What Your Girlfriend Wants: Autostraddle’s Final Ultimate Holiday Gift Guide 2009

lily-iconIntern Lily, Student (NYC/Miami, FL)
Lilith-Fair-worthy singer/songwriter who dreams of figure skating, plays classical piano, fears ice and commits operation lesbianage at her all-girls college in the heart of New York City.

Gift that I want more than anything ever ever EVER: Tickets to the Figure Skating portion of the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver: Do you enjoy being in the same room as 50-year-old cat-sweater-wearing housewives? Do tight-sequin-pant-wearing Russians who refuse to smile make you happy? Do you love dramatic classical music and flamboyant men? WELL I DO! And that is why this is number one on my Christmas list …and should be number one on yours as well.

But The Winter Olympics: An Insider’s Guide is probably the closest I’m ever going to get to the Olympics next year.olympics

Macbook Pro: I bought a PC because I felt that Macs were just trendy overpriced accessories that college students enjoy showing off in Starbucks. But my PC is awful and I forgot that I love being trendy!new-macbook-pro

Freaks and Geeks (Season 1):

Arguably the best show that ever happened on the teevee. I used to watch this with my mom when I was younger…she loved it because it reminded her of her youth. ALSO James Franco is in it, and I have many feelings about Mr. Franco. I want to strike up a conversation with him one day when he foolishly decides to study in my school’s library, but then he’ll think I’m hitting on him like every other girl…I just want to be his best friend forever!freaksandgeeks

Martha Argerich: The Collection 1:

I’m a huge classical music fan and I especially love listening to classical piano (a bit of a bias as I’ve been playing classical piano for what feels like my whole life.) If you’ve never heard Martha Argerich play piano then you are missing out on some of the best renditions of the most incredible pieces ever written. Plus, she was a total hottie back in the day.martha

Spice World on DVD:

Yes, I have Spice World on VHS…any self-respecting girl who grew up in the nineties owns this brilliant masterpiece. But times have changed and I no longer own any sort of contraption that will play VHS, which is why it is time to upgrade so I can once again relive the moment when the Spice Girls meet aliens in the woods.spiceworlddotted-divider2
rachel-iconIntern Rachel, Student (Boston, MA)
Barista & Librarian & public transportation enthusiast, enjoys tea & cardigans, dislikes patriarchal white hegemony.

Today’s Act Notebook by Maruman Mnemosyne

I am a crazy person, and so I was really excited to find that there are beautiful, high-quality notebooks from Japan created specifically for my obsessive list-making. They come with boxes for the date and also to check items off! Dreams do come true.notebook

Sony Cybershot DSC-W290:

I am in serious need of a new camera, and this has 5X zoom and looks very compact. Also, it has “face detection technology,” which will either be creepy or awesome.sony

Infinity Scarf:

I feel like the only person on earth who does not already have one of these. They come in a million different colors and fabrics and they are just a giant loop! They do not have ends! What a good idea!scarf
Sarah-Palmer-iconAssistant Editor Sarah (Missouri)
Journalist and Art History double major, ice-cream scooper, book reader, adventurous baker, road tripper, museum lover and dreamer of moving to Italy.

It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia Seasons 1-4 Box Set:

The more I watch this show, the more I love it. My roommates own seasons 1-4, but that does me no good in the long run! This box set is an essential part of any TV-on-DVD collection.philly

Magnetic Spice Rack:

I have a confession: I’m mildly obsessed with spices and consequently spice racks. I’d like to make my own wooden one, but who has the time? This magnetic rack would work great in my small kitchen.spices

Flip Camera:

My friend brought one of these on spring break last year, and it was fantastic to have around. Apparently Jess has found a brand that’s better, but I’m a label whore when it comes to electronics. Plus, the Flip commercials are so cute!flipdotted-divider2
Taylor, Taylor-iconTechnostraddle Editor (NYC)
I love geek stuff, duh.

