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This Just In…Men Know How to Shop May 28, 2007

Posted by Pupster in Man Laws, Personal Experiences, Philosophy, Women Ranting.

Grocery, Retail Stores Hardest Hit 

So I just got back from the store, and I’m feeling kind of overwhelmed and confused.  I mean more than usual.  I thought it was just the Memorial Day festivities yard work that made me over-tired and a little groggy, but it turns out that grocery shopping while wearing testicles is the problem.

From Reuters via Yahoo News:

 Help! Grocery store still overwhelming to men

…In a recent report titled “Men in Grocery Stores,” Putnam said that men shop inefficiently, which leads to missed sales for retailers.

Many men have difficulty finding items, fore-go buying rather than risk purchasing a substitute for an item on the grocery list and hesitate to ask for help if they can’t find an item, Putnam said in her report.

It appears to me that this particular study demonizes men as overwhelmed, but defines “whelmed” as buying a bunch of crap off the shelves that he doesn’t need/want.  I say the damn STORE is inefficient if it doesn’t have what I’m looking for where I expect to find it, clearly marked with flashing lights and Hooter’s girls on the package. 

Unlike women, male shoppers typically focus more on convenience than price, and retailers will need to cater to that need in order to attract them to their stores, consultants said.

Bingo.  Fix the store so it’s easier for my dumb ass to find what I want, and I will buy it.  Hell, I’ll even pay more.  I’m not a comparison shopper, I’m a hunter/gatherer.  

Men shop like they are on a commando raid.  Hit ’em hard, hit ’em fast, and get the hell out of there.   If you hide the trash bags in the cookware/baking needs aisle, I’m not going back a few aisles to look for them…I’ll use grocery bags in the trash cans, and the store misses out on a sale.  Plus I get to say ‘paper’ at the checkout line and listen to the enviro-weenies gasp.  Good times.

Unlike women, men tend to hone in on the specific thing they want to buy instead of surveying the entire aisle, consultants said.

Men also tend to bristle at the overwhelming number of choices in grocery aisles, with the cereal aisle being one prime example, Putnam said.

I’m bristling just thinking about it.  If I’m used to Captain Crunch being right next to Cheerios, and you move The Captain because Cheerios has a new “Dingle-berry Flavor” with big shiny dingles on the box, it pisses me off.  I’m not overwhelmed, I’m frustrated.  I’m not going to buy your damn Cheerios,  I want my Captain Crunch back where it was.   


1. Wickedpinto - May 28, 2007

When I shop? I don’t “shop” I “buy.”

Went to a mall with a friend of mine, I knew what I wanted, a whole crapload of candy (I always keep sweets near me at those times when I decide to have a job) and a pair of sturdy boots.

I knew EXACTLY what I wanted, he friggen damn near made us late for work (we worked midnights at the time.)

I have gone shopping with my brother, and my brother “shops like a woman” so much so even his wife calls him on it.

When I go to the grocery store, I know what I want, cuz I know what I’m gonna cook, so I’m on a mission, I don’t “shop.”

Oh, I might stop off and look at stuff, but I never buy, I’m scouting out the environment.

Takes me less than 20 minutes to fill an empty fridge and freezer, I’m prepared, cuz I know about the brawl at the lines, and in the aisles.

Best method is to adopt skirmisher tactics while shopping. Get in, take what you need, withdraw, and then retreat.

Thats how I see shopping in all it’s forms.

2. Wickedpinto - May 28, 2007

basicaly, I’m a mongol.

3. Pupster - May 28, 2007

I think your only telling part of the story there, Lloyd.

4. Mrs. Michael - May 28, 2007

I shop like a man. I drive Daughter Michael nuts. She wants to do major analysis on every item she looks at and make it a social event with me. I want to “bag a deer” and get home.

I almost have to take drugs when I’m with her, and remind myself it is probably her “love language.” If her brother shops with us, he and I BOTH go nuts.

BTW. Grocery stores are not the only culprits, Pupster.

Lowes did a major move — about 10 aisles — on their floor diffusers. I went nuts trying to find them today!

5. Wickedpinto - May 28, 2007


6. John - May 28, 2007

I truly hate shopping with every fiber of my being. I usually make a list beforehand and plow through the store to get out as fast as possible. Malls and shopping for clothes are the worst. For that one needs to bring a woman along because they usually know what they’re doing while I on the other hand can barely match socks together.

7. daveintexas - May 28, 2007

I can make it a week without trash bags. You just cram the stuff in more.

8. Pupster - May 28, 2007

Mrs. Michael,
Don’t tell me you are putting shiny, brand new floor diffusers on that same OLD duct-work attached to that OLD furnace/air conditioner ?

Might be a great time for an upgrade.

