My husband is a guy's guy. Football, golf, huge televisions and ranch dressing. These are a few of his favorite things. Mike likes big toys and no frills.
This means he is impossible to shop for unless I am shelling out for a car or a 72" flatscreen.
Case in point: I asked Mike for advice on my father's day gift guide and the conversation went something like this:
Me: How do you feel about this iPod docking station?
Me: But it's very manly— it's a rough hewn piece of wood!
Him: Just give me a cord and an outlet. Why do you have to make everything so fancy?
Me: What about a custom steak branding iron with your initials?
Me: Actually, I think I got you one of those a couple of years ago…
Him: I know.
Me: What ever happened to that?
Me: Remember the Jack Spade Messenger Bag I got you?
Him: The one that has now become your laptop bag?
Me: Yes! It fits my laptop perfectly!
Him: Are we done here?
After Mike got me nowhere, I decided to consult other online father's day gift guides for ideas. These guides basically think your man falls into one of three categories.
1) The Williamsburg Wannabe
These gifts assume your husband plays in a band on the weekends, trolls record stores for obscure tracks in his spare time and pretends to bump into Zooey Deschanel on his way to midnight showings of foreign movies. Excuse me— films. Gifts include Ticket Stub Diaries, Make Your Own Ukulele Kits and Stanley Kubrick Movie Collections.
To which I say— my husband likes Bon Jovi and Wedding Crashers. He is not Dan from Gossip Girl.
2) The Big Child
These gifts assume your husband peaked at the age of eight. That he genuinely loves his Goonies T-shirt and only pretends to wear it ironically. They recommend things like custom bobblehead dolls, Yoda USB Drives and the #1 Dad Gumball Machine.
But buying these gifts for your husband ignores the fact that you share the same house. If your husband owns a # 1 Dad Gumball Machine, then so, by default, do you. Unless you are prepared to display it in your home till the end of time, look elsewhere.
3) The International Man of Mystery
These gifts assume your husband spends most of his time overseas conducting bank heists underwater. They include things like stainless steel wallets, video spy pens and faux vintage book covers for your laptop.
If you know my husband, you know that he probably could pull off a bank heist underwater. But his hair would look horrible afterward. And he'd drive away in a Volvo from 2001.
No matter what the category, the fact is— these are all novelty gifts. Meant to be given, received and then stuffed in a closet for all eternity.
After all that, and as a service to the wives of guy's guys everywhere, I went back to my husband and asked him again what the hell he wants. Of course, Mike answered what most guy's guys would answer— "I don't know." So then I said— Ok. Let's make this easier. What do you already own that you like?
Mike's Father's Day Gift Ideas Culled From Things He Already Owns
1) Odyssey White Hot Putter: Because the bad score he got on his last golf game was totally his old putter's fault.
2) Ray Ban Sunglasses: Because Bradley Cooper wears them. And he was in The Hangover. So they must be okay.
3) iPod nano: Perfect for drowning out your own grunts at the gym.
4) Bottle of Jack: Without it, it's just a glass of Coke.
5) Oster Classic Beehive Blender: The easiest way to ingest protein powder is with frozen blueberries.
6) Weber Professional-Grade Barbecue Fork: In case you don't hear him when he tells you to step away from his grill.
7) Monkey Drinking Booze Cufflinks: Didn't you know? Guy's guys find monkeys hilarious. Drunk monkeys are even funnier. Don't question it. This is one of the only gifts that I have ever given Mike that he liked immediately.
8) The Dean Martin Celebrity Roasts DVD: I have no idea what to say about this. I'm a girl.
9) Michael Andrews Bespoke custom shirt: Because men are weirdly particular about collar widths. Note: I am currently running a giveaway for a Michael Andrews Bespoke custom shirt and tie. Winner will be announced on July 17th. Enter here.
The good news about this gift guide is each item is "Guy's Guy Guaranteed". The bad news is that your guy's guy probably already owns all of these items too.
Sorry. You're screwed for the rest of your gift-giving life just like I am.
Or you can always get the #1 Dad Gumball Machine.
What gifts have you gotten for your husband that have been successful? What failed miserably?
UPDATE: I compiled all of your answers into "The Mommy Shorts Fan-Submitted Father's Day Gift Round-up". Thanks for contributing!
