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Nov 23 2012

The Stangroom Experience

So this odd tweet flies by me:

Jeremy Stangroom
Ed Rybicki speaks out about the consequences of the vile bullying he received at FtB: http://bit.ly/TT9CWz #FTBullies

8:52 AM – 23 Nov 12

“Vile bullying” here at FtB? “Consequences”? Really? And who the heck is Ed Rybicki? I don’t remember him. So I did a little digging.

Oh, yeah. Ed Rybicki — he’s the guy that wrote that “Womanspace” short story that parroted goofy evopsych myths.

At this point I must digress, and mention, for those who are not aware, the profound differences in strategy between Men Going Shopping and Women Going Shopping. In any general shopping situation, men hunt: that is, they go into a complex environment with a few clear objectives, achieve those, and leave. Women, on the other hand, gather: such that any mission to buy just bread and milk could turn into an extended foraging expedition that also snares a to-die-for pair of discounted shoes; a useful new mop; three sorts of new cook-in sauces; and possibly a selection of frozen fish.

It was a not-very-good piece that relied on sexist stereotypes for a crutch. It gets a very thorough going over in the comments section there — a great many people were appalled that such a “tongue-in-cheek” exercise in perpetuating falsehoods about women could get published, even as fiction, in a science journal. It also got slapped down by Jacquelyn Gill, who compiled a huge list of negative responses, such as this one by Anne Jefferson. This wasn’t an FtB-led rejection — it was a massive, science-internet-wide gag reflex that puked all over poor Ed Rybicki’s story. Dana Hunter was our local huntress spearing the wild Rybicki, with follow-ups that included Ophelia Benson.

But to claim it was “bullying” or that FtB was responsible…well, that’s typical Jeremy Stangroom, not letting the evidence cloud his hatred of everything on this network.

But I’m happy to join in now, because I read Rybicki’s awful whine. He doubled down on some truly egregiously bad research in an attempt to salvage his story and credibility.

Oh, by the way, nowhere in his excuse-making does Rybicki mention anything about consequences to himself or his career. That’s another Stangroomism, I’m afraid, and should be completely discounted. Along with everything else he claims. It’s also a year old; I guess Stangroom just wanted to revive an old argument that he saw as damaging to FtB (alas, he’s wrong on all counts.)

But oh, gob, the excuses. They’re embarrassingly bad. Rybicki has to settle on one strategy, first of all. He tries to claim that it was just a fictional story, a little exercise in what-if, and that no one should be offended. But he also tries to cite a whole bunch of articles to show that his hypothetical sex difference in shopping vs. hunting is actually reasonable and true, and therefore no one should be offended because he’s just using the facts.

Look, guy: you could possibly try to make a case for either of those, but you can’t do both: they’re mutually incompatible arguments. Especially when you announce your intent to pursue the evidence like this:

Being a scientist, however, I have been trained to demand evidence, to either support or disprove a hypothesis.

And then what he proceeds to do is cite a series of papers with complete credulity. About a paper titled “Evolved foraging psychology underlies sex differences in shopping experiences and behaviors” he writes:

So: a reasonably respectable gathering, then, of respected academics, reporting academic work? One has to assume so – and that this paper is in good standing, otherwise it would never have been published? Again, a reasonable assumption – so to quote from said article could possibly come under the heading of scientific reportage, rather than sexist assumptions based only on gender bias? If the chain of logic holds, then what I will write now cannot be held as evidence of my innate gender bias – can it?

Good grief, the man is a trained academic at a university, and he hasn’t yet figured out that a horrific amount of crap gets through peer review and manages to get published? How could he read the 15 pages of bloated speculation in that paper, all built on the results of a survey of the shopping habits of students enrolled in an American college introductory psychology course, and not see the flaws?

No, all that matters is…

Right: so it went through an Ethics Committee, then? Evidently – it being a large, respectable US university, and all.

I don’t know. At this point it’s hard to believe this guy is being serious: none of those are grounds to trust a paper’s results. But then he claims that the study has been confirmed by two other papers!

I give you “‘Men Buy, Women Shop’: The Sexes Have Different Priorities When Walking Down the Aisles” – from “researchers at Wharton’s Jay H. Baker Retail Initiative and the Verde Group, a Toronto consulting firm”.

