The topic of men and Christmas reared its shy and dreaded head around work last week. Women in our
office were asking me if men are comfortable shopping. And what sort of gifts do they (we) really
like under the tree... As I struggled to come up with answers, I realized I should be addressing
this in the newsletter. I know my answers may not truly speak for ALL men, but...
First, do we like to shop?
In a word... No. Christmas shopping is bad for men's health. Indeed it raises men's stress levels to those
experienced by fighter pilots and riot police, according to a psychologist. I recently read that a major department
store chain looked into it by commissioning a doctor to monitor heart rates, blood pressure and stress hormones in male shoppers.
The results showed that men's stress levels went through the roof at the prospect of buying presents, while
only one in four women even registered a slight change.
If we men buy golf clubs or a car, our stress mysteriously seems to disappear. So, as you can see, no, we don't like
But we do like to get gifts... if they're the right gifts. My co-worker gave me this helpful
list for you ladies who will be shopping for us this holiday season!
Christmas Shopping For Men
Buying gifts for men is not nearly as complicated as it is for women.
Follow these rules and you should have no problems:
Rule #1: When in doubt - buy him a cordless drill. It does not matter if he already
has one. I have a friend who owns 17 and he has yet to complain. As a man, you
can never have too many cordless drills. No one knows why.
Rule #2: If you cannot afford a cordless drill, buy him anything with the word
ratchet or socket in it. Men love saying those two words. "Hey George, can I
borrow your ratchet?" "OK. Bye-the-way, are you through with my 3/8-inch socket
yet?" Again, no one knows why.
Rule #3: If you are really, really broke, buy him anything for his car. A 99-cent
ice scraper, a small bottle of deicer or something to hang from his rear view mirror.
Men love gifts for their cars. No one knows why.
Rule #4: Do not buy men socks. Do not buy men ties. And never buy men bathrobes. I was
told that if God had wanted men to wear bathrobes, he wouldn't have invented Jockey
Rule #5: You can buy men new remote controls to replace the ones they have worn out.
If you have a lot of money buy your man a big-screen TV with the little picture in the
corner. Watch him go wild as he flips, and flips, and flips.
Rule #6: Do not buy a man any of those fancy liqueurs. If you do, it will sit in a
cupboard for 23 years. Real men drink whiskey or beer.
Rule #7: Do not buy any man industrial-sized canisters of after shave or deodorant.
I'm told they do not stink - they are earthy.
Rule #8: Buy men label makers. Almost as good as cordless drills. Within a couple
of weeks there will be labels absolutely everywhere. "Socks. Shorts. Cups. Saucers.
Door. Lock. Sink." You get the idea. No one knows why.
Rule #9: Never buy a man anything that says "some assembly required" on the box.
It will ruin his Special Day and he will always have parts left over.
Rule #10: Good places to shop for men include Hardware Stores, Lumber Stores,
Home Depot, John Deere, RV Centers, and Tire Stores. NAPA Auto Parts and Sears
Clearance Centers are also excellent men's stores. It doesn't matter if he
doesn't know what it is. "From NAPA Auto, eh? Must be something I need. Hey!
Isn't this a starter for a '68 Ford Fairlane? Wow! Thanks.")
Rule #11: Men enjoy danger. That's why they never cook - but they will barbecue.
Get him a monster barbecue with a 100-pound propane tank. Tell him the gas line
leaks. "Oh the thrill! The challenge! Who wants a hamburger?"
Rule #12: Tickets to a Red Wing/Lions/Pistons/Tigers game are a smart gift.
However, he will not appreciate tickets to "A Retrospective of 19th Century
Quilts." Everyone knows why.
Rule #13: Men love chain saws. Never, ever, buy a man you love a chain saw.
If you don't know why - please refer to Rule #8 and what happens when he gets
a label maker.
Rule #14: It's hard to beat a really good wheelbarrow or an aluminum extension
ladder. Never buy a real man a step ladder. It must be an extension ladder.
No one knows why.
Rule #15: Rope. Men love rope. It takes us back to our cowboy origins, or at
least The Boy Scouts. Nothing says love like a hundred feet of 3/8" manilla
rope. No one knows why.