Wednesday, August 4, 2010
Many Saturdays, Suzanne and I could be found at Eastland Mall in Bloomington, Illinois, strolling through all the stores, checking out the latest styles, trying on clothes, buying clothes, having lunch, looking at more clothes, buying more clothes.
Now, I hate to shop. And it's no wonder.
Most women's clothes of today are designed for six-feet-tall teenagers weighing a hundred pounds or less: dresses and blouses splattered with bright blues, oranges, purples, not to mention those horrible zebra stripes; very short, odd-looking skirts with belts dangling on the hips; suits with jackets ending just below the bust line (which make a normal woman's hips look wider than Oprah's!), and those five-inch heels, with toes sharp enough to smash cockroaches in the corner.
A few weeks ago, I traipsed all over Kentucky Oaks Mall searching for a nice dress or suit to wear to my nephew's wedding. But when I entered Dillard's, I knew I was in trouble. They were having a sale, and The Regulars were out in full-force.
The Regulars are women who shop til they drop. All the time. And when a sale is going on, they go crazy, traveling in packs, rushing here and there, huffing and puffing, giggling and squealing:
"Ooooh, look at this, Maxine, this would look SO cute on you!"
"Oh, no, Joyce," Maxine says, mopping her brow with an embroidered handkerchief, "It would look a whole lot cuter on you!"
I was in a bad mood (as I usually am when I shop), so I moved as far away from them as possible. The other side of the store, actually. But as soon as they spotted me, they rushed over and start pawing through clothes on the very rack I was looking through. When I moved to another rack, they moved right along with me:
"Oooh, look at that CUTE zebra-stripe dress!" says Joyce, her moist breath on my neck, "Do you think they have it in size twenty?"
"I dunno," says Maxine, turning to me: "Do you see a twenty over there?"
I grit my teeth and try to arrange my face in a pleasant look: "No, these are all eights and tens."
A sudden blast of music almost knocks me flat: Johnny Cash and June Carter's "Ring of Fire."
It is Joyce's cell phone. She lets it ring a while (to make sure every customer in Dillard's hears it, I suppose), and then she answers. In my EAR:
"WHAT!" she barks,"No! We ain't through yet!"
"Husbands!" she says, dropping the phone in her gigantic gold purse and rolling her eyes at me.
I leave the store without buying a thing.
I know I'm sounding like a bitch, and I guess I am. When it comes to The Regulars.
All words and pictures © 2008 Brenda G. Wooley