By Robin Boddy
All right. Enough is enough. We've been inundated with requests for Christmas gifts for guys, mostly from women who don't understand the men in their lives. We're going to lay it out to you right here, gals, and it's not going to be pretty. What it will be is direct, practical and effective.
To answer this, we went and did the unthinkable. We asked guys what they'd always wished their girlfriends or lady friends had given them. Now, all identities have been changed to preserve the guilty...and unlike similar things you'll find in Cosmo, these aren't "filtered by what we expect a dream guy to be". Nor are they the gift guides from Maxim or FHM - though they're closer to that than anything else.
In particular, don't be expecting your guy to get this as some sort of subtle relationship signal. Guys don't think like that. Guys are direct, think that pickup lines like "That dress should be in a pile on my bedroom floor" is subtle, and think playing Halo 3 together on the couch is at least as good as a movie date. And you know what? We really, honestly, wouldn't them any other way.
So, the next question to ask:
Is your guy a geek? If so, he's probably made your life a lot easier. You don't have to be a geekette to figure out what he wants. Go rifling through his video game collection some night when he's in the bathroom, listen to what some of his friends are geeking out over, and keep mental notes - is there a game that's getting good word of mouth buzz that he doesn't have yet? Your christmas present ideas shopping list just got a lot easier.
If you're worried about him getting that game from someone else, get him a GameTap subscription. Now, be warned - if you get him the Uber Game Of The Year, you don't get "whining privileges". Guys will obsess about these things until they finish them; really, it's the outlet for the same kind of thinking that brought food back to the cave when it was mastodon season.
Does your guy like sports? Either as a watcher or as a participant? If he's a watcher, and he's got a cable package or DirecTV, see if there's a network package or satellite package to let him get the games he wants to see. If there's a professional team he follows, assorted fan gear is usually safe...and admit it. Sprawling on his couch wearing a sports jersey for him to keep and your intimate underthings would certainly spice things up. (Feel free to tie a ribbon around yourself in strategic places to get the hint that he should be unwrapping you, too...) If he likes to play sports, you're going to have to do a bit more research on what sports he likes, and here, as with the computer game examples, talking to his buddies and doing a bit of Google searching are your friends.
Is your guy good with his hands? This one takes a bit of research as well. Nothing is as much of a disaster as being the only chick checking out power tools at Lowe's. You'll get patronized - not deliberately insulting, but patronized. Here's where you recruit one of his buddies to be your "shopping escort" - preferably one who works on guy projects with him. Remember, it doesn't have to be the spiffiest tool on the rack, it has to be one he'll actually use, and appreciate using. Same applies to buying car parts, or car accessories, or most electronics gadgets.
Lastly, one thing that nearly every guy likes is looking at half naked to naked girls. Yeah, yeah. We know, he's with you, and he doesn't need to look any more. Get real. He'll look - the trick is to remind him that looking is OK so long as he never wanders, and a good way to do that is a subscription to a pinup site. And trust us, he'll remember that you bought him that subscription for a very long time. Two tasteful ones are MET-ART and DOMAI - you can Google for exact URLs.
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