By Alex Distefano
By Scott Snowden
By Anna Merlan
By Steve Almond
By Jena Ardell
By Jon Campbell
By Alan Scherstuhl
By Tessa Stuart
Whether you celebrate Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwaanza, the winter solstice, or just time off from your job, in our society, there is one thing that unites us all during the holidays: capitalism. That's right, whether we like it or not, it's all about buy, buy, buy. Even sex has been neatly commodified for our consumption. Lucky for you, I love giving gifts, and hunting down the perfect present is a little fetish of mine I haven't yet told you about. I've weeded out the cheesy sex toys, mediocre porno, and gimmicky erotic gadgets, and handpicked the best gifts for everyone on your holiday list. Remember, in most cases, batteries are not included.
What to buy for your computer-geek girlfriend who just cannot get enough add-ons for her new iMac? Sure, you could go with the obvious, like a matching Zip drive, but why not give her something for her sex drive? Adult novelty company Doc Johnson has brilliantly exploited the hi-tech color trend and designed a line of pocket rocket vibrators in iMac colors like grape and tangerine. Aptly named iVibes ("iVibe, therefore I am"), these futuristic buzzing beauties are small enough to carry in your purse but strong enough to get the job done ($30, better sex toy stores). While you're at it, toss in another computer accessory no proud girl should do withoutan "I Love My Cunt" mousepad ($12.99, www.khunt.net).
Speaking of loving cunts, for breeder boys who want to know what women really think about sex, forget softcore Maxim or Mel Gibson's psychic skills in his new movie, What Women Want. Give guys a subscription to the best women's magazine on the planet, Bust($11.95, www.bust.com). If you sense your man's feeling jealous of all your sex toys, stick the Fleshlight in his Christmas stocking. Imagine a sleeve made of an incredibly lifelike thermal plastic (rumored to have been originally developed by NASA) encased in a silver plastic tube resembling a giant flashlight (hence the name). Add lube, and he'll never leave the house; some guys say it's better than real sex with a condom ($65, better sex toy stores). Not quite ready to make a big financial commitment to him? Go for a porn-star car air freshenercherry-scented, naturally ($4, www.pornstarclothing.com).
For all the hip, hetero chicks you're gifting this year, I recommend items that celebrate their sexuality. If she's a clotheshorse, feed her fetish with a bold and campy "I Love Wieners" T-shirt ($20, www.welovefine.com) or a coy and cunning "Kiss My Kitten" tank top ($20, www.talkshitroadwear.com). (Come to think of it, these would also be appreciated by your gay male friends.) If she's more bookish, Gynomite: Fearless Feminist Porn, Herotica 6, and Sex and Single Girls should definitely be on her reading list. Or go to Toys in Babeland for the best selection of women- and couples-friendly porn videos, especially titles like Eyes of Desire 2, Chloe's I Came, Did You?, Bend Over Boyfriend 2, and Bad Wives ($25 to $45, 94 Rivington Street, or www.babeland.com).
For the girl-lovers in your life, those with an aural fixation (what dyke doesn't have one?) will get an earful from spoken-word CD Sinful Idolatrous Rituals, where the JezebellesNew York writers Cheryl B., Lauren Sanders, and Elena Georgioushare their luscious, erotic writing, um, orally ($10, www.jezebelle2000.com). Butches will appreciate an ingeniously designed strap-on harness called the Man Panty ($35, better sex toy stores or www.aslanleather.com). Femmes will love dyke icon Amber Hollibaugh's book My Dangerous Desires or a pair of marabou and satin high-heeled slippers ($28, www.fredericks.com). (Hint, hint.)
My biggest challenge is posed by friends who are either gender-bending trannies or health-conscious vegans, or both, and for them I have found a one-stop shopping placeWacky Jac, where I picked up a few "Gender Free" T-shirts ($20) and several pairs of "Eat Organic" panties ($9.50, www.wackyjac.com).
We all have pals who've told us, "Please, don't get me anything for the holidays." Depending on your relationship with the gift recipient, I recommend giving yourself, naked, with a strategically placed ribbon or bow. Another perfect alternative for antipresent folks or for the politically conscious activist in your life is to make a donation to a worthy cause in his or her name. May I suggest a check to the Exotic Dancers Union in San Francisco (www.livenudegirlsunite.com/tshirts.html)? Not only will your money help strippers keep their work environment safe and fair, but you'll get a free T-shirt with the union logo on it.
I don't know about you, but in addition to activists, I've got quite a few golden-shower enthusiasts on my list. Maybe it has something to do with the growing popularity of piss playlast year's spanking fan is this year's water sports fanatic. I have found the perfect gift for friends who wish to announce a desire for that golden nectar: a T-shirt with a silk-screened image of a fire hydrant! When I told the nice young man at Curbstone, a growing company that specializes in urban images (like sewer covers and subway signs), about my own interpretation of this particular city icon, he admitted they had never considered it. But ever in the holiday spirit, he embraced the alternate meaning, chuckled, and gladly took my cash ($15 to $20, Curbstone, Holiday Market at Union Square or www.grittycity.com).