I dont know about you, but shopping hurts my head. I am man who has never, I repeat NEVER!!!!! Liked shopping. I just don’t know what it is that I despise about the whole act, but whenever I’m forced into “shopping” a world of gloom decends upon me.
I often ponder the amazing constitution of the partner of one of my colleagues. Who, she gleefully informs us “loves shopping”, she says that he says, “I love to see you spend money”, . Stop right there, is this man mad? Maybe I am a tight wad, maybe I don’t have enough love in my heart to take pleasure in seeing my nearest and dearest shop, but I cant stand SHOPPING.
Sure, I want to see my girl dressed in the finest gear she likes, I mean, as long as we can reasonably afford it, no problem. It’s just that, well, do I really have to be there when the goods are purchased? Standing outside changing rooms all trussed up in my overcoat in shops that are baking hot makes me want to scream. Shuffling aimlessly up and down aisles we have already been up 3 or 4 times already that day,,makes me want to scream. Over the Tanoy TLC proclaim, “I don’t want no scrubs” it belts down my earhole at 3 decibels above the national safety limit. I just dont get it. I’m happy to hand over the dosh and stay at home. I’m happy to do that.
Like so many other men I have spoken to, Shopping wasn’t designed for me. If a woman tries on an item of clothing that she likes,it stands to good reason that she should buy it right? No No No, we have to like it too , or so it seems. God forbid that you should express your distaste towards any garment your woman has tried on. Should you do this, you could be frozen to the spot with an icy glare that would have meteorologists announcing the dawn of a new ice age.
Finally, when she has managed to find that elusive item that you have dragged your sorry ass round 15 stores to find, the realisation that this is the first item she tried on four hours ago in the first shop you went into hits like a steam train. Your life flashes before you as you realise that you could have been playing computer games or playing football or even watching football in the pub. Better still Watching Football with a beer, in your underpants on the couch.
Finally, you can go home and put your feet up, that is if your missus doesn’t decide you need some new threads too. If this happens, take my advice, don’t try to resist, just comply. resistance is futile, you will be dragged into every shop on the way home anyway, capitulation simply makes it less painfull. Accept the shirt, trousers, trainers or whatever, pay and head for the sanctuary of home where hopefully you wont have to pay for anything else you didn’t really want or need, until tomorrow when it’s grocery day.
Grocery shopping isn’t quite as bad as clothes shopping. It’s still really bad though. In an ideal world I would, once again lay down the money, have a minimal input in adding essential items to the shopping list such as beer, whiskey, Pizza, Ben and Jerrys, Camenbert Cheese, Biscuits and any other unhealthy crap I can get away with. Then I would disappear until the shopping was done. That would be my selfish and Lazy Ideal situation. I would surface only to carry the bags and put the stuff away, which I don’t mind at all.
However, I don’t live in a fantasy world, (not my ideal one anyway). Sometimes I am required, like most husbands and fathers to enter the dreaded SUPERMARKET. Super, Super? What the hell is super about it? I cant Stand those places , they make me want to vomit.
As soon as I enter, I immediately demote myself to the role of “Trolley Oxen”, then… the Musak pervades my soul. Why do the managers of supermarkets feel the need to play THE shite-est music they can find. I wonder, do they rumage around in those bargain CD bis for that perfect shopping music “The crapest CD ever volume IIIV”?
All this just so we “Happy shoppers” can be entertained by “Bonnie Langford sings Judas Priest-the golden Years” or some other unbearable title.
After adjusting my “block out the music” brain cells, I fall neatly into step with the cast of George A Romero’s “Dawn of the Dead”.
As we shuffle aimlessly up and down ever aisle with no list or purpose, I begin to wonder why Shallots instead of Onions? My cavemans brain is desperately trying to tell me that onions are bigger and therefore better. However, the poor Caveman brain can’t get past the powerdrain that the “block out the music” command is putting on my system. So, shallots it is, even though they cost more and are smaller.
Momentarily I catch a glimpse of something shiny, it threatens to catch my magpie like attention. Its a spotty youth dressed up in a Gold Lamé jacket…I can see now he’s promoting some kind of discounted pile cream. I ask him for a photograph for this blog entry, he timidly refuses, God knows what horrible images are entering his mind now. Looking at the state of the other shoppers in here I shudder, and decide to explain to him that I only want the photo for blogging. I doubt he’s any the wiser, he looks as though he hasn’t heard of electricity, let alone the internet.
The thing I hate about grocery shopping the most is the colours, you see I’m short-sighted, and if I venture into a supermarket without my glasses it starts to induce vomit. My eyes drown in a sea of mismatched colour. Row upon row of green next to red, blue next to orange, Yuuuaarghk!!! The colour festival makes me feel very disorientated. If I am lucky enough to have remembered my glasses I can begin to navigate the store looking firmly at the ground until we approach the beer section or the occasional item of interest.
I’m all for choice, I reckon a bit of choice is good, but Supermarkets have taken this grain of wisdom too far…i mean how many different washing powders do we need…It’s all the same white flaky crap isnt it? who actually examines it or reads how much sodium fluff is each box?We have ecover, ecover non bio, fairy, fairy non bio, lotus blossom, Asda’s own, asda’s non bio, , Daz, ariel, dreft,2 in 1 . swoosh, squidge splosh and splat, I’m confused already.
After beating a hasty retreat form the Soap Powder, I dodge and weave my way around the store without too much trouble but I’m intimidated by gangs, or more like flocks of old people, they approach me in a slow , shaky, fragile way that makes me scared of moving for fear I may nudge one of them and break a bone. This would ineiveitably lead to me being wrestled to the ground by some overweight security guard as a would-be purse thief.
By the time I finally get to the till and pay, I actually feel happy, safe in the knowledge that I have secured a plea bargain of beers and crisps, which should if I’m lucky, last until the time of the next horrific visit. Mr Blair , if you are reading this, I seriously urge you to ban these places, close them all down at once, for the good of the nation.
Take me back to a time when I knew my baker, and my baker knew me.