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10 Things a Guy Really Wants for Valentine’s Day

Rock Band
Whether he fronted a band in college or can’t even play the kazoo, every guy secretly dreams of being a rock star. Unfortunately, the pursuit of that dream would almost certainly result in financial ruin and total humiliation…for both of you. So buy him the video game Rock Band, which lets him be a guitarist, singer, drummer, or -- if he has serious self-esteem issues -- bassist in his very own virtual band. And don’t forget, he’ll be looking for a groupie after he finishes the encore. ($170, rockbandstore.com). For a list of more games you'll both enjoy, check out our guide to the 10 best Video Games for Two .

A Guys' Night...With You
Contrary to popular belief, the thing married men miss most about their bachelorhood isn’t the opportunity to go out and chase women -- it’s the opportunity to kick back with his bros and beers on a daily basis. So agree to schedule nights where he can rule the remote and eat chicken-fried bacon pizza...and you'll be right there with him.

Get-Out-of-Jail-Free Card
Hey, we all make mistakes. And unless those mistakes involve illicitly procured human organs, Interpol, or a second familia in Honduras, there’s no better gift you can bestow than unconditional amnesty. Simply tell him that he can redeem this card after a mild-to-moderate screw-up in the coming year. In return, you’ll forget it ever happened -- no questions asked. He’ll be grateful for your understanding, and you’ll be assured that he didn’t lie in order to escape your wrath.

An Outfit Worn for Him
It doesn't have to be an over-the-top Catholic schoolgirl outfit or a black patent leather zipper-crotch bodysuit…unless you’re into that sort of thing. Instead, try some sexy lingerie. Feel self-conscious? You won’t once you see him ogling you.

Less Makeup
A little eyeliner and lipstick are great. But unless you’re a newscaster or an octogenarian, there’s no reason to cake your face with goopy foundation and -- sorry, but you’re not really fooling anyone -- patchy zit-hider. Up close, subtle makeup is always more attractive. Besides, guys appreciate women who look good au naturel. Take racecar driver Danica Patrick; when all made up for talk shows, she’s unremarkable. But when she’s at the track in her jumpsuit with her hair tied up in a ponytail, she’s the hottest thing on four wheels. He clearly thinks you’re cute -- so why conceal it under a bunch of, er, concealer?

Gift Ideas -- For You
If you’re reading this, you know how difficult it is to find the right present for your spouse. So what better way to say you love him than to spare him from aimlessly wandering around a crowded mall until he buys you a woefully ill-advised gift at Hot Topic? If catching on to subtle hints isn’t his specialty, have a friend brief him on what you might like this year. He’ll feel like a genius, you’ll get exactly what you want, and you’ll both eliminate awkward trips to the store to buy, and then secretly return, crappy presents.

Driving School
Most males love to drive. But unfortunately, the kind of driving your guy typically does -- commuting through rage-inducing traffic or weekend runs to Bed Bath & Beyond -- isn’t enjoyable. So help remind him that he can have fun in a car by sending him to one of dozens of different driving schools held all over the country. Better yet, go with him to one like The Land Rover Experience at the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, NC. He can test the amazing SUV’s off-roading limits on the 8,000-acre property; you can explore the 250-room mansion, winery, and four-star hotel. Everybody wins! ($200-$800, landrover.com)

Madden '09
Madden NFL has been around for 20 years, so they must be doing something right. The ’09 version offers the “most complete NFL football package ever,” but all that matters to us is that it has a great two-player experience.

Booze
Sure, his occasional intake of alcohol has indirectly led to an argument or two. But it’s a gift you can be sure he’ll use and enjoy. Rather than buying him a case of the beer he guzzles with buddies on Sundays, introduce him to something he may not have tried before. India Pale Ales (so named because the British sent the hoppier, more alcoholic beer to colonial soldiers in India), like Dogfish Head 90 Minute IPA, are becoming more and more popular. If he’s a spirits man, buy him an Irish whiskey -- a subtler cousin of Scotch -- like Bushmills 16 Year Single Malt. It’s so good, he’ll gladly stay home to go drinking.

Fantasy Sex
Sure, it seems like a no-brainer, but first you have to do some detective work. Was he particularly attentive during the refrigerator scene when you rented 9 1/2 Weeks? Then bring some strawberries to bed. Have you ever caught him perusing an, ahem, erotic website? Well, take a look at what goes on there. Or, if all else fails, casually ask him outside the bedroom, then surprise him in it later. If you help make a fantasy of his come true, he’ll remember it long after he loses that pair of Isotoners you bought him.
Surprise him with a flat-screen
Make his favorite meal

-- Ky Henderson

See More: Anniversary & Date Nights , Gift Guides , Love & Sex