Friday, June 4, 2010

It’s over. And I mean it. Maybe. Probably. It is. Most-likely. Just read this.

Has anybody ever tried out one of those budgeting websites where you link your bank account and like magic all of your purchases in the last three months are compartmentalized for you like a bento box and then your husband looks at you and says, “you wanna know how much money we spent at ____________ since March?” and you really want to say no, but that won’t make it so HE doesn’t know how much money has been spent at _______________ and you know that by “we” he means “you”, so you just say “Sure” and then he tells you and you gag a little thinking about that new car you’ve been trying to work into the budget because yours makes that clicking noise when you turn left and the tape deck (yes, tape deck) stopped playing that tape that connects to your MP3 player so you’ve been listening to CD’s from the nineties for the last month or so?

Yeah. Well. I have a Target habit. And I blame it mostly on account of that Starbucks nestled in the corner of the place.  That and the fact that without espresso, my day quickly starts resembling that you tube video of the guy begging people to “leave brittany alonnneee”.  My face drips off around three thirty when I pick up the kindergarteners and the questions pick up right where they left off at eight thirty.  {OMG, yes, just have some friggin gum already and NO we can’t go to the blankin’ pool-it’s flippin raining out!}

All joking aside, I cried when I heard the number.  And my dear husband kept saying “we” when talking about going on a hardcore budget as if it wasn’t me doing all the damage.  Sure you’re app-tastic, or app-addicted with that new Incrediphone or whatever the shit that thing’s called, but a dollar ninety-nine every few weeks is not keeping us from our dream vacation or a car that doesn’t make noises and leave puddles of goo on the garage floor.  It’s me. Me and inappropriate love-affair with Super fucking Target. And Starbucks.  The pair are an irresistible force that I am powerless against.  But I think I may have the solution.  Just like booze, these shopping addictions can be thwarted with a little list I tweaked to better suit my needs.  I give you:

The Twelve Steps to Quitting Target

  1. I admit I am powerless over you, Target.  My weak-willed soul is no match for your red-tag riddled end-caps
  2. I have come to associate your florescent lights and red plastic carts with a higher power.
  3. I have made a decision to turn my will over to an actual grocery store for all items food related as to avoid being seduced by your reasonably priced tank tops, candles, and cat hair combs.
  4. Have made a searching and fearless moral inventory of my purchases in the last month and {for SHAME}.
  5. Have admitted to Jed, the almighty ruler of the household, the exact nature of our wrongs together.
  6. I am entirely ready to have coffee at my house every morning instead of in your shiny Starbucks.
  7. I have humbly agreed to forfeit my daily, no weekly, okay…..daily outing to see you in order to look my husband in the eye again while answering the question, “is that new?”. 
  8. I have made a list of all the stuff I have recently purchased from your shelves and determined you are surprisingly NOT a necessary and justifiable trip. 
  9. I have burned, torn, or probably just recycled the coupons I had on reserve as flimsy, papery excuses to see you.
  10. I will continue to take it personally when one of your advertisements interrupts my regular programming to alert me of how ill-prepared I am for summer fun.  Your trendy music mocks me, but you can’t win.
  11. Have sought a high elsewhere that can satisfy my seemingly insatiable need for Archer Farms, Converse One, and Sonia Kashuk.  There is none compatible, yet I stay strong.
  12. Having had a shopper’s awakening as the result of these steps, I have survived my first day of many without you.


JG says I don’t have to quit Target.  But he doesn’t know.  Alcoholics can’t have one beer.  Sex-addicts can’t be satiated with a quickie hand-job in the bathroom at Wal-Mart. Ted Bundy couldn’t go on a date and just give her a black eye. (oy. i did.)  I don’t believe I can go to “that place” without bringing home something that is instantly rendered frivolous as soon as it crosses the threshold.

It’s just that way.  So.  I am done with you, Target.  I will never be your mayor on four-friggin-square.  Don’t call me.  I won’t answer.  This is more of a band-aid ripping thing.  You and me.  We don’t belong together.  And I’m sorry.  Sorry that the last thing I came for was a pack of dryer balls.  More regrettably, I just said dryer balls and couldn’t laugh about it.

This is more serious than I imagined.


Anonymous said...

