My mom is a HARDCORE shopper – and by hardcore, I mean anyone that shops more than me. And by ‘more than me’, I mean anyone willing to stay in a store beyond the absolute minimum time it takes to put things in the basket. I believe people refer to this insanity as “browsing” – I am not a browser. I don’t even really like to browse in bookstores.
I am not the ‘girlfriend’ that you want to take clothes shopping with you. I have a friend that can spend HOURS in a shoe store. HOURS. I Cannot Comprehend. I go into those wretched stores to buy a specific kind of [black] shoe (or [black] boot), I have never just gone into a shoe store to look at shoes. It sounds like torture.
For the good of my marriage- my husband does all the ‘big ticket item’ shopping/research. He shops like a snail. He looks at each and every item – he pours over ads – HE WILL GO TO MULTIPLE STORES. Before, he’d drag me on these hellish missions – and I’d last about 20 minutes before the kvetching began. I wanted to lay on the floor and scream a lot. For some reason I exasperated him. We finally came up with a solution. He does all the prelim research, including physically going to the store(s). When he narrows it down to three options, he calls me and I go to look. However, if it’s something I don’t know anything about or don’t really care about (electronics), he’s free to make all the decisions himself. On the upside, I get to go grocery shopping alone in the mornings. That’s only shopping I like. And I don’t want snail-man with me. Had we not come to this compromise, I’m sure our marriage would have ended.
I’m pretty sure this inability to shop stems from my fragile youth. Because, you see, my mother is a HARDCORE shopper. And she’s painfully patient (slow) with making a decision. The most painful memories of my shopping-youth were visiting the furniture stores. It took my mom SIX BLOODY LONG YEARS to buy a couch. We went to furniture stores all over Tucson and Phoenix. The same stores over and over and over and over and over again. HOURS of my life were spent in pre-arranged furniture clusters in showrooms. I would spend my (tortured) weekend days roaming from sectional to sectional ‘befriending’ the ceramic display animals. I’d given them all names – complete with back-stories and adventures. That part wasn’t so bad, along with laying on waterbeds and drinking bottled water from the cone cups (which was an novelty in the 70s & 80s).
I eventually reached an age where I was able to stay home alone (THANK GOD AND ALL THE ANGLES) and I was released from furniture-store-prison. I still had to go to the maul (sic) with her when I needed non-thrift-store-quality-clothing, and that was painful for everyone…but that’s the price you pay for having kids, right? Right.
My mom still goes to furniture stores – and her husband, bless his little Viking heart, goes along with her. I think he actually enjoys it. I’m glad for Mom, she deserves to have a willing shopping companion, especially after being tortured by me all those years at the stores. Because, you see, I fully realize that even though I talk a lot about being tortured at having to go the stores with people, I was no picnic myself.