Welcome to the Annual Man Repeller Gift Guide! As you may know, we love throwing a theme party that moonlights as gift-giving advice around here, and this year’s theme is “horoscopes.” It’s a timely celebration of the 2010s’ primary source of digital catnip, but also an excuse to create TWELVE highly personalized gift vignettes for your shopping pleasure. Tuesday you saw gifts for fire signs, Wednesday earth signs, yesterday air signs, and today, our final frontier: water! So I’ll hand the mic over to astrological aficionado Sarah Panlibuton Barnes who is far more qualified to wax poetic on the stars and their plans for your presents. —Harling Ross
Happy Holidoozies folks! Welcome to the most wonderful time of the year. ‘Tis the season for turning looks against all weather-based odds. It is also the time of year that calls us to reflect on where we’ve been and ask some big questions, such as: What cheese assortment will please the largest number of my family and friends? Are antlers an ethically chill decorating choice? If I sit at the kid’s table can I avoid making eye contact with my great uncle who just wants to recite facts he learned from “the Wikipedia” as if he is the first person to have used the internet? And, of course, the eternal wintertide question: What objects do I wrap in festive paper and offer to my acquaintances, friends, and most beloved in order to demonstrate my feelings about them?
We’ve got you covered on this one, you lil yuletide delight. We have selected an array of very good objects inspired by the astrological water signs, Pisces, Cancer, and Scorpio. Water signs are all about connection. Nothing makes a water sign happier than being with their chosen people, and yet, they also tend to come off as dreamy or far away. Basically, they want to be invited to the party, even if they don’t actually want to go. If you are lucky enough to get a water sign to attend your party, you can count on them to emotionally bolster everyone who needs it. You might find a Pisces with their arms slung around Jim and Kathy, trying to coach them through a rough patch. Don’t be surprised if you catch a Scorpio sneaking the dog cheese cubes because they just couldn’t resist those sweet puppy eyes. Maybe you’ll close out the night doing dishes with a Cancer who insisted on staying to help you clean up even though they’re just, like, a tertiary friend/acquaintance and you’re not even sure who they came with. What more could you ask for?
Scorpio is magnetic, enigmatic, and deeply in touch with the fluxing emotional world of mystery and intrigue. If the zodiac were a high school yearbook, Scorpio would be voted Most Likely to Attract Followers Without Even Trying to and Then Becoming the Leader of a Group That Local News Organizations Might Call a Cult But That the Acolytes Refer to as “a Community of Like-Minded Seekers in Ecstatic Supplication to This Scorpio Hottie.” The community’s activities would focus heavily on rituals involving singing bowls and contemplative eye gazing, which sounds to me like a grand ol’ time.
Whether or not the Scorpio in your life has actual devotees, you can honor this underappreciated side of their nature by giving them gifts that are glamorous, cozy, and esoteric. Examples include this gilded turtle box cast from the mold of an actual box turtle that died of natural causes, or this hat with ear flaps which indulges Scorpio’s mysterious side by making their ears into a secret. You should also consider gifts that help your Scorpio send a message, like these lip oils from Kosas that hydrate like a lip balm and also add visual drama to any prophesying your Scorp might need to do. Or you could take a more figurative approach by buying Scorpio items that speak for themselves, such as this chain belt which says, “I want you to know I have a waist and also possibly a weapon.” Or this photo of tomatoes that says, “Let us admire a fruit at its ripest while the world around us decays.”
Oh Pisces, the tender-bellied celestial fish of the zodiac, what would we do without them? During the holiday season, we count on Pisces to remind everyone to slow down and make time for those sticky feelings that often come with the season. Pisces wants to help you hang the mistletoe, then process your feelings about that kiss you shared with your neighbor last week which you can’t decide if you loved or were just bored and had too much champagne. Pisces comes to the holiday party draped in silk and insists that everyone write down compliments for themselves and their loved ones on little slips of paper and stuff them into a bedazzled box she made which she will then read out aloud while the party engages in a cleansing communal weep followed by a group hug.
Tend to your Pisces and all their feelings with little things that show you care, like this sunscreen to keep their skin sun-safe even in the winter, this dinner party set so that your Pisces knows that you never want them to dine alone (unless they want to), these sparkling loafers that are both comfortable and extravagant, and these heart-shaped earrings so that your Pisces can not only wear her heart on her sleeve, but also on her earlobes. Tuck your pressies into this excellent woven bag that looks like it was knit by a coterie of Cinderella’s devoted mice and voilà! You have yourself a perfect Pisces present.
Cancer is a sign that you want on your side. Loyal and devoted to their chosen few, Cancer wants nothing more during the holidays than to be with their favorite people. An ideal holiday gathering for Cancer would take place in a familiar environment with people they know well. If you put a Cancer in loving surroundings they can trust, you will have a charming and creative party guest on your hands. Before you know it, your beloved celestial crab will be organizing a Scrabble tournament and making mulled wine. But if you drag Cancer to a raucous soiree where they don’t know anyone well, you may find your friend standing by the punch bowl giving dark lectures to other guests about the epidemic state of loneliness in late capitalist society.
To keep your Cancer happily scuttling along this holiday season, give them this shiny crab ring and this top-shelf CBD oil that will show them you see the beauty in their crustaceous exterior and you wish them peace in their inner shell. Tuck both gifts into this Rachel Comey bag that looks like it was discovered in a chest of buried treasure. You could also offer the gift of hours of wholesome home-based entertainment with this party-themed puzzle. Pair the puzzle with these baroque seashell plates and starfish brooch to honor Cancer’s natural affinity with water and desire to never leave the house again.