At the outset, let me say that I am not a stranger to supermarkets. Over the years, I have probably spent more time in supermarkets than most men. Now, following retirement and making the House by the Parkway (South) the default residence, the division of labor has worked out such that I do most of the supermarket shopping.
I have a few observations I thought I’d share:
Today’s Subject: Shopping Efficiency — Men and Women
Of course, there are numerous exceptions, but I think it’s fair to say that when women shop alone, they are good at, most likely having done it for years. I have noticed that when men shop alone, they are also pretty good at it and quite efficient, except for an occasional lapse of douchebaggery where you see a man on the cell phone calling home for instructions. “They don’t have the 16-ounch cans. Would two 8-ounce cans be OK?” Most men don’t have to make such calls, but, alas, some still do. Despite the occasional Call-for-Instructions Guy, I think it’s fair to say that when shopping alone, men are pretty efficient.
The problems arise when men and women shop together. Efficiency goes right out the window.
The shopping-together phenomenon takes two forms.
The Puppy Dog, Bored, Hopelessly Lost Looking Husband
I’m sure you’ve seen these couples. The man walks several steps behind the woman and contributes absolutely nothing toward the goal of buying supermarket stuff. He often looks bored to death, or confused by it all. You have to wonder why he came along in the first place. I never get the impression that the woman asked him to accompany her, or, for that matter, even wants him there. He’s nothing but a drag on the process, destroying the efficiency of the operation.
The “Expert” Shopping Nazi
I see this type of chooch a lot in the supermarket near the House by the Parkway (South), where there are an abundance of retired people. This is typically a guy who, before retiring, left the supermarket shopping to his wife. Now that he’s retired, he’s decided that, for all those years, his wife didn’t know how to shop for groceries.
So, he accompanies his wife to the supermarket, where he demonstrates his instant expertise on everything having to do with grocery shopping. Every single purchase involves a conference, which sounds more like a lecture from the Expert Shopping Nazi to the hapless woman who obviously has been doing everything wrong for the past three decades. “Why are you buying that? We don’t need it, and this one over here is two cents cheaper.”
I would like to see one of these women whack her imperious, Shopping Nazi husband in the kisser with bag of onions.