I don't like to blow my own horn (I prefer to let a sub get on his knees and do that. Ba-dum-ching! Thank you, I'll be here all week.), but I have to say that last year's "Gifts for Holiday Giving" -- in addition to being one of my favorite posts ever -- remains the definitive guide for the contemporary gay man who wants his holiday host gifts to ooze erudition. And I'd like to think that it's working; certainly, I've seen a marked decrease in the number of people who show up at my door with the unforgivably unimaginative gift of a bottle of wine. But while it's tempting to rest on my laurels, I recognize that time marches ever onward. Last year's gifts remain as exemplars, and you may certainly bestow any of them upon your soon-to-be grateful host and rest assured of your continuing place in his heart and/or backside. I suggest only that you consider whether any updates are needed to comply with current fashion. You'll want to consider, for example, whether the colors of Christmas past are still appropriate: woe betide the gay who shows up with (or, for that matter, on) last year's kneepads.
But you're saying, "Oh, TED, the kneecaps and the portable sex kits were brilliant, but since you thought them up, everyone we know already gave them to everyone else we know at last year's parties. Could you please come up with something new for this year?" As a matter of fact, I can.
1. Sex toy cozies. It's happened to all of us. We show up at a party and we see the sex toys lying out on the table. We know they're not supposed to be visible until after everyone's had a few drinks, but we don't look away quickly enough, the host sees us staring, and he's mortified. Well, no more, readers. Now, with nothing more than a half-circle of fabric, a handful of stitches, and a few minutes, you can turn this:
The best thing about sex toy cozies is that you can keep a few in your coat pocket, so that when you find that your host has neglected to put away his toys, you can pretend that he thoughtfully left them out so as to better show off your gift.
You can make the cozies in any size, simply by varying the radius of the circle of cloth you cut. And you can make them in any width, from narrow to quite full, simply by using more (up to three-quarters) or less (down to one-quarter) of the circle. The construction is too easy to give directions for here. I will simply offer one small warning: clerks at fabric stores are nosy people, and when you're buying your fabric, they'll ask you what you're making. Think ahead, otherwise, you'll end up like I did, saying, "Oh, I'm making a cover." Which was fine until the follow up, "What are you covering?" At that point, I'm afraid, I was forced to prevaricate.
2. Homemade inebriation. I know that when you see the next picture, you'll think I'm an awful hypocrite. But let me rush to assure you that I'm still adamantly opposed to bringing a bottle of wine as a gift for the host. I do think, however, that bringing a bottle of a homemade potent potable is perfectly acceptable. So if you've made some nice clementine ratafia or vin de noix, go ahead and put some of it in a bottle and give it with my blessing. You can even package it in one of these festive wine bottle bags:
This particular wine bottle bag is one of several that I bought last week from the dollar store, and any homemade liqueur would be thrilled to be wrapped in it. But the particular bag above isn't holding a bottle of anything. In fact, it's holding one of the best party gifts I know. 3. The gift of wood:
Indeed, readers, what could be better than to show up at a party and tell your host that you've found him a man who's fit, always hard, and prepared to assume any position? Even for men whose minds don't reside in the gutter (I haven't met any such men, but I'm assured they exist), wooden manikins are hours and hours of fun.
You can put them in all sorts of fascinating positions. And if you don't feel like putting them in a wine bottle bag or otherwise gift wrapping them, you can go for the double whammy and also give your host a narrow-but-long version of the sex toy cozy to cover the manikin when its not being used. Or to cover its eyes to protect its innocence when the other cozies come off the other sex toys.
Best of all, you can get the manikins for less than $10 at Ikea, so it's easy to stock up the next time you're there.