9. Mrs. Michael - May 28, 2007

Pupster, I think our project-creep has gone far enough this year.

I got a new diffuser in maple finish for the new maple floors in the kitchen!!! Ron-the-contractor suggested it. It looks great BTW.

10. Wickedpinto - May 28, 2007

is ron the contractor an acquaintence of julio? Cuz I hear they do very good work.

11. daveintexas - May 28, 2007

what’s a diffuser?

12. mesablue - May 28, 2007

It’s a thingy that you pull fuses with.

13. Mrs. Michael - May 28, 2007

Diffuser is a fancy word for the grate that you put over your air vent.

Confession: I had to look at the package to know what to call it.

14. Russ from Winterset - May 28, 2007

Diffuser? It’s a hole in the floor you pour money into.

Oh, and in case noone has mentioned it yet, congrats to mesa & dubya-pee for their Insta-lanche.


(don’t use that link if you’re consuming food or drink at the time. Or do it anyway. Just don’t come crying & asking me to buy you a new keyboard or monitor.)

15. Michael - May 28, 2007

what’s a diffuser?

It’s that grate in your floor above the ductwork that distributes the heat/air-conditioning. We’ve got a maple-colored one now in the kitchen, to match the new floor. It’s plastic, but it looks like maple.

Mrs. Michael says that details like that really make a difference. She watches a lot of HGTV.

16. Mrs. Michael - May 28, 2007

Michael — your Spurs need you. I need you.
Get your sweet cheeks out here.

17. Michael - May 28, 2007


18. daveintexas - May 28, 2007

Ductwork under the floor?

What planet did I wake up on?

19. Russ from Winterset - May 28, 2007

That’s what happens when you live in the land of “basement”, Dave.

Think of it as a root cellar.

Under the house.

20. daveintexas - May 28, 2007

Git outta here. They ain’t nuthin under a house cept a concrete slab and some plumbing.

Everybody knows that.

21. Russ from Winterset - May 28, 2007

No, no. Basements are real. It’s the female orgasm that’s a myth.

22. Mrs. Michael - May 28, 2007

Okay — When Michael showed up again to watch the game with me Spurs had only a one-point lead. We are now up 10. Michael is a Spurs good-luck charm!

23. daveintexas - May 28, 2007

It’s the female orgasm that’s a myth.

The what?

No “insider” code words. I can’t keep up.

24. geoff - May 29, 2007

They need to completely reorganize supermarkets for men. We need categories like:

Foods your wife wants you to buy
Foods you buy when she’s away
Foods that look healthy but are really great
Stuff to drink (all water, milk, OJ, soda, and beer in one spot)
Special party food
Super Bowl food

And what’s with that produce section? How are you supposed to make food out of that? If I wanted to take rotting vegetables home I’d open a halfway house for Kos Kids.

25. Mrs. Peel - May 29, 2007

I often have trouble finding food myself. For instance, I went looking for taco seasoning the other day. Was it in “International Foods”? No. Was it with all the other taco products (taco shells, refried beans, etc. are all in the same place)? No. It was off with the turkey gravy. I guess “powders you reconstitute with water” all go in the same place, but only if they’re kept in paper packets (powdered milk is kept elsewhere). (Be sure you don’t use heavy water to reconstitute your powders. It’ll make them unstable.) (*waits for Michael to catch that reference*)

And don’t even mention Walmart. I remember one time I was looking for hand soap, and I went to the toiletries aisles, over by the pharmacy area. This is where you find shampoo, feminine products, aspirin, makeup, toothpaste, et cetera. Did I find soap there? Yes. But there were only like 5 varieties. Puzzled, I got the one that was closest to what I was looking for, and continued shopping.

The next time I visited that same Walmart, I discovered that there is another soap section, in the grocery area, and that’s where the kind of soap I wanted was. Seriously, wtf??? How was I supposed to know after I found the first soap section that there was another soap section? And why is the primary hand soap section, with every variety of hand soap Walmart carries, in the grocery section and not the pharmacy/toiletries section? This isn’t dish soap or laundry soap. It’s hand soap. It’s a fucking toiletry. Who looks in the grocery section for toiletries??? Argh!!!

And HEB (grocery store) pisses me off because they totally suck at keeping things in stock. The best types of food (for instance, Tia Rosa tortilla chips) get sold out almost immediately, to the point at which I had to learn the truck delivery schedule in order to get those chips (when I was still in CS; the one here is slightly better).

26. eddiebear - May 29, 2007

”If I wanted to take rotting vegetables home I’d open a halfway house for Kos Kids.”
Geoff: the problem is that you can throw out rotten veggies. The Kossacks tend to stay, eat your food, spill their bong water on your couch and then steal your wallet.

