I have had some gift cards lying around for a while. I figured I should spend them. My brown slacks have seen much better days, so maybe I should look for a new pair.

Let’s see. What is appropriate?

Ah … Mark’s Work Warehouse. $50 of cards. That should get me some slacks.

(at this point my daughter Stephanie enters the conversation with, “New pants are fun, new anything is fun!!” – that should have been a hint of things to come)

Next in the process is asking my beautiful and talented gf Cass if she would like to join me, and help me find something good.

My angle at this point is that Cass knows 2 things that I do not.

  • how to get a good deal while shopping
  • how to choose clothing that looks good on me

Off we go in her 5 on-the-floor 4 banger. Next stop – MWW.

Here is where it gets nasty!

We walk in the front door of Mark’s and take about 6 steps and Cass stops. “But the men’s section is over there.”, I exclaim.

Too late.

shoesA mountain of women’s shoes blocks the aisle, and we have no choice but to study the pile. Well, Cass studied the pile while I looked for a way around it.

30 minutes later and I suppose that even though Cass won (she scored 5 pairs of shoes at, like, 80%-90% off) I should be happy with my 2 new pairs of slacks that Cass has volunteered to shorten. (I usually buy 32s so I do not have to shorten them, whereas Cass says I’d look better in 34s shortened to 33)

What can I say? Beauty almost always trumps brawn.


  1. Hal says:

    Hi, Richard !

    You got off easy, my friend ! Every time I went out with my wife and she decided to ‘browse’, it was the most excrutiating time in purgatory I ever spent !

    Guys are easy (usually) – they know what they want, they go to it, and they get it.

    Women, on the other hand (IMHO), think of shopping/browsing as their calling in life that they must devote their utmost time and attention to, where the rallying cry seems to be either “Spend as much time as you can to justify the obligatory ritual of ‘just looking'” or “Spend as much as you can (money), with the justification that ‘they were all on sale’.”

    In fairness to the ladies, though, it must be admitted by this male that my eyes do tend to glaze over when I am looking at sporting goods or electronics 🙂

    And so, the ‘battle’ and the ‘bottleneck’ of the sexes rages on 🙂

    [GR replies: Eyes glazing over – ya, take me to Henry’s or Vistek (camera stores here in Toronto) … sigh ]

  2. John says:

    A friend of mine swears that when men & women go shopping together, the women sap every last ounce of energy from the men as the day goes on. At the beginning of the day, they’re both fine but as time passes, the women get more and more energy while the men start to slouch, drag their feet and generally look exhausted.

    If you sit and people watch in a mall, it’s amazing how accurate this is. If you see the same couple go by you a few times, it really does look like the women are draining more of the men’s energy with every pass 🙂

    As for “beauty almost always trumps brawn” where exactly does “almost” fit into it???

  3. You got out in under an hour? That woman is a SAINT!

    Just be careful if, while shopping, she tries something on and asks you, “Does this make me look fat?” At all costs, avoid the temptation to say, “Sorry, dear, it’s not the dress / slacks / whatever…”!

    Best regards,