No, girls! I haven’t forgotten about you! I know first-hand that it’s not that easy for us either to find the perfect gifts for our boyfriends/husbands/dads/uncles and all the other males in our lives. Our advantage over the men? We listen, we like to go shopping and therefore know quite well what to get where. Nevertheless, I myself regularly wonder what in hell I should get for the men in my life. With the help of some of them – I call it research – I came up with a pretty cool list of what and what not to buy for our guys.
YES: Tickets – the ultimate gift ever for sports freaks! And I hardly know any guys who are not into sports at all. One way or another there will always be some kind of sports they will be interested in. Just watch out to pick something your dearly beloved is actually interested in. Ice dancing probably is not one of them … Your gains? A few hours to yourself every other week while he’s cheering for his favourite team, drinking beer and having hot dogs. Much better than him being at home, yelling at the TV and waking up the kids, don’t you think? And if he’s not into sports, concerts, monster truck shows or any other kind of manly man thing will do.
YES: BBQ – everything and anything! As long as it’s got to do with fire and meat, you’ll be fine! Do I really need to say more? Actually, that just gave me an idea for another posting, which you’ll get to read soon, I promise! But back to the BBQ related gifts! Your men will adore you for treasuring their manly BBQ skills by giving them a new motorized grill cleaning brush with dual revolving brass brushes, simple push-button control and ergonomic handle, the mini fridge they always dreamed of for keeping beer and steaks cool or the monstrous grill tool set to expertly dissect the huge slabs of meat!
YES: Since we’re already talking about food and partying, two essentials shouldn’t be missed: booze and cigars! Beer, wine, whisky, scotch, vodka, gin … you name it, they usually love it. Alcoholic beverages are probably the most common, boring and unimaginative gifts that ever roamed the gift giving universe. Every one of us has turned to this last resort at least once when we were absolutely clueless what to buy. (Or completely forgot! Since you probably always have the one or other bottle of wine at home, just in case you need a gift! You should be careful, though, to not give it back to the person you got it from! Would be a little embarrassing, don’t you think?) So, I advise you to just give alcohol when everything else fails. Cigars? A completely different matter! Even men who usually don’t smoke like to puff the one or other stoogie from time to time. It makes them feel gentlemanly and like in the good old times when men (were) still obeyed and spent their time in gentlemen’s clubs!
YES: Small toys for big boys! Basically everything you can get at Radio Shack, Virgin Megastore, Apple, Home Depot. Cell phones, Playstation, cameras, power tools, … just to be on the safe side, you better get the newest equipment possible. The way you know which shoe store has just received a new collection, they know which smartphone offers most gadgets no one ever needs, which computer has the best and fastest processor … it’s not easy, isn’t it, girls? But don’t worry! Shop assistants will be eager to help you out and sell you the most expensive stuff available …
YES: Big toys for big boys! Darn, big toys? Isn’t the latest Playstation worth 500 bucks big enough? How can it get any worse? Well, let me just say, the bigger the better! Has your guy always dreamed of digging a hole with an excavator? Drive on the steepest mountain roads in a Landrover? Or take part in a NASCAR race? Jump from helicopters or planes in skydiving gear? Dive with sharks? Drive a speedboat? Ride a bull at a rodeo? Hit scrap cars to a metal pulp? Take the Harley on a trip through the desert? Flying lessons? Bungee jumping? Deep sea fishing? Paintball afternoon? Survival training on a remote island? As long as it’s BIG, ADVENTUROUS and DESTRUCTABLE you can’t go wrong! You’re a little short on money? No problem! Just drop him off in the woods with a Rambo style machete, some water and a cereal bar and let him find his way home.
YES: Clothes! Probably the section you’re most comfortable with, since you basically spend most of your time in department stores and boutiques anyway. And since men tend to leave the clothes shopping to us, being incredibly bored to have to it themselves, it’s definitely an advantage for us. No more stupid T-Shorts with silly prints like “It takes ball to golf the way I do” or “You’ve been a bad girl, now go to my room”. Or colourful shirts that should have been shredded in the 70s. Not to mention suits he shouldn’t be caught dead in. They will be well dressed at all times from now on!