Hellboy Hardcover Library Edition, Vol 1-3:

I’d always assumed I wouldn’t like Hellboy. The name always turned me off, until last year I picked up a Hellboy comic for the first time. Turns out, I absolutely love it. The art by Mike Mignola is gorgeous and moody, the stories are awesome retellings of world folk tales and obscure mythologies. It might be my favorite comic (and that says a lot!), so I’d love to have it in a hardback collection.hellboy

I Am a Strange Loop by Douglas Hofstadter:

I’ve been meaning to pick this up for ages, but sadly I am quasi-illiterate these days. In I am A Strange Loop, Hofstader examines the phenomenon of consciousness and tries to figure out what the hell we are referring to when we say “I.” This may be kind of heavy reading for the holidays, but it’ll make you look smart. And that’s what counts!strangeloop

Fringe: The Complete First Season:

I just caught a few episodes of Fringe lately and it seems awesome, so I’d really like to catch up. It feels like a grown-up version of the X-Files, with less sexual tension, higher production values and even more pseudoscience! Yes!Fringe-The-Complete-First-Season-Front-Cover-13284

Frye Erin Oxford (dark brown):

These are seriously the best shoes that ever happened to me! I own the red ones (featured on the Frye website) and I wear them all the time! They’re an oxford for women that’s totally classic, comfy and shaped like a traditional oxford. They make me feel dapper and I love them. Also, Frye has AMAZING customer support. I emailed them about a tiny defect in my red pair and I got a super personalized, apologetic email back where they told me to get the repaired at a cobbler and send them the bill! Wow!fryedotted-divider2
intern-vashtiIntern Vashti, College Dropout (Chicago, IL)
The Original Autostraddle Intern enjoys arts & crafts, the internet, ALL CAPS and has a destructive relationship with 4AM. Is leaving granola and oregon behind for bigger dreams unrelated to human physiology.

Planet Earth – The Complete BBC Series:

How long ago did this come out? SO LONG AGO! For some reason this epic documentary is not in my DVD collection, and I find this very upsetting. I have a hard time choosing between the BBC version and the Discovery version, but BBC wins out for the following reasons:
1. It is cheaper and easier to find.
2. In the Shallow Seas segment there is a clip that is very near and dear to my heart. I took the liberty of giving it my own title: SUNFLOWER STARFISH OF DEATH AND DESTRUCTION EATING THE SOFT INNARDS OF HELPLESS SAND DOLLARS.Picture 1

Caligula and Other Plays by Albert Camus:

I have not read Caligula, Cross Purpose, or The Possessed but The Just is probs my favorite play ever and I need it so I can quote and refer to it constantly.513Zmm7p6kL._SS500_

Zune HD [32 GB]:

I have been in love with the Zune since it first came out. While I may be a PC 4 lyfe, I’ve had iPods before so it’s not my bias against Apple that makes me love it so much. The navigation and look of the Zune [in my opinion] is above and beyond that of the iPod. So now, with Zune’s answer to the iPod touch, how could I not want it? LOOK HOW PRETTY IT IS YOU GUYS.zune


I have a deep appreciation for the hipster aesthetic but I just can’t make myself like Vans. They’re just so… mainstream. I turned to Keds at the end of the summer and already they have become a part of the Brand Name Shoes That I Will Wear No Matter How Mainstream They Become [along with Converse and Sperry Top Sider. ps – I wore these way before I knew I liked the ladies]. I already have a navy blue pair, but I need a pair of loden green Keds like whoa.keds
riese-icon3Editor-in-Chief Riese (NYC)

Because I am attempting to take over the world of media, I’m trying to eat all the masters I possibly can. Why haven’t I already read Marshall McLuhan’s Understanding Media: The Extensions of Man – Critical Edition? I don’t know.


Fresh fruit in New York City is hard to find and when you find it, it’s super expensive. I am going to die of scurvy in two months if I don’t eat some f*cking apples STAT so I could use the Golden State DeLite Fruit Club.


I go through a pair of Roll Down Yoga Pants by Hard Tail every year because I wear them literally every single day. My 2003 pair is only now getting holes.


Also, our apartment is missing several key survival items, including but not limited to a pasta strainer, a large pot and knives and a pot.
knives dotted-divider2
Hello Autostraddle this is Tinkerbell. This year I want to give all my money to autostraddle. Unfortunately because I am a dog and because of the recession I am unemployed and must rely on the kindness of strangers.

