Boys will be boys. But they aren’t just that. After all, they come in every shape and size you could fancy. (And you have.) So, just in time to start spending, here’s a guide to what to give him — depending on what sort of bloke he is.
For the Leisurist
Play is serious business. He’ll love an Ultra Man bank and lighter from Ginza, purveyor of cool Japanese toys (1721 Connecticut Avenue NW; 202-331-7991); 20 Q, handheld, electronic Twenty Questions — great for parties (Sullivan’s Toy Store, 3412 Wisconsin Avenue NW; 202-362-1343); or inflatable animals, oversize plastic sunglasses, and assorted novelties at the Monarch Carnival Supply (1331 14th Street NW; 202-462-5533).
For the Structuralist
He’s been climbing the walls for titles like Rural Studio: Samuel Mockbee and an Architecture of Decency from the National Building Museum Gift Shop (401 F Street NW; 202-272-7706). To further buttress his collection, give him one of local artist Lely Constantinople’s photographs.
For the Egoist
His own reflection has no rivals; give him something worth staring at from Relish (which — hooray! — now carries men’s) by Dries Van Noten, Marni, Comme des Garçons, or Nudie Jeans (3312 Cady’s Alley NW; 202-333-5343). Don’t forget something for face and body: The new men’s skin care line from Alchimie Forever (BellaCara, 924 King Street, Alexandria; 703-299-9652) will make him beam.
For the Rock Musicologist
Supplement his vinyl collection with the Burn to Shine DVDs, a film series by Fugazi’s Brendan Canty featuring performances by bands (Q and Not U, Weird War, The Evens, Bob Mould, Ted Leo, Wilco, and Tortoise) in an about-to-be-burned-down house. Or get him the classic Banned in DC, a book of photos from the D.C. punk scene by Cynthia Connolly.
For the Gastronomist
Help him be a champ in the kitchen with Tapas: a Taste of Spain in America, the new cookbook by local star chef José Andrés (Politics and Prose, 5015 Connecticut Avenue NW; 202-364-1919) and a gift certificate for cooking classes at L’Academie de Cuisine (5021 Wilson Lane, Bethesda; 301-986-9490). And because time spent together is the greatest gift all, top it off with a visit to Julia Child’s Kitchen at the National Museum of American History (14th Street and Constitution Avenue NW; 202-633-1000).
This year, show him how well you know him. You may just get something sweet in return.
Want more inspiration? We’ve done Gift Guides for Guys in all of our editions today. Start with Everywhere.