The End Of Shopping

No, this isn’t one of those pieces bemoaning the influence of the Internet on the retail industry or indeed a gloom laden piece at all.

I’ve written here on the subject of some of the consequences of aging, of reaching certain milestones, some of which appear to be more millstones weighing me down.

But in one respect, advancing years has led me to conclude one thing, one delightful thing.

 I no longer need to shop

Yes that’s a crap generalisation. I still need food and a surfeit of toilet rolls but I am now at a point in life where I have coats for every occasion, more Christmas lights than Lapland, ties for every conceivable social event from glorious births to sombre funerals. I can sit on a selection of furniture that caters for the fluctuating state of my posterior. I have adapters that let me charge anything across a range of time zones, cultures and languages. I can punch holes, stick labels, clip papers and, thanks to my father’s obsession with envelopes send letters through to the next millennia.


I am able, in short, to allow myself to wear out alongside the fripperies and paraphernalia of modern life without ever having to form the word ‘IKEA ‘ again.

And that thought is glorious. My underwear collection will see me through to 2045 with judicious management and a small adjustment to my stride pattern. The shirts I bought for work will serve me as both torso covers, lawn mower cleaners and white flags in the event of invasion.

2016-03-19 13.37.49

I will buy stuff. Books are a given even though, whisper it gently dear reader, I have more than enough reading material on the shelves around my house to give our local library a run for its money.

But no longer will I have to face the condescension of the assistant in the gentleman’s outfitters who, with one subtly raised eyebrow, can contradict my insistence that my waist measurement has remained unchanged since stay-press was the new black. No more will DIY sales people easily contrabefuddlicate me over the best reverse-warbling drognifaggot that I need to unblock the dog – I have every unblocking implement known to science tucked away in my garage.

I have moaned at my children and their obsession with accumulating stuff but that is only because, glory be, I need to no more! The half tins of paint I have left over from my many experiments in decorating can re-coat every conceivable dwelling I might occupy before I join those bemoaning St Peter’s reluctance to countenance even Barley White.

Every cut, nick, bruise, abrasion and suppurating orifice can be blocked, stopped, sopped and sutured courtesy of my many years as a trainee hypochondriac. I can dull pain, lift spirits and both open and close bowels at will with my pill collection.

And never again will I have to bend my knee to a variety of shamen and con artists who wish to add to my enormous collection of gubbins and guff – every drawer contains enough for every task which is normally the preserve of the Boy Scouts multi-tooled pen knife. In short, I am replete.

2016-03-19 13.36.50



About TanGental

My name is Geoff Le Pard. Once I was a lawyer; now I am a writer. I've published several books: a four book series following Harry Spittle as he grows from hapless student to hapless partner in a London law firm; four others in different genres; a book of poetry; four anthologies of short fiction; and a memoir of my mother. I have several more in the pipeline. I have been blogging regularly since 2014, on topic as diverse as: poetry based on famous poems; memories from my life; my garden; my dog; a whole variety of short fiction; my attempts at baking and food; travel and the consequent disasters; theatre, film and book reviews; and the occasional thought piece. Mostly it is whatever takes my fancy. I avoid politics, mostly, and religion, always. I don't mean to upset anyone but if I do, well, sorry and I suggest you go elsewhere. These are my thoughts and no one else is to blame. If you want to nab anything I post, please acknowledge where it came from.
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58 Responses to The End Of Shopping

  1. Nothing like starting the day with a big smile. Truth and humor all in one.
    Great lines one after another.
    Cheers on arriving to this point

    Liked by 2 people

  2. All you have to do now, Geoff is NEVER DECIDE TO MOVE.

    Liked by 2 people

    • TanGental says:

      Ah yes, well I’d hope if we do that it will just be selling and no buying but that may be naive


      • It’s possible there are homes available with cellars and sheds specially equipped to hold a lifetime’s worth of bits of wire, loose screws, old window frames, doorknobs, bits of 2×4 half-empty tins of paint, varnish, that UB40 stuff, broomhandles, spare rakes, the thing for sweeping spiderwebs off the ceiling etc etc etc. But I doubt it.

