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Do you really want to bring him to Hobby X?

I know that some of you have no choice when it comes to whether or not your husband or boyfriend comes with you to Hobby X but ...

... unless you have one of those awesome partners who fully understands your passion for shopping and crafts (which is about as rare as a woman from Hyde Park without Botox), you need to try every trick in the book to leave him at home.  If you don’t, he will definitely take the joy out of your shopping experience and it will not be nearly as blissful as it would be if you took along your best girlfriend!

It’s not that men set out to ruin your fun - not all of them anyway - it’s just that they don’t have the staying power that we do. Oh, and they can be a little bit unreasonable when it comes to spending money on crafts. And shoes, for that matter.

Of course, this is nothing that you and I don’t already know but I decided to make it my project today to observe male behaviour around and at our stand and take notes…
The first thing that I noticed (which, I am sorry to say, didn’t surprise me at all) is how grumpy most of them looked. This look changed only when either their female companions announced that they were ready to go home or they were watching something that flew up into the air and was operated by remote control. They also seemed quite taken by saws or knives that could take off a few digits given half the chance.

What I became aware of was that when I was operating the credit card machine - which was acting up like a premenstrual teenager - and I was dealing with a male who was paying with his card, was that I had to do the job quickly.  And heaven forbid that the machine took too long to respond!  I could normally engage the women in small talk and they would patiently wait for the transaction to go through. The men, on the other hand, would glare at the machine, tap their fingers on the counter and refuse to put in a pin because, “This card doesn’t need a pin,” even though the machine was very clearly asking for one! 

You may think that it I shouldn’t be too hard on the guys, after all, they were paying but in most cases it was to take control of the females’ spending. I know, because I watched it all day: pay for the book and steer her away before she tries to buy another one.  I have to admit that there were exceptions to the rule and if you have a man like that, ladies, hang on to him for dear life!  One particular man comes to mind when I say this -  he was a ‘salt of the earth’ boer from the platteland who was an absolute gem.  He arrived at the stand with his wife, holding a rather impressive collection of bags containing her purchases and then stood to the side while she browsed leisurely through the books. He was looking slightly dazed and overwhelmed by all the people and activity around him as he was clearly out of his comfort zone and did mention that he was now very, very tired of people normally but continued to to wait patiently anyway.  Once his wife had chosen her books, he moved to the till and paid for them without so much as a murmur and insisted on carrying them too! We assumed they were making their way home after that but three hours later, we saw them again.  He was carrying so many bags by then that his arms were out at right angles to accommodate them!  That is one lucky lady ...

Then there were the not so lucky ladies. Their husbands would hover next to them and when they picked up a book, would say things like, “You’ve already got a book on mosaics, why would you need another one?” or, “We need to go now, the rugby is on in three hours and I need to to go and buy beers and biltong and don’t want to get caught up in traffic. You’ve bought enough anyway.”

One woman came to pay for her books and when she took out a tatty old wallet with cash in it, explained that her husband had taken her purse containing her credit cards away from and given her the wallet with cash in it instead!  I suppose she could be considered lucky in comparison to others though.  I noticed numerous men holding firmly on to their partners and steering them forwards to stop them from taking a sidestep to one of the stands.  Some even put their arms around their wives and drew them in and kissed them in order to detract them when they showed interest in a stand!  This is not a joke, I actually saw it happen on about nine occasions.

However, us females have a way of getting through these traps. We tell our husbands to go and have a cup of coffee and we’ll meet them in ten minutes - it’s amazing how much we can buy in that period of time. We even know how to hide it in amongst the stuff we have already bought.  Receipts are thrown away because they are evidence of a purchasing misdemeanor and, if we are lucky enough to go shopping without our husbands, bags are stashed away at the back of a cupboard so that we can bring out the stuff that we have bought gradually, so as not to arouse suspicion.  We know your tricks, guys, but at the end of the day, we can outwit, outlast, outplay and take home the prize anyway.

Posted in Craft, Events,
Written by: Deborah Morbin - 06 March 2012
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Shadow bottom Do you really want to bring him to Hobby X?