Carbon self flagellation (complete with thorns)

If you’ve ever felt guilty about harming the planet, Swiss artist-inventor Annina Rüst has invented just the right Christmas gift for you. According to the New York Times, this translucent leg band monitors how much electricity you use, and once you’ve gone over your threshold, the wireless device inflicts physical punishment and slowly drives six stainless-steel thorns into the flesh of your leg. The pain caused is “therapy for environmental guilt,” Rüst told the New York Times. Apparently, she modeled her “personal techno-garter” on the spiked bands worn by the ultra conservative sect of Catholic monks Opus Dei.

Rüst built her prototype while working at the Computing Culture group of the Media Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She says the band will also inflict thorny pain if wearers don’t spend enough time talking to their plants.

Some people have a twisted sense of humor.