsessively documented the experience and asked people who visited her in hospital to make notes and lists, which she later turned into her memoir When Life Gives You Pears.
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    Gear
    • 12min summarizes hundreds of best-selling books down to essential 12-minute microbooks.
    • Microbooks are downloadable in both text and audio formats.
    • You can request a 12min summary of any non-fiction book not in their vast library.
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    Most of today’s teens are easy prey to fake facts

    An international study finds the vast majority of 15-year-olds can't tell when they're being manipulated.

    Image source: mooremedia/Shutterstock
    • International reading tests administered in 79 countries find most teens to be gullible when consuming information.
    • As learning has moved online, absolutely reliable sources have become scarce.
    • Most teens can't detect the validity of supposed "facts" from contextual clues.
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    Think Again Podcasts

    Confucianism, Islam, Christianity, Hinduism—the world's scriptural belief systems take many different forms but all tend toward 'kenosis'—self-transcendence for the benefit of others. And all have been used and abused for less spiritual ends. Former nun and renowned theologian Karen Armstrong on the lost art of scripture.


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    How much does it cost to save a life?

    Our personal choices can help to effectively combat poverty, says Peter Singer.

    Videos
    • For the amount it costs to save one life in the United States, several hundred or a thousand lives could be saved in developing countries.
    • You can make small sacrifices to fuel your personal philanthropy. Instead of giving, "we're buying ourselves things that we don't really need," says philosopher Peter Singer. "Things that might range from expensive cars to simply buying bottled water when we can drink the water out of the tap."
    • Peter Singer is the founder of The Life You Can Save, an organization that aims to help change the culture of giving in affluent countries and increase donations to reputable and effective nonprofits.
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    Master a second language in easy 10-15 minute blocks

    Babbel is developed by over 100 linguistic experts and its speech recognition technology assesses your pronunciation so it's "fi 'ahsan al'ahwal" every time.

    Gear
    • A lifetime Babbel subscription can help you learn up to 14 popular languages.
    • 10-to-15 minute language lessons focus on building basic conversational skills.
    • Babbel's speech recognition technology monitors and assesses your verbal performance.
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