Tiny Prints is offering one FREE Father's Day Card up until 6/13/2011. Click link above to redeem and use code: FREEFD
My husband hates gifts. I really suck at buying him things. It sucks doubly because I normally get really awesome gifts for other people. He’s just impossible to please. He’s a very gadgety type so I’m screwed as I am a tech idiot and have no idea what gadgets are the bees knees. Alternatively, I just buy him gummy bears. He never says no to gummy bears.
Oh, I like the Monkey Drinking Booze cufflinks!
Let’s cut to the chase – if you want to give him something he really wants and that doesn’t cost a penny (unless you are “out-sourcing”), I would go the BJ route. 🙂
Holy crap I think we’re married to the same guy.
The only answer to the “What to get?” question for my husband is golf clubs (dude already has 3 sets, and enough fancy drivers to take down the windshields of every cheating spouse in the state of NJ) and iTunes gift cards.
This year I got him a keychain because his is crap. It is a simple ring with the GPS coordinates of where are kids were born (which was all at the same hospital, so it is only one line). Also? Angelina Jolie has this tatooed all over her body. So I get to see his keys more organized when I need to use them and he can think of Angelina whenever he gets his keys. Win-win.
I hate buying for men. Hate it. Usually we just get him a coffee gift card or a gc to his favorite store. Everything we buy, he returns anyway. lol
Hmmm. What’s the best gift I’ve ever given my husband, huh?
I’d have to go with a son for his birthday. But in the realm of things that can be bought, XM radio. Except he made me cry the ugly cry when I gave it to him. Because he doesn’t “do” surprises. So now? He gets a meal of his choice and the opportunity to sleep in!
Going with Omaha Steaks because my man LOVES to grill so I’m like “rock on” because I get to enjoy it to. Love a win-win!
In times of desperation, I have resorted to banana bread. But then I learned that he only likes this one specific banana bread from the Union Square Farmer’s Market. Even baking it myself was unsuccessful.
And yes, I used to be awesome at gifts too.
Truer words were never spoken. You have no idea how many times that was mentioned while I was writing the post.
My hubby and I have been together (both dating and married) for 11 years. I SWEAR, I have bought ONE gift that was successful in that entire time. A GPS unit. Everything else, he either picked out himself or was a miserable failure.
That grill fork might be a good idea for my guy. Have to put that on the list.
I suck at buying gifts for my husband. Like yours, everything he would LOVE is much $$$$$$$. FAther’s Day stresses me out. Every. Single. Year.
I think I absolutely nailed Father’s Day this year, but I am so afraid he’s not going to *get* it. I also haven’t had a chance to take it out of the box and get a good look at it because he’s been in the house constantly.
iTunes gift cards work every time
I really hate buying gifts for my husband. REALLY HATE. I always have awesome ideas and he is so “oh yeah, that’s nice” and then they sit in a corner.
he bought me a Tiffany’s necklace for mother’s day. SERIOUSLY? Why do you put this kind of pressure on me????
You had enough tact not to mention it as an option. I am shameless and lack class completely, so I had to. Its the gift that never goes out of style. At least not for him.
My husband would love those monkey cuff links, but he only wears a suit once a year, so they’d unfortunately be stashed in his dresser drawer for the rest of the year. He’s in the market for some awesome sunglasses, but he’s got a very round face and has to try on each pair and most don’t fit right. I think I’ll get him a case of his favorite beer (something we so rarely splurge on due to our tight grocery budget). He’ll love it. 🙂 Guys really are easy if you don’t overthink them.
Ladies, if you’re just giving blowjobs for holidays, you have bigger problems than giftlessness. Why not sports tickets? You probably know his calendar better than he does. You said he likes golf. Golf is made for gifts: clothes, gadgets, videos. Steak-of-the-month club (I’m sure it exists). and in a pinch, a new framed picture of your daughter cannot go wrong. Also, isn’t this Mazzy’s problem to begin with?
Why are you buying gifts for father’s day? That’s what you had a kid for!!!
Just print out a ridiculously cute pic of Mazzy and have her scribble on a frame. HE WILL LOVE IT!
Then tell him why is the world’s best dad.
But if he does wear cufflinks I have to say one of the best guy gifts I’ve ever given is the NYC Subway token cufflinks.
ok im seriously contemplating getting my husband the ticket stub diary you show in the first category. He is one of the few people who would love that!! thanks for the suggestions, ha!
