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Get Smart: High-Tech Style for the Rest of Us

I’ve always had a thing for spies. As a kid, I wanted to be Agent 99, work with the A-Team, marry MacGyver, and though I didn’t know it then, I wanted—and still want—to sleep with James Bond and shag Austin Powers. I used to get up early every Saturday morning to watch my favorite spy of all, Agent 86, Maxwell Smart, fall arse-backwards into saving the world from the evil clutches of KAOS. I loved the danger, the recorded laughter, the intrigue, and mostly the gadgets. I may be a few years older now, but I’m no less enamored of and impressed by spies, shoephones, cones of silence, and polished women who can kick evil butt in couture. I’m a tad disappointed that many of my favorite gadgets from the show were never realized, but I’ve found a few other high-tech fashion statements to smarten up my style. Say it with me, “Good thinking, 99!”

Photovoltaic Bra

I’ve always felt that a good bra and knickers can save an outfit, but who knew a good bra could save the world? Japanese lingerie maker, Triumph International, recently unveiled the “Photovoltaic-Powered Bra,” which is both earth and spy-friendly. This perky number features a solar panel, which can display messages on the removable small electric board when the cell generates electricity—something Dr. Evil developed for his fembots years ago. The bra is also equipped with pads designed to hold beverages, so you can be hands-free for any arse-kicking that needs to happen.  

Spy Jackets

The original Agent 99, Barbara Feldon, and Anne Hathaway’s Agent 99 make it look easy to kick butt in high heels, and still have perfect hair. Regardless of heel height, I can’t kick any butt—my legs are too short. That’s why I fend off bad guys with this high-tech, no-touchy jacket. When activated by the wearer, 80,000 volts of low amperage electrical current pulses just below the surface shell of the entire jacket. This exo-electric armor prevents any person from unauthorized contact with me, so I can focus on perfecting my hair.

Inspector Gadget had the traditional spy trench coat to hide his high-tension springs and extendable boxing gloves, but this modern jacket, designed for federal law enforcement agents, kicks Inspector Gadget’s trench-coat wearing shiny mechanical butt. Its forty pockets—many of them hidden—manage all the secret bits and pieces that keep a secret agent plugged in. There are specific compartments for a spy’s PDA, MP3 player, cellular phone, wheatgrass bottle, memory-eraser, wallet, keys, x-ray sunglasses, laughing-gas pens, and more, with non-scratch linings, magnetic closures, and hidden conduits in the lining to keep wires from tangling. The hood that inflates into a duckboat costs extra.

Being an undercover operative is almost as dangerous as being an auditor—people want to make you disappear. I’ve been tailing my dodgy-looking neighbor because I’m convinced she and her octogenarian husband are running a crime ring. I never know when she’ll come at me with her handbag, so I wear this protective and stylish vest. It’ll protect against anything up to a .357 magnum and some .44 magnum rounds, so I’d imagine it’s good for old-lady handbags too.

Disposable Undies

While secret agents are portrayed glamorously on the big screen and in books, a real agent’s life is very different. There’s little time for hot sex scenes, flash fashions, or shaken-not-stirred drinks, and even less time for personal hygiene. When working undercover, the last thing a spy wants to worry about is his underwear, so he carries postcard-sized packages of disposable undies in the secret voice-activated butt-flap on his pants. Made of extra soft polypropylene, El Boxer disposable underwear boxers feature a convenient fly front and finished leg openings. An elastic waistband ensures a snug and comfortable fit.


Spy Specs

A good spy is always a few steps ahead of the bad guys; a really good spy is a few steps ahead, but always watching his behind. A great spy is wearing these see-behind glasses to see if you’re watching his behind. Perfect for discreet surveillance and also handy for blocking evil UV rays. Standard spy gear.

Air Guitar Shirt

Spies could wear boring low-tech t-shirts like the rest of us, but why would they when they’ve got scientists and engineers designing super-secret spy clothing in the lab? I’d be sure to have Australian engineer, Dr. Richard Helmer, in my secret lab. He embedded textile motion sensors into a shirt to make a virtual instrument that allows real-time music playing. Can’t wait to stun bad guys with my stunning air guitar. Actually, I want an entire orchestral wardrobe, with tambourine pants, trombone scarves, and timpani gloves.

Wi-Fi Shirt

Thanks to inflated gas prices, we spies can no longer afford to have our tech team tail us in a nondescript white van. Without that backup, we need to be aware of current Wi-Fi signals at all times, or our covers might be compromised when we hold our shoes to our ears and say, “Can you hear me now?” This Wi-Fi detecting tee is a subtle and stylish way to keep tabs on Internet access and it doubles as a neuro-programmer for when you need to hypnotize bad guys.

Spy Tie

A recent Gallup poll revealed that the number of men who wore ties to work each day fell to 6 percent in 2007. It seems the casual Friday mentality has leaked into the rest of the week, which is good for those with fat necks, but bad for those sticking their necks out for us. Take our friendly neighborhood spy who relies on his tie with a built-in high-resolution pinhole camera and miniature digital video recorder to record the rascals on Wall Street sending dirty money to CONTROL. I wonder if I can hook my TIVO up to mine …

High-Tech Jeans

Spies typically have deceiving genes, and when they need to blend in on the street, they wear these high-tech deceiving jeans. Levi’s Redwire DLX Remixed Capri has an iPod docking cradle built into a hidden side pocket, retractable headphones at the waistband, and a removable joystick as part of watch pocket. The controls allow you to look like you’re adjusting volume when really you’re ready to dispense sleeping gas on those gangsters keeping you awake at night. Available in Black Matrix wash for good guys and bleached-out White Nasty denim for bad guys.

Spy Phone

It goes without saying that no self-respecting spy can save the world without a shoe phone. Old school spies like this old-fashioned corded phone because they just can’t risk a dropped call when conveying life-or-death details to headquarters. Sure, you might trip over the cord when casing a suspect, but nobody said being a spy is easy.

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