If a stranger would like to purchase me a ‘stocking stuffer’ I would prefer the Merry Pet The Mansion Wood Pet House, so that Littlefoot will come over to play with me and we can have romantic times. It is made from kiln-dried Asian fir treated with natural color stains. I do not like unnatural stains or kiln-dried Asians, only kiln-dried Asian firs and natural stains, like chocolate and blood. This will be my love shack. Without it I cannot be merry. Thank you love tinkerbell.

pet wood home

I would also like the snuggie for dogs because it is like a blanket but with sleeves. It is cold on the floor when Riese has violent terrorist nightmares.


Here are some CRAZY ASS DEALS
because the recession is AWESOME:


$10.99 – Muppet Movies DVD 3-Pack – (Kermit’s Swamp Years / The Muppets Take Manhattan / Muppets From Space)

$16.99 – Jim Henson’s Fantasy Film Collection – (Labyrinth / MirrorMask / The Dark Crystal)

American Apparel’s totally overpriced wardrobe staples are 50-70% off:

$8.99 (usually $19.99) – American Apparel – Tri-Blend Short Sleeve Deep V-Neck
$23.10 (usually $45) American Apparel Flex Fleece Zip Hoody
$9.90 (usually $19.90) American Apparel 8328 Cotton Spandex Jersey Legging

Support the life of print:

+ Subscribe to BUST for $19.95 (33% off)
+ Be gay and give a subscription to OUT for $14.95 (normally $59.98) or CURVE for $24.95 (normally $31.60)
+ Be smart and give a subscription to Harper’s Magazine for $14.97 (normally $83.40)
+ Be a reader and pick up Alison Bechdel’s Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic is 30% off at $13.57 hardcover, and $10.50 in paperback, Tipping the Velvet: A Novel by Sarah Waters is $10.88 (32% of) or get the books True Blood was based on $36.97 (normally $63.92) (Sookie Stackhouse 8-copy Boxed Set (Sookie Stackhouse/True Blood)) OR get your theory on with Nobody Passes: Rejecting the Rules of Gender and Conformity for $10.85 (32% off).

And yes, the Hitachi Magic Wand Massager, normally $60, is $29.12. You know if your back hurts or whatever.

You can find all of the items mentioned here at our amazon store.

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  1. The Glass Castle was one of the most inspiring memoirs i’ve ever read. If you don’t receive it in your stocking you should buy it for yourself for new years or something. I think Jeanette Walls would praise the independent move. I’m excited about this “true-life novel” too. sweet post.

    • I agree that the Glass Castle is amazing. Definitely read Half Broke Horses, too. I just finished it yesterday and it might be better than GC?

      Also… my feelings are hurt that a gift guide didn’t come out in time for Hanukkah. 🙁

      • I also enjoyed The Glass Castle a lot a lot. I also found it strangely useful when trying to understand a lot of the weird families that my friends came from, and in particular about how easy it is to be manipulated by someone you love, even if they are completely f*cking insane.

        Dawn THE BEST PART IS that like um, I’m Jewish too, but also in denial anout Hannukah because I can’t afford to go home for it. I told my Mom on the phone that it wasn’t a real holiday and it’s just been pumped up by capitalists looking to bank on everyone for the commercialized holiday season and she just made a whimpering noise and said it was a real holiday. Which is true, but it’s not our most important holiday so um, oh I dunno. I haven’t gotten gifts for ANYONE YET. NOBODY!!

  2. If you’re gonna get a cordless drill for somebody, don’t get anything by Black & Decker or Mastercraft. The parts inside are made of plastic and they don’t hold a charge very well. Go with something by DeWalt or Makita. IMO.

  3. This list is bursting with awesomeness! But.. “Yes, I have Spice World on VHS…any self-respecting girl who grew up in the nineties owns this brilliant masterpiece” – Lily, you win. I LOVE THIS MOVIE. Let’s watch it at the imaginary autostraddle holiday party.

  4. I love this entire post so much. It’s bursting with rainbows. Alex, I also la-la-love the graphic photo for this thing. I wish Christmas actually consisted of hot girls in bras opening presents!