I love you. Wait. What? Sorry. That just came out. This post completes me. As a recovering caffeine/fast food addict, I am sympathetic to your plight. Seriously. I'd like to see a cocaine addict give up cocaine if it were available in a legalized, drive-thru, multiple-sized form. ON EVERY CORNER. And if EVERYONE in AMERICA were also cocaine addicts. Not possible, I tell you. We are the unsung heroes of addictions.

nicole said...

i too had to quit target- cold turkey! now i shop at bjs. buy bulk doesn't mean you save more on what you buy... it means you don't have to go out so often and get tempted so often! if you need a sponsor- as all 12 steppers do, i know a gal that would be great. she could teach you how to do 11th step meditation... Oooommm i am at one with the universe which is target. ooomm if i am at one then i already own all that its walls encompase. ooommm therefore i need not wip out my bank card and pay for what is already mine. ooomm. so i do not even need to visit (had to throw that in there cause it was sounding like i need a shoplifting 12 step group!). plus, she might be willing to split a bulk purchase!

Will Burke said...

I had to start having my coffee at home too, and Starbucks (and Tim Hortons, which I heard an American tourist say "is like Dunkin Donuts, but better." Honest), and now coffee out is an occasional treat. Saving a bundle!

JG said...

@FabuLeslie - I'm with you. I have a food problem. Food is socially acceptable, available everywhere, and SOMETHING YOU HAVE TO HAVE!!! Food (coffee counts) addictions have to be more difficult to kick than other things.

Currently, I'm trying to kick an unhealthy addiction to water.

PS - my word verification is "unterdi". That sounds like a word describing something as less than poop like.

Molly said...

Every time I hear about this mythical place I'm torn between wanting it and being very glad that we don't. For all the reasons you listed. Loved the one about the coupons :)

Octohawk said...

So so so with you on this one.. Beautifully written, by the way.

Regina said...

Ok, seriously, it's impossible to step foot into a target and not buy something in those dollar bins. (at the very least) It's imossible to even walk by them without looking in that direction.. (try it, i did) impossible. I am a recovering Target addict, (i have a target credit card bill to prove it) the only way to get through this, is to pretend they don't exsist.. turn your head when you approach the red circle.. its hard but I have faith in you. YOU CAN DO THIS!!!!!

Nancy C said...

Here's how it's done: move to the sticks where the nearest Target is forty five minutes away. Trust me. Sad, but true, this is my life.

Joy said...

I'm living a parellel Target hell! I love your post so much, I will confess that half of my Target problem is that they have FREE chocolate chip cookies sitting out in the bakery of my neighborhood jerk-wad-giant-red-money-pit. Now I know these are probably intended for children. But i snag one every damn day. Then I feel like i need to buy tupperware. Just so I don't become known as the fattie that comes for a free cookie every day and doesn't buy anything.

Stephanie Meade Gresham said...

Thanks so much for the votes of confidence people. It's really comforting knowing that
a) i am not alone in this
b) i am not hitting the crack pipe (leslie)
c) i live close enough to a target that when i get a handle on this whole thing i can go back. for tupperware. (and look for those cookies)

I'm starting to feel thankful there's not a drivethru starbucks within a reasonable distance to my house. Dusted off the coffee press last week. Still trying to perfect my technique. I'm gladly accepting hints, tips, advice...

Thanks everybody!

Dawn said...

Thank you so much for this post! I had a major Target problem as well. They pump something into the air, I swear! I think I kicked my bad habit. Thanks so much for this post - it cracked me up!

fine little mess said...

you go girl. damn the man! when i lived out west, i discovered the beauty of the dollar store,not to turn your addictions elsewhere...but, i found sponges, dish soap and even some cooking utensils, tp, papertowels, etc, for yes, a dollar. target is a vortex. and recently seeing a few girls in one place wearing the latest target dresses, i've too sworn off the place. be strong. god speed. ;)

Amber Rae Paulson said...

Oh Lord, Target.
Did you read about how I was in Target a few days ago trying on some things ( a huge pile of red tags) and a bomb threat was called in? In retrospect, it was probably in my favor. I almost never leave without spending less than 70$. It does not help that my meds are filled there every month, and that their pharmacy staff is the best around, or that I live in the radius of both the colonial/bumby target AND the amazing supertarget that has the space age cart escalator. I think I go shopping there for groceries sometimes (even though I like the old albertsons publix so much better) just so I can see the cart escalator.
Also, the fact that your husband uses the loving "we" to describe a spending habit warms my cockles. Very sweet. You have got THE cutest kids. Sending anit-target brainwaves.