Gosh, when I grow up I want to study evolutionary biology at the Jay H. Baker Retail Initiative. And this is the source for the other confirming study:

The study was commissioned by PayPal, meaning again, big $$$ are involved.

I give up. Really, Stangroom? This is the basis of your accusation that FtB is a place of “vile bullying”? That some of us, at least, are willing to call out bad science?

By the way, I’m sure Ed Rybicki will be grateful to you for resurrecting his shamelessly bad story out of the blue like that. I suspect he’s actually been hoping everyone would just forget it after that net-wide panning it received the first time through.


Oh, wait. In the pile of links I dug up to figure this out, I lost track of the main one Stangroom was pointing out: Ed Rybicki himself has brought it up recently. It’s still true, though, that there were no consequences to Rybicki.

While I received next to no personal communications, other than replies to blog comments, I was vilified at my place of work in what amounted to a systematic campaign – despite never having used a Departmental or institutional affiliation anywhere, and having written and published the thing in my private capacity – to the extent that the principal and a DVC of my university actually asked if we could have a public debate on the issue. I told the DVC he HAD to be joking; getting abused in print was one thing, but public attacks would be another thing entirely. I advised our hierarchy that it would blow over – and you know, it did? Quite quickly, too.

So where am I, now? Well, pretty much in the same place I was in prior to early November, 2011, because I have stopped reading Hatespace: that’s right; I no longer bother to check in on the circle-jerk that FtB had obviously become. I also got good news which completely distracted me from the bullshit: my long-shot effort at getting my 30-year dream project funded struck gold, and yes, the wonderful person who walked into my office and asked “Does anyone here know anything about viruses?” and I will be exploring oceanic viromes (thank you, Maya!).

So – all I can say is that I am wiser (but not sadder); that while as an atheist, humanist and liberal, the FtB blogs would look like they were made for me – they can Fuck. Right. Off.

So he’s had no adverse affects on his career, recently got a grant funded (I presume), and the only effect on his life is that he now blames freethoughtblogs for all the criticisms he received over his petty little story. He hasn’t learned one single damned thing.

FtB was not made for him. Scientists who can’t recognize pseudo-science and who use it to defend sexism aren’t quite our audience.

68 comments

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  1. 1
    Pareidolius

    This Rybicki character seems to have the same relationship to the first amendment that many fundies do: It’s fine for me, but not for you. Guess what? Your right to free speech doesn’t protect you from the consequences of that speech. Your ideas will rise or fall on their own merits, or lack thereof. The whine of the privileged is pressed from a harvest of sour grapes.

  2. 2
    Rutee Katreya

    Oh, so being FTBullied is like when white dudes are nearly inconvenienced due to ‘false accusations’ then?

  3. 3
    Ophelia Benson

    Oh gawd – Stangroom’s obsession is so embarrassing.

    And what can Rybicki possibly mean by suddenly dragging in FTB out of nowhere at the end? Does he think all the criticisms of his stupid “story” were at FTB? Did the blogger – one Rebecca Bradley – tell him they were? Did she instruct him to mention FTB at some point, because that’s what he was there for?

    It’s so bizarre.

  4. 4
    PZ Myers

    Really — look at the loooooong list of critics from Gill — not one link from FtB among them (Dana Hunter’s original site is cited).

  5. 5
    Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought

    Meh. He could have just accepted that he fucked up with that story, apologized and moved on. It would have been long forgotten by now. But he had to prove that he is a conceited fool.

  6. 6
    PZ Myers

    Rutee: Maybe Stangroom’s implication was that being “bullied” by FtB and spouting sexist nonsense has absolutely no consequences at all? Which is actually kind of true, unfortunately.

  7. 7
    Rutee Katreya

    Oh, I know it’s true. Further evidence of the evils of misandry, that is, that these people are criticized instead of having their feet kissed.

  8. 8
    changerofbits

    DVC of my university actually asked if we could have a public debate on the issue.

    Oh no, not a structured, public forum where my ideas will be respectfully challenged! Talk about being bullied!

  9. 9
    hyperdeath

    Is this article where Stangroom’s obsession with PZ started?

  10. 10
    Anthony K

    Reading that piece by Rybicki is like listening to a concerned community member stand there with a cigarette in one hand and a Coors Lite in the other describe how the nearby power lines must be to blame for all the cancer that didn’t exist when Grandpa first farmed there.

  11. 11
    chigau (違う)

    waitaminnit
    This is the same guy that co-authored two books with Ophelia Benson?

