So, Black Friday happened, I guess. I’ve never experienced it first hand, because I hate crowds, I hate people, I don’t wake up early, the list could go on and on. I don’t really know what the whole premise of Black Friday is exactly, but apparently, people die at some place called Walmart. For those of us who choose to sleep off our Thanksgiving day hangover and NOT ruin a perfectly good day off by wrestling someone’s Nana for the last pair of…whatever it is people go crazy over on Black Friday, Cyber Monday exists. Cyber Monday, for those who live in a cave, boasts the same shopping deals as Black Friday, except it’s COMPLETELY online. This is a bandwagon I can get on to. First of all, I can leisurely shop for myself, and my family, and myself, and my friends, and myself, all in the comfort of my own home. Also, I always appreciate saving a dollar or two, because that means there’s more money left for me to spend on ME. This Cyber Monday, I came back from class and sat around in yoga pants while I did most of my holiday shopping. While celebrating my brilliant decision to forgo the crowds and get all of my holiday shopping done in the comfort of my own bedroom, it dawned on me that online shopping is like both crack and kryptonite to me. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE actually shopping, but my hatred for crowds/general human stupidity dictates that I avoid malls at whatever cost during late November and until December 24. While online shopping seems relatively harmless, I’ve had a few too many instances where online shopping has gotten the best of me. For example, one night I was super wine drunk and spent $250 on Amazon on Royal Wedding related paraphernalia. This would have been fine, if it weren’t for the fact that I had no need for any of it. I would also like to mention that I’m still banned from eBay because I got so addicted to it during my sophomore year of college that I started bidding on miscellaneous items I didn’t even want…I never completed the sales, I just enjoyed beating other people at bidding on I Love Lucy lunch boxes, which is apparently frowned upon. My online shopping addiction has gotten so bad at times I wish I could cut up my own credit card whenever I’m in the vicinity of magic grape juice (AKA wine), but then I realized if I cut up my credit card, I’d be without access to funds until a new one came in, and that doesn’t really fit into my life plan. My freshman year of college, my parents threatened to take back the AMEX because there were so many “unnecessary” charges on it. As tumultuous as our relationship may be, online shopping and I have a true love affair that deserves to be defended. Why?
1. Online shopping is actually very cost effective. “But Pearls, you pay shipping,” you say. Um, yeah, and you also use gas when you drive to the mall, so I feel as if the money you pay for shipping basically cancels out what you would spend on gas. It’s probably cheaper, maybe.
2. Online shopping is safer than real shopping. I usually require a little bit of wine/vodka to feel inspired (and I MUST feel inspired before I spend ridiculous amounts of money on items I don’t need). When I go real shopping, I run the risk of murdering someone because I require someone to go with me/drive while I’m casually day buzzed. How is this a homicide risk? I prefer to shop alone, with my own brilliant mind, and usually wind up wishing a lot of ill will to whomever is giving me their useless opinions on how fabulous I look in what I’m trying on.
3. Online shopping is the best confidence booster. If something you order something online that doesn’t fit perfectly, you can return it and chalk it up to not knowing the website’s sizes ran smaller than usual. Nothing makes you feel worse about yourself than being in a fitting room and your go-to size is feeling a little snug, thus, forcing you to ask the dressing room attendant to get you a *shudder* bigger size. Also, fluorescent lighting is way too harsh to ever admire your new clothes in. The soft, calming glow of your own bedroom is a much safer place.
4. I LOVE PRESENTS. Usually, I make a lot of late night, online orders and then go to sleep and forget about them. Imagine my excitement when a few days later, packages arrive at my door for me! It’s like I’ve won some prize, even though it’s usually just the results of too much pinot noir and a sudden interest in buying the boxed sets of True Blood DVDs.
5. There’s no need to tote bags back to your car and then bring them in the house when you online shop, because your packages come neatly delivered right to your doorstep. The most energy you need to exert is bringing them up to your room.
6. There are no annoying sales girls trying to push their seasonal product agenda on me while I shop in the comfort of my own home. I don’t have to say, “No, thanks, I’m all set” when someone asks me what they can help me to find. I don’t have to pretend I didn’t hear the Eastern European girl who’s trying to sell me some weird hair care product at the kiosk between Nordstrom and Victoria’s Secret. It’s peaceful, it’s serene, and it’s basically my equivalent to meditation.
7. Rowdy Gentleman is currently an online-only store and they’re doing Cyber Monday sales all week long. So, duh.
Happy shopping, bitches!