Monday, September 29, 2014

Bryan Pops Some Tags at the Outlet Mall

Bryan and I have been married 20 years.  In those 20 years, he has been shopping for clothes for himself one time.  One.  Time.  Ten years ago.  His work wardrobe consists of threadbare polos and a few pairs of khaki pants (all with holes forming around the spot in his pocket where his wallet goes) and one pair of brown shoes that he wears every single day.  Which would explain the worn out toes and soles.

He hates to shop.  I used to just buy him a few things whenever I saw something on sale, but I gave up.  I never got the size right and ended up having to return half the things.  I decided that he was an adult and could handle his own attire.

His solution was to not worry about it.

Until he had to.

I had it all planned that he and I would go out for his birthday on Friday night.  On Friday afternoon, he called me to say, "I know this is going to sound like I've lost my mind, but I think we should go to the outlet mall (in the town near our house) to shop for new clothes for me.

I couldn't believe my ears.  I was happy that he was finally going to do it, but I was a little bummed.  I knew it could be a rough night.

Let me take you through a shopping trip with Bryan.

In quotes.

Store 1:  Shopping for pants and polos.

Bryan, after exiting the changing room wearing a pair of khakis:  "These fit, but there's no room for growth."
Me:  Well, I'm pretty sure you're past the age where we need to worry about you growing.
Bryan:  Pretty sure that in the next 10 years I'll be growing.

He bought the next bigger waist size.

Store 2:  Shoes

Bryan:  "I know this sounds crazy, but I think I'm going to get 4 pairs.  It's a buy one get one 50% off sale."
Me, holding up a pair of boat shoes:  "Only if you are going to go wild and buy something like these.  You know, something that an adult would wear with jeans or shorts instead of one of the 8 pairs of worn out running shoes you wear."
Bryan:  "Only if they have ties on them.  I can't get shoes that don't have laces."

He bought 1 pair each of black, brown, and burgundy dress shoes and one pair of blue (slip on with pretend ties) casual shoes.

At least nothing was velcro.  He had a mess of velcro when we met in high school.  Even his wallet and his shorts were velcro.  It took me years to break him of his velcro addiction.

Store 3:  Luggage

I promised Lizzi that I would have better, less back-breaking luggage the next time I came to visit.  I'm pretty sure the luggage we had was a wedding gift, back before modern technology gave us luggage one didn't have to actually carry.  Since there was a luggage outlet store, we went in and decided to buy some.  This happened when Bryan went to pay:

Teller:  "I'm sorry, but your card was declined."
Bryan:  "Really?!?!  Let me swipe it again."
Teller: "Declined."
Bryan:  "Hold on.  My phone is ringing."
Bryan:  "It's the credit card company.  They stopped payment thinking my card was stolen."
Teller waits 5 minutes while Bryan calls card company and verifies all three purchases.

We then left the store, laughing our full heads off.

"They were concerned, seeing as how the charges weren't on a weekday for $7 at Taco Bell."
"I guess when we do this again in 10 years, we'll notify the card company first."
"With these purchases, the only two conclusions they could come to was stolen card or husband leaving his wife.  They wanted to stop me either way."
"It is a little creepy that they can identify odd charges and call so fast.  Although, I appreciate the fact they have my back if you decide to head for the hills."
"I kinda wish Buttercup was here.  She would have been mortified."
"You're writing a blog post already aren't you?"
"The post is writing itself, Honey."

At one point during the shopping trip, I took a photo to put on Instagram.

Just before going in to buy the luggage.

I was trying to come up with a funny caption that started, "A sight more rare than..."

I couldn't come up with the right analogy, so I asked Bryan for an example of something that was rare to see.  He replied, "Haley's Comet".  True, but that is far from funny.

I never did get it posted, seeing as how the captions we came up with started lame and went downhill from there.

"...a full set of teeth in a Wal-Mart" is the best of the worst we could come up with before we got distracted by the clothing in the 4th store.

Store 4, aka the last store:  More shirts

Me: "Any chance you'd go way out of the comfort zone and get something...I don't know...not blue or green?"
Bryan: "Yes. I need to look hip, what with these new associates we've hired looking up to me and all."

The man actually picked up an orange polo and a purple button down.

Watch out Associates.  The bald, "beer"-bellied hipster is in the house.

Store 4, continued:

I knew this store was going to be a problem.  It was a problem when we were here 10 years ago, and I knew things hadn't changed.  I even mentioned it when we went in the store.

As we walked up to pay for his new, hip clothing, I took a look at the poor teller.  She was just a young, adorable girl.  I felt bad for her before any word was spoken.

Teller:  "Can I have your email address?"
Bryan:  "No."
Teller: "It's just to let you know when we have some deals coming up."
Bryan:  "No."
Teller, wide-eyed:
Bryan:  "Use your own."
Teller types something while muttering:  "Fine.  I'll use my own."
Teller:  "Can I have your first and last name?"
Bryan:  "No."
Teller: "No?"
Bryan:  "No.  Are you going to let me buy clothes without giving you my name or am I walking out of here with nothing?"
Teller, looking down, muttering:  "I just want to make my managers happy."

He walked out with his purple and orange shirts, proclaiming, "When I come back in 10 years, I'll have a name for them.  I'm leaning towards Seymour Butts."

It was then that I remembered an incident with Buttercup.

I took her shopping last week for some much-needed church clothes.  I had her pay for something while I went to a different store.  After paying, she came up to me and said, "She asked for an email address.  I gave her yours, but instead of saying christineL I told her it was christineA."

It seems an aversion to tellers and their nosy questions is hereditary.

Have a lovely day!