  12. 12
    hyperdeath

    chigau:

    This is the same guy that co-authored two books with Ophelia Benson?

    Unfortunately, yes.

  13. 13
    hyperdeath

    …actually it was three books.

  14. 14
    chigau (違う)

    Right, three books.
    hyperdeath your link in #9 is borked.

  15. 15
    Ophelia Benson

    Yes. And I’m afraid that’s why he keeps publicly obsessing about FTB. (It was new atheists before that.) It’s a way of poking me in the eye without actually mentioning me. (Why does he want to poke me in the eye? I don’t really know, but he considers me “a bully” because of repeated criticism of Chris Mooney and others.)

  16. 16
    chigau (違う)

    Ophelia
    I’m guessing you will not be co-authoring any more books with him.

  17. 17
    michaeld

    While one data point doesn’t disprove anything I’ve always been amused at how the men hunt women shop thing is completely reversed in my family. Of anyone my dad and me are most likely to go trawling through dvds, used games whatever without a clear target in mind where as mom is most likely to shop as little as possible. Just get in and out with what she came for and be left waiting while we sift through some rack of assorted geekery.

  18. 18
    SC (Salty Current), OM

    Yes. And I’m afraid that’s why he keeps publicly obsessing about FTB. (It was new atheists before that.)

    Yes, including people like Russell Blackford who now cheer him on. I know I’ve said this before, but it’s incredible to compare their replies back when they were targets to their reactions now, when feminists and FTB are. (Miranda Celeste Hale’s comment in that thread: “Wow, that’s a smarmy and nasty post, even by Jeremy standards. Reading his blog makes me feel like I’m being shouted at, if that makes any sense. His (completely unjustified and scary) hostility is palpable.”)

  19. 19
    A Hermit

    Don’t tell them about this: http://freethoughtblogs.com/ashleymiller/2012/11/21/how-girls-evolved-to-shop/

  20. 20
    SallyStrange

    Hyperdeath, your link doesn’t work.

  21. 21
    Ophelia Benson

    Dang, that thread made interesting reading, SC.

  22. 22
    julian

    The story was dumb. Everybody Loves Raymond dumb. It was sitcomy portrayals of gender roles and sexist notions of men and women. The comedy depends on the audience accepting and sharing society’s sexist ideas. ABC couldn’t have done it any worse.

    Why the fuck is Stangroom who insists he’s a feminist, who insist he rejects and opposes this sort of crap, defending it? It’s crap. Complete and utter garbage you’d expect to see regurgitated by a group of B list actors in Hollywood romantic comedy.

    What the fuck?!

  23. 23
    SallyStrange

    Rybicki just published a blog post insisting that he’s really right, because, basically, ahhh, sex, gender, what’s the fucking difference? The point is that men and women do things differently! Ergo, shut up haters!

    Now I am not going to argue about whether these are in fact innate or learned differences, or whether they are reflected in gender bias, or anything else – the fact is that studies that observe human behaviour have thrown up differences in shopping behaviour linked to sex. Or is it gender?

    Which removes another of the planks used to beat me with, as far as I am concerned.

    It’s not just bad science, it’s bad logic.

  24. 24
    hyperdeath

    Damnit. This is the link I meant to post:

    http://scienceblogs.com/pharyngula/2011/03/03/the-sad-saga-of-jeremy-stangro/

  25. 25
    hyperdeath

    …and it works this time! (In fact I had it right the first time; it’s just HTML that’s wrong.)

  26. 26
    SallyStrange

    Oh whoops, wrong year. My bad. Hey, leave me alone, I’m on vacation (and a bit drunk).

  27. 27
    texasaggie

    Based on a sample of one (my wife), the conjecture that women go into the supermarket to buy two items and come out with a cartful isn’t too far off. I go with a list that says oranges, apples, zucchini, onions, and yogurt. I come out with oranges, apples, zucchini, onions, yogurt and raisins. She goes in with the same list and comes out with oranges, apples, zucchini, onions, yogurt, canned tuna, cheese, frozen fish, whole wheat tortillas, dog treats, egg plant, three packages of different cuts of beef, peaches, some special kind of vinegar, mushrooms, olive oil, almonds, and a whole bag more of stuff I can’t identify. It’s why I insist on doing the grocery shopping myself.

