Men vs. Women: #Christmas Shopping

Category: Men vs. Women Series, Weekly Columns

 

Our fifth in this ongoing series could really be a one-sentence column: Women like to shop; Men don’t. Okay, I’ll elaborate a bit more, though that really sums it up. Add Christmas into the mix and we can simply say, men would rather be drinking eggnog or anything but shopping during the madness of the Holiday Season.

Like every column in this series, I will make generalities and stereotypical judgments and statements. As I qualify with each in this series of columns, there are exceptions to every generality and stereotype, but they are few and the majority of generalities and stereotypes that I express I sincerely believe apply to most men and women. This particular column really is about shopping in general, but since it’s “the most wonderful time of the year,” I chose to put it in the Christmas context.

Also, I love women. Let’s be clear about that. But, unlike Women’s Studies professors, I love and celebrate our gender differences. I so hate the word “gender,” and really simply prefer “sex.” But, I digress. My wife makes me a better man. And, though she may be reluctant to admit it, I make her a better woman. In this sense substitute “man” and “woman” with human. We are more human because of our respective male and female inclinations.

That is the way we were made. That is the way it is, no matter how much post-graduate work you do. The irony is that most parents – moms and dads – that have boys and girls will quickly let go of any notion that it’s nurture over nature in children’s inherent interests and traits. Again, there are exceptions but they are just that, exceptions.

Back to the topic on hand, there is little doubt in my mind that men and women shop differently. In a nutshell, men want to get it over with and go do something else. In the other nutshell, women could linger all day and not buy a thing and still be quite content. Not a man. If he sets out to shop for something and comes back empty-handed, he will deem that effort an abject failure.

Other differences between men and women and shopping include:

~~ Men look at price tags

Yeah, we guys care about price, while women (see #2) care about labels. More succinctly, we check the price way before we try it on. Some of us will only buy when things are on sale.

~~ Women look at labels

This one mystifies me. Not only do I not care about labels, I won’t wear anything that has a label prominently displayed. Why should I pay to advertise someone’s product? Pay me and I’ll wear your hat with your name on it.

Okay, I know I’m an exception as kids – boys and girls – do care about the current “IN” fashion icon name and like it to be obvious and displayed.

For me, not only do I not care about the label, I’m happy with a similar design that is a fraction of the label’s cost but, to me, just as good.

~~ Men are happy buying generic – anything

I love everything generic, especially Kirkland products at CostCo. Most generic or chain generic brands are exactly the same as the brand product but at a significant cost savings.

~~ Women in Europe, will go without many for just a few (re: designer clothes)

Many women in France not only live in small apartments, but their closets hold a truly modest amount of clothing. They’d rather have that $999 designer handbag than 10 different ones of no brand distinction. Consequently, many women business executives in Europe will choose to have a smaller label “high quality” wardrobe versus shopping at Target (said in French…Tar-Jay).

~~ Men prefer to shop online

I’m probably wrong on this one – I don’t know – but I bet more men shop online than women. Why; because we men want to be DoneWithIt. Ladies, please enlighten me on this one?

~~ Women do like to shop online for deals but prefer the tactile experience e.g. my wife loves GroupOn

Women do like deals so shopping online has its place in their range of shopping choices. But, the tactile experience of touching material, trying clothes and shoes on, plus the camaraderie of sharing it all with their friends trumps the comfort and ease of doing it from home.

~~ Men will take care in shopping for the BIG toys

When it comes to the big items, the important stuff, like a new television or a car, men will deliberate quite thoroughly.

~~ Women will take care in shopping for accessories

And, the same holds true for women but, ironically, with the small items like fashion/hair accessories and Christmas decorations. Men care about one accessory – a belt.

With that, I wish you all a wonderful holiday season and lots of fun shopping before Christmas and after, when the sales begin!

Please read and/or comment on any of the other columns in the Men vs. Women series.

Get my new e-book on #Kindle for FREE and get the PDF version included – all FREE! Just click on the book cover image below! Offer expires Xmas Eve!

