Monday, May 3, 2010
Barbara: I’m not a sucker for sales—it’s not like I can’t pass one by without gorging, BUT…if I need something, say a shirt or a new pair of jeans, there’s something about getting it on sale that turns me into the proverbial rabid dog.
I feel this inexplicable joy at being able to nab that perfect item—or near-perfect (because, yes, I will throw “perfect” to the wolves if “near-perfect” is good enough and 50% off)—from the sales racks.
But this is the part that kills me—I can’t leave self-satisfaction alone. If someone notices and/or compliments something I’m wearing, I must share, rejoice, and celebrate my purchase-triumph. Me, breathlessly: “You like it?! Well, this dress was originally $250, but then it was marked down to $120, which was already great, but when I got to the cash, it was only $87!!!!” Even as I hear the exultation pouring from my mouth, I have begun to cringe at the sound of my own joy. It’s so embarrassing. To the poor gal-pal I’ve cornered, I must sound like either a gloating Braggerton or a Cheapie McCheaperton. Why can’t I just say “Thank you” and leave it at that???
Deb: Oh to be you! I would save a fortune! I admire you, I really do. But when I compliment something fabulous on someone and they say they got it on sale, the item is instantly lowered in my estimation. I think, “Clearly something was wrong with it to go so cheaply.”
When I shop I love to see each piece on its own mannequin––featured and standing proud––saying, “Look at me, I’m brand new and sexy, right off the runway. You need me!”
Sales are so very sad to me. Pieces once so full of promise are now squished and tossed on tables with no regard for seasons or ensemble-looks. “Oh, look a Michael Kors evening jacket!”––yeahbut, COVERED IN DEODORANT STAINS, with FINGERPRINTS and DRESSING ROOM CA-CA on the hem. Poor bastard!
I may have to eat mac and cheese for a solid week, but I’ll stick with my shiny new clothes. They are out there, waiting for me.
Barbara: And I wish I had your commitment! Purely intellectually, I see how it’s good for those creative geniuses who design the clothes and for the tailors and crafts-people who construct them that I save my money in order to spend it wisely in support of the best quality stuff. But my inner-commoner can’t help thinking, “To hell with it, what’s a little dirt and dressing room ca-ca when there’s the gentle-cycle at home and an iron, and it’s ON SALE!!! And anyway, if I don’t buy it, it would only go to that sad, lonely world of Unwanted Clothes where it will die a tragic and unnatural death. I am here to save it from obscurity and ruin!”
I am the Green Peace Warrior of clothing.
But I’ve been meaning to tell you that your new half-price linen jacket is missing a button.