A few things I noticed at the Biggest Mall in All The Land:
- There is a hell of a lot of walking at the mall. This mall in particular, which has a hellish layout and is the most discombobulating mall on earth, is mentally and physically taxing. I think, I think it is vaguely in a figure 8 with a couple of off-shooting loops, but in all the years I've been going there, I've never really figured out how to get around it without the help of signs and a Sherpa. And it seems that no matter what store we want to go to, it is at the exact opposite end of the mall and requires a snack before embarking. Big Liver Girl very nearly barfed right in the middle of that mall that last time she was there; she says from the flu, but I think it was dizzyness from trying to negotiate her way from the parking lot to the Gap.
- Store that cater to my children's age group are all very dark and very loud. I'm not sure what the strategy is behind "So! Lets have minimal lighting in here, so that you can barely make out if you are holding a wetsuit or a nightie, and then make sure the music is blaring so loudly that you can't even ask the person who works here! And also! Let's make sure our employees are all brain-damaged from the noise, and can't hear you anyway! It will be so cool!" Seriously, that marketing genius should have to spend time in their own stores as penance. I want to remind them that the person with the money is the cranky, middle-aged scowler in the corner, and if you want me to spend it in your store, you should not look at me like I'm Sadaam Hussein when I ask you to turn the music down.
- Believe me, I know what a nightmare it can be to work retail; I've done it. In fact, I think that every single person over the age of 15 should be required to work as a waiter or in retail.... just young Israelis are required to serve in the army. But honestly, while you are doing it, would it kill you to acknowledge my presence or even, heaven forbid, say hello or smile? Believe me, you would look much cooler and hipper if you didn't look like you had spent the last week in rehab, and now weren't sure if you could keep it up.
- My daughters spend a puzzling amount of time in a change room. I think next time I will bring a book to pass the time; I don't know what the hell they are doing in there for all that time, but they look considerably older when they come out.
- The correct outfit for a day at the mall is not what I was wearing. One should not dress as though one were going outside, even though one has to go outside to get to the mall. One should dress as though one were going inside. I was wearing a winter jacket, mittens, a turtleneck and winter boots. The mall's internal temperature is closer to the surface of the sun than Ontario in January, and I nearly fainted several times, from heat stroke.
Believe it or not, my two daughters have just asked if I would drop them off at the mall this evening (our local mall), and I will happily do so, as long as I don't have to go in.