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Lust in the supermarket

Laura Marsden doesn't even get a snog after she samples the delights of singles shopping in M&S

Published on April 23rd 2008.

Lust in the supermarket

Supermarkets are amusement arcades for the idle minded. They’re not sexy.

But, they're becoming popular cruising grounds for single folk. In Paris, certain supermarkets have stated that Thursdays are the ideal night for singles to get together. They're given purple baskets illustrated with cartoon depictions of couples kissing and are offered a free photograph and glass of champagne if they succeed in hooking up with a mate. English stores don’t promote sex like the French but I figure, I like men; I’ll try and shop for one….

Marks & Spencer. Quality food. Their adverts look like food porn. Quality food porn. If you’re gonna try getting laid in the supermarket you may as well start at the top. (Diamond diggers shop in Harvey Nichols, Grocers and Selfridges Food Hall caters to idiotic students who bray over expensive American cuisine). So, I settle for M & S. S & M? Possibly….

The atmosphere is quiet and refined. Few single men. There’s one dressed as a posh extra from Emmerdale; green cords, hunting shirt, wax jacket. He’s about 57. Menopausal women are flushing in the aisles. Meringue nests. Roger and Sue are coming. Dinner, tomorrow night. This is depressing. I head for the booze. There’s a male 20-something, leather jacket, haircut. I look at bottles of Sauvignon Blanc, whilst keeping one eye on him. He glances over. I smile, widely. He’s selecting a Rosé. Oh, so, you’re indecisive, I say to myself. He’s listening to his iPod. I break the ice by dropping my phone at his feet. He picks it up and hands it over. There’s no lingering look, wink or even a smile. I mouth the word ‘thanks’ over the tinny din of his earphones.

I wander about, looking in peoples’ baskets, judging them on their potential purchases. If you’re gonna try and trap off, you’ve got to have attractive products in your basket. There’s no use lugging around a bumper pack of Tena Lady Ultra and a hopeless expression, right?

I head to Tesco. It’s rammed. Which, in this instance, is good. Loads of single men. Newspapers are not sexy so I head past… but, do they sell porn mags? Maybe I should loiter….no. That is definitely a bad idea. There’s a young man looking at Gemma Atkinson’s hand-bra on the cover of a Twat Mag. I head to the fruit aisle. That’s erotic. Yeah. Fruit is sexy and provides a colourful backdrop should you get chatting. I mince around near the bananas for AGES. People bustle past, stressed, with iPods and ‘want-to-go-home-for-me-tea’ eyes. I hold some bananas sexily.

Pouting, I slowly put them in my basket. Nobody’s watching. I have a thousand Carry On Cruising lines, poised on my lips should anyone give me a second glance, ‘Would you say these melons are ripe?’ I’ll coo, holding them aloft, ‘Blimey, you don’t get many o’ them t’ pound, do you cock?’, I will actually wink, looking at a guy’s crotch. I am prepared to do that.

A couple to my left are having an argument about onions. This is bullshit.

I stuff a bag of Cox’s in my basket and go to the grocery section. A Japanese couple are umming and aahing over rubber gloves. The leading brand or Tesco’s own? After an interminable period (whilst I stare glassy eyed at a roll of bin bags), they opt for Tesco’s own. As they amble away, I note his hand stroking her bum, fondly.

A very small boy with a big pizza is following me. Most other people seem keen to get the hell out. I join the queue behind an attractive man in his 40s. Grabbing a carrot, I stroke it provocatively, should he, or anyone else, notice. He doesn’t. I see he drinks herbal tea and deduce that he may be easily shocked. I drop the carrot act.

What’s in my basket? Soya milk (faddy health freak, don’t bother with her), English Breakfast Tea and English apples (possible nationalist, fan of The Proms?), Anchovies (fishy), bog roll (pisser, shitter). This is total bollocks. Except for the boy with the pizza, nobody has noticed me. Although I am paranoid about my products.

I pay and leave. Walking down Market Street, I conclude that cruising for sex in the supermarket is pointless. Perhaps it’s different out in the suburbs. Maybe in those massive hypermarkets people actually have sex amongst the clothing rails, or behind 80” flatscreen T.V.s. Grabbing lubricant off the shelves…I bet they do it all the time. Then they drive out into the sticks and go dogging, flinging their recently purchased/used condoms out of the window. The city stores are a waste of time though. Everyone is too stressed. Too wrapped up in themselves to notice that they could actually put a bit of themselves inside a bit of somebody else. (Who may well be holding up a pair of melons with a glossy pout).

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11 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

LeeApril 23rd 2008.

Simple Simon: strawberries and champagne, good quality dark chocolate - all for obvious reasons, fresh herbs, maybe porcini mushrooms or similar and a nice joint of meat, suggests you like to cook (avoid the joint of meet if you want to pull a veggie though), fresh fair trade coffee - ahhh taste and a social concience, and something for the house but not something too houseworky or yucky, suggest nice handsoap or packet of dusters, to suggest that you don't live in squalor!

Rubbing My EyesApril 23rd 2008.

who on God's earth pressed the publishing button on this vacuous load of bollocks? Confidential just reached a low. This should be in effing heat magazine.

Richard BrowningApril 23rd 2008.

I dunno, i found it quite amusing. but then today i was drawn to an advert for sex in the city. i really want to watch it, but i can't.

DaveApril 23rd 2008.

What a drivelling article - rehashed from about 4 years ago when the so called supermarket dating craze was written about in every paper going... even the bloody Student Direct beat you to this by about 3 years!

JinkiesApril 23rd 2008.

Didn't they completely tie everything off and have all the characters married off at the end of the last series? How are we going to take the show seriously again... does this series focus on cooking or just more fake feminine empowerment garbage? Yawntastic, I'd rather shoot myself with a gun.

ShaApril 23rd 2008.

I reckon that rubbing eyes guy has had an unfortunate time in a supermarket. I reckon he was rejected by some melons. Cheer up chappee.

Simple SimonApril 23rd 2008.

Does anyone have any tips for the best products to have in our basket? I'm guessing my usual choice of heinz beans and sausage, a small loaf for one and 2 beef pot noodles might not really help sell me to anyone but medical research.

Kev PApril 23rd 2008.

Lee - Thanks for the suggestions, I'll be sure to don my Sunday best on Monday night and include all of your items in my basket! :oD

Rubbing My Eyes for a second timeApril 23rd 2008.

Garner, are you a real Publisher? Sack Scofield over this nonsense.

Gina KayApril 23rd 2008.

Hey guy with the sill rubbing eyes name this is funny, and a piss take on the usual does shopping for sex actually work. Very funny. And it's all true about suburban shops. I hear you can't move for copulating couples in that John Lewis in Cheadle. At it all the time.

Kev PApril 23rd 2008.

Haha, this article brightened my day!Tip: Tesco is by far the best place for hot single men! Around 7pm after the initial work ruhs, you have all the cute city centre dwellers who enjoy taking their time. I love a good wander round the aisles at 7pm on a Monday :oD

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