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It's About Shopping

by Ron Kitson

I don't understand why people waste good shopping time driving around and around trying to get parked close to the entrance, only to go inside and walk two or three miles?

I must say though, my wife doesn't do that. She likes to park away back where no one else is parked. She figures her car is much less apt to get dings from other car doors. Plus, it's a lot easier to find.

I'm told there are a lot of cases of shoppers exiting via doors at a different side of the building and then reporting the car stolen. Not my wife though, she always parks in that same deserted part of the lot and enters and leaves through the same doors and her car is always right there where she left it.

Something else I don't understand is why a few of them can shop and walk for hours but can't take a minute and a few extra steps to put the shopping cart into one of those little "shopping cart corrals" in the parking lot.

And why do women spend so much time looking at things they have no intention of buying? They'll hold up a little girl's dress, "isn't that cute?" "Who you lookin' to buy a dress for?" "Nobody, but isn't that a pretty little dress?" ..."Yep."

Don't misunderstand me, I do enjoy going places with my wife. I just don't enjoy going shopping with her. Sometimes I'll spot something interesting and stop to take a closer look and check the price.

If it looks good, I'll say "hey, what do you think of.........." and she's nowhere to be seen. Vanished into thin air. I look down the aisles and behind the tall displays and no sir, no where, ten seconds tops and she is gone.

One thing I've learned is to start out by making a mental note of what she's wearing. It helps a lot but I don't always remember to do that either. So, here I am looking for my wife among a large throng of women and can't remember what she has on.

"Can I help you find something Sir," "Yes, my wife." Sooner or later she'll come up behind me and say "where've you been?"

Of all the new laws they pass, they should pass one more and make department stores install comfortable benches for husbands. Maybe they could call them "Husbenches." It's not the walking that bothers me so much as the standing. Just standing there while she checks out all those cute little dresses.

And why don't they have a little more consideration for customers when they set their thermostats? We dress up warm for the outdoors in the winter but it's so hot in those stores that after a few minutes of aggressive walking, you feel like the pig-in-a-pit at a luau.

You'll notice the cashiers wearing short sleeved silk blouses to keep cool. The opposite in the summer when we're dressed for the hot outdoor weather, you need a sweater in many stores and restaurants to keep from freezing.

I don't like to go grocery shopping with my wife either. Everything I pick out is cheaper somewhere else. "They're three for $2.98 at Marc's and here they're $1.49 each." How does she remember all that?

The other day I had to go to the post office and she said, "Good, drop me off at the grocery store. I'll pick up a few things and you can meet me there." Good idea except it's a mega-store, very crowded and I didn't remember what she was wearing. I walked across the ends of all the aisles two or three times and didn't see her so decided to walk the aisles.

Then I was sure I had spotted her down at the other end of the aisle. The right body, right hair style but then she turned around....oops, wrong face. Sure glad I didn't sneak up and pinch her. There must have been five or six women I kept meeting over and over again but couldn't find my wife. Why is that?

If I was looking for one of them, I'd never find her either. Eventually I came around a corner and there she was, only to have her dispatch me to aisle 4 to pick up a jar of peanut butter and you know she's not going to stay where I left her.

Another thing that bugs me about grocery stores is that when I spot someone restocking or rearranging items on the shelves and ask, "Excuse me, could you tell me where I would find the molasses?" "Oh I don't work here." "Looks to me like you're working here." "No, I work for a distributor."

Also, about the time I get to know where to find the items I shop for, they move them. Not just a few feet, but to another part of the store. I used to find peanut butter here, now it's all soups. You know why they do that? It's to make you search up and down the aisles hoping you'll spot and pick up a few other items you hadn't planned on while you search for the peanut butter.

Another thing I've learned about grocery shopping is to go right after you eat and not when you're hungry, it's a lot cheaper.

Also, there are far too many choices. Take breakfast cereal for example. Eight or ten choices would offer a nice variety wouldn't you say? Instead, there are long aisles filled on both sides, top to bottom with product most of which I think should be with the candies and junk food.

I'd like to see them do away with most of them like the ones with low or no fiber or, whole grains with artificial color, artficial flavor and preservatives and those with enormous amounts of sugar. I prefer plain, whole-grain cereal and add a little honey or brown sugar if I want to sweeten it. I pass on the ones with all the added vitamins and minerals. If I feel I'm not getting enough vitamins, I take a multivitamin tablet every so often.

However, the kids today want the boxes they see advertised on TV and I find it difficult to understand why that has become more important than good nutrition.

Happy shopping.

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