When I first saw Aladdinpower’s Hand Held Generator, I was skeptical. Years ago I was duped into buying a bicycle headlight powered by the motion of the bike’s front wheel. The gadget caused so much friction Lance Armstrong would have had trouble getting enough juice out of it. Looking at the design of this unit, which you operate by pumping a lever with your hand, I was expecting nothing more than a nasty cramp; instead, the Hand Held Generator quickly gave a satisfying zing and its plug-in flashlight bulb glowed bright. Weighing just 4.2 ounces, the unit can also charge cellphones and other electronic devices.
($59.95; 813-975-7177; www.aladdinpower.com)