We have been busy with inconsequential things. We were at the mall in Albany on Sunday afternoon. Allison needed a few things, and brought her Christmas gift cards with her. We shopped a bit, tried on some things, discussed, admired, returned and rejected. It takes time and as always, Jerry was a hero. He sat in the beautiful and comfortable occasional chairs in those mini-living rooms set up courtesy of Raymour and Flannigan. Mostly men are sitting in these areas. Bored men. Tired men. Men who are sick of this shopping thing. With that in mind, we kept it as short and sweet as we could, and then moved onto L.L. Bean. This is the store that Jerry and I like to shop together. We both are happy here. If they had comfortable occasional chairs outside that store, Allison would have been sitting there. L.L. Bean has no chairs, they want you to MOVE! Kayak, swim, row, camp or hike, but get out there and MOVE! She was not happy. We were in hog heaven. Jerry purchased a small LED key light, and we moved across the street to the Real Purpose of our trip to Albany, purchasing a new suit. Jerry had decided he needed a new suit, and this was why we drove the 45 minutes to Albany. Now men don't buy suits very often. They shop very differently than women, and this was apparent from the moment we walked in the door. Allison opted for a quick snooze in the car, so we were alone. The first thing you notice is that the WOMEN are sitting here. There are a few chairs here and there next to the mirrors and the tailor stands. This is where we sit while the men are being measured. There was a bridal party in the back of the store being measured for tuxes for a wedding sometime in August. They were fun to watch. Mostly unsure of themselves and embarassed by the whole affair. The real men were completely at ease and put themselves in the hands of the experts - the salesmen. These guys know their stuff. They know how to measure, which impresses me to no end. It is hard to find a man who can wield a tape measure with such confidence. They are right down to business, no time wasted here. They take the measurements and tell the customer what size they need. We then move to that section and start to look at the colors, because that is how suits are arranged. What impressed me so much is that there was no teeth-gnashing over the size. This was the fact, that is where you went. If I went into a woman's store, got measured and was told a size I was not happy with, or even that I slightly disagreed with, there is no way I would have just walked over to the larger size and started shopping. I would have had to try on the smaller size just to be sure. And if it was just a tad snug, I would have sucked it in and told myself to stop eating for a few days and get the smaller size. Women do this, regularly. Men? They let themselves be measured, try it on until it fits properly, stand still for the alterations, and go home. Easy. Painless. Respected. I was in awe. I have newfound respect for men. This system works on so many levels. When we go to the affair for which we needed this new suit, Jerry will look good (as always) and more important, he will feel good. His suit will fit properly and not pinch anywhere. Nor will he have to restrict his movements to protect seams or embellishments. I have worn pants that were so "snug" if the button were to pop off it would take someone's eye out. This is not comfortable. And shoes? Let's not even go there. I have had to have surgery to correct the damage done to my poor feet over the years of "power dressing". No more. After this trip to Mens Wearhouse, I have vowed to shop differently. I think L.L. Bean is the closest thing to Men's Wearhouse for women. Sturdy and functional clothes. Except now the problem is, what dress do I wear to this affair? L.L Bean does not sell evening wear. I have until Friday to work this out. If I just skip lunch. . .