It probably seems silly and even a little pathetic to waste time being angry with a retailer. And yes, I am aware that “J. Crew” is not a person. Honestly, it doesn’t eat away at me, but when I stop to think about it, I can’t help but feel annoyed. Here’s why:
* This country is in its worst economic crisis in eighty years. So why is J.Crew sending me obnoxious emails that tell me to spend $175 to get free shipping? Really? Free shipping? Gee, thanks. If I could afford to blow $175 on high-end khakis, then chances are I could probably pay for the shipping myself.
* They have the audacity to romanticize a shade of brown I once saw inside of a diaper by calling it “Root.”
* I have been insulted not once, but twice by their salespeople. Once, I was shopping for my very petite sister and asked the salesperson for a size 2. The woman looked me up and down and patronizingly said, “Are you sure?” Another time, I overheard a conversation between two of their associates, where one asked the other, “Aren’t you from Medford?,” to which the other scoffed, “I’m from the right side of the tracks, thank you!” I know this was not directed at me, but it was still an unfair slam on my underrated hometown.
* A lot of their clothes suffer from what I like to think of as the “layering effect.” They only look fabulous and chic when layered with other over-priced items, also conveniently from J. Crew. Individually, they seem sort of boring. Of course, I never realize this until I get my purchase home. In the store, I am brainwashed.
* More than clothes, they are selling an unattainable lifestyle. It is a lifestyle of impossibly skinny, beautiful people who seem to spend a lot of time in the Hamptons and can afford $25 t-shirts. I used to want to be one of those people. Now I realize they probably don’t exist, and if I they did they would be the kind of people I don’t like.
Perhaps I am putting a little too much thought into this or taking it too seriously. I think, among the other disappointments of grown-up life, I am just bummed to now know that the J. Crew lifestyle is really just a yuppie fairytale complete with a snazzy catalog.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to order a dress from jcrew.com.