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GIFTS FOR GUYS LIKE ME

After absorbing the exhaustively researched material on finding the perfect gift for someone else, readers are no doubt thinking: Why not some research into the perfect gift for a guy like me?

You know who I mean -- that underappreciated and overworked 25 to 45-year-old male demographic. We're brothers, husbands, fathers, sons, co-workers, guys trying to date your best friend. We're that sensitive fraternity of guys without whom sports bars, end zones, cable TV, Destroyer games, monster truck rallies and the Harley Davidson dealership and accessory center on Bailey Avenue could not exist.

And there's good news! I fully understand that the people who want to buy presents for us think we are hard to please. But the shocking truth is we're not. We know what we want. And we don't mind telling you. Guys like us are always being accused of thinking about sports, cars, TV, intoxicants and women. And of course, the most important thing about these close-minded people who think they know us so well is that are absolutely right. What more inspiration do you need to make us happy than that?

So let's take away the fear. The following list is a good start for making the holidays special for me. I mean us.

New Bills Jersey: As much as we all love Jim Kelly, it's time to retire those vintage pit-stained jerseys and hook up us guys with snappy new numbers. Go for a player who's likely to stick around awhile (that Bledsoe dude might have a future). You can order them right at www.buffalobills.com.

Beer Sampler: Your friendly neighborhood grocery or liquor store will have variety packs available. It gives your favorite guy a chance to swill down a few brews he otherwise wouldn't get to enjoy. He will love you like a dog loves strangers' legs.

Xbox: For a mere $199, you can ensure that your favorite couch potato will be entertained all year. Be sure to throw in some new games like MechAssault. Strictly for improving eye/hand coordination, of course.

Driving Range Gift Certificate: Spring for an outing at one of the local golf domes where the lucky recipient can hit a few buckets of balls during the boring winter months. His swing will not improve, but that's not your problem.

Home Depot Gift Card: Handymen will love the chance to buy some extra stuff to tinker around with or use to improve personal space (like that bathroom that's been torn up since 1997). The repair-impaired will eventually have to buy something there and will be thrilled not to have to part with real money to do it.

Motorhead Stuff: "Corvette's 50th" and "Harley Davidson's 100th" are two book titles out this year that any self-respecting wrench man will dig. There are also some pretty cool Hot Wheels replicas of everything from the Ferrari to the Viper to NASCAR vehicles.

Victoria's Secret: Buy something for yourself and wear it proudly. This is, actually, a gift for him. Provided, of course, you are a spouse, fiance or girlfriend. Do not, repeat DO NOT, try this for your sons or grandsons

The Spy Outlet: This store is just cool. Go there and buy something.

-- William E. Paterson