Arun is Bringing You...Your Daily Remedy

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Men, Women, and Our Shopping Differences

The act of going shopping is quite an enigma. For me, it's usually a chore that, while not really being a nuisance, isn't particularly enjoyable either. I think it's the same for most guys. Usually, my workday evening schedule is so packed with things to do or activities, that I want to get in and out as quickly as possible.

Don't worry, I'm not going to talk about janky shopping carts and cart-driving etiquette. I already covered that here.

Women however, treat shopping very differently.

***Disclaimer: I'm going to be making gross over generalizations about genders! Read, chuckle, and feel to chime in...but no complaining :) ****

Some things are pretty similar. When we go to the grocery store, neither gender is particularly adept at melon selection. Tap this, rub here, press that. And what are they actually listening for when people hold melons up to there ear?

When we make our way up to the front though, the genders begin to separate. We all do the incredibly quick mental calculation of which line to get into. You look at the amount of people in line, factor in the amount of crap in their basket, whether or not there's a bagger to speed up the process at that line, etc.

This has to be an extremely speedy decision though. If you hesitate, someone will beat you to the line! Then, in a continuing streak of bad luck, you'll get stuck behind the person who discovers a broken egg in their carton. Now the checker has to call someone to go all the way back to the eggs (conveniently located in the very back of the store) to go get a new one.


Then, just when you think the next person in front of you is speedy with not too much stuff, they pipe up with the dreaded, "Can I get a pack of Marlborough's?"

Damn Damn.

Now the checker has to walk over to the special case, get the special key, and unlock the cigarette storage. And just to push you over the edge, the customer will bust out the checkbook.

Damn Damn Damn.

Seriously. Who writes checks at the grocery store anymore!?!

Men, to make line selection slightly more simple, have a trump card. If the checker is cute, we will choose her line even if it's a little longer. If you don't believe me, ask around. Obviously if her line is crazy, we won't go, but men are willing to make the five minute sacrifice if it means getting to say two words to a hot chick.

Sad, but true.

In fact, at my work, we have a lot of Government contracts, so everything is pretty secure and you have to scan a badge to enter buildings. A month ago, the good ol' Government came by unannounced to sort of test our security. Apparently, they hired a young hot girl to see if she could just "follow" people into buildings.

Guess what. She was able to get into nearly every building despite not having a badge because guys would hold the door for her.

We are weak.

Back to shopping, guys are usually much more efficient as well. Go in, get what you need, and get out. There's minimal "perusing." Women on the other hand enjoy the task of shopping almost as much as the products they buy. We men are generally very helter skelter at the store. We go and get things as we remember them regardless of where we are in the store. Women on the other hand are much more organized and go down isle by isle pickying up things as they pass.

But, there's nothing more painful than getting stuck in a department store with women. They can seriously spend HOURS and buy NOTHING! I've had the misfortune of having had this happen on a few occasions. Sometimes, I bring a girl along if I'm going to buy myself clothing since they have usually have good fashion sense.

When only one girl comes along, its controllable. She won't get carried away "shopping" if it's just the two of you. BUT, if she brings a friend, you are in code red territory! They will forget about you and embark on the shopping journey!

Go to Nordstrom around the Holidays, and you'll see exactly what I'm talking about. Near the escalators, there's a little nook with like a couple of chairs and a couch.

This is where the unfortunate male victims of getting stuck with women at Nordstrom congregate. I've set up shop there many-a-time. Here we just sit in silence and stare into oblivion, praying that the end is near. Occasionally, a wife, mom, or girlfriend will come over with an update. "I'm almost done, I'm just gonna check out the stuff over there. Do you want to come or just wait here?"

We wait because because the only thing worse is being the "Dressing Room Exit Evaluator."

Ladies will go in with what looks like five outfits, but somehow it's more like twenty-five. Meanwhile we wait outside as each wardrobe change takes ten agonizingly boring minutes. You see, once changed, girls make damn sure they look halfway decent in those fitting room mirrors before coming out. Men on the other hand just throw the pants (or whatever) on and our only concern is dodging the renegade safety pins on the ground threatening our shoeless feet as we come out.

Then when they finally come out, despite what we say, we realize our opinion actually means nothing.

Women value other women's opinions on apparel, but a man's opinion means virtually nothing. If any girl around pipes up, whether or not they know each other, our opinion on whatever she's wearing goes straight out the window. Two hours and twenty-five outfits later, they buy nothing.

Kill me now.

"This place doesn't have anything cute I like!"

And speaking of wardrobe apparel evaluations, PLEASE find another adjective besides "cute!" Seriously, everything is "cute, not-cute, really-cute, sort of cute, or kind of-cute." There's nothing else!

OK, I feel better.

Women - please spare the kind men in your life by letting them stay home if there is the potential for "shopping." As much as we like the nook by the elevators at Nordstrom, we'd rather stay home, barbecue, drink beer, and watch football ;)

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