Thursday, June 09, 2005


Friday is my 27th wedding anniversary. 27 years…. In a row.

What kind of gift do you get the woman you have been married to for 27 years?

I’d run out of ideas. So I did what any married man would do. I’ve already told my wife I’m giving her a card that entitled her to one free outfit.

She loved it and followed with, “This is wonderful, the Nordstrom Half Yearly Sale started this week, why don’t we go together on Friday and you can help me pick it out?”

I haven’t been inside a shopping mall in two years.

I don’t want to be caught with her out in the open in a shopping mall. I’ll get sucked in. She’ll see something in a window of a woman’s shop and then I’ll get…”THE CHAIR.”

Every woman’s store has one. That lone chair that husbands sit in and wait, and wait, and wait, and wait, and wait, and wait, and wait, …………………

We’re supposed to sit there and not touch anything while we give “positive” running commentary on the impromptu fashion show we’re about to get.

Why do you women think that if you try on an outfit that you are going to get an honest answer from us when you come out to show us?

Do we look like someone who should be giving fashion advice?

You have to know we just want to get the hell out of there.

After I’ve been sitting there for an hour and see 18 trillion dresses she has to know that she could come out with nothing on but a Hefty bag and Cheetohs taped to her forehead and I’m going to love it!!!

That’s why I haven’t been back to the mall since my last time in the “chair.”

I fell asleep.

Deep sleep.

The kind of sleep that follows with snoring and inevitably, drooling.

When my wife came out to show me “the dress” she finally decided she was going to buy she startled me. I woke up, yelled “Fumble!” banged my head against the wall behind me, knocked the painting off the wall and sat there with a foot long line of drool going from the corner of my mouth to my left breast pocket. I also had a cowlick of hair sticking up from my head hitting the wall.

God I wish I was making that up.

I looked like a deranged version of Alfalfa.

Yes…I’m a keeper.

Normally my wife just shakes her head and walks away pretending she doesn’t know me.

Not this time.

She had this look on her face like I was a puppy she wanted to drop off at the pound. Like she wanted to keep me but I was getting to be way too much work and she couldn’t potty train me.

She mumbled something about my mother and went back into her changing cell. Yes “cell” because I feel like I’m a prison guard sitting out there.

I’m sitting there with a huge wet spot on my shirt, messed up hair, and a knot on my head the size of a golf ball. So I try to look…cool.

My wife comes out and now I’m getting the silent treatment, which seems like a blessing at this point compared to the alternative.

We get to the checkout counter and the 19-year-old tattooed waif behind the counter is nonverbally communicating with my wife. I could sense it. She had this look like, “Oh my Gawd, I can’t believe you’re with this.”

I’m trying to look nonchalant at this point. Like I meant to have a wet spot on my shirt over my left breast and that my hair was a statement.

While my wife is spending an eternity with the punk version of Karen Carpenter trying to pay for her stuff I start playing with these odd-looking gel balls they have in a “50% off” sale bin next to the counter.

I bounce em, squeeze um, juggle them, and then I think to myself. “Why would they be selling kids stuff in a woman’s clothing store?”

It was at this moment I caught the pained look of horror in my wife’s face a fraction before she smacked me in the back of the head.

“Idiot! Put down the “Nearly Me’s” and go wait outside.

What the hell was a “Nearly Me?”

Do you know what it’s like to have to stand outside a woman’s clothing store in a crowded mall with messed up hair and a wet spot on your shirt over your left breast?

Let me put it this way, at that moment all I was thinking was, “how can I fake my death?”

My wife comes out and pretends she doesn’t know me. So I now look like some kind of perverted stalker following a woman through the mall.

“Sorry babe, honey, sorry. Want me to carry those for you? You wanna stop at the Starbucks and get a decaf frappo latto macho macho man Vente for $49. Huh? What about a Cinnabon? Anything you want babe. Really, I’m sorry. I said I was sorry. Are we good? We’re good right? I just want to go home. Can we please go home? I’m safe at home.”

It’s been two years and now I have to go back.

Hopefully no one will recognize me.

I don’t wanna go to the mall.

Can’t we just spend the day at Bed Bath and Beyond?


At 6:37 PM, Blogger prying1 said...

Your lucky - The places my wife goes can't afford chairs so I get to stand. And stand, and stand, and stand, and stand, and stand...

Until I can't stand it any more!!!

At 7:57 PM, Blogger Bad Penny said...

Well that's about right. Except you forgot to mention that you have to hold her hand bag while she's in the cell.

Chair, hair, drool, purse...

At 9:04 PM, Blogger Nonsensical_Flounderings said...

I may regret this what are "Nearly Me's"?


At 10:10 PM, Blogger Nonsensical_Flounderings said...

My Hubby just had me read your story and I have to say I feel for you. The shoe is on the other foot here. He is the one that I have to follow around the mall trying to keep up as he is the shopper in the family. In one store and out another looking here and there but I do have to give him credit he always carries his own Bags. C.

At 7:40 AM, Blogger waybar said...

Congratulations! We also just celebrated our 27th last week. It is an accomplishment to be proud of.

