Subourbon Mom


Meerkat Shopping
September 18, 2021, 7:00 am
Filed under: shopping | Tags: , ,

Fall not only brings Pumpkin Spice Everything and Coffee Cooters; it also brings school shopping days. I miss those days of throwing pencils, pens, protractors, markers and binders into the cart like bread and milk when a snowstorm is coming. I also miss those days of trailing along behind Daughters 1 & 2 as they paraded through the mall, frowning and rolling their eyes at everything I pulled off the rack. One thing I learned from those excursions, though, is that there are three kinds of shoppers, and they’re all based on fear.

The Buckshot Shopper.  Daughter #1 spends hours browsing through each and every rack, touching, pinching and holding up every piece of clothing in the store. Buckshot Shoppers must see each opportunity for fashion excellence available and understand what that will look or feel like after purchase. When the time comes to select an item of clothing, there is much agonizing over which to choose: What if I buy the wrong one?  What if I missed something that would have been perfect? What if the other store has a better color?

Combo

Buckshot Shoppers cover all the bases by looking at and touching everything. Although this type of shopping may generally come from a place of FOMO (fear of missing out), there are advantages to being a Buckshot Shopper. These intrepid explorers find new styles they might not see online or by zeroing in on only one particular style or item. They find sales that others don’t see form the front of the store and have time to down their pumpkin spice Starbucks potions in a leisurely manner as they browse.

The Surgical Shopper. Daughter #2 begins her shopping journey knowing what she needs, knows it when she sees it, goes into the store or online to order it, and that’s that. The Surgical Shopper touches as few items as possible, most likely because they are either overwhelmed by the selection available or they lack the confidence to sift through all the options: What if I do all this and I still can’t find anything?  What if I can’t afford the thing I want?

surgical shopping

This fear is often couched as “I don’t have time for this crap,” or “I just know what I like.” There are advantages to being a Surgical Shopper, though. A lot of money is saved when you only buy what you know you need and when you don’t drink as many Starbucks pumpkin spice lattes. The time a Surgical Shopper saves can be spent elsewhere.

Meerkat Shoppers can usually be found lingering outside store windows or even cupping their hands around their eyes as they browse from outside the store. Online they hit the same 5 -10 stores they know and like, but rarely venture outside that comfort zone. They also can be found silently watching other shoppers, judging their choices as they come out of the dressing room, weighing whether this or that would fit or look good on them, without having to touch anything. Meerkat Shoppers don’t require as much tactile feedback as Buckshot Shoppers, but they also don’t want to miss any obvious wins. Nor do they keep their focus as narrow as Surgical Shoppers, so they have a better chance of finding something new and out of their comfort zone.

meerkat

Meerkat Shoppers have a combination of the other Shoppers’ fears. They are afraid of missing out, so they watch Buckshot Shoppers as they go through the process (online, Meerkat Shoppers accomplish this by filtering by “Most Popular”). They lack the confidence of Buckshot Shoppers, and so are more Surgical when they finally do swoop in to make their purchases. On the plus side, Meerkat Shoppers often generate a sense of gratification from not making impulse buys and manage to stay somewhat current.

No matter what type of shopper you are, or what combination of these you might be, don’t shop from a place of fear.  Buy the things that make you happy, that you can afford, and that what won’t get you arrested.  You can always find me for more deep thoughts – I’ll be the one surreptitiously looking in the store window.



Dungeons, Dragons and D*!dos, Oh My!

If people judged me by the catalogs I receive, they would probably say I am a woman somewhere between the age of 12 and 75, I prefer being athletic outside (true), I occasionally have an interest in high-end hunting attire (nope), and I may have a fetish for dressing like I play Dungeons and Dragons (also no).

It’s the last catalog topic that I find the most fun.  The Pyramid Collection catalog,  which I receive because I somehow got on a list, is a clothing catalog for wanna-be wiccans, female Renaissance Faire attendees, and those on the fantasy side of Goth (not the EMO, skeletal, dyed black hair and white-face makeup Goths). It bills itself as “Myth, Magick, Fantasy & Romance.”   All true, if your idea of romance is to meet fellow wiccans wearing flowing blouses with  lacy sleeves (think Seinfeld’s “Puffy Shirt”),

puffy

you want to meet prince charming after a joust at your local Medieval Times,

Ren Dress

or your idea of fantasy is to meet a fellow enthusiast at ComiCon while waiting to do a meet-and-greet with the cast of Outlander or Game of Thrones.

Dress 1

But the most interesting thing about this catalog is that right in the middle, where the staples are and where it falls open is a double-page spread of a variety of sex toys for women.  So, in addition to buying the many fantasy-related accoutrements, you can also purchase some toys to help you relieve the loneliness that apparently is assumed will follow the initial purchase. It’s genius, really – cater to women’s fantasies, then cater to them not panning out – all in one catalog.

Perhaps other catalogs should follow suit, in their own way:  Athleta and LuLu Lemon could also put a spread in their catalogs that include the inevitable cheese boards, pizzas and wine that somehow seem to follow those departed New Year’s resolutions.

W CatalogMen’s catalogs could offer sleek suits and upscale weekend wear, but also include a spread with wings, onion rings and a selection of porn (not that I condone porn in any way) when the suits don’t hide the douchey-ness beneath, and they once again are seated with their buddies on a Friday night at BW3s instead of out on a date.

I just can’t believe this marketing trend hasn’t caught on before – addressing the “Who I Want to Be” part of the customer, as well as the “Ok, This is Who I Am” portion, all in one place.

Land’s End is gonna have to step up their game.

