Thursday, September 6, 2007


A.k.a. another post where I discuss stereotypically female behavior. Only I like shopping.

I enjoy going into a store and trying on lots and lots of different clothes, despite what I said here.

I don't enjoy shopping for things I need. I don't enjoy shopping by myself as much as shopping with somebody else. I don't enjoy shopping in an environment where there are fifty different versions of the same thing. I don't enjoy shopping when I am broke (you need the possibility of buying) and I don't enjoy shopping when money is not an issue (hard choices add to the intensity of the experience).

The rules continue: Your companion has to be capable of enthusiasm for ridiculous items of clothing (taffeta skirts, plaid shorts) but also of pointing out real ugliness. Both parties have to have equal luck finding things -- it is depressing to get worked up over an article of clothing when the person you are shopping with hates everything. Or vice versa. You need a wide vista of time. Time to reconsider, to try things on over and over again and stare at your own reflection as though you've never seen yourself before.

I went shopping on Monday. All the necessary ingredients were there, including a $300 coat by a designer I'd never heard of that looked better on me than anything ever had before or ever will again.

I could not buy the coat for reasons ranging from the Southern California weather to the coat itself, which was unlined and had no zipper.

It didn't matter. The possibilities were enough. The coat was untouched. It had no associations with my actual life, only with a world where everything would be sleeker, cleaner and better.

So I bought a skirt and left.

If I didn't like shopping, like I don't like cleaning, I'd wonder why my own physical appearance in a revised and improved format seemed to offer me the hope of a better world.


chanchow said...

i no longer like shopping for clothes. more and more often, clothes that i think should fit me just don't look right. shopping for pants is especially humbling. on the other hand, i like shopping for plants, housewares and furniture.

Captain Colossal said...

That's why I don't like shopping for clothes I actually need. I go in there hoping to find things that look a particular way, and then those things don't fit the way I think they should. I too find pants to be especially demanding.

But if I'm shopping for the sake of shopping and trying on the most elaborate and crazy clothes I can find because I like the way they look as objects, it's kind of fun.

Plants, housewares and furniture are also fun to shop for, though I always get depressed plant shopping because I know I'll kill off the plant.

Tracy said...

hot skirt!

Captain Colossal said...

It was a hot skirt.