Shopping is described simply as the purchase of goods from stores. Across the world today, the term shopping has taken on a new definition and twist so much that it is not what it used to be anymore. In the 90s, when someone said they were going shopping, they would return bearing a big polythene bag containing Blue Band Margarine, Tip Top Bread, a Kilogram of beef, some tissue, Kiwi Shoe Polish, Colgate toothpaste and probably Kasuku exercise books. Shopping was a big deal back then and it was for important things. In fact, only parents were allowed to go shopping because there was the worry that sending children to do any shopping would result in many items on the list forgotten and a few gummy bears or sumbiz added to the shopping list. Today, shopping is one of the most widely done activities by human beings after breathing, eating and giving birth. Everyone loves shopping!
The shopping virus has bitten almost everyone
Women Run the Show
No race has owned and defined the practice of shopping as much as the females of this generation. Today, shopping barely refers to purchasing legitimate goods like sugar, milk, bread or salt. Shopping almost has nothing to do with purchasing important groceries or necessary foods for the house hold – that is called ‘picking groceries from the nearby store’. Shopping is now exclusively an affair that entails heading out with a bunch of girlfriends and scavenging for a particular dress or pair of pants that will do the healthy backside some justice when the cloth is unleashed on the unsuspecting public. When you walk around town on any given day, you are likely to encounter several sororities of closely attached females moving from one shop to another, comparing prices of high heeled shoes, tiny little outfits and newly imported wigs. Not that there is any problem with this but it has somewhat made men stop using the word shopping. Nowadays when a man is going out to purchase a few things (to do shopping), he is likely to just tell you he is going out to ‘grab a few things from the supermarket’ or ‘to buy some things from the shops’ as opposed to telling you that he is going shopping. Women now run the show so much that a good number of women will confidently tell you that shopping is one of their hobbies.
Typical female problems
The demon of online shopping
With the advent of technology and the introduction of the World Wide Web, it is now easy for people to do their shopping. In fact, one can very easily look through several stores without leaving the safe comfort of his house. This has obviously made life much easier but it has also made life a lot more expensive. You see, in the past if you needed something, you had to get off your lazy ass and go to the store to look for it. You would probably have to board a taxi and brave the huge traffic of humans and cars alike as you head to town. Shopping was therefore done once in a while, like around Christmas time when all the kids needed new Kaunda Suits and the house needed some decorations for the festive season, that is when shopping was done. The other time when shopping was done was just before the school term started. One would have their shopping list with figures attached to each item and then one would head to town (after getting permission from the father) to do the shopping. Today, with just the click of a mouse you can get pretty much anything delivered to your door, even that other plastic life size effigy of Jennifer Lopez which you would otherwise do without; anything can be brought to you. The addiction that people in the world face because of online shopping is simply immeasurable. I know a one Jackie who has bookmarked several shopping sites and all she does while at work is browse for the latest outfits and attires online. It is safe to say that she spends half her salary on these outfits every month. The addiction is so strong that even something that she could do without, poor Jackie will probably order for it because, well, it is easy to have it delivered to her door step. In the past, it was safe to be in Uganda because not many online shopping companies delivered to this part of the world. However today, many websites offer delivery to your doorstep no matter where you are in Uganda. Life has been made easier, at a price. I know two friends who are currently going through a spell of rehab because of addiction to shopping online. It seems no one is safe!
And in most cases we end up making the wrong ones!
Window Shopping and then showrooming For many people, shopping has become a leisure activity, something of a hobby. Window shopping is where one walks from store to store gazing at all the wonderful things that are priced higher than they can afford but still seem interested to keep the seller guessing whether or not a sale will be made. Window shopping is something that many sellers are trying to fight because it leads to Showrooming, which shop owners hate so much. Showrooming is the practice of window shopping and then going online to look for cheaper prices of the same items. Shop owners are no longer as keen to welcome people into their shops because half the time the people just want to identify if there are better prices elsewhere.
Little kids doing some window shopping
For all the noise I am making about shopping, one would think I do not go shopping. I do go shopping too every once in a while but for serious things like new gadgets, ear phones, video games, novels and occasionally I go shopping because I hope to bump into fine ladies who are out to do shopping too. That said, I am still a traditional person who will most likely prefer to have items bought from the physical store in town as opposed to simlpy clicking and making payments online.
I just hope that as everyone gets bitten by the shopping bug they reserve just enough funds and time to go shopping for remedies too because the human race shall not be wiped out by disease or natural disasters but by addiction to shopping.
“The odds of going to the store for a loaf of bread and coming out with only a loaf of bread are three billion to one.” ― Erma Bombeck
The Talkative Rocker
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