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Mall du siècle

I went to a mall today. One of those big ones in the suburbs. Freeway drive to get there. Many SUVs in the vast parking lots. Many W stickers on the SUVs. Not, in short, my kind of place.

But it's 90 in Phoenix, where I'll be in a couple of days, and I needed something to wear, and my favorite downtown store is closing, so the mall it was.

I went first to--well, no names because that'd be rude, but let's just say it rhymes with "Racy Benney." There, I was traumatized by the ugliness of the clothes they were selling. I don't exaggerate: my stomach ached, I broke out in a sweat, my sense of direction vanished, and I was lost in a sea of sparkly-fiber polyester and suits with short-sleeved jackets. Okay, who the FUCK thinks short-sleeved suit jackets are a good idea?

Feeling in serious need of a drink, I managed to find my way out of Racy Benney and to the next big store. This meant entering the actual mall part of the mall, where the huge corridors filled with chemical smells and cellphone kiosks and music and corporate food--and way too many people--just about finished off any presence of mind I had left.

But it ended well. The next store--Meier & Frank--was much calmer. There were people working there. The aisles were wider. And I found racks and racks of pretty things. And it was all on sale! So I bought some of it.

Then I got my ass out of there. Because silk coat or no silk coat, that place is hell.


( 13 comments — Leave a comment )
Apr. 17th, 2005 07:47 am (UTC)
*snickers* I hate malls with a passion, so I feel your pain.
Apr. 17th, 2005 08:08 am (UTC)
Sad thing is? I checked the Phoenix weather forecast AFTER I got home; I really hadn't bought anything cool and breezy enough for 90. So I might have to--eeek!--go back tomorrow.
Apr. 17th, 2005 08:31 am (UTC)

Scary thing? I still wearing long sleeves when it is 75.
Apr. 17th, 2005 09:10 am (UTC)
Well, yeah.

But 90? Long sleeves made of very light fabric.
(Deleted comment)
Apr. 17th, 2005 04:18 pm (UTC)
Monsoon's website shows only UK locations--and a lot of very pretty clothes. "Cream silk"--what's not to love in those two words?

I'd clothes-shop online if I could because going to the stores IS a hellish experience. Now that I'm old and no longer expect Superclothes (sexier than a speeding movie star! More alluring than a much-younger woman! Able to attract a sex life in a single gland!) to rescue me, it's not as bad. If I find pretty colors, decent fabrics, and no fucking short-sleeved suits, I'm pretty content.
(Deleted comment)
Apr. 17th, 2005 05:43 pm (UTC)
Ah, the non-slutty rule. I passed that one on myself, probably five to ten years later than I should've, at about 45. Nature has taken it out of my hands now.

And you know, of course, that in my comment above, the word "gland" is a Freudian slip, and that I should have typed "glance." Heh.
Apr. 17th, 2005 06:41 pm (UTC)
This is how much I hate clothes shopping: I'm not a conformist by nature, but I'd gladly submit to mandatory uniforms in the interest of never having to think about what I'm going to wear tomorrow.
Apr. 17th, 2005 06:53 pm (UTC)
Mmm, I hear you. In fact, I wear the same thing every day: black shirt, long black velvet skirt. I have ten identical copies of each of these things. Occasionally they wear out and I have to buy or make replacements, and I even hate doing that. :)
Apr. 17th, 2005 08:58 pm (UTC)
You mean my black skirt black turtleneck colored jacket (or alternatively black trousers black jacket colored shell) ISN'T a uniform?

It's the only way to go.
Apr. 17th, 2005 06:58 pm (UTC)
No offense, but American malls scare me. I used to work in one (I spent a summer working days in a pizza shop and nights in a fabric store in MA) and they're so strange and so plastic. I read in a Bill Bryson book the other day that some people have formed 'Mall Walking' groups and they voluntarily take their exercise there. I was baffled. It's like voluntarily eating Velveeta instead of actual cheddar or stilton or even brie. (And Velveeta. That was another thing that scared me. Cheese product?!)
Apr. 17th, 2005 08:26 pm (UTC)
Mall Walkers are called "Mallies". Very popular with senior citizens trying to get some regular exercise. At least, very popular in Wyoming, where I'm from, if only because it provided a place for people to walk continously on flat ground without having to worry about the weather, which can be...volatile in Wyoming. Plus, places like that have very limited choices for shopping and whatnot, so by comparison, a mall provides a plethora of shopping choices that seem positively cosmopolitan. Sigh. Such is the state of things in rural America.

Since I've moved away from the hinterlands, I've not had occasion to step in a mall very frequently here so I don't know if there are big bands of Mallies like there were in Wyoming.
Apr. 17th, 2005 09:10 pm (UTC)
There are. My mother--whom I've mentioned at FAN as reading DailyKos and subscribing to the New Yorker--was persuaded to join one once, last fall, during her convalescence from a broken wrist. She was fearful of falling again out in the rain.

She described the experience--of the mall walking, not the bonebreaking fall--with shudders. I could see the whites of her eyes. She's never been back.

She's so cool.
Apr. 17th, 2005 09:07 pm (UTC)
Hee! You (and Bill Bryson, whom I love) have summed up mainstream America in two words: Mall and Velveeta. A "dairy" product that doesn't need any refrigeration, ever, should rightfully scare us.

I've lived in both England and France, so, like you, I have some small perspective on Europe/America culture differences. My departure from the Velveetastream probably began in earnest with my experience of real English cheddar. It became final and irreversible several years later, on the day I drank my first petit noir in a Paris cafe. Basic fact: for someone like me, life is better in Europe. I do my little best to bring that sensibility to this American life.
( 13 comments — Leave a comment )



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