I'm working on my shopping lists today. If I don't have a list with me when I'm shopping I get sort of lost. You see, in addition to whatever I aim to shop for at the time, I also carry around in my mind a list of things to watch for. Often I'm on the lookout for cool, inexpensive stuff for GEMs gifts or centerpieces. And then there's the perennial list of household wants/needs, currently: milk glass plates for my guest room wall, a "trophy shelf" for Katherine, cherry wood tray for the living room, anything to decorate the kitchen. Not that I actually plan to buy any of those things. I'm just looking for a good deal on them - then maybe I'll buy.
So you can imagine what happens to me. I'm in a store shopping for an item, say a shirt for one of my daughters. But they've got a housewares sale going. I take a detour past housewares, scanning all the displays. Is there anything there worth picking up? My mind is whirring through that unofficial list. The look on my face? Something close to catatonic. If my husband is with me he'll get annoyed. He usually says, "You've got that deer-in-the-headlights look". That's my cue to snap out of it. But sometimes it's all so overwhelming that it's hard to get back in focus.
Part of the problem isn't just me. It's the stores. So many stores today are HUGE. At least the ones we go to most often are. Home Depot: not just hardware these days. You might find decorative stuff or even food (btw my husband highly recommends the Home Depot on Butterfield by 355 for lunch. You can get a great Polish there). Department stores: more than mere clothing and housewares. Sometimes they stock furniture and electronics (I'm not talking Sears. They've always been that way), even books. I wish I could think of some of the more ridiculous stuff I've seen. Occasionally I think, "what is that doing here?". So I'd say it's not just me losing my focus. As a person with a marketing degree (did I just admit that?), I'd say a lot of retailers are spreading themselves too thin trying to be everything to everyone and are losing their focus. Except Home Depot. They know how to catch those contractors on a supply run right around lunchtime. That's a smart move.
Back to me. I'm still working on my shopping list. Hopefully when I trek out for Christmas gifts in the next few days I can stay on track. And if you happen to come across somebody in a store with their eyes glazed over, cut them some slack. After all, it is the holiday season.