Sunday, December 24, 2006

Battle Purse

As we recover from today’s events, I decided blogging about it might be worthwhile. As long time readers will know, last year I made the mistake of going to the mall on the weekend before Christmas. In my blog I tried to dissuade others from such an endeavor. This year I took advantage of Amazon.com and other online shopping sites to avoid physically going to the mall. I even bragged to coworkers two weeks ago about finishing the shopping experience in my slippers. Alas, all the bragging was for naught.

We had some last minute gifts to buy today, and online shopping has proven to be convenient, but not that quick. Off to the mall we went. As we drove in traffic befitting New York City, people were shouting impolite encouragement to one another from their respective car windows. Numerous people in these cars were also using their middle fingers to remind others that the season should be about G-d. We all experience these very friendly encouragements, in greater abundance closer to the holidays.

Finally we get to our first stop, Sports Authority. My wife Elizabeth, my daughter Cassie and I were very appreciative of the man who cut us off so that he could get the closer parking spot. I never figured out what was wrong with that closer spot, but there must have been a problem with it. This other guy was very aggressive in making certain that he got it and we didn’t. I needed a bit more exercise anyway.

Cassie bought a pink football that has the Super Bowl imprint on it. For those of you who do not know, Miami is hosting the Big Game this year. Cassie really likes her new football and doesn’t see any problem with it being pink. We got a few other knick-knacks and went on our way.

Our next stop was lunch.

Chili’s is very child-friendly. There are at least a few of you that might be able to use this information. The place was packed and boisterous, and the people sitting behind us had the gall to complain to themselves about our child before we sat down. Now, please believe me when I say that Cassie is very well-behaved in public. The gentlemen who commented on Cassie’s behavior were surely toddlers themselves once, and should suck it up just a bit. It’s not like Elizabeth and I have six kids and were taking over the joint. We ate our meals; we got compliments from other customers and the wait staff on Cassie’s beauty and good behavior. The businessmen who grumbled as we sat down did not bother to apologize. I imagine that they didn’t realize that I heard their comments.

Our last stop was on the horizon. Loehmann’s is a department store in New York City. They have an outlet store in Miami. As we entered, I remembered why I hate shopping so much. Things were everywhere. This place also had the feel of Gettysburg or Bull Run. I could easily imagine two middle-aged women going for the same Chanel purse with reckless abandon. This is the sort of place where “Battle Purse”, might occur. There were shell-shocked people such as the three of us. We all had P.T.H.S.D. (Post Traumatic Holiday Shopping Disorder). People in this store were wandering aimlessly holding up a bottle of Charley perfume looking for the top to the bottle. Others were grasping a copy of Bananarama’s Greatest Hits looking for the correct CD case. The battlefield of the last-minute holiday shopper was littered with well-meaning individuals who had nothing left to give.

As we escaped Loehmann’s we drove through a Burger King for beverages.

Holiday
shopping had dehydrated Elizabeth and me. The drive-through attendant took pity on us. She noticed Cassie and gave her a kid’s drink for free. Who says the holiday spirit is dead?
Thankfully, we only had to drive for about an hour to go the mile from the mall back to our house. I will not go to a mall next year. I think I said that before.

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