There are any number of reasons to cross the double-wide threshold of a home improvement store. Usually it’s because you need some sort of screw or tool or gardening implement, soil or sump pump. Here’s the secret “Big Pharma” doesn’t want you to know: guys of a certain age go there to treat what’s politely become known as “low T,” and obtusely defined as “empty tank o’ testoterone.”
My son and I visited a mega-sized such home improvement/Low T treatment center today with absolutely no motivation other than bolstering our manhood. My son is in his 30’s, I’ve reached my 30’s….twice.
Here’s how it works. You start by pulling into the closest parking spot you can so other guys getting out of their pickup trucks think you need to be near the exit to make it easier for you to load that slab of plywood and bags of concrete. They give you that look that says, “way to go, but I’m gonna load enough crap in my pickup bed to build a subdivision.”
Up to the challenge, we walked confidently into the store and made sure the nice guy in the apron asking if we needed to be directed anywhere knew we weren’t some suburban do-it yourselfers, but actual men with actual testosterone. “Thanks,” I say with my chest filled with pride and pizza, “I’m headin’ for the power tools and I know just where they are.” The guy is in utter awe and I feel my T levels spiking uncontrollably.
Of course I don’t go to the power tool aisle, because my “treatment” has many phases, the next being, convincing other guys hoping for rescue from their hormonal sinking ship that I’m the master of my male vessel. This mean touching and feeling and making up fake stuff to say within earshot of the untreatable. Here’s how it goes down. You strut up to the plumbing stuff and grab the biggest monkey wrench you can and hold it and look at it and say out loud, “Hell, I hope this giant monkey wrench is up to a master plumber like me using it, because pipes fear me when I start twisting and I can’t have my tool bending under pressure.” That gets the attention of the High T wannabees who admit immediate defeat by skulking off to the housewares department and meekly fondle storage bins. That ain’t gonna cut it, ya sissy.
Phase two involves impressing the apron guy watching over the screws and nails. “Help you?” he asks while his fingers are crossed deep in his apron pocket because he just wants to go on his break. “Yeah, thanks,” I say, dashing his hopes. “I need a dozen two penny nails, 14 six penny nails, 2 screws with left-hand threads and a bolt as wide as a Slim Jim.” The guy is both impressed and intimidated and calls over a supervisor who tells me they don’t carry any of those things, which is a trade secret for blowing off obnoxious customers. Even so, I’ve made my point and I’ve never felt more like a man.
The final phase is eavesdropping on another customer’s quandry and acting like you can help. Hapless guy in flannel is agonizing over whether to use a washer or O-ring and discusses such with his wife. You decide to end the guy’s pain, walk over and say, “I couldn’t help overhearing your discussion. Always, ALWAYS, go with the O-ring. You’ll be glad you did. They never fail…except maybe on the Challenger. Sad.” The guy is grateful, his wife wants to run off with you and you’re walking out the exit having spent nothing but time with more T than a scrumming rugby squad.”