        Liked by 1 person

      • TanGental says:

        Shame really. The property development world is missing some sort of trick really.


      • They’ve probably been warned not to encourage it. The weight of all that hoarded junk could tip the landmass and the entire south east would be submerged.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Solveig says:

    Oh I do envy you, but somehow I manage to shop only when necessary. My fiancé gets shirts and suits from work, which means all closet space is taken up with that anyways 🙂
    Great read!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Jools says:

    I’m a woman, and shopping is in my DNA… but Ikea? Thankfully I can’t recall the last time I crossed its tortuous threshold or got lost trying to find the way out. Great post!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. … until you find that your computer won’t accept the latest version of the operating system, and the one it does have is no longer supported. GOTCHA.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. M. L. Kappa says:

    Ahem – the pill collection might expire one day, with unforeseen results…

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Sacha Black says:

    So what now then….?!

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Huzzah!! Isn’t it wonderful – and you note I speak as a woman, to whom ‘shopping’ is [ahem, was] a life style, not a verb. I have noted a growing disinclination to be drawn into the fripperies and frapperies of a new something or other or the latest thing………….. Except for maybe a portable bluetooth speaker, which appeals to me very much – but after that I think I’m pretty much done. Unless they invent a 3D tele…………. uh-oh, maybe I’m not done after all ……….

    Liked by 2 people

  9. Ahh, that’s where we differ. You can never have too many cushions, or shoes for that give up shopping would be to contradict the very principals by which a domestic goddess lives her life.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Helen Jones says:

    Ha ha – I like this very much! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  11. jan says:

    I’m with you! When my kids move me out of this place, the junk man is the first person they’ll call!

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Allie P. says:

    I have nearly reached that level for myself, but unfortunately I also live with a pair of boys that seem to grow two inches overnight and change favorite interests with the weather. Sigh… one day…

    Liked by 2 people

  13. If it wasn’t for groceries and volunteer work, I wouldn’t need to leave the house for anything–except for socializing with friends. I don’t need to go to the library either. I have my own I’ve hardly read.
    Your post is so true. You reach a point where you don’t need much of anything except the basics..

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Ritu says:

    I can so relate to this Geoffles! !!

    Liked by 2 people

  15. Wonderful thought provoking piece. You put it into words so well and the pictures made it such fun. Oh, to be a consumer no more!
    Out of interest, I have a friend in the same boat who has started making collages from the dried paint he has found on his tins – tells me that the rubber texture is a wonderful medium to work with. Latest piece is a tiny Hindu temple which he has now put a paper clip ladder up the front with a piece of “dried paint stuff” hung across a rung like a cloth. Actually looks like the workmen have knocked off for lunch.
    Could be a naff thing you never needed to know – or a fun future hobby!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Norah says:

    I think you and my hub would make a good pair. Though he does keep adding to his tool collection, and he’s always looking for the perfect pair of jeans (impossible!) or shirt, but each time he does, he says “It’ll see me out”. Grrr! That’s an expression I do not like. 🙂 But I enjoyed your take on it. It made me smile.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. davidprosser says:

    G’wan, betcha find something you NEED before the next two weeks are out.

    Liked by 1 person

  18. So true. I don’t even buy The Times any more

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Time to de-clutter then?


  20. Rachel M says:

    I’m impressed that your underpants will see you through to 2045. What’s the secret? No washing?

    Liked by 1 person

  21. You need to move house, Geoff, then you’ll have to shop again. Or, you could have an eBay frenzy with all that stuff.

    Liked by 1 person

  22. Debbie H says:

    I really enjoyed this! My father in law has a new rule – nothing new can come into their house unless something goes out the door. I completely understand where you’re at 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  23. I will visit you more often, as I just love your stories. Thanks for sharing this over at the Senior Salon. I am so glad that you joined us at SS.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Pingback: Senior Salon Roundup Post: March 19 – 23, 2018 | The Recipe Hunter

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