The Thrill of the Hunt
So, this morning I sat with my coffee cup in hand and sat down at my laptop for my usual morning routine: check MSN lead stories, read my horoscope, check Ann Taylor to see about sales, and read my email. It’s pretty standard, but in today’s email there was one of those things that made me set down my first critical cup of coffee and sit up straight.
It was a sale at BonTon. Not just a sale, but a coupon for 50 % off a purchase over $100.00. This, in itself, is not unusual for BonTon, but it just so happened that there was ANOTHER coupon for 25% off your whole purchase. And I have been looking for a new pair of navy blue pumps because the Anti-Christ that is our dog consumed them in the first week he was introduced into our home. Hence, my search for that same pair of pumps.
As any woman knows, a good pair of pumps comes around only so often. I am talking about pumps in the right color, with the right heel and (most importantly) pumps that are comfortable enough to wear all day. My old pumps were all this and more. They had the perfect heel. I could wear them all day while I tore through Hamlet, corrected poorly conjugated verbs and just generally addressed illiteracy.
Without real hope, I scanned through the BonTon site. And then….there they were. Bandolino Latanna Pumps in navy. My heart racing, my credit card ready to fire, I began the checkout process, but alas! I was under the 100.00 limit and thus unable to use the discounts.
Fortunately, my trained eye located a cute pair of pumps in just the shade of brown I had been dreaming of. And they came in wide. Sure, they were 94.00, but I had a coupon, you understand. Into my cart they went.
Yes, friends it is a happy ending, but it was about to get better. I typed in the code for the 50.00 off and then that little promotional code box popped back up. Was it possible? Would BonTon honor BOTH promotions on a single purchase? Tension mounted as I typed in the code….
Victory! I’ve been smiling ever since. And that is what made me wax philosophical this morning. Why do I get such a high from shopping and getting a really good deal. And I don’t want any of you nay sayers out there (I know who you are and you are male) to say that I didn’t save money because I bought that second pair….They are beautiful and now, they are mine.
Anyway, I thought about women and our love of shopping and it occurred to me that it is the female equivalent of hunting for men. As hunting season bares down on us here in the North Country, I have begun to commiserate with my female cohorts whose husbands hunt. My friends are always complaining about hunting season, a season in which their men – most of whom you would not trust with a hot glue gun- head off at the crack of dawn with a shotgun and testosterone raging through their middle aged veins. They can’t wait for 20 minutes for the kids to get done with piano lessons, but they can sit in a tree, freezing for hours with the hope that a something beautiful will stroll by. Then, they can shoot it. My husband doesn’t hunt. I kind of wish he did. Then he wouldn’t be home when the UPS man comes; my husband has judgy eyes. But to all you men out there who judge your wives and fail to appreciate the value of a good sales promotion….
I ask you to consider this: why do men hunt? According to Michael Gervin and Kim Hill, “The role of men in hunter-gatherer societies has been subject to vigorous debate over the past 15 years. The proposal that men hunt wild game as a form of status signaling or “showing off” to provide reproductive benefits to the hunter challenges the traditional view that men hunt to provision their families.” They discuss this theory in their piece entitled Why do Men Hunt? A Re-evaluation of “Man the Hunter” and the Sexual Division of Labor. It makes sense to me, especially the showing off part.
In her article in Esquire, Jeanne Marie Laskas notes that “… there is a thrill that these guys get when they are successful. It makes them feel cunning, smart, and very “manly.” Many guys need this exercise, they don’t want to totally lose touch with their masculinity, which is often partially defined by their lack of caring or concern for a poor little defenseless critter against a high powered, long – range rifle. But that’s another matter.” She probably doesn’t get invited to hunting camp much….but hats off to her for her observation that it makes men feel “cunning, smart and manly.” It seems to me that the odds are stacked against Bambi here and I’m not so sure how cunning it is to sit in a tree freezing when you could be doing something better like….
If hunting appeals to the evolutionary roots of “Man the Hunter,” then it makes sense that shopping appeals to the evolutionary roots of “Woman the Gatherer.” So, when I had that epiphany this morning, I realized there is nothing wrong with me. I am a gatherer (And a fine one at that).
It’s in our genes. I can’t fight it and neither can you…
Featured Image: http://www.ftknox.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/hunting-awesome-wallpapers-in-hd-free.jpg