January 2nd, 2009

Mall Madness

I went to the mall to buy a birthday present for my mom, who foolishly scheduled her own birth ridiculously close to Christmas. I don’t go to malls very often anymore. I don’t understand how they work now.

Part of my personal strategy for living is camouflage. I figure if I blend in, I’ll probably survive until They develop a thought-ray that can detect my subversions. I used to understand the signals, but my disguise is now imperiled by the change of codes.

Once upon a time, I could walk into Macy’s and know what department to shop in. It was clear where the little old ladies went, where the cool people went, where the professionals shopped. I have no scale to judge what might be a stylish top now. All the clothes have started to speak Martian to me.

Eventually, I may find this freeing. The great marketing machines may not be in control of my brain anymore. (Now if I could just get all the girl-programming about what makes me look fat, other than the fat on my body itself…) Right now, I’m just confused.

On the other hand, I do still understand how my mom’s style works. I bought her a sweater that exactly met the criteria she laid out. I will give it to her. She will thank me. And then she will return it to get something else. I think it’s a tradition.