As promised, here's the second half of my butch holiday gift guide!
11. Smartwool Socks. A well-dressed butch needs more sock choices than black and white. Smartwools are my (and my DGF's) personal favorite, because they're warm and versatile without being too thick or bulky. Check out Sierra Trading Post and REI for some good discounts, but be ready to pay $10-$15/pair. The PhD series are always winners, and a men's size medium seems to fit most women's feet.
12. Belt Buckle. Whether you're a butch's best bud, cousin, or acquaintance, an interesting belt buckle makes a terrific gift. Here's one from Retimade ($95), the company that makes the necklace I featured in the last post. (I promise they're not paying me... Alas, no one is!)
13. Audible.com Subscription. I like Audible so much that every year on my birthday, I renew my subscription as a present to myself. If the word "audiobooks" makes you think of blue-haired eightysomethings checking out cassette tapes from the local library, think again. Audiobooks have come a long way. With a free mobile app, Audible makes it a cinch to download great literature, philosophy, humor, mysteries, even lesbian erotica. I listen to audiobooks every day on my commute (currently making my way through David Foster Wallace's unfinished last novel, The Pale King), as well as when I go running, walk the dog, or clean the kitchen. Great for multitasking, book-loving butches.
14. A Book or Three. Speaking of books, I can't resist plugging some favorites from 2011:
- 1Q84: Haruki Murakami's excellent new tome. Fans of The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle will love it. Magical realism, two compelling characters, and tiny people who spin cocoons out of air. A great, long (>900 pages!) read.
- Bossypants: Raise your hand if you wish Tina Fey played for our team! Yeah, me too. Her memoir is a fun, gay-friendly romp through the world of college, improv, SNL, mommyhood, and more. A little cheesy, but very fun.
- The Marriage Plot: It's no Middlesex, but then, what is? Jeffrey Eugenides depicts three college friends in the 1980s whose lives intersect in interesting ways. Themes include religion, young love, and bipolar disorder.
- Blue Nights: Admittedly, I'm not finished with this one yet, but how can you go wrong with Joan Didion? This is a memoir about her daughter, and reads like a series of short essays. As beautifully written as it is sad.
- 5 Very Good Reasons to Punch a Dolphin in the Mouth (And Other Useful Guides): at last, the hilarious Matthew Inman, author of the popular humor blog The Oatmeal, has released his first book. Laugh-out-loud funny.
15. Cufflinks. I can't think of a better reason to wear French cuffs than showing off a sweet pair of cufflinks. I am quite partial to the currently-popular typewriter key trend, including the ones pictured left from Uncommon Goods. Whether you get their initials, a pair of shift keys, or "BW" for "Butch Wonders," these make a great gift.
16. A Night or Two at a B&B. Who says butches don't like to be pampered? Take the reins, make a reservation somewhere Yelp-approved, and give her a couple nights she won't forget!
17. Heifer International. I got grief for the "found object" idea in my last post, so I'm sure some folks aren't going to be crazy about this idea, either. But Heifer International is a non-profit organization with a great mission: they give animals to families in need so that these families can lift themselves out of poverty. For example, $20 will buy a flock of chicks. Not only will the eggs feed the family, but extra eggs can be sold for profit. Cool idea, no? Plus, you can give your butch a card that says thinks like, "I bought you a new cock. But I gave it to someone in need."
18. A Gift Certificate for a New Experience. Has your butch ever mentioned that rock climbing looks cool? Or that she's always wanted to snowboard? An introductory lesson or two for a new activity might stir up a new passion. Other ideas include: windsurfing; skydiving; karate; shooting; defensive driving; sushi cooking; improv comedy.
19. A New Tie. Dapper gentlebois never have enough ties, and it's hard to go wrong in adding to their collections. Wool ties are nice for winter and currently in style. Check out the Tie Bar for great patterns (one is pictured here, on the right, $15), and see my post about tie selection for guidelines. I also like the Tie Bar's double-sided pocket squares (one is pictured here, on the left, $8).
20. A Personal Shopping Day. Make a day date with your butch buddy, lover, or relative and take her out for a day of shopping! Trust me: it's refreshing to shop with someone who wants to focus on US all day, and doesn't make us try on anything in the ladies' department. Be sure to build in at least one 30-minute break for every two hours of shopping. And either read up on men's clothing in advance or take along a buddy who knows something about it. (And yes, I rent out as a personal shopper/wardrobe consultant for butches and straight men!)
I hope these posts have given you some great ideas for the butch in your life! Butches, what's the coolest butchy-type gift you've ever gotten?