Wednesday, 18 August 2010


I'm not a big fan of shopping, unlike my wife who ranks shopping somewhere between breathing and eating in terms of importance. When I do shop for clothes I do 'man' shopping. Women do not generally understand how this works so for the benefit of any ladies present 'man shopping' goes like this....

1. I decide I need a new pair of trousers.
2. I go to the shop and buy a pair.
3. I come home.

Except that I recently found myself in a clothes shop with time to kill so I started browsing, but of course this was 'man browsing'. This version of browsing entails idly picking up the odd item which catches the eye and then thinking of a good reason why I don't need it and returning it to the rail.

'Woman browsing', which sounds strangely like a pastime you would undertake in the red light district of Amsterdam, is different. I have observed my wife doing 'woman browsing' and she is expert at it. To understand the female version of browsing, read the definition of 'man browsing' above but substitute the word 'desperately' for the word 'don't'.

However, I have a confession to make. There is one thing which can seriously interfere with my browsing and that is spotting what appears to be a bargain. So it came to pass that my eyes alighted on a linen jacket which was 'denim' blue with a very fine white stripe. There was only one left and as you may have discovered, this fact leads you to grab the item concerned with undue haste just in case anyone else might be interested. I checked the label - it purported to be my size. I slipped it on and looked in the mirror and discovered that it fit like a glove - well like a jacket anyway. At this point I was in touch with my feminine side as I seemed to be trying to think of a reason why this jacket would fill a big gap in my wardrobe.

The price was £27 which was a definite bargain I felt but just to be sure, I took it to the tills and played hard to get by asking them to check what its original price was. This turned out to be £99.

I walked away and after feigning an act of indecision I eventually succumbed walking back to the tills and said 'I'll have it' hoping that the assistant wouldn't notice me slavering slightly. The bar code was swiped and the lady said 'That will be £9 please'. I offered my credit card with a trembling hand and after the transaction was completed I left the shop at indecent speed.

It was only later that the thought occurred that perhaps I should have haggled and asked them how much they would pay me to take the jacket off their hands.


  1. I love this story! Chris is like you, in that he spots a bargain and then decides he needs the said item, even though before we went out he never mentioned needing the item!
    I have sometimes taken a reduced item to the till and then found it to be even more reduced! I like that kind of shopping!
    Ann X

  2. I'm just the same as you and my wife refers my trips to the shops as 'commando raids'. I just can't understand the pleasure in spending hours just browsing...


  3. Browsing in a bookstore is ok