Our View From Here

Perspectives of Five Women

Shopping – my archnemisis

on November 23, 2010

This week, in honor of Black Friday I suppose, we’re talking about shopping. It’s very easy for me to sum up my feelings about shopping. I hate it. I hate the crowds, the rude salespeople and I hate parting with my money. I like my money, and I feel it is more at home in my wallet than a cold cash register. I’m also not one of those people who needs the latest fashions. I figure as long as I look good in what I have and everything matches, that’s all I really need. It’s great for extending the life of one’s wardrobe.

If I must go shopping, I try to do it when the stores first open, or towards closing time. I can’t stand going in the middle of the afternoon when everyone else is there. It’s ironic in a way. As a kid, I used to hate that my parents always insisted on getting up early to go to the stores. It all makes sense now.

I do seem to have some kind of shopping quota that must be fulfilled though. I tend to go for months not buying anything (except essentials like food and toiletries). Months. I can’t remember the last time I was in my local mall. However, my non-shopping seems to build to a breaking point, which leads to binge shopping. My binge shopping is relatively benign. It usually starts with getting an email or catalogue from one of my favorite stores advertising a great sale with free shipping. Here’s the crux – free shipping. I shop at very few stores and know what sizes I need. I hop online, stuff my virtual shopping bag/cart (with 3, maybe 4 items – I told you my binge shopping was benign), enter my shipping address and credit card information and wait patiently for my order to arrive. No traffic, no crowds, no salespeople, no cranky me.  I love online shopping so much, I even buy the K-cups for my Keurig coffeemaker online (http://www.bigcatcoffees.com/).

I do go to stores occasionally. I seem to have a particular weakness for Target. I think it’s because I can buy a whole bunch of stuff – accessories, makeup, house goods, etc. – without spending that much money. I also can go there late at night and not deal with the crowds. I’ve learned not to buy gifts there though – they have a pretty poor return policy.

Shopping is one of those things I really don’t derive much enjoyment from. I more view it as a necessary evil. Sometimes I wished I enjoyed it more and liked going clothes shopping and having the latest styles and whatnot. But after nearly 30 years, I don’t think my viewpoint on it is going to change. I take the band-aid approach to shopping- minimize the pain by getting it done as fast as possible.

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