 

 

 



10 Commandments of Christmas Shopping at The Mall
December 17, 2019, 5:00 pm
Filed under: shopping | Tags: , , ,
  1. 1362777490homepage_brioI am the mall.  Thou feareth me and loveth me. I am the mall.
  2. Thou shall bring no false values before me, like budgets or credit limits.
  3. Thou shalt not take my name in vain, especially when referring to the unbearably long list of Christmas errands you still have to do because you waited until the last minute. It is not my faulteth you procrastinateth.
  4. Remember Black Friday, and keep it holy.
  5. Honor thy sales and thy markdowns.
  6. Thou shalt not kill…time hanging out in Starbucks or restaurants. Thy shopping list loometh.
  7. Thou shalt not steal thy neighbor’s parking spot when clearly, his indicators blinketh.
  8. Thou shalt not bear false witness against The Mall.  Own up to where you have been; likewise, own up to the time thou killed while chatting with thy neighbor instead of shopping, and the silver thou hast spent.
  9. Thou shalt not covet thy fellow shopper’s loot. They arrivethed first.
  10. Thou shall visit no other retailers but me, especially not Amazon, Wal-mart or Target.


Does Toilet Paper Need a Commercial?
October 24, 2018, 3:05 pm
Filed under: Food/Drink, Misc. Humor, shopping | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Funny-toilet-paper-memeI pity the advertising firms that have to come up with new ways to sell toilet paper and not offend anybody.  Toilet paper has one specific purpose, and it’s gross.  Sure, you can say it has other uses, like failing to adequately remove eye makeup, or sticking to your shoe when you leave the port-o-john, but let’s face it: we don’t buy thick, soft toilet paper because of those little perks.  I buy it because I don’t like wiping my butt with the tree bark found in public restrooms.

The other day I heard a commercial for Cottonelle that asked the experts (young kids), “How clean do you feel after going to the bathroom?” And of course, the kids all had cute things to say like “I feel as clean as a white, tiny kitten.”

Kids are cute, but they are not a surefire strategy for selling your product. If you really want to know if the toilet paper is any good, ask a hairy man – he’ll tell you. Ask a woman with IBS – she’ll know. Ask a woman who’s recently given birth – there better be some soft paper in her bathroom or somebody will pay once she gets a couple of hours of sleep. Or ask someone who has dogs that poop on the carpet a lot – they can tell you how durable and flush-able it is.

But don’t ask little kids about toilet paper and how clean they are – they can’t know.

Young kids are inexperienced wipers. I know because I taught preschool for 10 years, and I can’t tell you how many times kids would try to get me to come in the stall (I didn’t – teachers aren’t allowed to) and check to see if they “wiped right” or “got all the poo off.”  Thanks, pedophiles, for not only making it inappropriate for teachers to hug a crying child, but for creating a situation where children learning to use the toilet stay itchy all day and develop rashes because teachers can’t check and answer that simple question.

Charmin got it right – they used bears in their commercials. Bears are hairy (i.e. credible), but still inoffensive because everybody knows if a bear shits in the woods and nobody’s around to see it…it didn’t happen.

tp2

But the real question is, do we need commercials at all for toilet paper?  I think there are two rules of thumb for this:

  1.  If it’s the generic brand, don’t buy it unless you must choose cost over comfort.
  2.  A commercial isn’t going to tell you that more than 5 squares clogs the toilet, or that it comes apart in your hand mid-wipe.  Your friends tell you that kind of stuff, so go by word-of-moth when it comes to TP purchases.  And if your friends don’t tell you this, you need better friends.


You Really Can Get Everything at Walmart!

I don’t know how or why the Jesus Freaks find me, but they do – and it’s usually at Walmart.  Now, before you get all upset, know that I do believe, but I believe in the privacy of my head and heart.

I’ve had two people tell me in the check-out line that it’s their second birthday, as in, they’re Born Again.  (Personally, I don’t think it’s the best metaphor – why would anyone want to leave their warm, dark cocoon where they have been fed and grown with no effort for the cold, bright world where every day can be a struggle?  How about something like “Refried” instead?)

Ummmm…so you’re Born Again. First, you look tall for a two-year-old.  Second, I’ve had 47 birthdays, and I never once told anyone in a check-out line when they happened.  Third, why do you think I need to know you and Jesus are besties when I’m standing here trying to figure out who wore the superman glasses better – George Clooney or Denzel Washington?

But the best encounter happened yesterday.  I was standing in the freezer aisle at Walmart trying not to buy yet another bag of tater tots, when two teenage girls approached me.

“Excuse me, M’am?” they asked.

“Huh?”

“Hi. Um, would you like us to pray for you?”

“What, here?” I asked.

“Yes.  Or is there someone you would like us to pray for?”

Oh my God, this is a blog happening right now.

“My family – they’ve got issues.”

“Okay. Would you mind if we lay hands on you, or is that too weird?”

“That is definitely too weird.”

Then they said a very nice prayer in the middle of the freezer aisle.

So why me? I recently asked my gym trainer if I have a serious RBF (Resting Bitch Face), because whenever I go to other gyms, the trainers never talk to me, while they talk to everyone else who is new. And it’s not because I’m doing things correctly, either.  She said no (probably for self-protection), that mine wasn’t bad. I just always look like I’m concentrating (#thestruggleisreal).

Why do people feel the need to approach me and tell me all about their relationship with God/Jesus?  Do I have a RSMF (Resting Save Me Face)?  You can’t tell me my RSMF is worse than the woman smacking her kid in the child-abuse aisle, or the addict who’s hanging around in the parking lot asking for cash, or the people who live in their camper in the back of the parking lot. I’m pretty sure they might need help from Above a little more than I do.

So please, let me keep my headphones on while I play my soothing spa music and shop.  And while I don’t want it to happen again, it just proves that you really can get everything at Walmart.




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