Over the next couple of weeks Gothamist staffers will give you some suggestions on gifts that you could get us (OR your loved ones) this holiday season. These are from the heart! Our warm, materialistic hearts. We really do like this stuff. Today's gifter: Associate editor Lauren Evans.

Unlike Gothamist’s renunciate publisher Jake Dobkin, my disdain for "stuff "isn’t born of any lofty rejection of materialism. I just don’t particularly like it. My apartment is too small to house any additional tchotchkes or gadgets, and history has proven I’ll just wind up spilling mustard on it anyway.

This is not to say that I don’t occasionally lust after life’s more sybaritic pleasures—if someone volunteered to exterminate the current leaseholders of a tastefully-sized private island and give it to me instead, who am I to decline? Generally, though, I just prefer my excesses in a form with limited potential for breakage or accidental death.

I would never suggest that working at Gothamist leaves my muscles anything but buttery and untroubled, but I’ve noticed, lately, a painful nugget of tissue snuggled against my right shoulder blade. It’s probably just a tumor, but I’d still like to have it mashed around a bit—really get it good and provoked, like a hornet’s nest. Then it will realize my body is a terrible place for it to live and it will go away. It's fundamental biology.

Under normal circumstances, the spa at the Mandarin Oriental would shoo the likes of me off the sidewalk with a broom, but this is Christmas. This isn't the time for "DIY Massages Using Just An Old Sponge And Some Rubber Bands", but "Massages Performed By A Team of Chiseled Lumberjacks Squabbling Over Who Gets to Pour Gold Flakes Over my Shoulders Next." It's a magical season where all dreams must be regarded with respect, no matter how stupid.

Of course, before one spends several hundred dollars on a massage, it's best to do one's homework. An About.com video of comically abysmal sound quality walks future customers through a brief tutorial of the M.O spa experience. The host and protagonist, Brent Rose, who almost definitely moonlights as the narrator of 1970s sex-ed videos, explains that clients are first offered "delicious herbal tea" and ushered into “silken robes” that they'll inhabit through the duration of their stay.

I, of course, demand nothing less than the VIP spa suite, a favorite amongst “couples and celebrities,” since it’s tucked away from the prying eyes of...other couples and celebrities. The laundry list of amenities include two treatment tables, a private tub, a lounge area, a fire place and a “large kang bed,” meaning, I think, that it's heated.

Rose, who has a tattoo of what appear to be the words “Saggy Bacon” on his toned pectoral muscle, opts for the Vitamin Infusion Facial. As far as I can tell, this entails having his face gently slapped at by the deft hands of the therapist, before his entire head disappears into a wrapped towel, his own fluffy Shroud of Turin. Some time later, the hands reappear to press down upon his eyeballs. None of the treatment appears to be anything you can't convince your spouse or local bodega proprietor to do for 20 bucks, but there are alternatives—the "Himalayan Salt, Sea Therapy Chakra Therapy" and "Thai Yoga Massage" do carry an appeal. The treatment concludes in the “relaxation room,” because all that face-swiping and eyeball-pressing has left you very on edge. Prices for various massages and facials vary, though I'm particularly intrigued by the "The Clearing Factor - Journeys," as it costs up to $975 on weekends and includes the words "Lymph Drainage."

You and Your Chiseled European Partner, chatting casually in a tub of alcohol. (Aire Ancient Baths)

Another viable option is the Cava and Caviar Massage at the Aire Ancient Baths in Tribeca, with slight modifications: Instead of Cava, I’ll take Cristal, because, like Scarlett Johansson in Lost in Translation, "I love Cristal," probably! Instead of Caviar, some ham would do fine. The “special corporal” massage focuses on back and feet using warm Cava Cristal mouse, and a facial hydrant and luminous massage using a caviar ham facial cream. Doesn't that sound refreshing?

Or if anyone just has any extra sponges and rubber bands laying around, I’ll take 'em off your hands.