Why I Hate Shopping

This picture lies. No one actually looks this happy while shopping.

Well, I don’t hate all shopping.  I like shopping for school supplies.  And nail polish.  And books.  And I don’t particularly hate grocery shopping, as long as I don’t go when it’s super busy.  But shopping for clothes?  I’m not sure there’s a quicker way to get me frustrated, annoyed, and generally bad-moody.

This past weekend was tax-free weekend in Tennessee.  For those of you who don’t know, tax-free weekend is a magical time, usually right before school starts, when some states waive sales tax on clothes and school supplies.  The tax break itself isn’t a huge difference (although it does save you 9.25% here), but many stores will have sales on top of it to get more business during the busy shopping weekend.

Normally I avoid shopping on weekends like this because it just makes an already frustrating process even more obnoxious, but I really needed some new gray dress pants, leggings, and various other items for work.  And since I’m on a bit of a tight budget at the moment, tax-free seemed like a good way to go.

It started off well, with a plan for avoiding most of the chaos.  I went to Target late Friday night to avoid crowds and found some cute dresses and good work shoes (last year I tried to buy higher quality work shoes…I wore them once and had such horrible blisters I never wore them again.  Cheap Target shoes all the way!)  All-in-all a successful trip, although no success finding the two main items on my list.

Saturday morning I was working on the dreaded AMAZING skills needed worksheet (positive framing, Rachel, positive framing).  Once my brain started revolting, I went over to the mall to hit Macy’s and Lane Bryant, two stores where I can pretty reliably find stuff for work.  Of course, the mall was all kinds of nuts, but I managed to find a parking spot and hit up Macy’s first.

And that’s when things started to go downhill.  There wasn’t much that was actually cute AND professional, and what was there was not budget friendly.  I can usually find leggings at Macy’s (it’s where my old ones are from), but the cropped ones that supposedly come to mid-calf hit me right above the ankle and the full-length ones bunched up at the bottom, looking awful.  The one pair that did fit right was made of that terrible leotard-ish material that makes that horrible swishing noise when you walk.  I did find a black pencil skirt and a nice top, but they were a little pricier than I wanted and still no gray pants or leggings.

I put the two things I liked on hold and left Macy’s to go to Lane Bryant, only to discover that the Lane Bryant in the mall had closed.  Like, was empty and gone closed.  I went back to Macy’s and bought my two items, which I knew meant I was going to need to return things at some point because I had spent my whole budget and still didn’t have two big things I needed.

I remembered seeing a new Lane Bryant in a shopping center a few miles away, so I drove out there after leaving the mall.  I pulled up to the store right in front of the sign informing me that they would not be open until August 10.  Grrrrrr.  The only other Lane Bryant in the area is out in Cordova near the mall, and I wasn’t about to go out there on a Saturday afternoon.  I was already planning on going to a friend’s house in Cordova Sunday evening, so I decided to just go to Lane Bryant beforehand.

Sunday evening, after church and more banging my head against the skills needed worksheet, I drove out to Cordova.  I got to the store sometime between 5:15 and 5:30, and thankfully found some things that worked.  I think it’s ridiculous to spend $30 on leggings, but that’s what they had, it was tax-free, and I had a “get $25 off when you spend $75” coupon, so I wasn’t too bothered.  Until I went to check out and discovered that my wallet was sitting on my desk in my room 25 minutes away.  At this point, it was 5:50 and the store was closing at 6:00.  Fantastic.

I put the pants and leggings on hold and left, feeling all kinds of frustrated.  I had to drive all the way back out to Cordova yesterday after work and since the weekend was over, I had to pay full sales tax.  And now I have to figure out what to return and actually go back to those stores and do that, which is something I really have no love for.

I’m really looking forward to the day where I can just push some buttons and my closet will automatically dress me in cute things that fit perfectly, like on the Jetsons.  That’ll happen soon, right?

*Photo Credit: Zurich Tourismus (Creative Commons)

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  • A collection of ramblings and musings on Jesus, life, education, family, and anything else that pops into my head.

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