  1. FRIST??!!

    Great shopping story, and I love the bit about the email address. It really bugs me when shop staff ask for mine - why do they need it for heavens sake?? I usually just say I don't have one :)

    1. Of course you're frist! :)

      I know. It bugs me, too. I never give mine, either. Of course, I don't usually go to stores that ask for it. The grocery store has other ways to track me. :)

  2. My husband is a far better shopper than I am. I hate it with a passion.

    I loved the teller and her nosy questions. I would have loved to see that exchange. I would have been laughing out loud.

    Have a fabulous day. ☺

    1. I don't hate shopping. It's not on my list of favorite things to do, but I don't hate it like you and Bryan do.

      I couldn't laugh while we were in the store. The poor girl looked horribly pained. You could tell she was pretty new to the job and just wanted her bosses to like her. She hasn't learned yet that she first needs the customers to like her.

  3. "Hip clothing".....hahahaha.....sounds like our house. :D Tooo funny about the credit card company and I would've LOVED to be behind him with the young teller. I always just give them the info because I'm a wimp and then curse when I start getting all the junk mail. You know you can never unsubscribe to them right??? *sigh* I think I need to take lessons from Bryan and Buttercup. ;)

    1. I imagine you are all walking around in the most hip clothes money can buy. Just so R can shred them. :)

      The credit thing was hilarious. We had only been shopping for 20 minutes!

      Get a backbone! Give them fake info if you're too chicken to just say no. :)

  4. Velcro addiction! I love your whole family but Phoenix the best (behind you).

    1. He really did have a velcro addiction. It was everywhere.

      Aw, thanks. I'm pretty fond of you and your family, too.

  5. This is a fabulous story. I would love to say I could relate but my husband refuses to shop. Ever. I had to force him out of worn out t-shirts that he had since high school when we got married. I've yet to be able to purchase him anything. He has to do it himself - something about how things have to fit exactly right. It's not worth the argument - whatever makes him happy. Your shopping trip sounds like a hoot and a half. I also hate that they ask you for so much personal information just to check out - honestly.
    Great post!

    1. Have you ever read the post I wrote about Bryan's t-shirts?!?! Oh, you would relate to that one!

      Well, coming from a marriage to someone who doesn't particularly care about fit, I am kind of envious. :)

      It is getting to be annoying how much info they ask for.


  6. Ha Ha are all men made from the same mold - Nick only wears t-shirts, jeans and polo shirts, those are called collared shirts - on the feet are sneakers and in the summer boat shoes (when we go out) - the only time he goes shopping if something is needed like the cruise went on 5 years ago....this was funny especially when he called you out about blogging the shopping spree.

    To all our hip men!!!!

    1. It seems most of them are. :)
      Yeah, Bryan didn't even go shopping before our trip to England. It's funny that Nick's boat shoes are his goin' out shoes. :)
      Oh, there was no doubt in his mind that I'd be writing about the shopping trip. Especially once the card was denied.
      To our hip men!

  7. Do you mean to tell me I have to wait 10 YEARS to read another post like this one?

    1. Ha! For a shopping post with Bryan, yes. I'm pretty sure there will be other ones in which I make fun of Bryan before that, though. :)

  8. That was so funny! Bryan sounds a LOT like my husband. He hates to shop and it is a very rare occurrence. I love the email part. The only difference is my out my email address. Yep. He's a funny guy!

    Loved this, Christine!

    1. He gives your email?! Oh, funny, funny guy. (Can you tell I'm being sarcastic?) :)


  9. Haley's comet would have worked but maybe not too hip for instagram. Maybe something like "He hasn't popped tags since 2004." Love that solution to giving the email address. I don't want to be all Seymour Butts about it but I don't know why they have to ask everything time. I have so many emails to unsubscribe to. Next time they are getting a different middle initial!

  10. Poor, poor girl teller! Bless her boots. And I do rather like Bryan's attitude to the whole affair.

    Well done you for getting him to buy some new (non-velcro) clothes. *did* get the new luggage, right?

    And if you want a caption which is (probably) only just out of date, try

    A rarer sight than:

    ...Kanye West showing respect.
    ...Miley Cyrus in modest attire.
    ...a comestible which DOESN'T come in pumpkin spice flavor.

    (I hope you noticed I left out the 'u' for you - the obsession over pumpkin spice is ENTIRELY 'Murican, so talking about it doesn't merit a 'u'. Additionally it might be worth re-thinking 'comestible' - might be a bit too...ehhh!)

  11. The best part is definitely the "stop payment" after 3 purchases! Hilarious!

  12. I don't know where to start....
    Did you let him buy the bright orange shirt?
    Now that he has boat shoes with mock ties, will he actually WEAR them?
    Can you throw away the old, worn out, curled toe tennis shoes?
    My husband fake numbers when a checker asks him for his phone number. My dad, who honestly doesn't have an email address, tells people his pastor won't let him have one. Just to be a turd.

  13. I enjoyed your Post-that-was-acted-out-so-that-all-you-needed-to-do-was-type-and-publish.

    (I'll assume any khaki pants bought were pleated front, that's what makes them 'dress')

    It sounds like a number of hours…the best Phyllis I do is one store, as long as it takes to buy whatever we set out to buy. Shopping, as in, 'oh, I don't know, lets just go in stores and maybe buy something', does not exist in Y Chromia…. congrats and admiration for Bryan's resolve and determination to complete the Quest for Clothes.

  14. He shops JUST like me, except for the planning to grow part (which is SO funny)!

    My credit card company has called me at a store more than once, too.

  15. so funny! I shop for my husband most of the time too. When he does goes on his own, he always buys the same things, then later wonders why there's nothing different to wear. Men just don't have the shopping gene.


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