Does anything beat a guy’s night for kicking back and forgetting about the stresses of everyday life? Whether you’re watching the big game or have different plans, the chance to see all of your mates and have a laugh can certainly help to kick the weekend off with a bang, or give you something to look forward to during the long, dark, and often grueling depths of the week.
This is the case whether you’re meeting in a local bar or just kicking back in your living room while the rest of the family makes themselves scarce. But, the benefits of lad’s night especially come to life when one of your group is lucky enough to have a man cave to which you can all retreat. Forget having to make plans months in advance or struggling to find somewhere that works for everyone, the man cave is a ready-made and incredibly tempting option for guys looking to hang. Like your mate’s beach house when you were a teen, it’s certainly ready, waiting, and kitted out to give you all the best times that you could hope for.
Unfortunately, guys with caves can too often find themselves taken advantage of as everyone descends time and again. Avoiding that is all about making sure that you show them how much you appreciate the space and them, and taking along a gift to at least every few guy’s nights is the best possible way to express those sentiments. The question is, with traditional gifts like flowers and chocolates generally not appropriate here, what exactly can you take to keep yourself cemented in cave culture for a long time to come?
Bring A Bottle Of Something Special
As you likely already know, a well-stocked bar is a basic fundamental for any decent man cave, regardless of whether that comes in the form of a mini-fridge under that sideboard or a fully-equipped and functioning bar setup. With that in mind, while there’s nothing wrong with bringing a crate or four-pack along with you, doing so is also going to add to those already existing stocks. It’s a good gift, but it doesn’t exactly scream ‘look who’s arrived’, and it’s not going to guarantee that your invites to the club keep on rolling.
To make sure that happens, you’ll instead want to stick to something a little more special anytime that you do choose to go down the alcohol route. It could be, for instance, that you specifically order a bottle of something vintage or a new tipple from your mate's favorite vineyard. You could even approach with an entirely different take on this altogether and invest in a drink’s decanter or something else snazzy (filled with quality contents, of course) to add your own little touch to that bar setup your mate likely spent hours creating.
Bring Something Fun
Sometimes, your well-equipped mate will make his own plans for guy’s night in the cave, but if the responsibility of planning falls on his shoulder every time, it won’t be long before he both gets annoyed and runs out of ideas. Hence why it’s also a great idea to take the fun sometimes, though you might want to check this with your mate first before you end up accidentally stepping on his toes. Once you’ve got the go-ahead, there are some surprisingly simple ways to bring entertainment that everyone’s guaranteed to love, and they could include –
Whether you consider yourselves gambling men or not, poker is always a great addition to a guy’s night, and it’s a go-to that you’ll definitely want to keep in mind if you're providing the entertainment. Of course, a full-size poker table isn’t exactly an easy thing to carry with you, but there are portable options that make this a viable thing to bring. Gift that poker set to the man cave, and you could even find that every guy’s night kicks off with a friendly game of poker where you bet on silly things, like responsibilities for the night, or who cleans up once you’re all finished.
Unless you’re literally heading here every night, the cost of a VR headset is probably a little more than you want to spend on a gift that says ‘thanks for having me’, but whether you bring along your old Oculus or just bring your VR set for the night, these cool gadgets are a fantastic option for keeping everyone happy. Admittedly, you will probably need at least two sets to make this work for a group, but if you can stock those yourself or pair up with another attendee, you’re all guaranteed to have a blast when playing top multiplayer VR games like PokerStars (incidentally), Cook-Out, and even good old VR fishing.
Bring An Addition For Your Buddy's Man Cave
If you intend to spend a lot of time here (and why wouldn’t you?), it’s also worth noting that a man cave should be a group effort. In other words, you don’t want to leave your mate with the sole responsibility of getting this communal space up to scratch or kitted out.
After all, he’s probably spent enough already on getting that garage or whatever renovated in the first place! Luckily, much like a housewarming gift, bringing along your own little additions and extras for the cave itself is guaranteed to go down a treat and make all of the difference. Admittedly, you’ll again be spending a little more on most things in this category than you might typically like for a ‘thank you’-type gift, so you may prefer to give these things out on loan. However, some fantastic options that are guaranteed to go down well include –
They might not be a traditional go-to for a guy’s cave, but it’s amazing how much well-chosen plants can transform a space. Even if he laughs at you when you hand it over, your mate’s certainly going to appreciate that Snake Plant or Braided Money Tree when it keeps the air fresh from all those male scents, and even ensures a welcoming brightness no matter how rarely he finds the time to come out here.
Taking a whole three-piece couch set to guy’s night might be a bit extreme, but investing in well-chosen furniture additions for the space also isn’t a bad way to arrive here, especially if you keep the interests of your friend and general group in mind. It may be, for instance, that you bring a dartboard for the space on the back of that door, or you could look into cigar humidors that bring some general order to that pile of cigar boxes on the side. You might even choose to bring along a beanbag or similar to make otherwise cramped seating setups that bit more comfortable and to really ride home those teen hangout vibes.
Top tech always compliments a man cave setup meaning that, while this is probably one of those additions you’re going to want to lend instead of giving, it’s another extremely tempting option. Again, there are endless ways to make this work for you, from coffee machines to home projectors and, as mentioned, a couple of VR sets for in-the-moment gaming. Simply consider what your guys love, what the space is currently lacking, and what you have to hand that could make it all that little bit better.
Bring The (homemade) Snacks
Like another crate of beer, a decent set of snacks are such a go-to for any guy’s night that the chances are every other person attending will bring along a bag of chips or another pack of nuts.
These things have their place (God bless salt and vinegar!) but if you want to impress with your offering, then it’s also worth considering a few homemade snacks that, while surprisingly easy to make, are going to taste even better than those shop-bought go-to's.
From homemade guac to your very own pretzels and nut mixtures, a few minutes (or admittedly half an hour or so) in the kitchen is truly all it takes to create the taste sensation of the evening. And, given that food is generally the way to any guy’s heart, those culinary skills are almost guaranteed to land you with a guy’s night invite for life.
Knowing what to take to any social event can be tough, but the main thing to remember is that choosing the wrong gift is always going to be better than turning up empty-handed time and again and expecting everyone else to supply the goods. Instead, get truly onboard with guy’s night by thinking about what your group needs, what you currently have the power to supply, and how easily you can make it happen. Admittedly, you don’t need to feel any pressure to take a winning gift every single time. But, if you’re going to secure your invite, you at least need to win the gift-giving lottery with ideas like these at least some of the times you attend!