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Monday, November 19, 2007

for him? for her? holiday gift ideas

awei: since the holiday gift-giving season is fast approaching, sam decided it would be a good idea to co-author a series of blogs about holiday gift-giving. today, we're going to take up the subject of what to get your significant other. specifically, we're examining the giant e-tailer, amazon.com and their pre-set gift guides for girlfriends and wives and for boyfriends and husbands.

sam: i always have the hardest time picking out gifts for a significant other. last year, i bought awei a mini-pool table which i don't think he has ever used! so, basically the purpose of this entry is to help you narrow down the search to ensure that your gifts are loved and used by the receiver.

awei: since amazon offers dozens of gifts in each of its guides, i'm going to peruse the "for wives/girlfriends" gift guide and pick out the top three i would most likely get for sam. then, she'll grade me on my performance.

sam: after, i will do the same by selecting what i think are three best gifts to get awei. then, he'll evaluate how i did.

gifts for him

sam's pick #1: the universal remote control

sam: if awei and i actually had a working t.v. (our tv is purely decoration because we don't have a cable package), stereo, and dvd player, i would get the universal remote for him. in the event that we get a cable package, this would be a great for him or any guy who only wants to lift one finger when lounging at home. i would say that this gift is perfect except the remote is missing a butler service that will fetch him drinks and food from the kitchen.

awei's ratings:
thoughtfulness: B
utility: C
surprise factor: C
creativty: B-
overall: C+
awei's comments: sam's right. i don't have a working t.v. or any audio-visual components that would necessitate a universal remote. i did get one of these for my parents, though. it is a very useful gift and fairly easy to program so that you can set up camp on your couch for a long day of mind-numbing, muti-media inflow. this would be a good gift if i had an entertainment center to go along with it... (hint.. hint..)

sam's pick #2: the slingbox

sam: o.k., so i know that my "for him" choices are electronic-centric, but the slingbox is so cool! with the slingbox, awei can watch t.v. wherever and whenever. if your guy is attached to his computer, this is definitely something worth looking into.

awei's ratings

utility: B
surprise factor: B
creativity: B
overall: B

awei's comments: this one is fundamentally more useful than the universal remote control as it brings me one step closer to actually using the television. since i'm not often around to watch television in real-time, recording shows to watch at my convenience is a great idea.

sam's pick #3: the digital camera

so, my last and final pick is the digi camera. right now, awei alternates between his camera phone and a samsung digimax 240 to take his pictures. It took awei about 6 years to let go of his sanyo scp 4500 (he calls it "the tank." i call it "an
embarrassment") and move on to his current model, the samsung m500. knowing awei, he will still be using the same camera and camera phone in another 6 years. i think it's time to treat him to an upgrade.

awei's ratings:

thoughtfulness: B+
utility: B+
surprise factor: B
creativity: B
overall: B+

awei's comments: i'm not much of a picture taker. perhaps having a nice camera would awaken my inner muse. i think that sam would end up using this gift more than i would.

gifts for her

awei's pick #1: the diamond
awei: diamond jewelry. i think this is pretty obvy. any girl would simply love receiving anything that is set with diamonds in it. even if it were a roman helment. unfortunately, diamonds cost lots of money. so, while i feel that this would be the idealistic, most-welcomed gift, i (as well as many other men) have a realistic, most-empty wallet.

sam's ratings:

thoughtfulness: A+
utility: B

surprise factor: A+
creativity: C
overall impression: A

sam's comments: diamonds are a girl's best friend, right? while i love to lavish myself with these sparkly gems, i have to be realistic. i can't expect a guy to fork over a $1,100 diamond drop earrings in a platinum setting from tiffany's every Christmas (*sigh...though, it would be nice). but, i guess a girl can dream.

awei's pick #2: the ice-cream maker

here's an ice cream maker. this one is a win-win: you give her a gift. thereafter, you reap the benefits that this gift will yield.for that extra sugar on top, suggest that you guys can have lots of bonding time by making ice cream together.

sam's ratings:
thoughtfulness: A-
surprise factor: B+
creativity: A
overall impression: B+

sam's comments: i would have to say that this is a super-cute gift idea. i do like the bonding time that i will have using the ice-cream maker. but, having access to homemade ice-cream any time you want? hmm, sounds dangerous for the waistline. well, at least everyone will be fat and happy.

awei's pick #3: the spa gift set

awei: as a last possibility, i'd have to go with the spa gift set. this is the last-minute cop out that will get you dirty looks till just before new years. nevertheless, it is an important safety.

sam's ratings:
thoughtfulness: B+
utility: B
surprise factor: C
overall impression: B-

sam's comments: i love bliss products, especially the lemon-sage bath/shower products. it smells so good. however, drawing myself a bubble bath in my tiny tub doesn't sound that appealing to me. wouldn't it be great if we all had tubs the same size as the one seen in the movie, Pretty Woman ? plus, i think awei would use this gift more than i would. he loves taking baths.

key takeaways

awei: this was a fun exercise in gift selection. it's a good way to test out gifts and get some feedback on how they will be received. buying gifts for another can be an overblown, torturing task of trying to find that perfect gift. personally, i think that money is always a good option.

sam: not one "A" from awei!??! this was fun way to figure out what to get for him. overall, i think that gift lists, such as the one on amazon, are somewhat restrictive and limited, but nevertheless, a good jumping off point for your holiday shopping.

happy thanksgiving everyone!

got a great gift idea for him or for her? write us at info@9tailors.com.