how not to shop

After many weeks of listening to “I don’t have aaaaanything to wear” whines several times a day, I took the clothing-deprived complainer to a discount department store. Before we walked in the store, I asked what our focus would be. “I definitely need shoes. I also need pants and shirts. Oh, also socks and underwear.”

I wandered the clearance and sale racks, collecting more than a dozen potential clothing choices. As I did, my companion picked two black shirts to show me. I stood and waited while the mountain of options disappeared into the dressing room.

Another woman stood nearby, shouting at an unseen person in the dressing room. “Come out here so I can see if it fits.” The unseen shopper answered. “These pants are itchy. Can’t I just get jeans?” I could see the woman’s frustration, but missed the rest of their conversation as I wandered off to search the clearance rack for anything I might have missed. Nearby, a woman fussed with her shopping partner about the patterns on the t-shirts. “You don’t need any more shirts with dragons on them.” “But, this one has TWO dragons.”

My companion emerged from the dressing room. “I like these shirts, but the pants don’t fit.” We played 20 100 questions as I tried to figure out what “don’t fit” really meant. I collected different pant sizes while my shopping buddy took a potty break.

I checked e-mail, twittered and contemplated the condition of my toenail polish while the second round of pants were tested for fit. “They all fit and this pair is awesome. Feel how smooth they are. Really. Feel this fabric.”

We wandered to the shoe department. A woman walked around mumbling to herself. “Why do I have to buy them, take them home and bring them back four times just to get one pair he’ll wear?” A pitiful shopper whimpered, “I like my oooold shoes. New shoes make my feet hurt.” My companion scowled and passed judgment on the entire department in 30 seconds. “They don’t have any good shoes here.”

We checked out and walked to the car. “Why did you make me buy clothes?” Next year, every woman in that store should buy their shopping companions spouses iTunes instead of clothes for Father’s Day. Unfortunately, I still have to take Doug shoe shopping.

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