So the holiday shopping continues. As I stand in a sea of screaming children, frazzled mothers, and harried fathers, I wonder why I didn’t start my shopping earlier. And then I wonder what the heck to get the people on my list. To help you avoid this, Her Side presents:
Holiday Gift Guide #2:
Gifts for your significant other who claims to hate the outdoors.
When discussing this list with a couple of friends, one of them asked, “there are people who hate the outdoors?” Unfortunately, the answer is yes. I know a couple of them personally. I haven’t been in a significant relationship with anyone like this, but can imagine the inner struggle. How can you turn around this unholy prejudice, so that your S.O. can embrace the wonders of hiking and camping and nature by your side? And how can you do so without pissing them off and spoiling the holidays?
While I make no guarantees about the second, here are a few suggested gift items to help you inspire your S.O. to at least give the outdoors a try.
Earth, the DVD: This mini-documentary narrated by James Earl Jones contains footage from the Discovery Channel’s Planet Earth series. While some have criticized this movie as a lesser version of the series on which it is based, its length (90 minutes) makes it a little more friendly to those who aren’t already inclined to watch documentaries. For the full effect, you could opt for the full series, of course…but the idea here is to inspire.
National Parks DVD: For a more targeted approach, and particularly if your S.O. does like documentaries, there’s the Ken Burns’ triumph, National Parks – America’s Best Idea, that debuted this fall. The images are awe inspiring, and you can follow up the movie with the suggestion that you and your S.O. could actually visit these places and see them for yourselves…if he/she was willing to give it a try.
Go Go Gadgetry: If your S.O. is a gadget fiend, then there are plenty of enticing toys with lots of buttons and functions that can be used while hiking and camping. Even a relatively basic and affordable GPS device could be the temptation needed to make hiking more interesting for your favorite couch potato. And if your S.O. is a gamer, you could even look into geocaching…it’s not something I do, but a lot of people enjoy it, and it could turn hiking into something a little more interesting for a gamer than an activity that is “walking, but harder.” (Yeah, someone said that to me once.)
Cushion of Comfort: A lot of the time people who don’t like the outdoors feel that way because they think it’s uncomfortable. Your job, then, is to make this a little easier on their tender constitutions. Step one: providing a high quality camping air mattress so they don’t have to sleep on the hard ground. Trust me, this works wonders towards convincing someone to go camping.
Personalized Water Bottle: Maybe your S.O. will be less hesitant if they’re sporting their own water bottle with some photo, name, or saying that has personal meaning to them. Or to the both of you. If your S.O. is a Twilight fan, maybe one of these is a good idea. (Pssst. Team Edward. Just sayin’.)
Promise a Home-Cooked Meal: Again with an eye towards increasing your loved one’s comfort (or decreasing their worry of discomfort), you could promise to cook a wonderful meal while on your camping trip. This will likely be met with skepticism, or perhaps curiosity. Make sure you practice ahead of time so that you can deliver.
A Trade: Is there something your S.O. really loves and you really hate? Maybe he/she loves the symphony. Or football. Or some other event that bores you to tears. Well, now is the time to practice what you preach. Get tickets to the event, or set up a day when you can spend doing what your S.O. loves. Without complaint. That way, next time you say, “honey, whaddya say we go camping this weekend?” he/she will feel a little more charitable towards the idea. Okay, so that’s a little bit of a scam, but in the end, everyone is happy — and that’s what this is all about, right?