I realized recently that I don’t like to shop. For clothes. I know, I must be some sort of mutant. We have a decent sized thrift store a block away and last week was the first time I went there to look for clothes for myself. I ended up giving up about five minutes in and spent the rest of the time (until our laundry was finished at the laundromat across the street) scanning the books and trying to keep Simon from destroying the shoe shelves.
I really wish I liked to shop. I like clothes. I like new clothes (even if they’re just new to me). And I love to find a great deal. But maybe that is part of the problem. Maybe shopping is a pain because finding a good price + good fit + good style = total frustration. And maybe it is because my shopping buddy has his own agenda and whenever we go out I spend more time trying to make him happy than focusing on the task at hand. Or maybe it is because I feel like I’m rifling through someone else’s closet and they are going to come in at any moment and say, “Hey. What are you doing? You don’t belong here.” This happens no matter where I go. I feel as self conscious shopping at Gap as I do at Goodwill. I remember going in to Gap a few years ago to use the restroom and feeling like someone was going to come up to me as soon as I walked through the door and say, “Excuse me, but I can tell by your outfit today that you do not belong here. Let me show you the exit.” And then I realized that I was wearing a Gap shirt and I felt a little bit more secure.
So I rarely buy clothes. The jeans I bought over four years ago bit the dust before Christmas and I spent about 20 minutes in two stores (while Micah chased Simon) before calling it a night. Micah’s co-worker (who was giving him shopping tips for me) ended up giving me a pair of jeans that were such a good deal she couldn’t pass them up, even though they didn’t fit her very well. I really like them.
There was a time in my late teens when clothes shopping was beginning to appeal to me. I had two friends who shared the same taste in clothes and the same love of bargains and quirky t-shirts. We’d scour the local thrift store on Friday afternoons and they were kind enough to let me have some of their good finds while I was still learning the ropes. But it’s been a while since those days. They live across the country now and I’m a little rusty.
The past few months I’ve been browsing online a lot more. The clearance sections of various sites offer plenty of eye candy, but how am I to know if it actually fits? And who wants to pay for shipping anyway? Maybe I need to find me some new shopping buddies.