Time & Money


Published: Monday, December 1, 2003 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, November 30, 2003 at 10:18 p.m.

ROADSIDE SAFETY

What fashion-forward driver wouldn't want to look as good as Grace Kelly while changing a tire in the rain or scraping ice off the windshield on a frigid morning? But Barbara K's Roadside Safety Kit is not just about style - though the futuristic-looking silver and blue carrier is chic enough to take clubbing.
It has substance, too. The compact, easy-to-tote bag is filled with all the necessary equipment for any beginner-level car calamity: jumper cables, SOS banner, tire gauge, ice scraper, flashlight/lantern, etc. But whereas most roadsters would want to hide their tools in the trunk, these are worthy of the front seat. The poncho is the color of Paul Newman's eyes, as are the funnel and ice scraper.
Barbara K's Roadside Safety Kit is available online and through retailers such as Amazon, the Container Store and Linens 'N Things. It sells for $39.95 for the 11-piece car kit and snazzy satchel. 212-739-9800, www.barbarak.com.

ON-THE-GO-CHARGING FOR CELL PHONES

The ZIP-LINQ wireless phone charger lets travelers charge their phones through the USB port on a laptop or a desktop computer. When connected to a Macintosh or PC, the device can deliver a full charge in about an hour. Its retractable cable can be stretched from 4 to 30 inches, giving travelers plenty of room to spread out. The ZIP-CELL-MO1 model includes a USB cable, adapters for various Motorola, Nokia, Siemens and Sony Ericsson phones, and a booster that increases the voltage from a 5-volt USB port to the 6 volts required by some phones. The M02 model includes a cable and adapters for various phones by Sanyo, Samsung, LG and others. The Cables Unlimited device costs $30. An additional booster for phones that require up to 9 volts of power is $15. www.zip-linq.com

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