Where did all my money go? Oh, yeah. Target.
Don't you just love Target? Ugh, me too.
Yesterday I had a few errands to run so naturally, I gathered my things and embarked to the second Happiest Place On Earth. Every time I go to Target, I make a list of everything I need and try to stay focused in order to avoid unnecessary purchases.
I'm certainly not the first person to call Target a money pit (a beautiful, glorious money pit). But can I just say HOLY *poopemoji*. How do they do it?? How do they suck us in every time?
You'd think I'd be more apt to spend at Ulta or Madewell, but Target?? A store that sells both mildew cleaner and my new favorite linen dress — wait is that a new crossbody bag ... I need that. WHOA when did Burt's Bees get a stawberry chapstick? Is that a new Maybelline mascara? WHEN DID ESSIE START SELLING GEL NAIL POLISH?!
^ ^ ^ That's how, people. That's how.
OK, back to yesterday.
I was doing fine with the first few items on my list, casually passing by fellow shoppers and keeping my eyes on the prize. I stopped and looked at nail polishes for a bit and threw one in my cart — I chucked it before I went to pay, I swear!!!
So there I was, minding my own business, picking up a new shampoo ... and then I turned ever so slightly. What are those shiny things on the end cap of the stationary aisle? Is that the Millennium Falcon I see? Darth Vader? R2-D2? Suddenly, I had no control over my body and therefore can't be held responsible for the rest of my actions that day. It was like a gravitational pull. Like the Death Star reeling in the Falcon in Episode IV.
Before I knew it, I was standing in front of Papyrus' latest creation: Star Wars greeting cards. We're talking Bedazzled cards for all occasions. Like any sane person, I read a few. OK, I read them all. Then somehow, one landed in my cart. I don't know how it happened, but it did. I wonder what other new cards they have? I did have a new baby cousin, after all. Maybe I could just peruse the section for a bit. A few friends have birthdays coming up ... maybe I could sneak a peek at a few funny cards, too.
So there I stood. A solid 20 minutes spent looking at pieces of paper I did not need.
WHAT ARE YOU DOING. ABORT MISSION. GET OUT OF THERE, SOLDIER.
I snapped back to reality (Star Wars card still in cart at this point) a few seconds later. I unlocked my phone to look at my store list and marched on.
While I was in the home section, I noticed the baby clothing just a Kropog or two away. The little itty bitty shirts and the little itty bitty swimsuits and ohmygoodness, the little itty bitty socks!!! Spoiler alert: the next thing I knew, I was sifting through baby clothes.
Before I continue, I need to explain that I do not have — nor am I planning to have — any offspring in the near future (just ask my mom — she's joked about putting a dating ad for me in the paper and often jokes about my future as a cat lady).
I do, however, have a new baby cousin (did I mention that already?) and nothing better to do so what the heck, I'm going to look at tiny clothes for tiny humans.
THE LITTLE COATS! THE LITTLE SWEATERS! THE LITTLE SKINNY JEANS!!!
*throws skinny jeans in cart*
After another half hour, I made my way to the shoe section. In my defense, my mom was eyeing some shoes and wanted me to try them on for her. Don't worry, I didn't buy anything ... this time, at least.
... but two weeks ago I was looking around the shoe section and stumbled upon the most beautiful shoes I'd ever seen (OK, not really, but pretty close). They were jellies. That looked like Birkenstocks. Clear with glitter. And the best part? They were in the little girl's section AND THEY FIT! And that my friends, is how I spent $12.
... OK, back to the present.
After striking out in the shoe section, my feet hovered over to the clothes (the gravitational pull, I tell ya).
Shirts? Bleh. Jeans? Nah. But would you look at that cardigan.
At this point in time I'd like to point out that I live in California. It's the middle of July. And the high yesterday was 100 degrees.
But none of that mattered because hello, it's Target. I don't make the rules.
After the cardigan creeped its way into my cart, I perused the bags. I've been in search of a good crossbody for the past month so this stop seemed valid. I grabbed four bags, threw 'em in the cart and tried them on in a mirror.
"Would this match most of my clothes?" I asked the mirror. "Is this too big?" "Will this fit all of my stuff?" "Does it lay weird on my hip?"
Eventually, the long mirror told me which bag was the fairest of them all and it was then that I realized I forgot a good chunk of the items I actually needed ... after I took a detour two hours ago. (TWO HOURS AGO).
You know how quick sand is often featured in scary adventure movies? When a person is slowly being pulled down by the sand and eventually they're trapped?
I was the human; Target was the quick sand.
I chose a bag and threw it in with the other non-necessities. I pulled, yanked and scratched my way out of the quick sand. It wasn't easy, but the Force was with me and I made it out safely.
*** cue Rocky theme ***
I gathered the last of the items I needed and glanced down at my cart. I looked at each and every item longingly. I stared, thought and stared some more. Slowly and one-by-one, I started to put a few items back.
*** cue Sarah McLachlan ***
I will remember you ... will you remember me ...
And that's when I cried in the middle of a Target aisle.
Hah just kidding. But almost.
I gathered myself, held back my tears and made a beeline for the registers.
DON'T LOOK. KEEP YOUR EYES STRAIGHT AHEAD. YOU DO NOT NEED GUM, YOU DO NOT NEED GUM, YOU DO NOT NEED GUM.
GUESS WHAT?! I didn't buy gum. But only because I already bought some last week.
I left the store spending less than $150. I felt like a failure. What had I done? What did my debit card do to deserve this kind of abuse? What happened to my self-control?
I'll give you one word: Target.
On a high note, I am the proud new owner of a light grey cardigan and crossbody bag ... so, I mean, who is the real loser here?
Yeah, I know. Still me.