Oh, ho-ho-ho-ho. The holidays are here, or already are here, depending on the things that you believe in. During this time, we scurry around and browse around online for things to buy, the most important of which are the things we buy for other people, because you know what? It’s true what every Christmas movie has taught me. It’s all about what you give, not what you get. And, boy howdy, do we have some gift options to get for yourself, and more importantly for others. Here are our holiday gift recommendations.
There are a couple of things I like right now, and am using. The Desert Oracle podcast rules, and the quarterly is beautiful. It’s like $8. I can’t wait to go in two weeks. I can’t wait to die out there impaled by ocotillo one day. Spotify is the only way to listen to music anymore. I miss CDs, but I haven’t bought one since my six disc spinner in my car busted, and I can’t bring myself to listen to records. The new year is coming up. Calendars are important. I check down the days with a National Parks Travel Poster one. Also a National Parks Pass pays for itself after three visits. I haven’t read a book in a while. I’m writing my own words for now. The last author I really read was Gerald Murnane. He completely changed the way I think about things, and now I’m looking at everything closely, finding importance in connections, and analyzing my own consciousness instead of just letting it all flow out my ears. I’d say to read Stream System or The Border Districts and Tamarisk Row. This New York Times interview is still the most incredible thing I’ve ever read.
If you’re buying a Texans thing for a real true TEXANS fan, get them a shirtsey. I used to like jerseys when I was 13 years old. I used to like mayonnaise when I was 13 years old. Then overtime influence from others has led to me turning my back on these former joys. The jersey is a piece of clothing that’s large, has no utility, is expensive and no one stays around anymore, and looks silly if you’re anywhere other than the stadium itself. The shirtsey allows you to wear a team specific thing, represent a player you enjoy watching, and most importantly, is a shirt. It’s something that people wear. I have a Will Fuller V one in my closet. I haven’t worn in it in a while though. I wore it playing basketball and my knee bothered me the next day. Instead, get a J.J. Watt one, or you can even customize your own, so that whenever Tyrann Mathieu gets called for a holding penalty you can take part in the shame. Empathy, it’s good for you. I’m still pissed NAME REDACTED takes up too many letters.
Another great option is just about anything from RTIC. The Cypress based company has managed to step up and take their place in competition with YETI, the Austin-based, all things thermal company... and we all know Cypress > Austin. Either way, Texas FTW!
Everyone... and I mean EVERYONE...needs a Houston Texans Santa Claus hat. Trouble is, they’re hard to come by since every one wants one. So, if you get the chance, grab up a bunch and hand ‘em out to everyone you know... like the Cowboys fan in your neighborhood, the Titans fan at work, that special someone who doesn’t even like football... the possibilities are endless.
Seeing as how I live in the Himalayas and I’m a fine spirits enthusiast, I recommend Everest whiskey glasses. They’re perfect for the bon vivant who likes to contemplate people dying slowly of hypoxia or hypothermia, alone, on the world’s highest peak.
For a Texas-themed gift, I recommend a beautiful pair of stainless steel Texas cufflinks (see photo). No matter where you go in the world, they’re sure to start conversation, so make sure you’ve brushed up on all things Texas like barbecue, football, and concealed carry before you sally forth from your hut looking fabulous.
I like to give the gift of steak, because 90% of the world would never say no to a good steak.
As far as a non-Texans gift, I love warm, cozy socks in the winter, so SmartWool socks for everybody!
I have a book recommendation: The Magic of Thinking Big.
The single best BBQ accessory I’ve ever owned are GrillGrates. If you are into BBQing and grilling, I cannot recommend these enough, especially if you cook a lot of steaks and burgers. You can get them customized to fit pretty much any grill, and they sell pre-cut GrillGrates for the most popular BBQ grills. A lot of the marketing on these really focuses on the aesthetically-pleasing grill marks you can get - but that’s really just a bonus. I use these with my PK 360 (which I also HIGHLY recommend, but it ain’t cheap). When I make burgers, I actually turn the GrillGrates upside-down and smash the patties down onto the flat surface. It creates an amazing crust. SO GOOD.
For something Texans-related, I recommend you purchase a subscription to The Athletic so you can read BRB alumnus Rivers McCown’s coverage of the Texans. He’s a great writer, a thoughtful analyst, and despite what people think - fair and balanced.
I’m a big fan of the Logitech Harmony Hub for controlling home entertainment and other appliances/accessories. The software is run on a phone or tablet and makes life so much easier than juggling numerous remotes or even a universal remote.
As for something related to the Texans, I’m looking forward to this new men’s cologne for those days when you want to get a jump on the competition and feel like leading from the front by being a risk taker.