    Whether this is in any way related to hunting and gathering is a moot point. That it exists is the problem.

  28. 28
    ChristineRose

    Like others mentioned, I shop like a man.

    Anyhow I always assumed it was about the commoditization of women. When complete strangers start coming up to men and telling them that they need to show off their breasts legs more, then maybe they will “evolve” shopping skills.

  29. 29
    Beatrice, an amateur cynic looking for a happy thought

    She goes in with the same list and comes out with oranges, apples, zucchini, onions, yogurt, canned tuna, cheese, frozen fish, whole wheat tortillas, dog treats, egg plant, three packages of different cuts of beef, peaches, some special kind of vinegar, mushrooms, olive oil, almonds, and a whole bag more of stuff I can’t identify.

    What, no raisins? I agree, that is deplorable. She should have known better.

    Women can’t be trusted with money. Next time, she might take a little detour from the supermarket and go buy herself a new pair of Louboutins.

  30. 30
    Anthony K

    and a whole bag more of stuff I can’t identify.

    Read more. Package labels + cookbooks + internet can all help.

  31. 31
    sonderval

    I assume that the difference between “men shopping” and “women shopping” (which may exist in a statistical way) was simply due to the fact that it is usually the women who do the grocery shopping – therefore they see more opportunities and have more “I might need that”-experiences. This is supported by my observation that when shopping in a hardware store, it is usually the men who buy more than they intended to (because it still is a men’s domain, so here the men see more opportunities). (But of course it is still all anecdotal, although could be tested in principle.)

    So in the end it is not a cause for a gender difference, but an effect of different socialisation.

  32. 32
    marinerachel

    Goodness, it sounds like that woman’s credit card needs to be revoked (as I’m sure it’s not her own money that will be paying it off.) It’s a PROBLEM, you guys!

  33. 33
    chigau (違う)

    texasaggie
    Do you let the little woman drive to the store?

  34. 34
    consciousness razor
    and a whole bag more of stuff I can’t identify.

    Read more. Package labels + cookbooks + internet can all help.

    Sure, so in other words, use your gathering genes to find where the words are, then the hunting genes to target some of the bigger ones with a nice pointy spear.

    I hear it works pretty much the same when you’re getting a physics degree.

  35. 35
    F [i'm not here, i'm gone]

    OK, so a slightly re-worked definition distinguished by the use of a capital J gives me Jeremiad as the thing with which I will identify such trolling writing in the future.

    —-

    texasfuckwit:

    You’re a fuckwit, fuckwit.

  36. 36
    Inaji

    Michaeld:

    While one data point doesn’t disprove anything I’ve always been amused at how the men hunt women shop thing is completely reversed in my family.

    Same here. Going by Rybicki’s theory, I’m a man and my husband is a woman.

    texasaggie:

    a whole bag more of stuff I can’t identify.

    Oh my. Well, there are these things called labels, ya see…

    What a douchecake.

  37. 37
    robro

    Where did he get the idea that “men hunt, women gather?” Is this supposed to be based on some evo-psycho nonsense about hunter-gatherer societies? If so, not only is his information about modern shopping practices unfounded, but his understanding of foraging societies is questionable.

    It doesn’t take much Internet searching to find that in contemporary foraging societies men gather plants and women hunt game. Common sense would suggest that when your resources are meager and you’re faced with starvation it doesn’t matter who finds food, how they do it, or what they find. If a woman comes back with a pig and a man comes back with a load of taro, who cares…let’s eat!

    We can only guess how paleolithic foragers might have managed, but I bet that they didn’t divide the labor of food gathering along sex lines the way modern men would like to think they did.

  38. 38
    Chaos Engineer

    Based on a sample of one (my wife), the conjecture that women go into the supermarket to buy two items and come out with a cartful isn’t too far off.

    Well, that’s one possible explanation for the data you’ve presented.

    Another possible explanation are that both you and your wife have deficient list-making skills, and your wife is better at making snap decisions based on new information. I gather that you’ll refuse to buy dog treats just because they’re not on the list. That’s just plain mean, especially if you have a dog.

    In order to fully analyze the data, we’d need to have:
    - (1) A list of unneeded groceries – things that get thrown out because they’ve gone bad, or things that sit unused in the pantry for a year or more.
    - (2) A list of groceries that you used even though they weren’t on a shopping list, and also of groceries that you didn’t have when you wanted them.

