Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Christmas and commerce

we took a family trip down to minneapolis and spent the evening at the mall of america, colloquially known as the mega mall. even since it opened some 15+ years ago, i've always liked going there, even if i'm never really sure what i want to do once i get inside. the magic store there started my short-lived interest in being a magician (i can still do a few tricks) and my best friend got banned from there for running up the down escalator in high school. the "camp snoopy" amusement park in the middle of the mall has been redone with nickelodeon characters; i could justify having fun on charlie brown's log flume, but dora the explorer is definitely out of my age range. still, there was a pirate "walk the plank" four-story ropes course that looked pretty dang fun.

from a step back, the mall is, in essence, the epitome of middle-class american commercialism, and it's interesting to look at the stores--ranging from megalith's like macy's and nordstroms to niche stores, such as "bead-niks" or the store that sold only butterfly knickknacks and lasted only a year--to the people who populate these stores. and i'm not saying this in some cynical, "glad i'm not them" way; i love it. i dig the energy of the mall. i like seeing all the people, the exciting high school kids flirting, the dad and kids waiting outside the shoe store for the unseen mom shopping inside.

in a hotel room, typing on my lappy, listening to mumford and sons {*} while my dad's reading a book on his phone and my mom's on her ipad, asking me when i'll update my blog. my vacation continues.


Becky said...

I must say I'm disappointed that Camp Snoopy got redone. I shouldn't be surprised. Caleb got Chutes and Ladders for Christmas, and it's been redone, too; the drawings look like they came from Nickelodeon as well. Of course I like the old design much better.

The Former 786 said...

I'm hoping to go to Minneapolis/the Mall of America this spring and when I do, I'm gonna take a picture on that Dora the Explorer playground, just to show you it can (and should) be done!