Does holiday gift-giving leave you as nervous and confused as a Tennessee athletic director hunting a new football coach?
Fear not. The Dawg Sports staff is here with gift ideas for the ‘Dawgs and ‘Dawgettes in your life. Buying gifts for Florida Gators? Yeah, you’re on your own with that.
I’ll preface this by admitting I went off-script, and will likely suffer lumps of gator poo in my stocking from Ol’ Saint MaconDawg on Christmas morn’. But I’ve been known to keep Christmas well as any man, in my own way.
What does every Bulldog fan want? An objective view of their team, and its place in the world around them. What is objective, you might say? Munsoning. Or knowing with every fiber in your being that we will be victorious. Or something in between. There is no “right” way to be a Bulldog, or to prepare for a game, or even to celebrate victory (aside from Ringing the Bell). One thing that can help bring us all together is to view our Bulldogs through the same lens. And now you can watch your team through a true Georgia Bulldog lens:
Of course if you like to buck the trend (and the logo), might I suggest something in a steampunk/Mad Max motif?
My second idea for any Georgia Bulldog fan is more akin to a wish. And what would I wish my fellow Dawg fans?
Good Air. This is not an item you can purchase in a store, but maybe it means just a little bit more. Something so commonplace and taken for granted has a profound effect on many of the things we hold dear.
I wish you good air flow for your smoker*, so that your pork butt (insert food of your choosing) comes out just right, you don’t have to check it, you can just relax with kith and kin and be awash in their compliments on what a good cook you are. I wish you good air temperature that puts you in the right mood for Christmas, whatever that may be. For me, it’s cold air I like – at least until January 1 when I want 70 degrees right up until Halloween. Oh, and that air needs to be heavily scented with Frazier Fir trees, with hints of cinnamon, bread, and mint mixed in occasionally. I wish you the good air for decanting your wine, to let it breathe and be just as bold or just as meek as you like it. Or good air for your bourbon, so that whatever amount of ice you put in (if any) melts just the right amount as your glass empties. I wish you, and all Bulldogs, and frankly all people in the Los Angeles/Rose Bowl area good air – free of fires, smoke, smog, or any other health hazard. Good air in which to inhale before exhaling with a vociferous “GO ‘DAWGS!!!” I wish us all health, happiness, and a wonderful holiday season.
*Coming Soon: Lump charcoal from the ashes of the coaching career of Butch Jones. Also available in Jim McElwain, which gives off a nice sharky flavor. We hope to have Paul Johnson Jowl flavor in time for next Labor Day.
Being a Georgia Bulldog fan is a commitment. It’s not just watching football on Saturday or ranting uncontrollably on the Dawg Vent the other 350 or so days a year. There’s an entire body of culture, a complete body of knowledge which I would argue one needs to know to be a true Bulldog fan, or at least to fully appreciate the experience.
There’s not a quiz before you walk into Sanford Stadium, so it’s okay if you don’t know everything there is to know about University of Georgia football and Athens, the Classic City which surrounds it.
But if you want to know absolutely everything there is to know about the history and lore of Georgia football, of what it means to bleed red and black, a great place to start would be with Jason Butt’s recently released book The Georgia Bulldog Fan’s Bucket List (Triumph Books). Jason’s been covering the Bulldog beat for years, and he provides an exceptional overview of the whos, whats, whens, wheres, and in some cases whys of Bulldog fandom.
From Herty to Butts, Dooley to Donnan, Rose Bowl to Bluebonnet, Von Gammon to A.J. Green, you’ll get a great primer on the history of Georgia Bulldog football. But you’ll also find a list of attractions and important sites around Athens, a discussion of many of the traditions you may not have understood (until now), and even an anecdote or two. It’s a rich tapestry of Bulldog miscellany, woven in an approachable style that seasoned fans will enjoy, but moves at a pace younger (or newly-minted) ‘Dawgs won’t find tedious. At $15 it’s a nice stocking stuffer or last minute gift for the ‘Dawg in your life, or the person you’re looking to bring over to the good guys.
It’s incredibly difficult to find Team Apparel for ladies that’s more than the standard tee or sweatshirt. Those have their place, but I like to wear UGA things to work on fall Fridays. Polo’s aren’t quite as fashionable for women so, for the Lady Dawg Fan in your life - let me introduce you to my favorite online store for UGA wear: Gameday Couture. If the name sounds familiar, you may have watched Shark Tank at some point. Everything is legally licensed and many of their items are also available at the UGA Bookstore.
Two particular favorites from the current collection are:
and the Plaid But True Tunic
Every Georgia fan needs a best friend, a regal protective, snoring, farting (and I mean room clearing farts), sweet-natured, playful, stubborn, loving best friend. For that I give you: The Georgia English Bulldog Rescue’s list of available dogs. Y’all these are the best dogs ever and I highly recommend getting one of your very own. For those outside of Georgia, the national Bulldog Club of America Rescue Network has you covered.
All.the.UGA.jewelry - Joy Jewelers has some nice University of Georgia jewelry.
You can also shop small at etsy.com for all manner of unique Georgia themed items.
No Georgia Fan Gift list would be complete without a little Lewis Grizzard. Amazon has The Most of Lewis Grizzard in hardcover - it includes 5 of his classic hits. For the displaced Dawg there is also If I Ever Get Back to Georgia I’m Gonna Nail My Feet to the Ground.
Last but not least, for anyone buying gifts for Vineyard Dawg there is this gem.
We all have a variety of people in our lives that we get to shop for at the holidays. Some are easy. Some are difficult. Some make you want to pull your hair out. Here are my suggestions for a few of these.
The Wife/Sister/Mother Who is Impossible To Shop For
My wife is infamously difficult to shop for. When she opens a gift, she always says “Ooooh! Thank you!” in this way that is simultaneously well-intentioned and dismissive. She wants you to know how much she appreciates the thing you picked, but you’re left feeling like you picked the wrong thing anyway. I love her to death but, as someone who genuinely enjoys gift giving, it can be a tad bit frustrating. So, though I’ve mentioned it before, this particular item is the one thing I’ve bought her that got a genuinely pleased reaction. I have no idea why. It’s a silly thing, but for some reason it did the trick. Try it. It works. Again, I find it genuinely perplexing... but why question a good thing.
My eldest son loves playing as the Dawgs in football video games. This can be a bit of a problem since it’s been a few years since there has been an edition of EA’s NCAA Football. But lucky for him, I still had a copy of NCAA Football 09. Ignore the year here. The ‘09 version of the game is actually the 2008 pre-season version of the Dawgs and they’re #1 Baby! Play as Matthew Stafford, Knowshon Moreno, and freshman A.J. Green (God I feel old). And good news: If you have a PS3 or Xbox 360 lying around, your kids can get in on the action for under 5 bucks.
The Music Lover
I was introduced to this glorious grilling tool around 5 years ago. Since then, I have purchased two for myself and one for just about every male family member for whom I’ve had to purchase a gift. Brilliance through simplicity. It may not make it in time for Christmas, but your favorite grillmaster will have it in time for their Rose Bowl tailgate/cookout.
The Drunk Uncle/Anyone You Truly Love
You don’t have to wait for shipping on this one. Just head to your nearest liquor store. And if you aren’t too far from Athens, may I recommend The Barn in Pendergrass, GA. They have discounts if you pay with cash. What a time to be alive.
Hopefully one of these ideas will fit the bill for that hard to buy for fan in your life, or give you a reason to use that gift card from cousin Bob. Happy holidays, and . . .