Today I did something I hadn't done since I was 14 years old, and that I truly, earnestly believed I would never do again.
Today I went into an Abercrombie & Fitch. And I bought a shirt.
Ugh. Its good, isn't it?
Before you peg me as a product of late 90s/early 00s suburban California undergoing a quarterlife crisis (the first part of which, at least, is definitely correct), let me say that this purchase does not indicate the start of a total reversion to the terrible style choices of my middle school years. I am too well-entrenched in the making of terrible early-twenties style choices to look back on simpler times. I went into this Abercrombie & Fitch --- the only one on the entire Iberian Peninsula --- because it is a palace.
Even with an iPhone picture doing it limited justice, tell me you could ignore this entryway. The storefront is marble. There are spiral staircases, giant murals of what looked ancient Greece, three-story chandeliers, crazy looking gilded molding. This store is NUTS. It is a veritable labyrinth of navy and pink shit. Remember how everything was navy and pink, and nothing was black? Still true. This is how I know I don't belong. Remember how every breath was straight up cologne, how it hung in the air so thickly you felt like you could part it with your hands? Still true. No escaping it. I can smell it in my hair even now, hours later. Remember the music? Remember the limited light? To get to the dressing rooms, I had to walk down a mirrored hallway, long and narrow like in a horror movie, that reflected my own expression of uncertainty and discomfort back at me from every angle.
But yeah, so then I found this shirt. And it was flowy and lovely and devoid of everything tell-tale A&F, like sequins, or the moose, or scripty advertisements for fictional beach restaurants. I could imagine myself wearing it only every single day of the summer. So I followed my breadcrumb trail back to the main foyer, and took the little wispy white thing to the register.
"Necesitas bolsa?" asked the man behind the counter, holding up a paper bag with handles for me to appraise, and I burst out laughing. I had forgotten about the photographs of nearly-naked people they expected you to use to house your purchases. "No," I told him, and I took my prize, and I ran out the front door and back into the light of day. Bye Abercrombie & Fitch. Thank you for the tank top. See you probably maybe hopefully never ever again.