    If you could give us, say, six months worth of data, I bet the nice people here would help analyze it.

  39. 39
    rq

    Funny, in my household, it’s my husband who can’t come back from the grocery store without a whole stack of items not on the list and not immediately necessary, while I manage to somehow stay on track and keep to the list and the list only…
    Perhaps he is mis-using his hunting genes? Although, who knows? Maybe he plays hunter in the aisles of the supermarket, lurking around corners and pouncing on that broccoli like it’ll claw him to death.
    So, I suppose I’m with michaeld @17 and Caine @36 – I must be a man and my husband must be a woman.

    BUT WAIT! When it comes to children’s clothes, it’s the other way ’round! How do I know what’s right anymore??? Is there no simple gender-based evolutionary solution for me? /snarky

  40. 40
    Inaji

    rq:

    Maybe he plays hunter in the aisles of the supermarket, lurking around corners and pouncing on that broccoli like it’ll claw him to death.

    :snortle:

    I know, hide a spy camera on him before the next shopping trip – this could be scientismically important!

  41. 41
    Anthony K

    I’m just gonna note that of the six food sources listed in The 6 Manliest Ways People Still Hunt for Food, three are honey, barnacles, and mussels, (foods I’d be curious to know how many people besides the Cracked.com article writer would consider as things that are ‘hunted’), and a fourth is a description of reindeer castration by the pastoralist Sami people.

    So ‘manliness’ as used in the article title seems to describe the danger level in procuring the foodstuff, rather than the gender of the individuals performing it or the simplistic ‘hunting’ vs. ‘gathering’ dichotomy.

  42. 42
    Ophelia Benson

    @ 38 – hahahaha

    So if that dog is following this discussion, from now on all lists in that household will include a roughly penned “DAWG TREETZ”…

  43. 43
    Ysidro

    If I, nominally a man, go grocery shopping, I can often come out with more than intended. Especially if it’s the weekly trip rather than a “oh crap, we needs this” trip. My wife, on the other hand, will get what is needed and no more.

    I guess I should go buy some cute shoes while I’m at it….

  44. 44
    Inaji

    Brownian:

    I’m just gonna note that of the six food sources listed in The 6 Manliest Ways People Still Hunt for Food, three are honey

    We watched The Human Planet a while back, and one of the scariest things we saw was A Bayaka tribesman going after honey – 130 frigging feet up a tree, in the midst of clouds of angry bees. Technically speaking, I’m pretty sure that qualifies as gathering. Maybe being scary as hell gathering bumps it into hunting class. Or something.

  45. 45
    Ing

    According to Nova this morning the evolutionary benefit of the human brain is adaptability to environment (citing that the human structure of the brain developed during a period of unstable climate shifts)…which to me means that it’s more likely that people in general are able to adapt and learn different strategies. If the idea is that men hunt and woman gather than it’s more likely that’s because men are trained to hunt and woman trained to gather. In some societies this might make sense due to the on average greater mass of males, but that wouldn’t mean there’s a hunting gene or genetic reason; it’s better explained as a social response to dimorphism.

  46. 46
    Ing

    We watched The Human Planet a while back, and one of the scariest things we saw was A Bayaka tribesman going after honey – 130 frigging feet up a tree, in the midst of clouds of angry bees. Technically speaking, I’m pretty sure that qualifies as gathering. Maybe being scary as hell gathering bumps it into hunting class. Or something.

    That actually reminds me of somthing my evopsyche prof said; that the line between hunting and gathering is often very poorly made and a reflection of our own cultural biases. Often people look at a society and define what is gathering and what is hunting by whether it is the men or women doing it. For example would checking traps for food be an example of hunting or gathering?

  47. 47
    John Morales

    [OT]

    Ing:

    For example would checking traps for food be an example of hunting or gathering?

    Hunting.

    (Hunting is the pursuit and killing of prey animals, gathering is the seeking and collection of edible sessile things)

  48. 48
    Ing

    @JM

    Yeah but the point was that that is a different skill set and set of tasks than what most people think of hunting

  49. 49
    John Morales

    Ing, true.

    But skill sets are learnt, not just a matter of aptitude.

    To quote PZ in the follow-up post, “This is the problem for the evolutionary psychology of sex differences: for each trait that you want to claim is a product of selection for a behavior that is different between sexes, you have to postulate a Plus that restricts its expression to a single sex.”

