The perils of love
  |  First Published: March 2015

There’s a feeling every male gets when he walks into a shopping centre, and it’s not a good feeling. It’s maybe similar to the one you might get when you go walk through the dental surgery door to get a tooth pulled and catch a glimpse of your cross-eyed dentist picking his nose with one hand and scratching his junk with the other.

It’s just not an acceptable scenario for anyone to face. We should start a movement to help those people who get caught up like this. I’m talking about the shopping centre, not the dentist. Gotta start small, but I reckon the UN would be interested in starting up some sort of pressure group to assist those of us who face this awful situation.

The first thing is you enter this place under pressure, because you’re there with someone, generally a ‘loved one’ – I use that phrase very loosely because a ‘loved one’ wouldn’t subject you to the type of torture that you find yourself in when you go through that door! Because you are entering an area that is absolutely devoid of anything that could possibly be of any interest to anyone who ever had any interest in anything that had anything to do with boats, motors, fishing, hardware or tackle.

It is cruel to subject someone to hours of relentless walking up and down corridors full of bargy people without even the relief of seeing some baitcasters, soft plastics or boat bits through a plate glass window. Instead you are subjected to mile after mile of clothes shops and shoe shops. I cannot for the life of me describe how boring it is to walk past row after row of frocks, cardies, heels, coats, jumpers and knickers. OK, the bras can be interesting but the mannequins are plastic. I know, I’ve felt them.

And amongst these hundreds acres of shops and stalls and sometimes quite busty mannequins, there is not one single thing that you can find that has any relevance at all to anything that could remotely be termed hardware. If you’re really lucky, you can find a tobacconist that has an area about the size of a train toilet with a dusty assortment of signed pictures or Brocky, jet flamed lighters and king sized pencils. Just go in there when you see it because you won’t find your way back without a GPS track.

And don’t think you’re going to nick into a shopping centre and zoom back out; your supposed ‘loved one’ can spend at least the better part of a week wandering up and down these corridors of hell, stopping into one place after another to handle some fabric or salivate over some shoe that looks exactly like the last one she slobbered over. It’s damn annoying. I can’t remember the last time she looked at me with that sort of interest. But I guess if I stopped making loud honking sounds when I wander into Bra’s n Things and road test the mannequin’s chests I might stand a better chance. And being escorted out by security is one way to cut the visit short. Those female staff shouldn’t stand still in the middle of a lingerie shop. Especially if they’ve got smooth, plastic looking skin…

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