Father’s Day is coming up and your dad isn’t going to say anything – good dads are full of stoicism – but he probably thinks it’d be nice if you showed some gratitude. After all, he did bring you up from a nose-pickin’ grub to a guy that has a unique way with women, can tell you exactly how he likes his whiskey, is a world traveler, and knows the right way to be hit by a car. He did pretty well. There’s lots of ways to show dear old dad your thanks, and guess what, here’s 14 great ones.
Luxury shave kit
Growing up, if you’re like most fellas, one of your first memories of dad is of him towering over you in terrible, lumpy, Will Ferrell-ian tighty whities while he shaved every morning. Shaving is an extremely dadly thing, and your dad deserves the best experience when it comes to using a sharpened blade to scrape hair from his face. We suggest the Art of Shaving shaving set. Pictured above is the sterling silver model at $1,700, but they have slightly less ostentacious trims if your pops is humble man (read: you’re broke).
Daddy Day Camp
A great way to say thanks to your dad for putting up with the screeching angst of your adolescence, the teetering awkwardness of your young dating life, and the crippling expense of your college education, is to give him a break from all of the above by sending him to a Summer camp for men. There’s plenty of options including bull riding camp, survival camp, race car driving school, and even a spy school.
As the XKCD comic above teaches us, one of the hallmarks of being a dad, and indeed, an adult, is personal freedom. No place is that more deliciously illustrated than at Bacon Freak. You can go to this simmering hub of culinary escapism and order Bacon of the Month membership, their ‘Daddy Cakes’ proprietary pancake batter, bacon-flavored seasoning, bacon jerky, bacon lollipops – you get the idea.
The iPhone 4 is pretty slick – its intuitive UI and sharper edges than its predecessor make it a particularly masculine choice if you’re going to go the direction of gadget-giving this Father’s Day. One caveat, though, is that one should be wary of giving gifts that require financial maintenance from the recipient. If you give your Dad an iPhone, the best part of your gift will come in paying for his coverage for a year. How else is he going to call you to let you know that the weather is “about the same as usual,” right?
If your dad is anything like us (probable), he likes to supersize it, man. Naysayers who poopoo the iPad as just an oversized iPhone that can’t make calls lack vision. Consider the simple pleasure of playing scrabble in a large, dadly recliner. Get your dad the Sports Illustrated or Wired magazine apps. It’s a rare opportunity to mix cutting edge technology with one of the lowest barriers of entry in the history of computing. Dad will appreciate your high-minded cultural awareness and consideration. And, like we said, the Scrabble app.
Fiskars Momentum Reel Mower
This gift is so odd, but so perfect. It seems wildly inconvenient, yet, perfectly matched to the pragmatic nature of a dad. No mussing with the choke. No running out of gas. No bagging, blade replacing, or fumes. Best of all, though, not so much damn noise in the morning. The simple pleasure and refined art of a well-mowed lawn is not the same with a gas-powered mower. You wouldn’t hand Da Vinci an airbrush, would you? Check out the Fiskars Momentum Reel Mower for $250.
Dr. Dre’s headphones
Whoa. We really hope you didn’t forget about Dre. He’s still in the game, just in a more technical way than he used to be. This year, he came out with his own brand of headphones called Beats (appropriate, no?). These over-ear, noise-reduction headphones use the highest-quality audio components to deliver the studio-perfect perfectionism that the good Dr. has come to be known for. Get them for your dad. Chronic optional (at least in California).
Lensbaby Lens Muse Photography Kit
We’re not suggesting you take your dad to the Bridges of Madison County or anything, but if your dad is a photophile, consider this interesting kit offering the amateur photography an infinite variety of looks, styles, apertures, and visions to shoot with. Using a shockingly intuitive series of bendable lenses, a photographer can morph the look of their pictures on-the-fly with just their finger tips. Wildly addictive and affordable, the Lensbaby Muse makes an equally good gift for yourself or your dad at just $100.
Whiskey Explorers Club
If your dad, like us, and like most men, enjoys the smooth, smokey flavor of a good whiskey, then it’s ridiculous that he is not in the Whiskey Explorers Club. Setting aside that pretty much anything involving ‘explorers club’ is likely worthwhile (pith helmets!), the Whiskey Explorers Club is a good deal, and a great way to taste of lot of high end booze you and your dad would likely not otherwise get a chance at. Head here to find out which of the three levels of membership is right for your pops.
A great companion gift to the above club is these at-first-wacky-looking-but-on-second-look-stylishly-understated whiskey snifters. Designed to swirl your whiskey for you at the touch of a finger, the swivel glasses rotate on their own truncated stems acting as both a drinking vessel, a conversation piece, a pleasant physical distraction, and a tiny piece of art. Get them from Charles and Marie for $50 a pair.
Tactical Nuclear Penguin
This is, simply put, the most powerful beer on the market. The guys at Brew Dog – the same guys that decided to make beer in the middle of a storm-tossed Atlantic just for the hell of it – have set a new world record. Their newest concoction, the Tactical Nuclear Penguin, is the strongest beer on the planet Earth. It’s not cheap at about 100 bucks a bottle. So order while supplies last.
Your dad had to grow up a lot to have you, believe it or not. And nobody likes to completely abandon their childhood – it sucks. He probably used to build the coolest couch cushion forts, and then he had to teach you to drive, and help you learn your multiplication tables. Boring. That’s what Christopher Noxon’s "Rejuvenile" is all about. Give the book to your dad and give him the option to reclaim some of the whimsy you knocked out of him when you decided a good way to wake him up Saturday morning was with a cannonball from the foot of his bed. Just don’t be sore when he beats you at kickball.
The DIY Book Vault
This is the only gift on this list that you make yourself, even though everybody knows those are the most meaningful. If you’re going to make your own gift, you should know what to make better than us. However, we can say with plenty of confidence that a hollowed out secret book vault is one of the most awesome, rarely-gifted gifts in all of Guydom. You can head to this video for some tips on how to make it yourself, or you can just give it a whirl. It’s fairly intuitive. Just remember to use plenty of clear adhesive on the pages to make it impenetrable and sturdy.
Life on Blu Ray
What better way to think dad for giving you life than by giving him "Life" right back? This follow-up to the precedent-setting BBC series "Planet Earth" takes the same jaw-dropping videography into wholly new worlds of life on this big blue marble we call Earth. It uses the highest-quality video cameras on the market, has some of the best production we’ve ever seen, and there is no better excuse (except maybe "Avatar") to watch Blu Rays rather than DVDs on the market today. Pro Tip: Get the British version narrated by David Attenbourough.