Down the Aisle.
Your shopping correspondent.
They gotta do something about these trolleys. They just aren’t designed for the male skeletal structure. You see a man pushing a shopping trolley and it looks like he is wrestling with it, like it is some strange beast..holding it at bay lest it turn on him and do some damage. Perhaps a handle more vertical, in keeping with those old “cow-horn” push-bike handlebars where a dozen-long-necks kit-bag would snugly fit, or perhaps like the ones on a trail-bike…that’s ; moto-cross bike btw.
I notice this because I see more men shopping by themselves these days..perhaps “on the ground” evidence of a rising divorce rate amongst the older generation..Grey-haired gentlemen shuffling up and down the aisles looking a little bit lost..but then, they ARE getting better at the art of shopping.
I suppose those years after retirement pushing the trolley for “the little lady” has taught them some of the basic rudiments of product purchasing…and I have witnessed several times an older couple come close to blows when the male tries to “muscle-in” on their wife’s ( I have to say ;”wifes”…the androgenous ; “partner” does not feel a snug fit for that generation) selection process. So perhaps the lessons learned from those encounters may now serve them well for their solo ventures into the wilds of the mega-market aisles.
Getting back to the fact that men now seem better at shopping than they used to..I recall the days of yore when a newly divorced man would roam the supermarket aisles like a lost elk, eyes wide for the possibility of fierce Panthers or the odd Siberian Tiger ready to spring at them from the shelves..such were the frightening array of products there..and they would traipse up and down, aisle after aisle with the only product rolling and cannonading about the trolley being some recognisable comfort food, like packet of iced vo-vo’s or that great smoko standby; ‘Arnott’s Monte-Carlo’ biscuits…a modern tragedy.
But now, I witness many men approach the shelves with an air of confidence..pick out a product, turn it around and over several times (their eyes darting this side and that to see if any nearby shoppers show doubt of their integrity) LOOK like they know what they are looking for..then chuck it in the trolley and move on. You can tell the newies to “the game” as THEIR trolley will contain many products purchased from the same aisle..and THAT aisle with the most colours and bling!…hypnotised, as I have observed in an earlier post, by the repetition of shape, colour and light…after all, how many bottles of “Kewpie” mayonnaise does a bloke need with his “Nasi Goreng” spice mix and 3 minute noodles?
And then there the “almost over it” males..I was passed by such a one confidently striding with head high, just today.. His trolley exhibited a salubrious variety of carb’s, protein, fruit and veggies suitable to brand him a consumer of a reasonable balanced diet..AND ..as one male to another, I have to proclaim he did the gender proud for his ostentatious display of five-high stack of twin-pack pure beef pies!…”NEVER SAY DIE!”…and what with a short visit to the local pub drive-through for a slab, there goes a man with the weekly shopping damn well done and a display of all the airs and grace of true, manly independence…You can just bet HE had hairs on his chest!
Down the Aisles.
Your shopping correspondent.
“ Work 8, * cast off 2 sts., work 8 (7) Sts.; rep. from * 3 times more (4 in all), cast off 2 sts., work to end. “
Now some of you may recognise the above code, and no ; it is not derived from the German “Enigma” coding machine, but just a common knitting pattern from an old magazine..what they used to call ; “A woman’s magazine” back in the old days…There used to be similar magazines for men, I believe..but with different subject matter..but they must have also contained many tricky patterns as my big brother wouldn’t let me see his as he said I was too young to “comprehend” ..yes, that’s the word he used…I remember he stalled on that word..nodded and said ; “comprehend”… I used to see my mother index-finger under similar codes in her old “ Woman’s Day” mag’s when I was a child..and to this day I still cannot work the damn things out!
But you would see many mothers carry those decorated, hollowed tubes made of cellophane and cross-stitched wool around the top and bottom with a circular lid and they contained an endless supply of the latest knitting project that could be taken into the picture theatre or where-ever and set to work…One can remember that tense moment in “The Gunfight at the OK Corral” where Burt Lancaster and Kirk Douglas fight it out together…the clicking of the size 12 needles poised in mid-flight at the zenith of the action . . . then to continue in softer more emotional, gentle strokes for the love scenes with Rhonda Fleming…(here : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W5cZK_KtriM )..like the most sensitive touch of Buddy Rich caressing a kettle-drum with a “brush”.. a sort of suburban domestic accompaniment along with the highs and lows of the musical score of the film.
