The International Writers Magazine
Art of Shopping with Mother
Ben Macpherson is off
said to be the most stressful experience next to moving house. It causes
me - even the thought of it - to begin convulsing, shuddering uncontrollably;
and yet without it, I would quite simply, starve to death. To what am
I referring?...shopping. Not clothes shopping, or gadget shopping; the
interesting type that can consume hours of my life - but rather that
shopping which necessitates wielding a lethal weapon around aisles.
Food shopping. With trolley wheels which never go the way you want.
It's a type of shopping that females seem to enjoy on a weekly basis,
and we, the poor unfortunate males have to suffer intolerably. Being
typically masculine, we groan, and moan and complain of a headache Sorry
love, I think Ill have to sit in the car; until they flutter
their eyes and we melt - or threaten us with a visit to their mothers.
We push or rather fight the trolley along the rows of greens and other
raw, fresh vegetables. We weave our way, like madmen with the trolley
cart in and out of small spaces, as the other party throws in, seemingly
at random, items which seem all at once to be edible (always good),
DIY), useless (what? another set of hair-straighteners.)
And whats worse is when you have to do this with your mother.
Or to be more precise - with my mother. Its a trait Im afraid
I seem to have inherited from her, to be disorganised in the order of
things. Oh to be sure, they get done; just quite randomly. Whod
ever credit celery to precede hairspray but come after a fresh loaf,
in the long line of things aimed forcefully into the wire box on wheels?
Even as an infant I found this quite amusing. Now its bemusing,
confusing and annoying. But still, I dont go shopping with her
that much - so its not that much of problem. Nevertheless, where
I can, I try my hardest to avoid it. Mostly because when you come home
and help carry the bags through you get the Im quite
capable thank you.
Youve fought for her, rammed others out the way, just to keep
up with the click-clack of her stilettos hammering down the aisle
like John Prescott at a buffet; you have even taken the heaviest bags,
so she dont have to carry them. And what thanks do you get?...exactly.
But herein lies the contradiction that embodies females (a sex I will
never again attempt to understand). The following week, you go shopping,
do nothing, get acid looks from other women and receive mumbles of Hes
not a very good son, is he?; and then, on arriving home go straight
indoors to leave your supposedly capable mother to do what she does
best. The phrase to do what she does best is actually more
accurate than it may seem.
True, she is capable of carrying the shopping in. But she excels at
the following action. Coming in and moaning at you. I cant
carry all of those bags on my own! Come and give me a hand now.'
Theres no consistency with women and food shopping. Things never
go the way you expect them to. So this leads to me one simple question:
were shopping trolleys invented by a woman?...
© Ben Mcphereson
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