Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Black Friday Blues

I didn't participate in that black Friday thing. Shopping just isn't in men's genes, not in mine anyway. Do you think back in ancient history some Roman soldier said to his comrades, "Sorry guys, I can't go conquer Persia on Saturday. There's a sale on down by the coliseum." Not likely.

Yet every year I get drawn somehow into the "shopping experience." And it doesn't make it any easier that I have few clues to what I'm getting, or even what I'm looking for. When I make out my Christmas list I'm very meticulous as to what I want, down to size, color, brand and the store that is most likely to sell it at discount price. My wife disdains such lists. She prefers to suddenly blurt out "I wouldn't mind having that for Christmas" in the middle of a conversation or shopping trip. This is cruel and unusual punishment for the average married man. It requires that I always pay attention when my wife speaks during the holiday season. More than that, it requires that I remember what she said beyond the moment. Very, very difficult for me.

Usually, I end up in a JC Penney's woman's department, checking out the apparel. I refuse help from the clerks. With my luck, I'd ask some middle-aged clerk whether a particular outfit looks too "old-ladyish" only to notice that she herself is wearing an identical outfit.

I can usually figure out my wife's and dislikes eventually. Afterall, we've been together almost 30 years. But now I've drawn the name of the my nephew's wife for our annual family Christmas exchange. That's a toughie. Then I heard someone got Xmas ideas by checking a Facebook page. I'm "friends" with my nephew's wife on Facebook. Cool. I'll check her Facebook.

So I see she's written on her wall, "Sometimes, it's nothing to believe in. Sometimes it's everything I see." But what does it mean? Maybe she's into obscure poetry? Or maybe puzzles? That would make an easy gift. But I Google the phrase (smart thinking, eh), and find out it's a line from a song produced by the Monsters of Folk. Monsters of Folk?! I dunno. That makes as much sense as "Monsters of Opera." If I got her a Monsters of Folk CD and she already had it, I think that would be extremely difficult to re-gift to the appropriate person.

On her Facebook page, it notes that she's a fan of craft shows. OK, I usually attend the local mega-craft show annually. It supports local schools. Sounds like a plan. But again, this is not a guy thing. Of the hundreds of people who crowd into this particular craft show, I'd say the percentage of men is one percent. And the percentage of men who are not exhibitors but shoppers are point-five percent. And the percentage of men who are shopping alone and not with a wife or significant other is probably point-one percent. That's me.

I was also drawn into doing the Secret Santa gift exchange at work. We drew names today. Thankfully, the names you draw comes with a list of likes and dislikes. The lady whose name I drew likes "Sweet Pea" scent from Bath and Body. Sweet pea scent? Is that the vegetable or the rug rat from the Popeye cartoon series? Either one doesn't sound too appetizing.

When we did the drawing, we were told to throw back the name if it was our own. What for?? I'd love to draw my own name. It would be a good excuse to shower myself with gifts my wife would normally not approve of. "Hea Wen, guess what my secret Santa got me today. Two tickets to see the movie Zombieland. Guess my Santa wants you to come with me."

She'd have to go with me right? Otherwise, she'd be on Santa's naughty list.


Blogger Lynilu said...

I'm with you. Let's all shop for ourselves, and everyone is happy! Sooo much more simple!!

7:34 PM  
Blogger TechnoBabe said...

You must have gotten a good night's sleep because you are raring to go with your writing today. This post is hilarious. You gotta have pizzaz to be able to write so much about shopping. I do not do shopping, never have. Not a typical gal. Why don't you get the tickets to Zombieland anyway and ask Wendy out on a date with a promise of a bite on the neck at the end of the evening?

5:09 AM  
Blogger Carine said...

Dave, just so you know, I'm the anomoly-if it isn't a produce market, I'd just assume go the dentist for a deep clean than go shopping.

It's my hubby who likes to browse. ick, drives me crazy.

12:43 PM  
Blogger Big Dave T said...

LYNILU--One reason that I often put gift cards on my Xmas list. Then I can go out after and buy what I want.

TECHNOBABE--Wendy and I have kinduva thing going--we go to a movie that's more to her liking, then next time to one I would enjoy. But she won't go to horror movies.

CARINE--After reading my blog, Wendy disagrees with the premise. She believe I like to browse too.

3:57 AM  
Anonymous Beeg Tyma said...

yeah I wouldn't go with the Monsters of Folk. We already have 2 copies, one on iTunes we purchased and one CD from her uncle.

11:19 AM  
Blogger Big Dave T said...

BEEG TYMA--I did kinda figure that. But thanks for letting me know anyway.

3:48 AM  
Anonymous BigBill said...

So when are you off to Persia, Dave?

7:13 PM  
Blogger Merle said...

Hi Dave ~~ A very fun post about shopping. I like the one about a sale on down by the coliseum. Funny.

If you really get stuck for ideas, there is always chocolate. Not too
many of us don't like chocolate.

Thanks for the comments and I am glad you enjoy the jokes and inspirational stories. I must Google Mamas and Poppas music to see if that poem is from one of their songs.
That "lady of the night" was taking a risk at a busy intersection in London. The guy in my joke got a shock to find his wife there. Take care, my friend,
Regards, Merle.

4:48 AM  

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