Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Outlet Mall Randomness

Yesterday I visited a “snooty” mall and a “normal generic” mall. Today’s little shopping adventure involved going to a nearby outlet mall.

I shop here several times a year, always visiting Eddie Bauer and Reebok/Rockport and usually buying something at one or the other.

All I wanted today was shoes, specifically casual shoes in some shade of brown with a sole that might not be slippery on wet pavement like the shoes I am about to throw away because they are slippery.

Reebok and Rockport did not have what I wanted, which is a first. I’ve always been able to find what I’m looking for there.

Nike, Bass and one or two others did not either, not in my size anyway. Am I too picky?

Last time I tried on Timberlands was ten years ago. They never fit right. But I walked into their outlet store anyway, just to see what they had. I walked out with two pairs of casual shoes in shades of brown. Maybe I found a new brand today. Maybe I was duped. I’ll let you know in a few months or the first time I slip on wet pavement.

In an attempt to avoid holiday traffic on I-70, I tried to take a parallel non-interstate route home. I got lost in Hagerstown because I assumed two things: that I knew where the other highway was and that there would be signs directing me to the other highway. Silly me.

This post is NOT an ad for any of the brands I mentioned nor is it an endorsement. I just want to be clear about that.

Yes, I know that just because something is at an outlet store does not mean it is the same style or quality as that same brand but sold at a lower price. I do know that some products are made specifically for the outlet malls, often at a slightly or greatly reduced quality level. But I have been generally happy with purchases of my favorite brands at their outlet stores, so I keep going back.

I would never be confused with a guy who has style, but I do sort of have “a look.” Jeans, khaki and brown cargo pants, long sleeve t-shirts in various shades of blue and rust, plaid shirts or solid-color Henley shirts. I should call it “suburban 45-year-old.” Think that’ll catch on?

I do still have a closet full of Hawaiin shirts, just in case that style comes back. Or in case I just feel like wearing them. I don’t really care that much about style.

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