Tuesday, November 10, 2009

I've changed.

Last night I had to go shopping. This chore has become an irritating task for me, even when I don't bring the kids along. I really loathe clothes shopping, have no use for jewelry or perfume and fancy toiletries and make up end up sitting unused in the cabinet. The truth is I have no use for 99% of what is sold in the mall (the percentage would be higher but the bookstore closed). I used to shop all the time and never was bothered by it. I suppose with this desire to homestead I've changed.

Most everything I need now is on the internet...as long as I don't need it right now which is the case of the outfit for the upcoming weekend, or the necessary groceries. I get my music online in the form of MP3's, books come from half.com or one of the big "B" chains, I can order practically everything (including some food) and have come to love shopping in my jammies. Having all that wonderful shopping at my fingertips has replaced trekking through crowded stores packed with overpriced junk. Plus, getting the mail is fun.

So, here I am, seven at night walking the mall. Store after store filled with trendy looks I had no desire to wear. I only need a dress. A semi-formal to formal dress. Just one lousy dress! What was offered in the stores was either short cut and slutty, yards of taffeta promness or mother-of-the-bride-wear. Nothing suited for a almost thirty mom with dreadlocks and a wrist tattoo going to a formal Army dinner. Sigh. I trudged on.

I tried Ann Taylor, NY&Co., a black and white store that looked promising, Old Navy, Sears, Macys, then stumbled tired and bleary eyed into Saks. Big. Mistake.

The mannequins in the front looked promising as I held my breath through the cloud of perfume that marked the path to the clothes. Past the shoes with name brands like Prada and Chanel I should have known better and turned around then and there but I was desperate for a dress. I needed to get it so I wouldn't have to come back. I turned a corner and found the clothes. Giving things a good glance I didn't see anything appropriate for my soiree but it's a big store. Making my way back out of that section to hunt down the formal wear a really cute flannel shirt stood in my way. If I had been drinking something I would have choked. Then again, I'd have to have been drinking to have bought it. The little white tag that faced me showed the reasonable price of a mere $138. WHAT?!? For a flannel shirt? Did this shirt give the wearer super powers? Did a portion of the funds go to aid starving children? I bet anyone could raid some relative's closet and find a similar shirt...for free. What exactly was I getting other than a shirt that resembled any other flannel shirt? Someone's name, that's what, and the Saks bag to carry it in. 

I'm not an art hater. I do realize that clothes are pieces of art, someone creates the pattern, chooses the fabrics and makes the darn things. I just don't understand why they have to cost so much. Buying flannel in builk should be pretty cheap and sewing a shirt isn't that hard. I know, I've done it. The plastic buttons weren't coated in gold either. That shirt sent me running out of the store so quick I almost walked in the path of someone spritzing overpriced perfume. That's how rattled I was.

In all honesty, I was just disgusted. I've become increasingly disgusted with the way things have become in our society. I used to bop down the mall laden with bags and not care about the empty space in my wallet. I've changed. Am I cheap? Unashamedly, yes. And I like good quality for the money I do part with. I suppose with the way I've been heading lately, towards homesteading and a farm of my own, looking at those items, realizing the severity that there's a market for it to need an entire two story store attached to a hundred like it to cater to persons anxious to own them is a little overwhelming. I just don't get it anymore. I don't see the appeal. It's hard not to look at that flannel shirt and think of the dehydrator I've been wanting or materials to build a chicken coop.

I suppose it boils down to priorities. I shouldn't have been surprised but it was like a slap in the face that my own have changed so much from the "norm". I guess I really have changed when, after hours of shopping, only smiled when I picked up my new cordless drill.

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