Tag Archives: shopping

Real Life Christmas Shopping

I decided to do some Christmas shopping today and I decided I would do it the old fashioned way. I went downtown and walked into actual shops. I went into a Target Express, I went into Old Navy, and I even went to the mall and walked around all the levels and explored random stores. It was real life Christmas shopping, just like I remember doing before the rise of Amazon and other online retailers. And it was a terrible experience. It wasn’t even crowded but there were a lot of angry shoppers and a lack of knowledgeable customer service representatives. I walked around the whole mall and only bought a handful of things. I thought getting up off my ass and physically going to a store would make the shopping experience more pleasant, more real, and more worthwhile. I was wrong. It was a complete waste of time. Sorry, Amazon. I’ll never doubt you again.

Critically Rated at 5/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Flea Market

Last week I went to a flea market. A flea market is a magical place where vendors set up shop to sell random items and knickknacks. My sister and her fiancé invited me to tag along and I went without really knowing what to expect. I imagined it would be like a giant garage sale with lots of old furniture, broken appliances, and soiled clothing. I was hoping to find ninja stars and various martial arts weapons. The flea market turned out to be a lot more glorious than I ever thought possible.

We went to the Treasure Island Flea, one of the biggest flea markets in the San Francisco Bay Area. It happens on the last weekend of every month. We pulled up to the gates and got directed to the parking lot by a slew of unenthusiastic parking attendants. We parked the car and approached the main gate. There was a three-dollar cover charge to get in. I won’t even go to a club that has a cover charge, but I reluctantly forked over a few dollars. As soon as we walked in we saw a booth with a huge line. We walked over to see what they were selling. It was booze. They sell alcohol at the flea market. That was pretty amazing. It was even more amazing that I didn’t stop to pick up a drink.

We walked around, looking at all the booths and the excessive amounts of merchandise on display. About half the flea market seemed to be antiques. We saw lots of artwork in the form of sculptures, statues, paintings, posters, and small prints. We saw lots of clothes, some new and trendy, but mostly old and retro fashions. There was gourmet food for sale. There was a ton of books and classic comics for display. We found a treasure trove of old video game systems and cartridges. There was a bunch of old toys and sporting equipment like battered baseball gloves and janky golf clubs. There was bunch of power tools and hand tools that had seen better days. I didn’t find any ninja stars, but there was a nice assortment of knives and machetes.

I left the flea market with a new used baseball glove and a 14-inch Bowie knife. I already had a baseball glove but now I have two and that makes it easier to play a game of catch (now I just have to find a friend to throw with, not a friend who also has a glove to throw with). The Bowie knife was more of an impulse buy, but I had to get it. The zombie apocalypse is approaching and no arsenal is complete without a Bowie knife. I could have gotten a machete, but the knife came with a leather sheath and a handguard that can double as brass knuckles. It’s dull as fuck, but it will still do damage to the undead. If I survive the zombie apocalypse, it will partially be because of the flea market.

Critically Rated at 12/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Getting Stoned and Going Grocery Shopping

One of the biggest mistakes I’ve ever made was getting stoned and going grocery shopping before a camping trip. Anyone who has ever blazed knows what it’s like to experience the munchies. You take a few puffs and suddenly all you want is Cheetos and a Coke. And some Skittles. Oooh, and a Snickers too. Now imagine that you have to buy enough food and drinks to last for the next three days. You don’t want to underestimate how much shit to get, so you’ll compensate by buying a lot more than you need. Instead of getting a pack of 8 sticks of string cheese, you’ll get a pack of 32 just to be safe. Instead of one pack of hot dogs, you’ll buy two. And you can’t forget the buns, ketchup, mustard, and relish. And what goes good with hot dogs? Potato chips! So then you get a few bags of chips, and some dip to go with it. And then a few packs of beer to wash it down. And a few cases of soda just in case somebody doesn’t want beer or if you need a caffeine boost. And obviously you need ice to keep all the drinks cold and the food from spoiling. All that shit adds up, and it adds up quickly, and it doesn’t help that your stoned ass is walking up and down each aisle throwing more unnecessary shit into your cart. Before you know it, you’re at the register and you owe them $364.24. Then you go camping for a few days and end up with a fridge full of expired leftovers that remind you of your stupidity. And you don’t even want to eat any of it because it all tastes like failure. This is the type of situation they should discuss during anti-drug assemblies in middle school.

Critically Rated at 5/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Forgetting Something On Your List

It’s your day off and you finally have a chance to go to the store and catch up on errands. You write down a few essential supplies and then start shopping. You’re flying up and down the aisles, mentally crossing off each item as it enters the cart. Then you casually glance over your list one last time before you pay the cashier and head home. You start unloading your bags and realize that something is missing. You forgot to pick up something vital, one of the main reasons you went to the store. I call it the BLT Law because whenever I go to the store to get stuff for BLTs I come home with the bacon, lettuce and tomatoes, but no bread. I always forget the bread. Forgetting something on your list defeats the whole purpose of making a list. You wrote it down so that you wouldn’t forget it. But you still forgot it. Now you get to go all the way back to the store. Don’t you feel like a winner?

Critically Rated at 6/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Gift Card

A gift card is something that you get for someone when you don’t know what to give them. It’s almost as good as cash but not as tacky. You know that your mom likes to read but you don’t know which crappy murder mysteries she’s already read. Boom, gift card. You know that your brother likes music but doesn’t like paying for it. Boom, gift card. You just realized five minutes ago that it’s your best friend’s birthday. Boom, gift card. Shopping for people sucks. Let them choose what they want. Get them a gift card and be done with it.

Critically Rated at 14/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Buying a Bag

Living in San Francisco has its benefits. There’s good people, great food, museums and parks and tourist attractions galore. There’s also a stupid law forbidding plastic bags from grocery and convenience stores. The goal is to save the environment by making you bring your own reusable bags. Don’t worry though: if you forget to bring your bag you can buy a paper bag for ten cents. It kind of sucks. You don’t even get a choice between paper or plastic. It’s paper or bust, and you’re fucked if it’s raining. A few years ago, a dime bag in SF was weed. Now it’s literally a bag that costs a dime. Global warming changes everything.

Critically Rated at 4/17

Written, Rated, and Reviewed by Brendan H. Young

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Being a Dollar Short

You’re at the store and you managed to track down all the items you need and now you’re at the register and it’s time to pay. The total of all your bullshit adds up to $21.26. You have a fresh twenty from the ATM and a few coins in your pocket, but you don’t have to be a math genius to realize that you are a dollar short. You have a few options, you can either return an item or pay with plastic. And you need that deodorant just as much as you want that bag of Skittles, so you’ll bust out your debit card and pay those hidden fees. Being a dollar short sucks, but it generally won’t ruin your day.

Critically Rated at 9/17

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