The other day, I found myself literally trapped at a DFO – which, for the uninitiated, stands for “Direct Factory Outlet” and not, as acronymfinder.com suggested, the “Dairy Farmers of Ontario”.
Having fought the Boxing Day Sales-type bitch fight over parking, I had finally managed to find a spot in a far corner of the DFO Parking Suburb. But only once I’d pulled into it did I realise I was between two 4WDs that surely must have moonlighted as Monster Trucks when they weren’t ferrying young J’Aime and Tarquin to school during daylight hours. And since I was driving KT’s Mitsubishi station wagon, which seats you closer to the ground than any F1 racing car, I had no chance of seeing my way out until the Monster Trucks moved.
So I went shopping, which is what I had come for, after all. I found myself walking around and around in circles in that crazy cavernous place, chock full ‘o’ bargains, hungry hungry shoppers and spruikers galore, competing against each other and the piped music. (For the record: I don’t ever go into a shop where someone’s heckling the crowd with a microphone).
After a while, all that walking around began to create one of those “whirlpools” I used to make with my friends in above-ground pools in the 70s. Eventually the pull of the whirlpool got so strong that I got swept away into a frenzy of consumerism. I started getting that overwhelming feeling of “I need linen pillow cases!” “I have to buy pastel-coloured ramekins” and “Must. Have. Onion. Keeper. In the shape of an onion!!!!”.
At one point, I even got the “My life is incomplete without a watermelon-coloured bra with black lace trimming” feeling (we all get it from time to time). I was perusing the intimate apparel when I came face to face with one of the teachers from Mr Justice’s school. We both laughed small embarrassed laughs – me mostly because just moments beforehand I’d been looking in shocked awe at Size 8 G-strings and had also farted (one didn’t cause the other, I hasten to add). Luckily this embarrassing encounter broke my shopping reverie and, clutching my bags, I hastily headed straight for the nearest exit before I got dragged in again.
And so it should be told that I had come to the DFO merely to buy shoes. After two long hours, I finally emerged into natural daylight bearing shoes, trousers, sparkly pink socks and a milk pan. Which wasn’t too bad, considering the pull of that whirlpool.
However, I could see – all the way from across the carpark – that one of the Monster Trucks was still parked next to me, so I had to stop a while at “Villa and Hut” to have one of the Chai Lattes that they were “famed for” (What they neglected to say was that those Lattes were “famed for being milky cinnamon sock water”). And before you go hanging shit on me drinking chai lattes, let me just say, in my defence, that I had just bought a pair of Birkenstock Clogs. If you’re really going to do these things, you have to do them properly.
When, after another half an hour had passed, I could see that the remaining Monster Truck had gone, I was able to drive home and show my husband my new purchases. He laughed when he saw the Birkenstocks and said he’d have to leave his City Job as a show of support for my new Lifestyle Choice. And I got all huffy and said he’d have to keep that City Job so I could bloody-well afford Birkenstocks, even those allegedly “on sale” at the DFO.
And then, for the rest of the afternoon, I found myself stopping to admire my new smurf feet and wonder how from such a Celebration of Consumerism could come such Chiropodiatric Comfort. At long last, I had the type of shoes that complemented my unshaven legs, that were very unlikely to press hard down upon the accelerator of a Monster Truck in city traffic or even ever tread the concrete floors of that DFO again. Unless of course, it’s the Dairy Farmers of Ontario and they’re into, you know, organic milk.