Wednesday, December 12, 2007

And on the 7th day, God created Target...

Much as I like living in Argentina, I really pine for regular conjugal visits from my beloved Target, whose goods are getting more fantastically amalgamated in design-n-practicality all the time. If I had to whine about one expatting experience here, it'd be: I just can't stand the lack of choices in everyday products! I know it's a pansy-ass first-world problem, but hey, why the hell should I censor myself on my own blog? Let's face it, the jumbo Jumbo can't meet barely half my consumer wants. Look what today's perusal turned up: Candles that reek of synthetic fragrance, on par with reject candles you'd find at 99 cent stores in the states, towels that are little more than gauze in their absorbency, mediocre body soaps (except for maybe these new imported Dove cream bars), juice readily sweetened with aspartame (actually, food rants deserve their own post). And forget being able to afford exotic home decor crafted Some Place Else (though if you're hard up, you can always amble over to OKKO where it's marked up a bazillion percent). It's just no fun checking off an everyday shopping list. Yet at mon amour Tarjay, even the commonplace is quality and a good bargain.

I am old enough to recall the days back in the 80s and 90s when Target was as unhip as Walmart and K-Mart (though really, no place can quite rival Walmart for its share of Nascar-shirted sloppers and shelf after shelf of ravaged goods). But thanks to an image makeover and just better, more selective products, Target is now ballparking Old Navy in the clothing department, Ikea in the Office department, and Pier One in the Home department--all under one roof and with a Starbucks in the foyer to boot. During my last T-spree, I found a groovy, 100% cotton, retro floor-length halter dress for like 30 bucks (what would it be here at John L. Cook?), a bejeweled Madras table runner for like 20 bucks, a gorgeous black wallet clutch for like cheapoh bucks, and adorable Swedish-looking desktop caddies for my classroom for like...whatever it was, I was able to afford one for each student. Not too shabby. Functional beauty at a discount. Win/win.

I realize there's more here than meets the eyes. Supply and demand, economics, all fueled by politics. And there are worse things for an Argentine to worry about, like double-digit inflation, than what array of products is available. I wanna shut up about this because I'm privileged enough to be making dollars over pesos. Still, it's human nature to discriminate and differentiate. In fact, on Bloom's Taxonomy, Synthesis (seeing patterns from diverse elements) and Evaluation (with bitching being its evil twin) are all higher-level thinking skills, so I guess you could say I'm just practicing what I teach.

Bitchfest aside, this post is really about my upcoming shopping spree at Target, so grab an hour or two and walk down these virtual aisles with me, k?

[Best finds ever: The Spanish vocabulary shower curtain, $20, and the stainless steel countertop compost pail, $24.99, 4th picture. Other noteworthy stuff: 100% cotton eyelet bed in a bag, webcam with speakers, funky lanterns, poetry cubes, cool pleather bag.]


Anonymous said...

Wow. I just just just got back from Target about 10 mins ago and i got on your blog cuz that store always reminds me of us 3. there's nothing like sister bonding at Target :]

Ken said...

Target also has nice pants!