    (Seems to come down to culture, to me)

  50. 50
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    I guess I’m not the right kind of male. I often go shopping without a clear idea of what I’m looking for. I can spend hours at a mall enjoyably browsing. My mother is the opposite. When she shops, she’s all about getting what she needs as quickly as possible. I also go grocery shopping and even when I have a small amount of things to get, I browse the store rather than getting in and out. The idea that men and women have specific shopping patterns-which differ from one another-is laughable (and that its all based on evo psych is inane).

  51. 51
    timgueguen

    Can I be FTBullied? Can I, can I? It would really increase the hit count on the my blog. I’ll even write some giant load of sexist bullsthi if it makes it easier.

  52. 52
    kestrel

    Christ of the Andes. How ridiculous.

    Is livestock hunting or gathering? Well, milking is women’s work, so it must be gathering! But in order to get that milk, the animal must be pregnant and have kids/calves/lambs which are utilized for food… so hunting? Gathering? The animal is standing in your pasture. It needs to go to the meat supply. Is that hunting or gathering?

    What a bunch of BS.

    Procuring food is a HUMAN endeavor. Different individuals bring different skills to the table. Why is that so hard to understand?

    A funny story about men who thought it was “women’s work” to milk. When smallpox was ravaging the countryside, the men would die and the women would live… not because they were stronger but because they were the ones milking, and there is a disease in cows and goats called “cowpox” and the women milking would get this mild form of the disease and thus be immunized against smallpox. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cowpox

  53. 53
    Winterwind

    Tony:

    I guess I’m not the right kind of male. I often go shopping without a clear idea of what I’m looking for. I can spend hours at a mall enjoyably browsing.

    But Tony, you’re queer. We don’t count as “real” men. Except when measuring things like sexual promiscuity and number of partners. Then we’re manlier than real men.

  54. 54
    Ing

    Ing, true.

    But skill sets are learnt, not just a matter of aptitude.

    To quote PZ in the follow-up post, “This is the problem for the evolutionary psychology of sex differences: for each trait that you want to claim is a product of selection for a behavior that is different between sexes, you have to postulate a Plus that restricts its expression to a single sex.”

    (Seems to come down to culture, to me)

    Right, to me it seemed far more likely that the difference (if we want to boil it down to a biological difference) is to the simple sexual dimorphism.

  55. 55
    hypatiasdaughter

    What is this big thing about women shopping? EVERYTHING in your home – EVERYTHING – has to be shopped for. Do you think pixies bring the toilet paper, canned soup, weed killer, socks and gallon cans of paint that that you will find in almost every house in this country?
    Isn’t this a variation on the theme that men and women do the same things – but when men do it it, it is sensible and rational, but when women do it, it is silly and trivial?
    Women “traditionally” shop for the whole family, not just for themselves. I buy my son’s deodorant, my husband’s socks and the ink cartridges for the printer.
    So, even though I hate to shop, I spend more time shopping than they do, ’cause it gets DUMPED on me.
    I am also the only one who cleans up the cat barf – and it ain’t because I think it’s fun.

  56. 56
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    @55:
    Everyone knows that when men buy things they aren’t really shopping. Something something hunting something EVO psych bullshit…

  57. 57
    Tony! The Queer Shoop

    @51:
    Why do you need a reason to be bullied by FtB? Justin Vacula, Wooly Bumblebee, Thunderf00t, and the rest don’t have reasons to support their accusations of being bullied. Just close your eyes and pull something random out of your ass and you too can be FTBullied!

  58. 58
    Lyn M: G.R.O.S.T. (ADM) -- Membership pending

    This is really quite revelatory. I appear to have been a man until sometime in my later 40′s, when I changed genders and became a woman. I used to hate shopping, and plotted the most efficient routes through any store I had to enter so I could get relevant items and leave in the shortest possible amount of time. Then I aged, no longer shopped for a family living with me and had more money for myself. Suddenly, I found it was fun to look for stuff I might want.

    And what’s weirder than that? I never noticed the whole gender change thing until these helpful articles appeared.

  59. 59
    Woo_Monster, Sniffer of Starfarts

    Nah, Lyn. That fits perfectly within evo-psyche*. Manly men hunt until they start to get old and less manly at around the age of 40. Then they become womanly gatherers. This perfectly explains your shift in shopping patterns. Gawd I love evolutionary adhocery.

