shopping spree: negotiating the barbed heat of summer

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Yesterday I dragged my bruised shoulder and slowly healing back to the mall, where I had not been since Christmas.

I'm not an expert shopper—find myself easily overcome by all the options, and the plain unknowability. Is there, for example, a better choice in another store? Should I keep looking—or stop? I shop unglamorously, my hair in a ponytail and my blue Nikes on. I shop without exhilaration. I shop ducking from people I once knew—the ones in light wool suits and pumps and grown-up shopping mall style.

Still, two birthdays are upcoming—my son's, and then my husband's—and I have a few places I need to go. And so, avoiding mirrors wherever I could, I explored the local King of Prussia Mall, where many of the stores I used to like are either gone or repositioned and where, for one frustrating moment, I could not find the stairs, and where, three times, like I had entered a Not Fun House, men approached me with a sad, yearning look in their eyes. Surely, they said, I understood that I would be much better off with their age-reducing skin elixirs.

I have a theory, and it's proving true in these banged-up, hot days of summer:

I'm not getting anywhere unless I laugh at myself.

I'll be at the Philadelphia Business Journal Women's Conference in the Crystal Tea Room of the Wanamaker Building, in two hours wearing my new dress and shoes. I hope I'm better at leading the Coffee Klatch than I'll ever be at shopping.


Serena said...

Ah, shopping is never fun. I find it overwhelming and wishing I had gotten something else that would have been more perfect

Adrienne said...

I have {almost} completely given up on malls of any kind. It's on line or local shops I love...can't stand the maze of confusion. I'm sure that living in Europe for 12 years didn't help...I like grocery stores with 10 cereal choices...not 110... le sigh.

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