I think it is a husband's JOB :) to carry all the packages as your wife shops! Since it is only 1 day, you could get a nice intimate lunch out of the deal and thank God you have a wonderful wife to be with!

May you have many more years!

At 7:49 AM, Anonymous Dave said...

It would truly be rude of me to laugh, but I'm certain those not crying are laughing. I have however found something worse than clothes shopping with your wife, that's clothes shopping with your wife for your teenage daughter!!

Still need to know what a Nearly Me is... Gauging from the response you recieved I'm almost afraid to Google it from work as I'm not sure I won't regret it.

At 8:27 AM, Blogger Ravyn said...

ROFLMAO I'm sorry i couldnt help it. You made me shoot coffee through my nose that was hysterical!

At 8:49 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

When my wife and were "DINK's", the "chair" at the Nordstrom in Torrance had a permanent imprint of my butt! So, quit your complaining!

At 11:46 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ohh! I pissed myself laughing. Hey, want to cross-link?

At 2:43 PM, Blogger FunkyB said...

Thanks for commenting on my guest post over at Searchin' for a Rainbow. This post of yours had me in stitches. You're officially blogrolled!

I'm thinking maybe next year you tell her to pick out the dress while you search the jewelry stores for "just the right accessory." It will cost a bit more, but what price are you willing to pay in order to avoid torture?

At 3:57 PM, Blogger EuroYank said...

every time I visit your great blog I get lots of credits. keep posting

At 7:10 PM, Blogger Bill said...

Just remember a husbands job is to That is why they take us to the mall.

At 10:20 PM, Blogger Der Tommissar said...

Cent Anno!

I'll let you decide if that's a blessing or a curse.

At 1:11 AM, Anonymous parated2k said...

Great Article... I laughed until I stopped!!! ;~D

I used to wonder, "when will the women in our lives figure out that there is a reason we give them gift cards to women's stores!" But then I learned, they know what they're doing to us, and they have as much fun telling the stories to their friends as we have reading them about each other!

Consider yourself Blogmarked!

At 1:14 AM, Anonymous parated2k said...

P.S. Yahoo'd "Nearly Me's" Now I'll never stop laughing!!

Reminds me of my Great Aunt, who had what they used to call a "falsey". Imagine my chances of not growing up warped, as my favorite Great Aunt used her left boob as a PIN CUSHION!!! ;~D

At 9:00 AM, Blogger "Weiner" said...

Yo chess... thanks for the challenge. I want to gift you some credits... BE is weird. Licks, Oliver

At 12:27 PM, Blogger warcrygirl said...

Bwahahahaha! My husband never shops with me; either he offers to keep the boys so I can go alone or he tells me to get him from the Electronics Boutique when I'm done.

And yes, I let him get away with it. Found you via Blog Explosion.

At 1:21 PM, Blogger hjksghks said...

Yeah, just don't yell out "No, not that one. It makes your ass look huge" and you should be OK. Anything other than that I can't guarantee ;-)

Congratulations on 27 years by the way. Most people don't last a third of the distance!

At 6:12 PM, Blogger Kris said...

Well, I guess I'm an exception. A woman who hates shopping, especially at malls. I REALLY hate malls. My husband begs me to go with him so he can sit in the "chair" and watch the fashion show. What a pain in the butt to have to take your clothes off and on and off and on.... My hair gets full of static electricity and sticks straight up after the first three outfits, nothing fits right or feels comfortable... except the most expensive thing in the dressing room. I really do love garage sales and book sales though!

At 8:22 PM, Blogger Sera Strawbridge said...

Funny stuff =D

and I love Bed Bath and Beyond! =)

At 9:37 AM, Blogger Nony Mitchell said...

Okay...I am probably one of the few women in the world who really hates shopping...I just want to get into a store and buy what I came for and get out...mine comes from my experiences shopping with my mother as a child, teenager and yes, even now I find myself sentenced to this event about once a yes I do feel for you and yes I understand your pain...but since I still have to follow my mother around the store as looks at every damn thing in the place, I can't pardon you from your sentence...oh well...try to have fun and this year...take a book or portable dvd player for your time in the chair...

At 11:31 AM, Blogger dom said...

The shopping mall in Sheffield has come up with a brilliant idea ... a creche for men !! .. I suppose most people call it a pub ! LOL

At 7:26 PM, Blogger GNN Staff Writer said...

Man, don't you know never to utilize the chair. We mall veterans perch our butts onto the edge of the 2-foot high cement planters that dot the occasional intersection. They're enough to save the back and feet but will no way allow for sleep nor drool.

C'mon... 27 years and you're playin' it like a rookie.

At 11:10 PM, Blogger kyknoord said...

Man, I love sitting in the chair. It gives you the opportunity to pull your face in horror every time anyone comes out of the cubicle. Of course, you have to be subtle about it and immediately look away as if embarrassed. Hours of fun.

At 3:31 PM, Blogger Spyder said...

Funny stuff as always! BUT..... Are you guys blind? I always loved to shop with my wife. Where else are you going to see hot women semi- dressed in the mall?

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