YES: In case you want to be on the safe – and cheap – side: there are always “neutral” gifts like shower gel and after shave gift sets, calendars for the coming year, picture books – never ever get them a REAL book where they have to actually READ with NO pictures to look at (unless you’re lucky enough to have caught a book connoisseur) – or one year subscriptions for their favourite computer/car/motorcycle magazine … and of course there’s also “Playboy” which is only of interest because of their articles … (yeah, right!)
So, let’s take a deep breath and be honest for a moment! Since I’m pretty sure you’ve made the big mistake of giving your men a gift from one of the following categories:
- Cosmetics: Big NO! Unless your man specifically requests it, you should NEVER EVER give him facial creams, body lotions, bubble baths, concealers or any other cosmetics stuff that is not shower gel, after shave or deodorant. Everything else is considered “girly-like” and not manly. Even though you constantly wonder why your newly bought expensive and hydrating night cream seems to be vanishing in high speed. Of course, they would never admit they’re using your lotion, so you better let them believe you have no idea what they are doing. And not embarrass and annoy them by actually buying them their own facial cream. (Little advice: next time you just refill the old jar with a cheap drugstore version and hide your expensive cream! You will be saving tons of money!) The same goes for bubble baths which they officially consider a waste of time. (Unless there’s naked you involved! They won’t care if they smell like roses and gardenias afterwards!)
- Comic hero clothes: Oh no, you didn’t! Please, tell me you didn’t buy that ugly Mickey Mouse tie! Or the adult Superman PJs! Or the Simpsons socks! Or the Sponge Bob T-Shirt! Or the Santa and reindeer boxers! Pretty please, tell me that’s not true! What might look nice and cute on kids NEVER EVER looks nice and cute on full grown men! It doesn’t matter whether you can see it or not – as in underwear and socks. It’s such a turn off I can’t even express my disgust. There might be men out there who like these kinds of clothing items – after all they’re still kids at heart – but don’t encourage them to actually wear those hideous garments. And even though Superman boxers or a silly T are scraping the outer border of taste, a snowman / Santa Clause / reindeer pullover with glitzy applications can not only ruin your holidays but also your relationship!
- Books: Well, as mentioned, this is a little tricky and totally depends on your man! There are still men out there who do like to read! For all the others … waste of money and time! Should you be of the opinion that surely there must be something he has to be interested in … at least buy and exciting thriller and hope for the best. Murder, mayhem, spies and conspiracies are at least something they can relate to.
- Flowers: Come on! Flowers? Men don’t even possess vases, so what are they supposed to do with flowers? Getting slightly embarrassed because you just might have given them a hint they are never thoughtful enough to give YOU flowers? Crisis ahead, I tell you! You want to risk your relationship or what? Forget the flowers! Unless you are lying on bed – naked again, in sexy lingerie or just in hold-ups – on a bed of red rose petals, they couldn’t care less about flowers!
- Tickets: Ballet, theatre, art exhibition, classical concert! Well, thinking of the reaction of my male colleagues who look at me weirdly when I tell them about the latest museum I went to … that usually says everything! How lucky I am to have a man in my life who actually likes art, classic and theatre. The common guy, not so much! And ballet is absolutely the worst of all! Men just cringe at the imagination of men in tights jumping around gracefully on stage, with basically everything on display! So, unless the concert is of the heavy metal hard rock kind, the art exhibition about the original Superman, Batman and Spies vs Spies drawings, the theatre play something light and funny (forget dramas and literary pieces) … you might actually give him something he likes. But don’t count on it …
So, I hope, I’ve given you enough ideas to make the men in your life happy. Sorry, sorry, sorry for this loooong post! Have a great weekend!