Tuesday 11 September 2012

Sex and not shopping (okay, mainly not shopping)

Nobody believes me when I say I don’t like shopping.  But seriously, it’s true, I don’t.  Maybe I got it all out of my system when I was consumer editor for City Limits magazine (a bit of an oxymoron, many people thought but, hey, socialists like to shop too, it seems). I mean, I do shop, of course I do – but only when things are absolutely necessary (which, to be frank, isn’t that often).  James grows like a weed and so, yup, he needs gear.  But generally he sends me a link via email and I go ‘yeah, I guess you really do need new trainers if your old ones really are two sizes too small’ or ‘nah, not on your nelly, my little mate’ and it’s all done and dusted in a couple of clicks.

I buy food (reluctantly); I buy petrol (even more reluctantly). I buy a few books for research and, once in a blue moon, I will treat myself to a new CD. And that is it.  Oh no – I did buy a new sports bra about a month ago when the old one wouldn’t take any more darning. And four pairs of socks from Sports Direct to make it up to the ‘no need to pay postage’ limit.

Aha, I hear you thinking (you know I can do this) – she’s only saying this cos she’s stony broke and can’t afford to go shopping.  Well, yeah, I’ll give you the broke bit - but I’m working on that.  J But nah, even if I had the dosh, I still wouldn’t make a hobby out of shopping.

I just don’t get it.  I just can't be arsed. I don’t see anything fun about floating round a bunch of shops gazing at…stuff.  It just doesn’t rock my boat.  And I really hate trying on clothes with a vengeance. Seriously, the last time I went shopping for more than ten minutes was two years ago when I heard I was going to Israel.  I had literally nothing to wear (my wardrobe is far from extensive and, given I live on Exmoor, there really is no need for summer clothes).  
Luckily I had a wodge of vouchers from Next (thanks to you lot) and Monsoon (thanks to friends who’d bought them for a birthday a couple of years previously) and so I did the shopping thing and very tedious it was too.  But…job done.

Now then. If there’s anything worse than shopping it’s shopping with friends.  Why?  WHY? Why on earth would you traipse round shops with other people?  Watching them pick up stuff, trying to adjust your facial features so they don’t guess that you’re wincing inside and then trying to say the right things when they try it on and come out of the changing room expecting a dishonest opinion?  Is it some kind of masochism?  Now you're thinking I'm a bitch, right? But - be honest - you tell me you don't think that?  Truly? 

But there is, deep below that, a further level of hell which is shopping with men.  Actually I do make a bit of an exception here because shopping with gay men (as I recall) can be a hoot.  But, back on the straight and narrow (cos, lamentably, I don’t have gay male friends out here – because any gay men on Exmoor sadly have the sense to stay firmly in their closets) - shopping with boyfriends/partners/husbands????  YE BLOODY GODS.  

Why do women do it? You see them, these benighted blokes, parked outside the changing rooms, or shifting from one foot to the other, tapping listlessly into their smartphones – clearly bored out of their skulls – while their women flick through the rails. WHY?  Is it some power trip (“You will prove your love by enduring… total boredom”)  The modern version of courtly romance, holding hangers at Top Shop rather than poking poles in a jousting tourney?  Some weird kind of branding (“Hey, bitches, he’s mine – look, he even comes shopping with me!”).   Insecurity (“Shit, if I don’t keep him with me at all times, he might cop off with some bird in the hardware shop”)?  Or just general ickyness (“We wuv each uvver so we do evveryfing togevver”)?  Yuck yuck yuckity yuck.  I mean, I'm assuming the women want the men there?  Or do the men secretly enjoy it? 

Nah. I don’t get it. I really, really really don't. Please explain.

Don’t get me wrong. I like nice things. Not as much as I used to but even so… As I prowl round the Internet I see certain things that make me go …oooh, that’s rather pleasing.  But I know myself now.  It’s just a bit of a flirt – it doesn’t mean anything. There's no commitment. So I usually stick it on my Pinterest board – and funnily enough that is kind of enough.  And, here’s the thingy – when I go back and look at that board (every month or so) the things I posted have often lost their allure.  Because, basically, they are just things.  And really there ain’t no thing I really want that much. J


Young at Heart said...

I'm afraid I love shopping...any kind including window.... and bargains give me the biggest buzz!!

Exmoorjane said...

@YAH - :) But solo, with pals or with partner?

Zoë said...

oh, we must be twins separated at birth - I have a huge aversion to shopping, I think my postie has a huge aversion to me shopping too, because I buy almost everything except meat and veg via the web and get it delivered! Meat and veg I either grow, or use farm shops for. I hate shopping with other people too, especially the iGit, its just something we have never done and never will. Some people seem to find it a recreational activity though - me I would rather be arse deep in mud, or have my hand in amongst 50,000 bees!

Anonymous said...

I only shop alone, I can't be bothered with trying to agree with whomever I'm with which shop we are going to, arranging to meet somewhere in half an hour only to find I need 40 minutes and then rushing out not trying on the only thing I quite like.

Having said that shopping with teenage daughters can be quite fun. I agree to try on ANYTHING they select (I don't agree to buy it) my wardrobe has been improved by things I would never have looked at before.

I am also married to one of the few men who is a good shopper. We both shop the same way, quick but open to suggestion. That was pretty much how we bought our house .... empty for 20 odd years, completely derelict. We agreed on the spot before we even climbed through the boarded up window that this was going to be our home!

the veg artist said...

I'm not keen on shopping either, but my husband loves any kind of shopping - food (he does the supermarket shop), non-food anything, even clothes or presents for me. If I have to, I will go with him, but much prefer to give him a list, or even a picture!
I know he's rare!! Or is he just odd??

Nicola Vincent-Abnett said...

The husband is a much better and more generous shopper than I am, and all my best stuff, including clothes, consists of gifts from him. He and the daughter leave me very happily at home when it comes to the big shopping trips. I tend to be a one shop or one-click sort of girl.

Greta said...

I HATE shopping. For anything.

My husband appears to LOVE shopping. After we get what's on the list, he fossicks. Off to the 'you-don't=need-this-but-it's-cheap' section in Aldi. You know the one. Full kit-out for skiing when you live in the sub-tropics; thermal underwear for the whole family; kitchen gizmos you never use?

And in fact, he'll stop outside the ladies clothing shops and say 'this is cheap, why don't you try it on?'

OK, rant over. Maybe I should write my own blog on the subject?