My Darling B and I spent the afternoon shopping for clothes. And here’s just one more reason I have to believe she’s the perfect match for me: We both feel that the only thing more painful than shopping for clothes is getting run over by a train. Wait, no: Shopping for a car is probably more painful. I’m pretty sure she’d be with me on that one, too.
Shopping for clothes can never be over and done with quickly enough. Even when I know exactly what I want, and I know exactly where it should be in the store, and the store just happens to have it in my size, it will still take me at least an hour and a half to drive to the store, go into the store, grab the clothes I want, pay for the clothes, get out of the store and drive home. An hour and a half of my weekend is a lot more time than I’m willing to give up for anything but the things I enjoy doing, or absolutely must do.
Unfortunately, we had both put off buying clothes for so long that I was down to the last pair of pants that were good enough to wear in mixed company. I had a few not-so-grubby ones that I could still wear in public, but only if I knew I wouldn’t be going anyplace fancier than the hardware store, or to a place where I knew the lights wouldn’t be very strong, like a corner tavern, or a dungeon. B was in a somewhat similar fix. Looking for new clothes had become something we absolutely had to do, so, with gritted teeth, we saddled up and headed across town to the Hilldale Mall.
B had the idea that she could get what she wanted at Macy’s. That turned out to be wrong, mostly. I think she said she found a handbag there that was exactly what she was looking for, “but I can get it cheaper on the internet.” It turned out she was totally wrong about that. The one at Macy’s was a steal. Well, maybe not exactly a steal, but more affordable than any she could find on teh intarwebs. Now she’ll have to go back.
Macy’s had a pleasant surprise in store (accidental pun) for me: Pants by Dockers. Lots of stores carry Dockers, but never in my size. In fact, I think it’s a state law that Dockers can sell pants in Wisconsin only if they have a waist no smaller than 40 inches. If you’d ever been to the Monroe Cheese Festival, you’d know why. But Macy’s must have been granted a waiver, or somebody goofed up the order, because they had two pairs of Dockers pants in a 33 waist, and I snapped them both up. Didn’t even care that they were priced at fifty-eight bucks apiece. I had to have them. Weirdly, when I checked out, the guy scanned the price tag, then got a little sheet of bar code stickers out of his cash register, peeled one off and placed it on the price tag over the original bar code and scanned it again. He did the same thing to the other pair of pants. I got them both for seventy-something bucks total, so there must have been an unadvertised sale going on. Score!
But the shoe selection at Macy’s was dismal, nothing but very stylish dress shoes, and running shoes. What I really needed was a pair of walking shoes, so I left the store by the main entrance to see what the rest of the mall had to offer and came face to face with a North Face store. That’s too many faces to be coincidental. And besides, North Face wouldn’t sell crappy shoes to hikers, right? So I barged right in and asked the first salesperson I ran into about walking shoes.
She wanted to sell me a pair of flashy running shoes, all shiny silver trimmed with traffic yellow. “Have you got a good walking shoe I could also wear if I wanted to stop into a nice place for a drink?” I asked her. “Something, um, normal-looking?” And indeed she did, a nice all-terrain shoe with leather uppers. She even had it in my size.
Back at the mall, My Darling B was having no luck at all searching for jeans or shirts among the available clothes. She wasn’t doing much better with the shoes. There was one pretty good shoe store at the mall, but a dozen or so people were competing for face time with the few salesmen on staff, so she gave up on that. We regrouped outside Macy’s to discuss our options and she decided to try one more time down the other way, while I amused myself in the toy store. They had dinosaurs. There’s still no toy better than a toy dinosaur.
Eventually, we had to make a trip to the Kohl’s store right down the road from the neighborhood where we live to find some jeans she could live with. They’ve got sparklies on the butt, but I guess she’s okay with that. I’ve never seen her with sparklies on her butt before. It’s a new thing for me. Maybe a good thing. I’ll have to think about it a while.