Oh, and as you know, I have been dealing with a Kossack myself. And this guy wants to tell me how smart and hip he is because he works in LA for MTV. Yet he can barely compose a coherent sentence. Turns out, he would be considered a rocket scientist over there.

27. kevlarchick - May 29, 2007

I hate shopping too. All of it.

I used to like the escape when the kids were little; I’d wander around the store and look at everything. Now it’s just another chore.

28. daveintexas - May 29, 2007

Do guys go into a supermarket looking for toast?

29. harrison - May 29, 2007

Do guys go into a supermarket looking for toast?

Of course, they sell it at the deli.

30. Don Carne - May 29, 2007

And there’s frozen toast in the freezer section.

31. Retired Geezer - May 29, 2007

I wanted some Sunflower Seeds, in the shell.

Produce section?
Nope, but they had the Sunflower seeds out of the shell.

Nut section in the Baking Aisle?

Finally found it in the Snacks section by the chips.

32. Tushar D - May 29, 2007

Grocery shopping is a pain for me. One trip to the ‘Indian groceries’ store. Second trip to COSTCO for the big ticket items like 4 crates of eggs, 4 gallons of milk, 8 pound fish and 12 pound chicken. Third trip to the ‘American Supermarket’ for small things that COSTCO does not carry in small packages, like seasoning, cheese, yogurt n’ stuff. Takes whole Saturday morning and drives me nuts.

And then, I have to lug half of that stuff out to the garbage truck when it gets converted to trash. (The other half makes its way out via the toilet, thankfully.)

That is waht I am reduced to. The man who lugs stuff in and out of the house.

33. mesablue - May 29, 2007

BBQ sunflower seeds, yumm.

34. Lipstick - May 29, 2007

Michael — your Spurs need you. I need you.
Get your sweet cheeks out here.

Here’s one vote to start calling Michael “Sweet Cheeks”.


35. BrewFan - May 29, 2007

two votes!

36. lauraw - May 29, 2007

Spam filter

37. Pupster - May 29, 2007

Set your feet Bystanders, we got an ace-o-lanche.

38. daveintexas - May 29, 2007

I don’t care, I ain’t callin Michael “sweet cheeks”.

It’s ok with me if ace does. Not my business.

39. CozMark - May 29, 2007

This study is BS. I went shopping with my gf and it took an hour at least. The gf isn’t too good with math but insists on doing the $/oz. calculations on everything in her pretty little head.

I did the shopping the other day and it took me 15 minutes, most of that waiting in line. I had a list and bought the cheapest product I could find (since that was what we usually wound up buying ayway).

Same thing with the mall. With the gf it takes hours. I bought a tie, 2 handheld games, and a pair of sunglasses. 30 minutes. I had a list of things to buy, I hate the mall, I found my shit and got the hell out.

But I’m a bad shopper? Maybe they have a point about being overwhelmed but it’s not at the choices, it’s an overhwhelming desire to not be in a store shopping for an hour.

40. BrewFan - May 29, 2007


I’ve started a new consulting gig and I’m really hesitant to enter the ‘spam bucket’ from their office system (there is some pretty nasty stuff in there), so, if Sweet Cheeks (*snort*) doesn’t get it by the time I get home (about 6 CDT) I’ll get it then.

41. lauraw - May 29, 2007

You realize, of course, that Michael will be delighted with that nickname.

He’s probably looking at his ass in the mirror right now.

42. pattyann - May 29, 2007

dubya-pee and sweet cheeks.

I vote to use them both.

43. daveintexas - May 29, 2007

Any cheeks with enough hair on them to knit a sock are by definition “not sweet”.

So perhaps I should rethink my objection to it.

44. skinbad - May 29, 2007

Slight variation for Michael: Sweat Cheeks

45. lauraw - May 29, 2007

Hubby prefers a small corner store to the megagrocery store.
It’s tiny and limited, they have only one brand of each item, and they sell good meats and some really excellent store-cooked/ prepped foods at the deli. Naturally the prices are a bit more.
I’m just happy he found a place he likes so I don’t always have to go.

46. Muslihoon - May 29, 2007

Now I love shopping at department stores. But browsing and buying are quite different: when I’m browsing, I can take hours and usually don’t buy anything; when I’m buying I’ll fly through racks looking at the prices and design details of items that catch my eye. If I like it, I grab it, then pay and leave.

In grocery stores, how long I take depends on whether I stray and end up buying stuff I shouldn’t get (chips, doughnuts, candy, cake, et cetera) because then I end up standing there and bargaining with myself (“if I put the cake away, I can get the chips”) or trying to convince myself not to get that stuff (“I shouldn’t get the chips because I’ll eat the whole bag and then I’ll gain weight and won’t be able to sleep because of high blood sugar”). If I behave, I know exactly what I want: I get it and pay and leave. (Usually, it’s milk, chocolate milk, or Special K Chocolatey Delight cereal.) And I always use the self check-out. It’s faster.

