So as promised about a month ago, here are some gifts that I think are good for the hardest group to shop for: guys.
Let me start out by saying that I'm kind of a present-giving nutjob. I always try to find the absolute perfect gift for people so much so that I kind of wish that birthdays were set up where once a year when you found something for someone you'd just give it to them then and then on their actual birthday make them food. This is because I always find the "so-perfect-they-don't-even-know-they-want-this-but-will-love-it" gift in March who someone whose birthday is in October. Or something like that. And it doesn't make sense to me to get it in March and hold onto it b/c it may no longer be perfect in October or they may find it and buy it for themselves and then I suppose I'd have to find a receipt to return it. That doesn't usually go over well.
But I digress... I think men are so hard to shop for because a) you can't just buy them what you want like you can with a lot of girl friends or sisters and b) when they want something THEY BUY IT. No, "arg should I shouldn't I?", they just buy it. Doesn't matter if it's December first and you've been asking him what he wants for Christmas/Hannauka. He'll buy it for himself. Le sigh.
So I feel like I've come up with some good ideas over the years which you can spin and make yours. Yay! I'm going to stick to things that I have actually bought over the years mostly for my husband (but also some things we got for his friend who was at one time our roommate and best man at our wedding.)
1) t-shirts from Threadless.com, 2) Grooming Lounge Gift Certificate, 3) Sephora Scent Sampler Gift Certificate For Him, 4) Silk Boxers
While it's kind of stereotypical to think that men hate shopping unless it's for the new big screen tv or something, in my case, it's totally true. Now I nearly got my husband a cashmere sweater for Valentine's Day (there was such a sale at Macy's!) my general feeling was "He'd like it but blah". Threadless shirts on the other hand are fun and cool. I found Threadless when they mentioned it in a little sidebar in my college's monthly magazine back in 2000 and I think between the two of us, my husband and I have roughly 20 Threadless shirts. The t-shirts are made from user submissions, voted on, and then printed on American Apparel shirts. If you think you're not seeing anything on Threadless and you're looking for funny shirts also check out glarkware.com, bustedtees.com, and there are a slew of other that are all escaping me now.
Number 2, The Grooming Lounge is from our days in DC (although they've apparently opened another store in Atlanta). They do, as the name implies, all sorts of male grooming. Hair, face, nails, skin, massages, all the things YOU'D want in a nice day spa EXCEPT the Grooming Lounge is all leather and wood and Old Boys Club rich looking.
[Start Scene] In the midst of Christmas shoppers in a horribly narrow Boston area mall, the crowd parts to reveal a slightly bedraggled woman clutching a fistful of narrow paper strips. As she passes people she can be heard muttering "top paper is Lacoste, then Calvin Klein, then Lazzaro, ralph Lauren, Hugo Boss, Burberry, Lacoste, Calvin Klein, Ralph-NO NO STUPID STUPID! Calvin Klein, Lazzaro, Ralph Lauren, Oooh my head hurts. Lacoste, Calvin Klein, which one to pick, which one to pick? Lazzaro, Ralph Lauren, I liked Lacoste but maybe the Burberry. Wait was this Burberry Brit for Men or Burberry Touch for Men... AHHHHH" She fall to the ground in madness. [End Scene] Soooo needless to say the Sephora Scent Sampler for Men basically saved my sanity this Christmas. Not only because it saved me from all my little sheets of paper (though if you do go that route-- here's a hint-- BRING A PEN not all of the colognes have pre-printed sheets at the department stores) but also because a fragrance smells different out of the bottle than it does once it reacts with your body chemistry.
And lastly, silk boxers. Come on, they're fun! I actually recommend the faux silk boxers that Target sells because how many guys that you know check the labels or - shock - hand wash some of their clothes?!
Ok this has been about 5 times longer than I expected so stay tuned to my next installment of my gifts for guys and if it's so super incredible dire that you get a present right this very minute, hey, take a deep breath then go check out my favorite online stores.