  • David Weber

    “I so hate the word ‘gender,’ and really simply prefer ‘sex.’”  The concepts sex and gender are different, hence two different words, like cardigan and pullover are two different words.  What precisely is the problem with the word gender?  

    Also, what is the deal with a repeated claim that women’s studies professors don’t acknowledge differences between men and women?  I thought I addressed that pretty intelligently in a comment in a previous column about that matter. 

    • http://www.brucesallan.com Bruce Sallan

      David, we continue to disagree on the effects of the PC Police at most college campuses. I hear it from college students I meet ALL the time! I always ask and I always hear the same thing – that they hear ONE point-of-view. 

    • Guest

      Gender is the primary basis for gender-bigot (read mainstream) feminism.  By conflating sex and gender and by subsuming sex into gender, gender-bigots can have their cake (social constructionism) and eat it (biological essentialism) too.  It’s a neat trick but one that is totally dishonest (like most things feminist) and one that require the rape of rhetoric by the ostensibly anti-rape gang.

      • http://www.brucesallan.com Bruce Sallan

        Hmmm, may I quote you? I wish you had a name, “Guest!” Professor, what say you?

        • Guest

          You can ‘borrow’ whatever you like from me as I have from bigger, bolder and braver others.   No name for now.  

      • David Weber

        I agree that what you describe is done, or can be. 

        The nature of spoken language and its derivatives (writing, digital communication, video and film, and so on) is that one can manipulate them relatively easily; and with the addition of some misuse of rhetorical techniques, the manipulation can be camouflaged. 

        For a reader or listener, the only way out of this situation is to (a) recognize that it’s so and what’s going on, (b) calling it out or calling attention to it by unpacking error, fallacy or oversight in the messages and (c) offering counterpoint.

        In reading your comments, I recognize that you are doing “a,” “b” and “c” as well as “d” — which I haven’t mentioned yet — and that is: not committing the same offenses committed by those you are committing such offenses.  You use some effective rhetorical devices, but certainly fall short of being dishonest.

        I wish I knew what mainstream feminism is. What I have come to understand from what I’ve read and heard is that at present, feminism has many guises, variations and nuances, compared to the relatively monolithic perspective expressed by feminist thinkers and theorists of, say, the 1970s. 

        My encounters with feminism and feminist thought in the recent 15-20 years suggest to me that some proponents are gender bigots.  They do not represent as big a group as may have been so in the past.  I suspect that this smallish cohort gets the bulk of attention by the person who pays attention to such things, yet who doesn’t consume more detailed information about feminism in its contemporary finishings.

        • Guest

          When I talk about gender bigots I have Nevah-Hit-A-Woman Obama and his even more sociopathic boy Biden in mind as well as all the feminists responsible for totalitarian travesties like VAWomenA, the OCR’s loathsome letter regarding college rape, and for the feminists responsible contributing to the ongoing rape of our Constitutional free speech rights.  Seems to me that these pigheaded ‘gender’-as-female-sex bigots are the PRIMARY group of feminists in power today.   In addition, since we are trying to get our hands around a very slippery handle that feminists intentionally refuse to define…that is the real definition/dogma of feminism…I suggest you assess Nathanson’s and Young’s trilogy on feminist-inspired misandry.  They offer some some serious analyses of the asinine ideological ‘construct’ which forms the foundation for mainstream or ‘gender’-feminism….and nice it is NOT.  

          And as far as smallish cohorts go, I wonder whether UCSB’s Feminist Studies ‘discipline’, includes ‘anti-feminist’ works from feminists like Daphne Patia, Christina Hoff Sommers, Wendy McElroy, Camille Paglia or from anti-feminists like Steve (The Woman Racket) Moxon or Erin (death threats) Pizzey. To have taxpayer funded covens where bigoted witches brew totalitarian poison in our major universities nationwide makes a travesty of both our academic standards and our democratic principles.  Imagine a KKK Studies ‘discipline’ setting up shop at UCSB, being funded by the regents, being coddled by the powers, and being protected by UC-wide speech code censorship.