Usually, I completely phail when it comes to buying The Man a gift he will actually treasure. Until last year, when I got him one of those vouchers for a Life Experience. You know, stick him in a really fast low, slinky race car with an actual racing driver. Except the one that I got him included actual lessons to drive the darn thing, have the laps recorded, and then he had two flying laps courtesy of the driver. He’s still talking about it.
Australia has http://www.redballoon.com.au, among others. I’m sure the States will have heaps more.
I buy myself things for father’s day. It makes my husband really happy. (Not really, but that is what I tell myself).
We might have the same husband. That is totally what mine would say about that docking station. And it’s official; I’m buying him a bottle of bourbon for Father’s Day. Done!
In think I’ll up the ante with actual drunk monkeys this year. I hate buying gifts for grown men. There’s no Bath and Body Works for them. The dirty apes.
I gave my hubby a round of golf certificate & am letting him go play golf all day Saturday in a tournament with my brother and friends that they call “The Bastard Open” and on Sunday(actual Father’s Day) I will let him watch the US Open – even IF it is MY Birthday June 21. I am nice like that.
OMG! You are hilarious.
last year i got him a nose hair trimmer… yeah.. you should have seen the look i got along with the ‘wowwwww thats grrrrreaaaaaaatttt’ so i flashed him my boobs and it made everything better!
Here’s my problem. I could totally buy him yet another video game, BUT I’ve bought him four games this past year, and he only plays one of them. And it was the first one I bought. I could buy him another tool set, which he will love, but never use because it will sit in the garage with his tools from last year until he finally starts all those projects that he keeps talking about. I could buy him clothes, but he hates close to everything that I pick out for him. It’s best to just let him pick. That’s what I did last year. I said ‘What do you want’ he told me he wanted a tool set. and I said “Okay. Lets go get it together so I don’t screw it up.” We did. He was very happy with his useless tools. This year? he wants sun glasses, which I refuse to pick out for him. THE MAN IS INSANE. He stands in front of the sunglasses longer than I do. He is so picky. I refuse to pick anything out except for what I’m wearing to bed.
My husband also finds monkeys hilarious. I’ve never understood this. Cute? Yes. Silly? Sure. But hysterically funny? I dunno… I just don’t get it.
I still have no idea what to get him for Father’s Day.
I too have many of those items. BUT, I do not have the most important gift… where did you get those monkey cufflinks??? Seriously, where did you get them?
YOU, my friend, are a gift giving GENIUS!!
The monkey cufflinks take it!
I’m off to secure my spot as BEST WIFE EVER….
I love that keychain idea! I announced it to Mike this morning like I had just solved everything and you know what he did? He shrugged.
Thank god for gift receipts.
Seriously? He doesn’t even like surprise gifts of XM radio?
When I gave Mike the Ray Bans, he was totally not into them. Then a year later he discovered them and decided they were his favorite. As if he had picked them out himself.
Omaha Steaks is actually a brilliant idea. Mike would love that.
I almost included a GPS unit up there because that was on Mike’s approved list. Gadget combined with directions. You can’t go wrong.
Father’s Day would be easy if I was rolling in cash. Just hand me the keys to a Porsche Cayenne and call it a day.
Are you scared your husband reads Mommy Shorts and that’s why you haven’t written down what it is? I’m flattered!
Also. Hello, New Mom on the Blog’s husband! Can I get you anything? A copy of Playboy or a beer perhaps?
Yes, that kind of pressure sounds just AWFUL. How do you get through the day without cracking???
It’s the good gift-giver’s issue of having to one up themselves each time. Look- I know you even BETTER this year!
Fails every time.
The problem with the golf thing is that he has been a live for a number of years now and most people are well aware of his love of golf so he’s gotten every golf knick knack and gadget imaginable. And you know what? I don’t even think he uses any of them but the clubs.
Ok. I’m framing a picture. I thought that was too easy.
Glad to help! I knew SOMEBODY was married to Dan from Gossip Girl.
This isn’t like the first scene of The Game 2, is it?
The second scene would be me checking out the website and booking an “experience”.
And the third scene would be my husband jumping off a building.
But that’s not what’s happening, right??
You win. Mike will probably track you down and marry you. Or marry one of the monkeys. If he’s drunk enough.
I’ve done that for Mike before. He told me last year that he’s rather have time than a tangible gift. So I arranged for four of his friends to play golf with him.