    *Well, I guess everything coheres with eve-psyche theory, since one can always pull out ad-hoc just so stories from their anuses.

  60. 60
    Ibis3, Let's burn some bridges

    Texasaggie reminds me…my mother and I recently went grocery shopping together and she told me about a time she had gone with my ex-stepfather* for groceries. She said that as they were walking through the aisles she put some things in the cart. He got mad at her, told her she wasn’t allowed to put anything in the cart. She still can’t believe it. He stated it as though the cart, the store, and everything on the shelves were his property and she wasn’t permitted to interfere. She said once she determined to just get her own cart, he backed down and she defiantly put in whatever it was that she wanted and more. No surprise that this is an ex.

    On topic: I’m sure everyone sometimes “hunts” and sometimes “gathers” (as if one could tell the difference when relating it to shopping behaviours anyway). If you like something or some types of things, you’re going to browse and immerse yourself. If you’re wanting something specific, you’re going to look for just that thing (especially if you’re crunched for time). If whatever it is you need is something necessary but doesn’t arouse excitement, you’re going to be impatient with all the crap involved (parking, waiting in the queue, walking to the end of the mall, trying stuff on, dealing with staff and other customers, any tag alongs you have with you–i.e. spouses/children who are even more impatient than you are). If you don’t like crowds/public spaces/noise/whatever, you’re not going to start just because you have to suffer it to get what you want. This is not sex, gender, or socialisation. This is just human nature.

    *It was usually his job because a) he enjoyed it and b) it was also his thing to cook so he knew what we needed. For the record, he never used a list, and he would buy *lots*–our pantry was a walk-in and it was always full of cases of stuff.

  61. 61
    Inaji

    Ibis:

    If you don’t like crowds/public spaces/noise/whatever

    ^This is me. It’s the primary reason I rarely enjoy shopping. I really think how well you deal with people (along with all the peripheral hassle) has much more to do with how much you do or don’t enjoy shopping.

  62. 62
    chigau (違う)

    6th generation city people make me haz sad

  63. 63
    Giliell, professional cynic -Ilk-

    I gather that you’ll refuse to buy dog treats just because they’re not on the list. That’s just plain mean, especially if you have a dog.

    You get an internet from me.

    *sigh*
    Isn’t there a requirement for people to learn something about the history of science, especially sex/gender differences before they’re allowed to talk about it?
    Because if there’s one area where the evidence was made to fit the preconceived argument, it’s this.

    +++
    And yes, I realize those different shopping-behaviours between Mr. and me. That might be due to the fact that when I enter the shop, I usually check out the offers and fresh stuff avaible and then start to make the meal-plan from scratch, think about what we’ll need for making X and then take a look at the staples to see what we need there.
    Mr. goes in with a shopping list written by me and puts on a helpless kicked puppy look when whatever is on the list isn’t on the shelf. Or if I failed to tell him on what shelf to find it.
    Maybe, just maybe the realities of our lives have something to do with this. And maybe, just maybe the fact that those lives still are dominated by gender roles may have something to do with this. And maybe, just maybe those people pull that shit right out of their ass.

  64. 64
    Beethovenfangirl: sharp, flat and natural

    He lost all (well, whatever was left, if any) credibility when he admitted that he wasn’t aware of the gender / sex difference, and when he considered a report by a consultancy to be a valid source. Really? A report was costly to do so it must be a reliable source? Oh dear dog, where to start. This man purports to be a scientist? I despair.

  65. 65
    Noadi

    While one data point doesn’t disprove anything I’ve always been amused at how the men hunt women shop thing is completely reversed in my family.

    Same here, I go in and get what I’m looking for and my boyfriend is the one constantly distracted by shiny things. We tend to drive each other crazy when shopping so we’ve started just going our own directions and meeting up when we’re done, it works well even if it means I do some waiting. It’s almost like people are individuals or something.

  66. 66
    michaelpowers

    I seem to remember a Tim Allen comedy routine that ran along those lines. If I were Tim, I’d sue.

  67. 67
    Goodbye Enemy Janine

    Sorry, Tim Allen’s career is based on tired stereotypes. He has no reason to sue.

  68. 68
    Alethea Kuiper-Belt

    But surely Rybicki’s piece is also based on the exact same tired stereotypes? Allen should totally sue! MRA bro fight!

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