          No personal offense because I don’t know you or your work, but I’d certainly like to see some testicular reclamation from what Hoff Sommers calls the faint-hearted men in academe.  It’s abhorrent to see what’s been done to the ‘soft sciences’ for 3-4 decades.  We men, who’ve always done the fighting and dying for freedom, have left the psuedo-progressive female/feminine-male Animal Farm pigs run wild in the Ivory Tower and elsewhere…and therefore we have no one to blame but ourselves.  To see our priceless Western liberal principles destroyed across the board for PoMo/MultiCulti/Gender Bigot comfort is appalling to me.

          And one last word on smallish cohorts.  Please pay attention to the ‘lovely’ reception that Warren Farrell was offered at the University of Toronto recently.  Since we certainly didn’t see sane feminists turn out in ANY numbers to do the right thing there, I wondering where the large cohort of ‘nice’ feminists is hiding these days.  

  • David Weber

    Oh, I meant to mention the passage “That is the way we were made. That is the way it is, no matter how much postgraduate work you do.”  What does that mean?

    • http://www.brucesallan.com Bruce Sallan

      Professor, with ALL respect to YOU, I still believe YOU are different than the average post-graduate. You are the most thoughtful, knowledgable Critical Thinker I know. Did you read the article about topics for dissertations that was a hot topic a few months ago? THAT is what fuels my disdain for the majority of Women’s Studies departments and all those USELESS majors that don’t really add anything in the form of opportunity to their grads except the small potential of teaching!

    • Guest

      I imagine he means that we were made male or female, that sexed biological essentialism rules and that ‘gendered’ social constructionism is mostly mean spirited Gender-Bigot bunk.  Critical thinking, objective science and solid statistics are anathema to Women’s Studies/Gender Studies/Feminist Studies professors.  What en-genders my loathing for Women’s Studies is that taxpayer funded academic fraud is worse than useless.  It is downright dangerous because it is used to ram bigoted totalitarian travesties like VAWA down our collective throats.

  • Guest

    Hard to believe but we just might have one bonafide public anti-feminist in silly Santa Barbara.  That’s real progress for a town run mostly by feckless feminist women and their feebleminded or fainthearted male flunkies….and one where people genuflect to Progressive Gender Bigots like Louis Capps.  I’ll be even more impressed the the day this dad writes an article on how fathers can protect their sons and daughters from maternal child abuse/child sexual abuse triangulations, from filthy female sexual ‘educators’ or from female pedophiles.    FYI: there was a wonderful HuffPo vid on this topic recently…one of the first to really respect male survivors of female-male rape.

  • http://www.dadblunders.com/ dadblunders

    Online shopping ROCKS!!! I will not stress enough the importance of being online and NOT having to go to the “bad” places of the holidays. I simply dislike going to the mall, Target or the “awful” WalMart during the holidays. It is supposed to be a season of brotherly love not a season of “I will push you over to get that bargain if you stand in my way.”

    I have come to the place in my life that I would rather plan my holiday shopping experience around Amazon and “Cyber Monday.” I find it less stressful and I generally get what I want the first time (okay it’s true its usually on sale too).

    I will say that my wife is a bargain shopper. She does like designer labels (I like a few of them myself). The one nice thing about liking designer labels and being a bargain shopper is that my wife WON’T spend full price on them ever. I think I can only recall one time in all the years we have been together that she has paid full price for anything.

    Aaron

    • http://www.brucesallan.com Bruce Sallan

      Okay, Mr. Online Shopper aka @DadBlunders:twitter …DID you or DID you not buy my book – for FREE – yet? #DadChat is tomorrow! I expect to see YOU there, Aaron!

      • http://www.dadblunders.com/ dadblunders

        Good one Bruce! I didn’t have too purchase your book because I was the very first person to win a copy on #dadchat! 🙂

        Aaron

        • http://www.brucesallan.com Bruce Sallan

          But you could promote it? And post a review on Amazon! Plus what a great gift for other dads?

