When most teenage girls go shopping at the mall with their parents, they look forward to those one or two hours of freedom where they get to run crazy through their favorite stores (and flirt with cute boys, of course!). But instead of spending my allowance at Charlotte Russe, Aeropostale or Claire's, you'd find me resting on a bench with an Auntie Anne's pretzel waiting for my mother to return at the designated time and place I had given her.
It's not that I don't enjoy finding a great deal or major purchase; however, I prefer retail on a less crowded scale. Translation: Online shopping and boutique stores.
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For as far back as I can remember, a rush of anxiety would come over me as soon as I felt the frigid mall air conditioning or caught a whiff of the overly-vacuumed carpet. No matter how headache-inducing the experience, my aunts and cousins would be beaming in front of the department stores' lighting and signage boasting "50% off" or "Buy 1, Get 1 free."
My anti-mall stance may have started with my mom's need to order all school and play-clothes from the JCPenney catalog until age 15. But I still have yet to get excited about making my way through hoards of people and obtrusive kiosks, especially when I can get my hands on a coveted item with a click of my mouse or assistance of a personal shopper.
I also have a short temper when it comes to rude mall employees. While it may not be everyone's career goal to constantly fold T-shirts, chase little kids between sale racks or dispute what exactly is on sale, if you are unable to represent the clothing or beauty brand professionally (and preferably with a smile), stay out of my way. I can put in a customer service complaint faster than you can say sorry.
Another con that comes with shopping at the mall: Walking for what seems like an eternity. The layout is ideal for burning a few calories and mindlessly shedding pounds. Yet, I'd rather not trek a mile to get to the only store I'm interested in because parking was only available on the opposite side.
Who's with me?