Lead Balloon


The Mall
December 20, 2006, 4:03 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

This year, Christmas completely surprised me. Where did it come from? Todd and I have been rushing around this week to get our shopping done, I’ve been wrapping presents each night until late…next year I will be better prepared.  I promise.

Last night and the night before, we decided to act like it wasn’t Christmas and go to the malls anyway. Usually, we can get all of our shopping done without having to set foot inside a mall, but that wasn’t the case this year. We dreaded having to do so, but it actually wasn’t too bad. It wasn’t as crowded as I thought it would be. Granted, we had to park a mile away in a sea of cars. But once we got inside we didn’t find it to be too crowded, the lines weren’t even that long. Maybe all those people were in the bathroom. Or sitting on Santa’s lap.

What I always love most about the mall is the people watching. Last night, I shopped alone (Todd had his own errands to run, hopefully he was out buying me that new Volvo cross country wagon that I want), and I was able to watch the people, uninhibited.

What is it with young teen-aged boys wearing girl’s jeans?  Tight girl’s jeans? They wear their hair long and over their eyes, very tight t-shirts, and very tight fitting, made-for-girls figures, jeans. All that I can surmise is that they really want to be girls. Early onset cross-dressing, for sure. Parents everywhere are just waiting for the day their sons give them an invitation to their debut appearance in “Rocky Horror Picture Show”…thinking, “Well, maybe one day he’ll at least make a career of it. That’s all we can hope for.”

I noticed at the Food Court that the Asian shoppers don’t eat at Panda Express. The Mexican shoppers don’t eat at the Mexican food place, and just about everyone loves Burger King and Cinnabon. As I was eating my Teriyaki bowl from Panda Express, I wondered if the fact that the Asian shoppers were herding toward the BBQ place and Burger King meant that maybe I should steer clear of the Panda? 

The people in those kiosk things (not sure what you call them) in the middle of the mall..They’re not so aggressive during normal shopping times, but they’ve obviously got a quota during the holidays to pawn off their useless shit to innocent passers-by. If one more person asked if they could clean my jewelry, I thought I was going to punch them in the face. Am I the only person who wonders if they throw your ring into this container and someone sitting under the table takes it out from the bottom, exchanges it with a cubic zirconia version of your ring, takes yours and pawns it? Okay, I admit that’s a little “conspiracy theorist” of me. But why else would these persistent, odd people want to clean your jewelry so badly for you? 

I really like my personal space, and I don’t like for people to touch me if I don’t know them. You know those things made of bandanas that hold some sort of gel, you put them in the freezer and take them out on a hot summer day, wrap them around your neck and they keep you cool? Apparently some genius has made one that keeps you warm in the wintertime. Except it’s rather large, and heavy. And ugly. And completely useless as far as I’m concerned. I mean, we live in Dallas. Anyway, walking through the mall, out of nowhere, some weird dude walked up to me and placed one on my shoulders. Did I mention it was heated?  And heavy? “Want to keep warm this season!?” Thirty minutes earlier I was forced to remove my jacket and stuff it into one of my shopping bags because I was so hot. Now this guy is following me around with what amounts to a cordless heating pad, touching me, uninvited. Then he got pissed off at me when I told him that he was freaking me out. Like I’d just offended him or something. Get away from me, dude.

I like how some of the retailers really don’t give a damn how much you pay for things – just get out so I can help the next person. I was at the Nieman Marcus close out store buying something last night.  The lady said, “This was 20% off, right?”  I said, “No, the table was marked at 50% off.”  “Okay,” she said.  Rang me up and got me out of there. It really was marked at 50%, I didn’t lie to her. But there is a little part of me that wanted to go back in, gather up a bunch of stuff and take it to her check-out station and tell her it was all on the 85% off table.

My favorite part of the mall during the holidays is watching all the men competefor seats on the benches in the mall, waiting for their wives to hurry up and finish their shopping. There are those few lucky husbands who score a seat in Brookstone on one of their three or four vibrating massage seats. Those are prizeseats – you’ve got to get there early to take advantage of one of those. If you don’t make it in time, you can settle for standing inside the store and using one of the hand-held back massagers. But, after a while you just start to look really weird and then you’re relaxed so much that you really must find a place to sit down, or you’ll be forced to lie down on the store floor and get some rest.

Then there’s the heartbreaking part of the holiday mall trip. A husband and wife shopping for their kids, in line to check out, and their credit card is denied. That breaks my heart. I’m sorry for how embarrassed they feel, and I’m sorry for how stressed and helpless they feel.

I’ve got to finish it all up tonight. Wish me luck.  I hope that you’re done with your shopping. I imagine all of you, sitting at home each night this week in a very clean house…The tree sparkling – the lights almost blinding you, glimmering off of the just-polished wood furniture in the room. The smell of evergreen in the air. Your pets, dressed in their Christmas-plaid printed sweaters, sitting next to the tree, not even trying to eat the bows off your presents or balls off the tree…You’re sipping on egg nog (and it’s really loaded with a lot of alcohol, you’re even a little tipsy), watching “A Christmas Story” (or maybe “Christmas Vacation”…you choose…), and you’re knitting a sweater, for me, maybe. The lights on your house outside are so wonderful that there’s a line of cars outside just waiting to see them. You’ve had them up since the day after Thanksgiving and you’ve already arranged for a service to come take them down on January 2nd. The wreath on your door is hung perfectly, and you’ve been so damned good this year that Santa has already placed the stocking stuffers into your stockings.

That’s my dream for you this week.  🙂

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5 Comments so far
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Thanks for all that positive wishing, I’m just wishing for the maid to show up now. Maybe while she’s here she could finish wrapping presents. Better yet, the postal delivery guy would show up with the rest of what I ordered for my beloveds for Christmas. Today UPS expects to deliver more than 21,000,000 packages. Go figure!

Comment by Big Sis

This sounds like something from “Ozzie and Harriet”…you won’t remember that, but they were THE perfect family…i am still waiting on the maid also; it’s gonna be rush, rush, rush for cleaning and baking before all my younguns get to the house! But it WILL be fun!

Comment by Mutha deah

i would like some girl jeans for Christmas. i have the perfect figure for them. and some little boy scooby doo underwear to go with. then my newly found Emo band will be legit. thanks 😉

Comment by Sam

I LOVE Panda Express’ orange chicken. Darn, it’s still morning and I’m thinking of LUNCH already. I’m so glad I got to know the “Luckey Couple.” Be happy you two. You’re great.

Comment by Windfall Woman

That post was one of my favorites ever. In our neighborhood, grown men where girl jeans. There’s nothing more attractive then men in skinny jeans, I tell you.

Comment by t




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