And it is much the same for those coded ingredients that one sees highlighted as a “SUPER ADDITIVE” on some products…like : “Now containing OMEGA 3!..FOR EXTRA VITALITY!!”…that sort of thing…and then you have something called the “Glycemic index” followed by a number that could or could not be “GREAT!!” ..and there is the ‘Glycemic Load” as well..there are others..One need not look far down the aisles to find them..secret ingredients or new “super-foods” just overflowing with coded letters and numbers that just ooze health and vitality..where once, the only coded label was the “V8 Tomato Juice” amongst the other juice bottles..The same sort of things can be found in “off-the-shelf” medicines in any chemist shop..it creates an air of cynical shopping experience I can tell you!
Talk about another sight that one is seeing much more of these days down the aisles..and that is the altering dress-code for the young, sartorial conscious men..
Have you, like myself, noticed the shocking new fashion for the post hipster era of young males in the socks department?…ghastly, multi-coloured things displayed by “flagging” trousers above the ankles!..or else those ankle-socks (I refuse to use the American spelling of : sox )that female tennis players use…or even worse…now brace yourselves fellow shoppers…: NO SOCKS!!…Can there be a more indecent sight than a male wearing patent-leather shoes and NO SOCKS ??…it grates on the psyche almost as much as the finger-nail down the blackboard!…one feels violated!
But one has to admit that the idea of one set fashion, be it cultural or couture, is not applicable these days of stretch lycra and trakky-daxs . put the two together and you got a Kardashian arse on a twiggy frame…not a pleasant sight for any male that still harbours any vestige of youthful memories of Annette Funicello or Gidget goes West!…how’s the song go?..; something about ;”. . . that which is lost upon the way…”…or something like that..and then there’s those loud, super bright glasses that hipsters and even some “just past middle-age” people like to wear..perhaps to draw attention to themselves..I know you can’t see anything else BUT those things when they are talking to you..some couples have matching pairs..sort of a “Kath and Kel” thing I suppose..is it a “metro-man” thing or just “unisex”…dunno…
Oh well..until next time, this is your shopping correspondent signing off..
(Ps; don’t forget to grab those saucepan coupons!)…
Down the Aisle.
Your shopping correspondent’s report.
I’d like to take this opportunity to recommend ; ‘Natasha’s’ Pomegranate and chocolate cake mix. I have it on good authority , one ;Lorna Roesler , who upon noticing the above product under my inquiring scrutiny, solemnly informed me ;” That is a nice one, that is…made it for my grand-daughter’s christening party…was appreciated all ‘round”…and she tapped the box and nodded her approval…and went on her way to turn the corner by the San Remo spaghetti stand.
Now I wouldn’t want you to think I dwell too long at the cake mix shelf..it is only a convenience stop while the OH. peruses the John West tuna tins ..always searching out, like the alchemists of old ; the philosophers stone..that elusive ; “Tuna with brine” tin..they don’t seem to make them anymore..she scorns the w/tomato, peppers or other condiments and will grudgingly accept the tuna w/ springwater substitute…the cake shelf is just there over the aisle..and I have to say ; I AM intrigued by those gorgeous pictures of the perfect cakes on the packet…as much as some perverts are attracted by those perfect legs on the panty-hose packets or the stunning blondes on the home-perm packs…I linger very little at any of the above..I want you to trust me on that!
But I have to say, I have seen several middle-aged shoppers handle those packs of food-wrap sealed meat trays with a fondness beyond mere purchase curiosity…I see them rub their thumb over the taut film of wrap covering the ‘lamb loin chops’ so it “squeals” and “chatters” with tantalizing intensity..almost comparable to a squeal of delight!…maybe THAT is the attraction..and then , having stretched the tension out, they move, thinking no-one is noticing their apparent interest, to the next……..but ..I..am watching..I am always watching…I am watching you all !!
Until next time, this is your shopping correspondent signing off.