Love “The Bastard Open”.
Maybe I’ll call mine— “The Idiot Invitationals”.
Boob flashing. I will use that in a pinch.
Forget buying things that he’ll never use. Grant him a long weekend away with the guys to play golf, gamble and act like a guy without having to worry about being judged for it by his family.
Or just go with the sloppy BJ. (yeah I added “sloppy”, it is a gift isn’t it?)
I just want a Goonies t-shirt.
Because steak-branding irons just sound dangerous.
(insert sizzling sound here…)
I’m sending my husband to a Golf PING event where he gets two hours without kids (a gift unto itself) plus free fitting, PING golf hats and various other non-essential golf goodies. Then he gets to actually PURCHASE new clubs as needed. He’s thrilled and I’m relieved. Yay me! Only took me 8 years to get that one nailed.
I do a photobook for him with pictures of him and Harlan. He’s not really a gift guy so this is perfect.
I’m totally going for that personalized bobble head.
my huz is impossible to gift too. though last holiday i got him a “mr perfect” shirt and i must say he likes that a lot. (go figure)
i also have done ok w/ comestibles and framed photos of the kids are good too.
Hahahaha!!! It all depends, I suppose. My budget could only stretch to hiring a tame racing driver for 2 hours. 🙂
My hubby would love the Williamsburg Wannabe! He collects guitars. This might be fun for him. Otherwise, he’s impossible to buy for. He already has everything he wants.
No gift for me, no gift for him. Bitter? Who’s bitter?
I did SO EFFING GOOD this year. I’ve had it for weeks and I’m dying to give it to him. CAN’T WAIT. He’s a film maker and he’s getting into stunts, shooting a rodeo flick now, so I got him a 5 hr session at STUNT RANCH. It’s a camp for kids and adults that teaches how to do stunts. So for 5 hrs on a Sunday they’re going to set him on fire and throw him off a building and crap. I even got it off a Groupon so it was half price! Go me!
Man….we must be married to the same man. I mean, I’ve done well in years’ past, BUT only because I shelled out some dough. A giant stainless steel bbq with all the gadgets? Awesome. $700. Special all weather custom floor mats for his truck? He adored me. $300. It’s insane. I don’t think I’m even going to bother this year. Maybe I’ll just shine the BBQ or something and make him think it’s an upgrade.
My husband totally blew it on Mothers Day (of course I wrote a post about to make him feel even worse). Thus, I must get him a phenomenal gift for Fathers Day to again make him feel bad for the Mothers Day debacle. I was hoping I would find it here. Except for the BJ Im pretty sure he would just be like “great thanks” and go back to watching sports. I will keep looking and if I find “the one” will come back and share.
yeah so one year i was so proud of the gift i gave my husband. he is a huge basketball fan, HUGE, so naturally a framed, black & white print of michael jordan (tongue hanging out and all) making a sweet lay-up shot was sure to be a winner. this was 5 years ago. the print is resting against the back wall of our laundry room, unhung and unloved – and has been since the week i gifted it. i forgot to mention i am an interior designer and wouldn’t let him hang it anywhere in our house. good job, me.
haha so true! i was thinking about just handing my 2 year old a piece of paper and some crayons and PRESTO! a card!
Thank you! The ukelele kit and the ticket stub diary (which I’d also love) would be perfect for Steve. I hope that doesn’t land him on lookatthisfuckinghipster.com
I was *hoping* your list was going to inspire me. I’m likely going with a gift card for a massage. It is basically the only successful gift in my house.
But where at the Union Square farmers market can I find the banana bread? I’m going to be near there for brunch tomorrow.
Did you say “Angelina Jolie”?? How is it possible for a man to shrug after those two words??
I got my husband a helicopter ride over Niagara Falls two years ago. Stupid me… I’ll never top that gift and our daughter was only a year old at the time. I’ll be trying for the rest of my life.
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about marriage and the afterlife. Whether you and your spouse are together in this life and next? Or whether you’re with your real soul mate in the next life? Where does it say this?And what about people with more than one wife? And those who have never married? Or are divorced?Thanks.
it yourself. Not to believe the same is not relevent. The accusation of just being conservative as equal to someone who dosen’t “give a damn” (without qualifiers) for children after they are born. is the subject. Go ahead, I have time.
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