Every year around the start of March Madness the same stat about the diminished workplace productivity during tourney time gets recycled. I have no idea how the research firm came up with the stat, but if any day could rival the start of the NCAA tournament for general office slack-offery it has to be the Monday after Thanksgiving.
You’re just back from what, for most folks, is a four-and-a-half day weekend, a good portion of which was probably spent drinking with your high school friends as if you were still in high school. On top of that, your blood contains a high percentage of stuffing and gravy. So it’s fair to say that your synapses may not exactly be firing at optimal levels.
That’s what makes the shopping holiday that is Cyber Monday so tricky to navigate. From your email inbox to your social media feeds, you are flooded with what seem to be enticing deals. The fact that they allow you to avoid Black Friday battles that look like a scene out of 300 is enough to make you want to click “Add to cart.”
But like the stripper when the lights turn on, all Cyber Monday deals are not as attractive as they appear. Some retailers try to fool customers by selling items at the same price as normal but still calling it a “special.” To help, you weed through all the garbage, we found Cyber Monday deals that are actually, you know, a good deal.
SAMSUNG 60" 4K ULTRA HD LED TV
$897.99, (was $1,699.99), walmart.com
I know, I know, this seems too good to be true. But it’s legit. Walmart is selling one of Samsung’s premier 4K televisions for $802 off the list price because that’s what you can do when you’re one of the world’s largest retailers. At 60 inches, this TV will dominate any space it’s placed in and that’s a good thing. It has a beautiful picture and a true 16:9 aspect ratio. The only downside is that now everyone is going to want to watch the big game at your house from now on.
CANON EOS 70D DSLR CAMERA
$1,199.99 (was $1,549.99), bestbuy.com
The 70D is the choice of many professional photographers and videographers, but is also user-friendly enough for more inexperienced shooters making it a great buy at $350 off the normal price. It has a large 20.2 megapixel CMOS sensor to capture sharp action shots and shoots amazing high-definition videos. The camera comes with a 18-350mm zoom lens, which is fine for beginners, but as you take more photos you’ll want more specific lenses.
PHILIPS FIDELIO NOISE-CANCELLING HEADPHONES
$199 (was $299), amazon.com
Philips Fidelio headphones do a great job of blocking out noise and are packaged in a sleek design, so when you have a chance to pick them up for $100 off it’s a no-brainer. The headphones have comfortable memory foam earpads and deliver high-resolution audio that preserves the quality of your music.
APPLE iPAD MINI 4
$299 (was $399), staples.com
The iPad Mini is one of the best form factors of any tablet on the market. The screen is big enough for reading books and watching movies without having to squint and the keyboard is the ideal size for thumb typing. But it is small enough that you can easily hold it securely in one hand as you’re being jostled around in a crowded subway car, unlike the full-size iPad. It’s also rare to find current generation Apple products on sale like this.
XBOX ONE 1TB FIFA 16 BUNDLE
$349.99 (was $399.99), target.com
With one terabyte of memory, you can basically store your entire digital life on your Xbox One and still have room to spare. This bundle comes with a full download of the latest version of FIFA, one of the most enduring video game franchises. You also receive another EA game free and a year-long membership to EA Access, which allows you to play other titles from the publisher before they’re released to the public.
DJI PHANTOM 3 STANDARD QUADCOPTER
$599.99 (was $799.99), bestbuy.com
You get the feeling that drones are going to be an even more popular gift this year than in years past, and DJI makes some of the best quadcopters out right now. The Phantom 3 Standard is an entry-level drone that will suit most amateurs just fine. It shoots video in 2.7K HD and 12-megapixel photos. The thing is remarkably easy to fly and you can watch a feed of the video on your phone.
NIKE FREE FLYKNIT CHUKKA
$101.23 (was $170), nike.com
Nike’s clearance section has always been an insider’s secret for guys looking for awesome sneakers that may not have received a lot of hype. And for Cyber Monday, the Swoosh is taking 25% off the already discounted prices on shoes like these Free Flyknit Chukkas which look dope in every season.
OMEGA SPEEDMASTER RACING WATCH
$2,895 (was $4,800), jomashop.com
Omega is the watch of choice of James Bond, which says a lot. This stainless steel Speedmaster chronograph has a distinct black and silver dial that looks elegant with a tuxedo and rugged with a pair of jeans. It’s the kind of timepiece you’ll have for decades, so it’s worth jumping at the chance to buy the watch for 40% off its retail price.
J.CREW FAIR ISLE SWEATER
$58.80 (was $98), jcrew.com
The intricate patterns on a Fair Isle sweater make it one of the best layering pieces a guy can own. You’ll look sharp at your holiday party and well into winter with this version from J.Crew, which is 40% off for Cyber Monday.
$199.95 (was $249.95), fitbit.com
If you are in the market for a smartwatch because you are more focused on tracking your workouts than doodling hearts, the Fitbit Surge is what you want. It has GPS to track the distance and pace of your runs and a simple heart rate monitor to make sure you’re training at the most effective rate. The Surge has a minimal but sturdy design that is more discreet than an Apple Watch.