Thursday, July 13, 2006

I Always Think Pumpkin in July, Don't You?

So the other day, my sister and I went shopping. I don't know about y'all, but lately it has been hotter than hades here in good old Southern California. Despite the big ocean to the left, we have a semi-arid climate and only people in very close proximity to the ocean have had bearable temperatures. And even then, it isn't all that pleasant when the wind dies down and the fog burns off.

Anyhoo, I digress. The point I was trying to make is that summer is in full swing, with no signs of leaving the party anytime soon. Even though we've asked nicely for it to call a cab, already.

With these conditions in mind, my sister had in mind to buy certain items. One of them being at one of our favorite stores, Illuminations. She was looking for this diffuser type of thing with bamboo sticks and oils. And since it is hot, she was looking for a clean, refreshing scent. Something along the lines of linen or cucumber. She approached the saleswoman and asked about the oils they had for the diffuser. The woman gushed and told her they had in stock a lovely pumpkin scent. Pumpkin? In the middle of heatwave? Was she kidding?

Then we smacked our foreheads and remembered that Madison Avenue for some reason decrees that in the middle of summer, all summer items must be cleared to make way for fall. I don't know about anywhere else, but we don't even really get a fall here. Shorts are worn at least until October. Why are some snooty New Yorkers in charge of what merchandise is carried in the stores of California? We have the fifth or sixth largest freaking economy in the world, and the East Coast is somehow in charge? I remembered a commercial I saw a couple nights ago in which the models were cavorting around in layered sweaters, boots, and jaunty berets. Here I am sweltering in ninety-plus degree heat, watching these deluded individuals who are trying to hawk jackets two weeks after the Fourth of July, and thinking that something is just out of whack.

With sinking hearts, we headed to a department store, let's just say it rhymes with Gaks. We were still hopeful that somehow, somewhere there was a retailer who dealt in reality. My sister was looking for a specific type of summer top. We again, foolishly you might say, asked a saleswoman where the summer clothes were. She gave us a look and pointed to a single rack crammed with discounted summer items. All around us was suede and alpaca, wool and cashmere, but only two tank tops to be found.

We then made our way to a Hallmark, where she was in need of a birthday card. We entered the store to witness an employee on a ladder, putting up something that suspiciously looked like Christmas decorations. My sister took one look at the display and said, "I just can't do it. I will not be a party to this insanity," and walked out.

I'm all for being prepared for something, whether it be holiday supplies or appropriate outfits. But this has gone a bit too far. Can we not at least savor Labor Day before Halloween and Christmas items are shoved down our throats? Can I at least experience temperatures in the low seventies before I am faced with rows of tweed? Can I buy pumkin and cinnamon scented candles when "fall" is more than just wishful thinking?

Is it really to much to ask?

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