  • http://www.brucesallan.com Bruce Sallan

    Well, “Guest” – I think I’m going to let you and the Professor go at it…I’ll just stir the pot!

    • Guest

      Stirrin the pot and tellin the truth to the ignorant masses or to indoctrinated (college educated) monkeys works for me.  Just spoke with two young freshman UC guys one at the Davis and the other at San Diego.  They are forced to swallow the pigheaded PC poison on a daily basis…and it’s laughable to em now but it won’t be so funny the moment the moment their future wives file a false PFA or destroys em in family court.

  • http://techieminx.com/ michelledh

    Hi Bruce – there are some women that don’t fit this strange stereo type you describe / I hate shopping , any kind – apart from the apple store …. Labels on clothes ?? Lol nope .,, this year I have done almost all of my shopping on line, (without searching for deals to much waste of time) the rest at one shop, no where near a mall or shopping centre. If I do ever have to go I will never take my other half (a man) who browses at gifts and wonders and dithers and takes tooo long! I know what I want, I’m and out in an hour.

    • http://www.brucesallan.com Bruce Sallan

      Of course you’re right Michelle…I’m just reaching for the stereotypes and liking to “stimulate” discussion!

      • http://techieminx.com/ michelledh

        Yes I know Bruce, and you did that 🙂  I see Gina is with me on this one – I would pay extra if I needed to if it meant ordering on line. Deciding that you have petrol cost, fares, parking, wear and tear on shoes etc if you actual go to a shopping center lol 

        • http://www.brucesallan.com Bruce Sallan

          Not to mention the time saved…I’m with YOU, MIchelle! Petrol? What’s that?…lol

          • http://techieminx.com/ michelledh

            Oh yes, and my time is very expensive! LOL –  hahaah I should have said GAS !!  Gas here is something totally different 🙂 

          • http://www.brucesallan.com Bruce Sallan

            Oh, and what might that be? LOL…

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  • ginavalley

    I hate shopping. HATE it!  
    Yes, it is a necessary evil, but I organize an exact list so that I, or whoever I rope in to spell me, can spend the minimum time on the chore.
    Overall, my daughters love to shop.  My sons love to shop.  My hub  loves to shop.  I am surrounded by  shoppers!
    I love to be done shopping.
    I don’t care about labels.  I care about quality and function. In general my hub agrees with me in this area. 1 of my 3 daughters and 1 of my 4 sons are major label lovers.  The rest of us just roll our eyes.
    I love to shop on line.  I start there.  Hub hates it.  I even bought our last vehicle on line!
    All  that being said, though, I think that in general your generalizations are generally correct.
    Of course, I reserve the right to disagree later.  Generally.
    Also, it’s refreshing to have an author admit they like sex. 🙂  So few feel  comfortable  talking about that in public.

    • http://www.brucesallan.com Bruce Sallan

      Would you say you are the exception among your (girl) friends @GinaValley:twitter ?

      • ginavalley

        I would not say I am the exception, but I would say I am in the minority.  My two very closest girlfriends love to shop.  But, that’s ok.  I love them despite this short coming 🙂

        • http://www.brucesallan.com Bruce Sallan

          But, do you agree with me about the stereotypes, @GinaValley:twitter ?

          • ginavalley

            I know a lot of exceptions to them, but, in general, yes I agree with your stereotypes.

          • http://www.brucesallan.com Bruce Sallan

            Whenever I make generalities or offer stereotypes, I open myself up for criticism – because there are ALWAYS exceptions. I almost ALWAYS preface my chosen list with exactly that qualification but people just choose to point out that there are exceptions. Duh. Love you Gina and LOVE your continued support! Thank you so much and Happy Holidays to you!

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  • srabon

    Is this a good pic to show Male Vs Female shopping ? —>
    http://4kuku.com/daily/Male-Vs-Female-shopping-z12149.aspx

    • http://www.brucesallan.com Bruce Sallan

      @disqus_7Hqfoxl4SE:disqus – it’s PERFECT!