March 18, 2007

There is a large Goodwill store in our neighborhood and visiting it with debit card in hand has become one of my favorite weekend activities. Sure, you could say it’s lacking in the sort of tastefully-Botox’d, tinkling-piano atmosphere that Nordstrom strives to offer, but where else could I buy an entire wardrobe of shirts for twenty bucks?

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This particular Goodwill is awesome, in that you can always find barely-worn non-crappy clothes and shoes—a benefit of its relatively affluent zip code, I’m sure—as well as decent housewares. Riley has some super-cute clothes from there, including a swooningly macho little North Face type vest. They even have a maternity section, which is a fantastic alternative to spending hojillions of dollars at Motherhood Maternity for outfits with a 6-month shelf life.

One of the reasons I like going there so much is that you never know what you’ll find. A pair of Seven jeans for $5.99? Some oxblood Nine West mary jane square-toe flats for $3.99? A $2.99 toddler-sized sweater in green and blue stripes, far cuter and better made than Old Navy’s offerings? A pretty rectangular glass vase that’s perfect for holding daffodils, priced at $1.99? SCORE.

Of course, there are times when all you leave with is the pervasive smell of musty attics clinging to your hair, because that’s the day when the clothes are all ugly or stained and the toy aisle is depressingly full of broken plastic crap that kids are throwing at each other and every two minutes a heavily accented man haltingly announces into the crackling P.A. system that all towels are 40% off, thank you and have a nice day.

That’s what makes it so much fun, the fact that it’s a total crapshoot. Will there be an 8-piece collection of beautiful ceramic bowls today? Or will there only be a chipped plastic tumbler with faint Kool-aid stains in the bottom? Ahh, eet ees a mystery!

If I were more creative and brave—like, say, Seattle’s own Ariel Meadow Stallings, my personal fashion hero and woman of many talents—I’d be buying up those vintage oddball clothing items that magically transform into a smoking hot outfit once you pair them together correctly, but man, I just don’t have the eye for that stuff. I want a stylist, and not some horrifying Hollywood praying mantis who always dresses her carb-phobic clients in oversized sunglasses and leggings, I want a funky chick with a tongue piercing and an ample ass who knows exactly what clothes flatter the size 10 body, who incorporates Threadless t-shirts and Cruel Girl jeans into her wardrobe recommendations.

Also, I would like a pony. A pink-winged flying pony whose ass burbles out a steady stream of zero-point Starbucks vanilla lattes.

In other news, our Netflix queue has been woefully clogged with unsatisfying movies lately. The most recent travesty being Fast Food Nation—spare yourself the pain of watching it (and finding yourself thinking, hey, what happened to Greg Kinnear’s character, did he just randomly disappear never to return to the storyline [answer: yes]? and what the fuck, is that Avril Lavigne? and why the hell wasn’t this a DOCUMENTARY?) and read the book instead, friends. There was Casino Royale, which had some nice moments of chasey chasey pow-pow-pow, but was annoyingly long and featured a 43947521 hour poker game (although it does earn points for including a brilliant line of dialogue from Bond: “Skewered. One sympathizes.” —I realize that makes no sense if you haven’t seen it, but if you have, did you also mentally file under Bitchin’ Rejoinders with the fervent hope of being able to use it someday?). And Babel, the movie that didn’t have the stones to be as utterly depressing as it could have been.

I need some recommendations! What have you rented lately that didn’t suck?

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