  5. You know, this gift guide is so awesome. it’s like you’re peering into the gay/doesn’t-understand-budgets part of my brain. either that or the radiation from the computer screen is finally getting to me. tubular, dudes!

  6. Wow! This list is amazing!

    I’ve been checking this site everyday since I ran into it about a week ago, and now I think, no I know I’m in love.
    Taylor, I just ordered those Frye Erin Oxfords in grey yesterday! I’m a girl who loves a good oxford and your description of looking dapper is exactly how I want to feel in a sexy handmade leather dashing shoe. Can gay christmas be today and everyone gets all the fabulous gifts on this list? please

  7. Laura’s right, the Sound of Music is the greatest gift on the planet. Especially when it comes with the deluxe Sound of Music companion book! The hills are alive!

    Laura: I’d give you power tools.

    • what comes special in the deluxe book?? i need to know! also, since we’re having a sound of music love fest, when i was little and it would rain and the power would go out, my mum would play songs from the sound of music on the piano and me and my brothers would sing along. it’s kind of a miracle that i’m the only gay one.

      • rofl yes, yes it is. That is glorious.

        The SoM companion guide is the most beautiful book in existence. It is about the making of the movie and the play, first and foremost, but it discusses how Rodgers & Hammerstein came up with the songs and how they chose to take the real story and edit it into something people would want to watch! They go into the background of the real VonTrapp family which is also super fascinating (did you know you can stay at their hotel in Vermont?!). And you get little secrets about the movie too, like the fact that the real Maria is in one scene. http://www.amazon.com/Sound-Music-Companion-Laurence-Maslon/dp/1416549544

        That long summary doesn’t show how much I love the SoM at all. Nope. *grins* Also, Julie Andrews is a goddess.

    • I love the Sound of Music so much. Not ashamed to say its one of my fave films. When I was in 6th Form (HS Senior Year) the head girl was one of my friends who was also crazy about SOM and we ended up putting it on as the 6th form production that year. It was totally awesome, we had an orchestra and everything, and costumes made out of curtains. Also Mother Abbess was a boy, but yknow, thats how we rolled.
      Anyway, I have like 3 copies of the Sound of Music, but would automatically love anyone who gave me one.
      This whole article is super ace, and I want pretty much everything on it! Also if you live in crap rented flats like me a cordless drill is pretty much essential for survival/putting up shelves!

  8. I got waaaay too excited by the colored knives and magnetic spice rack. Maybe I need a girlfriend. :s

    I have a Bodum travel press that is the only reason I was able to show up and teach my 7:30 last spring. They are magic. And I had my favorite little camper last summer design the insert for me and she drew me, a heart and a house that was “our house”. And I love the idea that someone believes I will afford a house some day, even if it is someone who believes every pineapple you cut up COULD HAVE BEEN SPONGE BOB’S HOME (oh no!).

  9. All coffee presses and no keurigs eh? I praise you all for the non-lazyness! I’m sure it pays off though. All I do for coffee is press a button.
    P.S. If you have netflix, you can watch Spice World non-stop, it’s on instant play!

  10. Dear Laneia and Jen,
    As a friend, I feel it critical to inform you of the Aero Press coffee maker. As an avid coffee drinker myself, I’d wanted a French Press as well. Hell, all I wanted was a perfect cup of coffee that wasn’t bitter or full of stray grounds. That was when my girlfriend bought me an Aero Press. And it is, I promise you, the very best cup of coffee I have ever had. Ever. In my whole life. It’s the only coffee maker I will ever need and I think if you took a chance on it, you’d find it’s all you’d need as well.

    Pros: It’s fast and easy to brew and fast and easy to clean up. It’s best to use espresso ground coffee because that gives you the richest flavour. It does use filters, but they are recycled and can be used as many times as you want. At $25 it’s the same price as, and even cheaper than some, French Presses.
    Cons: The only con about this thing is that you’d need a carafe to be able to make a whole pot.

    Seriously ladies, I recommend it. Obvs. That was a book, I know. But I think every coffee drinker should only have the best.

    Love, Rachel

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