Wednesday, November 14, 2012

I'm Too Old To Shop? Really?

Well, today Yahoo News has posted an article that defines "too old" as that time when you're no longer in love with shopping!   Yes!  I said shopping!  So, we can now discount the idea that years, or physical deterioration may determine whether you are "too old".   It is when we Americans stop the worship of "the golden calf", when we stop the quest for materialism, that we are finally ready for the old glue factory, or a casket.

It seems that researchers at Oregon State University have just completed an exhaustive study of old folks and found that, as we get older, we lose our lust for the shopping mall!  As with so many studies from academia these days, the focus seems to be on drawing some rather bizarre conclusions from a severely limited line of data.

For example, did it ever occur to those researchers that maybe, just maybe we old folks might have reached a level of maturity that we now consider the game of "keeping up with the Joneses" to be a silly and expensive game that assuredly does not bring happiness?    That perhaps we humans don't need the latest model car every three years?  Did those same researchers not consider that it is certainly feasible that, with maturity, perhaps trying to impress our guests with the latest trend in home decor does not buy friendship?

And perhaps those yuppies at OSU, running around with their graphs and clipboards, just might consider that when folks retire there is less money available to participate in the orgasmic joy of shopping?  We are no longer working, trying mightily to live on a fixed pension, we're getting 1% on any savings we've been lucky enough to accrue, so how in hell do these research whippersnappers expect us to go out and shop?

I believe this academic study, purporting to condemn the elderly's lack of shopping prowess, says far more about the broader American society than it does about the "gray hairs".  America today has become so damn materialistic that our young now line up for blocks outside an Apple Store, to buy the latest iteration of the IPAD.  A week from Thursday night, Americans will not even have fully digested their Turkey dinner before they are lined up outside Walmart to buy a Chinese-made TV or a Japanese gaming system.    We will read of the annual stampedes and stomping over their fellows so that they might score the latest shiny toy of note!  I believe that's a much sadder commentary about our society than some old folks who have lost their lust for the "loot!"

And, by the way you OSU brilliantines!  I shop at Amazon and have it delivered to my door!  No long lines out in the cold night air, no stampedes and no frenetic fights with my fellow man for "shopping space" in the store aisle!

So if you don't see me pushing that red cart down the center of a Target store don't assume I'm ready to be put out to pasture!  Young whippersnappers!


  1. I am proud to say I have never gone out to shop on a "Black Friday". further I have NEVER liked shopping, only when I had to, or really wanted something, then it was in and out.
    Black Friday was a term used by the Carpenters union giving carpenters every other Friday off. Others did the same thing I'm sure, I just know about the carpenters as I was one and I used to really enjoy that routine until I became a General Contractor, started my own biz and worked every Friday, the weekends, those other five days and wished I had an extra day to finish those things piling up on my desk.

    Then along came obama and now EVERY DAY IS BLACK FRIDAY!! I know my laid off employees don't worry about Black Friday and neither do I. See I knew I could find a Silver Lining to this "black cloud".

  2. Ken, I confess I went out on Black Friday about twenty years ago. Once, then never again.

  3. Went out on black Friday only once and, come to think of it, I don't even think it was called that. Or, if it was, I never heard it. This was about 20 or 25 yrs ago. I went to Metro Center and by the end of the day, the bags of stuff I'd bought were dragging on the floor. I did manage to pick them up off the asphalt as I looked for my car. The lot was full all around the entire Metro Center. Luckily I'd remembered I'd parked across from Discount Tower. Never went shopping that day ever again. Too many people! I've never really been a shopper, so for me to have done this, well.....I must have needed a day away from family.

  4. Discount Tower? Of course, you know I meant Discount Tire.