Just Me

Just Me
Look,I'm just sayin'

Tuesday, June 6, 2017


 I'm not much on shopping. Like most men, I know what I want, go to the store and buy it. It is a fairly straightforward deal. As a result I really haven't been to many malls. I've been to the Dover mall and I guess a few others, I don't know. But yesterday I took my granddaughter to the Annapolis Mall. It is the largest mall I've ever been in. Maybe it was just the size of the place, or maybe it is just my age, but I was immediately struck with a single thought, we sure are a consumer driven society ! I  witnessed a gluttony of consumerism and it made me feel just a little sick. Is this what America has really come to ? It was a Monday morning, shouldn't folks be at work ? This mall wasn't filled with old retired folks, no the demographic was as varied as America itself, and everyone seemed to be rushing about or drooling over some product. That is, the ones that weren't on their phones. It was just a sobering thing to me.
 I spent about three hours there and must have walked a few miles. Shop after shop showing their wares. Some of those shops shouldn't be showing their wares, at least not in front of the children ! But again, I guess I'm old school the only place I saw those things growing up was in the sears catalogue, when Mom wasn't around. I admit it was a staggering array of products, intermixed with food and drink. Every once in a while I came across what I called the " living " room. Right in the middle of the corridor there would be a large carpet, some wing back chairs and a coffee table. Folks were just sitting there, on their phones, relaxing. I just found it strange. It was definitely designed to make you stay longer.
 The thing that bothered me was all that glitz and glitter. I understand the concept, get them in your store, but still it struck me as a bit too much. These stores weren't there to fill a need, there were there to create a desire. That is what bothers me. I began to think it is no wonder so many are the way they are today. This mall and so many others just like it are designed to make you want stuff. They are planting that seed of, I have to have this ! I watched as the people shopped. Shoes and clothes seemed to top the list. Then I came around a bend and there was this strange place. A big open room with long tables in it. On those tables where some kind of electronic devices. The walls were covered with what appeared to be large flat screen monitors. There were quite a few people lined up at those tables being circled by other people wearing green polo shirts. Every once in a while the green polo shirt people would swoop in to the table and take the devices out the peoples hands. I stood, just staring, what in the heck ? My granddaughter looks at me and says. it's the Apple store. I just look at her and say, Apples ? She gives me that scornful look of, OMG are you stupid, and says I-phones and tablets Grandpa. All in all I found that store very creepy and I didn't go in there.
 Now, having witnessed all this consumerism it didn't make me want to run into the wilderness and start living a minimalist lifestyle but I'd say it was an eye opener. No wonder so many people feel underprivileged in society today. If you were exposed to that as a child and grew up that way it would certainly change your thinking. This is how we are supposed to be right ? Get money and go to the mall to buy stuff ! We are buying stuff just to buy it, it isn't a necessity or a real need. The only need being satisfied is the need to get more stuff. I don't know, I just felt repulsed. That is the only word I can think of to describe it. As a reflection of American society I did find it repulsive, somehow vulgar and vain. It just struck me as a place that is all about " me " and what I want. If I have the money or credit I can satisfy my every desire in this mini city of gluttony ! It is a consumer overload for sure. Far more stuff that anyone would ever need. My parting remark I made to my wife, I sure miss the day when the biggest store you went to was Woolworths. That was all the shopping I needed.