(I may not particularly care for the animated special anymore but I still love this piece of music.)
It’s that time of year again: this is the time when everyone is racing about, trying to get those last minute presents before Christmas day. Most store shelves have been picked over and the malls are crowded beyond belief. For some, this is a happy time of year; they enjoy the thrill of the gift hunt, if you will.
I’m not one of those people.
There’s a problem with getting older; by the time the holidays roll around at the end of the year, you already have everything you may need or want. There isn’t a lot of stuff out there that could be considered a decent present for the likes of someone like me. I’ve either already purchased it or I’ve made plans to do so in the near future. So trying to shop for someone in my position can be problematic. Then of course, there’s the gift card option but that has its own set of problems.
I don’t enjoy shopping anymore. The mall just isn’t set up for me anymore.
Back when I was a teenager in the Stone Age of the 1990s, most malls had at least one mixed media store–CDs, videos, books and the like all in one handy locale–a bookstore or two along with a Spencer’s Gifts. Throw in a Kay Bee Toys and Babbage’s and I could spend most of the day wandering the place. And that’s not including odd little stores like the occasional Rite Aid or Everything’s A Dollar! When I was a teen in the 90s, I spent a lot of weekends walking the floors of the local mall.
Today’s a different story.
Most bookstores are gone. Mixed media outlets have given way to the likes of Best Buy. Kay Bee is a wisp of a fading memory. Spencer’s Gifts still exists but it’s hardly a reason for me to take the jaunt across town. Now the local mall is filled with clothing shops or odd specialty stores which hold little or no interest for me–do I really want to go to a mall to get a Sleep Number bed? The once hallowed halls of consumerism feel empty; there is nothing at the mall that I wish to buy. There simply isn’t anything there for me anymore. And that makes me feel a little old.
Granted, shopping online has made things a lot easier: I was able to get my husband some nice Japanese Transformers back in the late 90s but it comes at a bit of a price; sure, I can buy books cheaply on Amazon but I can’t sit there and read a Calvin and Hobbes book before I decide to purchase it. Window shopping–at least in my case–seems to be a bit of a lost art, which makes me a little sad.
Maybe I shouldn’t be too upset over this. Since I have fewer reasons to go to the mall, I won’t spend as much money there. That’s always a plus.