Wise Guys: What’s a Good Present for a Man?

gift_present_holidaysphoto by mysza

Advice from three of our guy friends. This week a straight woman asks, What’s a good holiday present for 1) a guy you’ve just started dating (sleeping with), 2) a guy you’ve been exclusive with for a year or so, 3) a husband?”

wiseguy_benStraight Married Guy (Ben): I favor “experience” presents over things you buy at the store. The basic rules are a) something fun, sexy or sweet that b) you wouldn’t normally do that c) shows how cool and/or loving you are, and — this part is very important — that d) you take care of ALL the details. Where you are in the relationship changes the level of difficulty (or intensity) of the task.
1) Maybe tickets to see a show or a game (fun), or to see hipster burlesque (sexy), or how about side-by-side massages at the spa (sweet).
2) Maybe skydiving or scuba lessons, a weekend as his sex slave, or a getaway to a lit or music festival.
3) This is marriage now, so make it count: i) a scuba trip (passport required) or ii) fulfill a sexual fantasy, his choice, no questions asked, or iii) plan a weekend away — including a sitter.
On the other hand, you could just buy him a nice single malt scotch: 1) a ten year, 2) a 15 year, 3) a 25 year.

danielGay Single Guy (Daniel):
1) For the guy you’ve just started dating/schtupping, I suggest getting him something that shows that you’ve been paying attention to him and his interests. For example, maybe you’ve noticed – or perhaps the anime posters on his wall gave it away – that he is into Japanese anime. I would do a little research online for a highly regarded anime film that is rare or difficult to purchase Stateside and purchase it on eBay or wherever you can. You could also gift him custom anime body pillows of his favorite character (waifus for the win!). What that says to him is that you are aware of the little things that bring him joy and you’ll see his face light up in surprise and amazement. He’s sure to be impressed by your ingenuity in trying to impress him and your efforts will not go in vain!
2) For the guy you’ve been exclusive with for a year, I think you should make one of his sexual fantasies come true. I am totally serious because the timing is just right to demonstrate that you’re both interested in long-term fulfillment, which includes sexual. After a year together, maybe the sex is getting predictable anyway, so maybe it will be a holiday present for you too!
3) As for the husband, give him something that will let him spend some quality time away from you and/or the family – like a fishing rod (so he can go fishing) or a weekend mountain biking trip. Often times when you are married, you find that you’ve lost touch with yourself and the things you once loved to do because of time or other responsibilities. People need their own time to reboot, be away, have a break from their everyday lives. And that is an amazing gift to someone you’ve already pledged to spend the rest of your life with.

anonymous_suitStraight Single Guy (Max):
1) Don’t get him anything. It’s the best way to keep it fun and light. Sure, you can and should go have a baller dinner and some crazy sex but please, spare us. Holiday gifts at the beginning of a relationship are a lot more alarming than touching. Also, you can bet on the fact that he won’t get anything for you, and do you really want that awkward situation?… Wait, don’t answer that. I think you might.
2) After a year, it’s your call. My one suggestion would be to do something that you normally wouldn’t, like taking him to see his favorite sports team or buying the whole James Bond series and then watching it with him. (Remove clothes and add beer for effect.) Simply put, remind him that you rule.
3) Wow. I have to imagine that I’m married? I don’t know what I’d want as a husband… Maybe a classic car or a divorce. Anything else would be for the both of you.

Our “wise guys” are a rotating group of contributors, some of whom wish to remain anonymous and some of whom like the attention. This week’s Straight Married Guy is Ben, a writer and artist living in Los Angeles who runs AdultParlorGames.com; our Single Gay Guy is one-time stripper and sex columnist Daniel; and our Single Straight Guy, Max, is a recent college grad in New England. To ask the guys your own question, click here.


  1. Ben (Married guy):
    “Lit or music festival” – that is a present for “both of you,” brother. But you did redeem with the 25-year scotch. 25-YO Macallan is good.

    For the single dudes, I agree with Max. Don’t over think or over spend. One of the best gifts I ever got when I was single (other than this time with dirty nasty sex), was a framed and matted print/photo.

  2. To me, Daniel’s advice, at least for a hetero guy, would be total overkill. It’s way too coupl-ey, way too soon, and I think would freak a lot of guys out.

  3. I’m in agreement with Daniel and Cootz. Gay, straight or anything in-between, you need time to yourself. More importantly, as Cootz mentioned, you need the freedom to do this without feeling guilty or that you’re abandoning your partner or the relationship. Give us room to breathe!

  4. I think Daniel is onto something with his advice for married couples. I’m in the middle of a divorce and a big part of the reason we’re ending our marriage is that I felt he’d forgotten we’re adults who are supposed to have separate hobbies and interests, me time, really, so that we can come back to the relationship feeling refreshed. I always joked that he was more of the woman in the relationship, more needy, emotional, and possessive than me.

    Freedom to leave, do what I want for a while, and come back without any attitude or guilt about it sounds like the perfect gift.

Comments are closed.