Torch confession: I love to shop

Like a lot of others out there, I love to shop.

You name it—I’m always excited to purchase new shoes, new books to read or video games to play. However, over the past few years, I’ve realized how annoying the physical task of shopping is, especially in malls and department stores. However, I still like to go to the mall. I’m kind of a walking contradiction.

First, certain types of sales associates annoy the crap out of me. You know, the ones who practically follow you around the store trying to upsell you as much as possible or ask you every five minutes if you need any help. I’m perfectly fine and if I need help, I’ll ask for it—thank you.

Now, I completely understand that it’s a sales associate’s job to help their customers, and I’m also aware that companies constantly prod their employees to interest the buyer in buying more than they came in for. However, I’ve dealt with a ton of store employees who completely overstepped this concept. I don’t need a personal assistant while I browse for a new pair of jeans.

With that being said, I don’t hate all sales reps and I’ve had plenty who were very polite and helpful but didn’t overstep any boundaries, especially in stores like LUSH and Hot Topic. However, some other stores in the mall and elsewhere should take notes from their employees.

Second, some of the other mall-goers seriously need to take a chill pill. I kid you not, I’ve gotten a dirty look from a 13-year-old girl who looked like she’d walked out of an ad for Forever 21 because I took too long putting various toppings on my FroYo. (I was trying to make a frozen yogurt banana split, okay? That requires more than one topping.)

I’ve also had the parking space that I was politely and obviously waiting for stolen by a woman in an SUV who was the definition of an aggressive driver.

At a mall outside Boston, I got a bottle of Dr. Pepper from a vending machine that fizzed over upon opening. There was a smoothie place nearby, so I asked the cashier if I could have some napkins, since there were none to take on the counter. She seemed confused, so I told her what happened. She narrowed her eyes at me and asked, “Nothing to eat or drink?” I replied, “No, thank you, I just need some napkins please.” She proceeded to gingerly hand me a single napkin from behind the counter and looked at me as though I was a complete scumbag for not ordering a smoothie with it.

However, despite being constantly annoyed with mall shopping, I still find myself wanting to take a trip to the mall every once in awhile. I have no idea why, since I find online shopping perfectly dandy. Maybe it’s because it’s something I can do outside of my hometown for a breath of fresh air. Maybe it’s because online shopping simply isn’t the same, despite its conveniences. The world may never know.