47. hadsil - May 29, 2007

In department stores this is why the men’s clothing department is on the first floor near the entrance. If a man is going to buy clothes for himself, that’s all he wants. He will go in, buy, and go out. This is me for any store. I know what I want, go in to get it, and leave. Once in a while I will be in a splurging mood and willing to look around, but that’s only when I have lots of money in my pocket and determined to spend it. As for grocery shopping, I will double back if I miss something, but I don’t look too hard. If it’s not “right there”, I won’t buy it. Hint to grocery stores: Put products men would buy at eye level.

When a woman wants to buy clothes, she will buy for herself and her family. She will look around to see what else the store has. The women’s department is deep in the store, on another floor if multi-story. The female shopper will get there eventually, but she’s in no rush. She probably won’t even leave the department the same way she entered, thus seeing more of the store.

Of course, men also purposely don’t do grocery shopping well so that their wives would have to do it instead. 😛

48. TXMarko - May 29, 2007

It’s not really a secret, but….

at Wally World, the Returns counter can check you out.

49. skinbad - May 29, 2007

The little jewelry/watch place can as well. It does seem to suck your soul out to park in the five acre lot and run into the five acre store for just that one little thing you need. I usually end up in the express line and the tobacco addict shopper in front of me is getting frustrated because the checker can only locate the super filter, mentholated, extra flavor, lower tar, in the preferred brand in a soft pack and not a hard pack. And that just will not do.

50. Michael - May 29, 2007

Now don’t be hatin’ on smokers, Skinny. Just think of all the taxes we’re paying on that carton to support our troops in Iraq.

51. skinbad - May 29, 2007

No hate for smokers. I save that for Spurs fans.

Kidding. Jazz fans were an embarrassment last night. You can’t really apologize for anyone else, but I apologize.

52. Top Posts « WordPress.com - May 29, 2007

[…] This Just In…Men Know How to Shop Grocery, Retail Stores Hardest Hit  So I just got back from the store, and I’m feeling kind of overwhelmed and […] […]

53. Mrs. Peel - May 29, 2007

Uh-oh. This is a Top Post now, boys. Quick, hide the hobos! And bury those ducks!

54. Pupster - May 29, 2007

This is the kind of spontaneous publicity – your name in print – that makes people. I’m in print! Things are going to start happening to me now.

55. Wickedpinto - May 29, 2007

Sweet Cheeks

Has been getting imaginative with the parafin treatments? If so, Mrs. Michael, please, do not put your hands in there.

56. daveintexas - May 29, 2007

Just tell me where the chocolate is.

I have women to placate.

I mean, respect.


57. Michael - May 29, 2007

Things are going to start happening to me now.

Yeah, you’ll get the Jehovah’s Witnesses along with the Mormons.

*bing bong*

58. Wickedpinto - May 29, 2007

awwww, to the bucket with me. 😦

59. pattyann - May 29, 2007

Dave, Muslihoon already told you–the chocolate’s in the Special K cereal. Unbelievable cereal! I’m going out on a limb and saying best cereal I’ve ever had.

60. Wickedpinto - May 29, 2007

I just love the clip so much, I’ve linked it before, but with the whole sweet cheeks thing, I figured I would ask if this is how that might have come about.

61. Former Lurker - May 30, 2007

“And bury those ducks!”

Be nice to ducks. Specially The Blind Ducks.

62. Wickedpinto - May 30, 2007

I have a second cousin (my cousins daughter) who calls my brother (for no real reason, cuz it’s not that close to his name) “uncle duck!”

Don’t you DARE bury my brother, not cuz I’m threatening you, I’m better at violence, but my brother “uncle duck” is a very large man, Very large man. I’m about 220, he dwarfs me, never TRY to bury “uncle duck.”

63. Wickedpinto - May 30, 2007

Kinda screwed up that the li’l li’l cousin (what I call second cousins) called my brother “uncle duck” and me “uncle dog” since our names are almost completely opposite in description. Kids are stupid.

Adorable and sweet, but still, stupid.

64. MJ - May 30, 2007

Shopping and window shopping are so much fun. Especially when you have lots of money and time – you can really browse, check different types of products before you buy for the best bargain & quality.

65. lulu - May 30, 2007

So, you all still shop in brick and mortar stores? How quaint! I hate shopping. If I can’t buy it on the web I don’t need it!

66. The Swear Jar « Innocent Bystanders - June 4, 2007

[…] in Man Laws, Women Ranting, Commenting Tips, Philosophy, Movies. trackback When I wrote the “Men Know How to Shop” post, I was upset at the stupidity and anti-male bias in the linked article. Also…I […]

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