On Hunters and Gatherers

If you were ever a part of the madness called the Day-After-Thanksgiving Sale a.k.a. Black Friday you know what I mean:
Malls are not for men. These are places where men are least welcome, least required and least comfortable.

There are only a few ways you can get a guy to go to a mall:
a)He was told he will surely find something nice and was 'tricked' into coming
b)He was emotionally blackmailed
c)There is a really huge sale on electronic items
d)This is his first visit

Shopping is the same, but on Black Friday, everything I describe below should be viewed at a magnification of 10x. Most stores are of little interest to men. In the big stores - Sears, JC Penny, Macy's, etc. almost all the space is devoted to women's products. Somewhere, tucked away in the corner there will be a tiny men's section. Even there you will find women furiously turning everything over and you start feeling as if you were intruding. In fact you are since you have no interest nor inclination to buy.

Then just are you are beginning to adjust you will be startled by a voice crying out behind you - "Are you finding everything okay?" It is the salesperson with a beatific smile. While you are far from feeling comfortable, you mumble that you are "Doing okay!", "Fine!", whatever. Then most guys, like me, will start playing with their cell-phones. There is no TV to watch, beer to drink, games to play, trails to follow or animals to hunt.

In the mall context women are the hunters and men are the gatherers. As women collect their various trophies obtained at an 'incredibly low price', they cannot but tell the tale of the capture of the elusive bounty. "You know I have been looking for this colour for months? I finally, finally found one and it fits perfectly. It was the last piece too!" The men patiently listen and gather the shopping bags.

If you want an greater sense of alienation then try walking into a shoe store, alone. After being bored in exactly 1 minute and 23 seconds, I decided to conduct a spot-survey. There were 35 women and exactly 5 guys (including myself). An important observation was that all of the guy captives were being escorted by women. These gender ratios would be completely reversed in say, in a Best Buy. Talk about sexism!

Another piece of advice: Never mess with women drivers in trying to beat them for parking space in the mall. You will not win on their home turf.

This tongue-in-cheek article called:How to Buy nothing, had me rolling on the floor laughing. It does have a few sensible ideas. I suspect that the page has been created and edited mostly by men.


Javed said...

We(men) definitely aren't hunters when it comes to shopping. After all why do you think some lazy guy had the idea of buying/selling things online? And I bet there are women there who look down upon online shopping. For us (and i speak for the rest of us), if it looks like its in the photo, we'll take it.

Ashutosh said...
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Ashutosh said...

And on top of this, the guys finally pay too...that's just horrible! This is paying the price without eating the steak. :P