I feel like one begins to take things for granted until they’re taken away. Be they freedom, driving privileges, your credit card, or your Girl Scout cookies, the best things in life are often overlooked until you don’t have them any more. Absence either makes you forget something completely or makes the heart grow fonder. A list of several things I miss from my past that I didn’t appreciate until I had no access – Cook Out (an entire post in itself), mix tapes, Bojangles, driving, Chi Chi’s (don’t judge), playing with neighborhood kids, riding my bike, my innocence before watching 2 Girls, 1 Cup, et cetera. But one of the worst slights of living in DC for two years, especially sans car, is how much I missed Target.
Oh, Target, the glittering, shiny capital of all that is good and holy in the world. You can walk into Target with a friend without needing a single thing and walk out with a hundred bucks worth of stuff. It’s always such a happy, glowing place and for some reason you can’t wait to go back. Wal-Mart is a piss poor replacement and K-Mart sucks all joy out of your soul like a Dementor’s kiss, so they were clearly not missed. But this week, this exuberant and exultant week, Target opened up in my old stomping grounds – Columbia Heights. A quick 5 block walk and a short Metro ride later, I was standing outside the new DC USA center, chomping at the bit to find some wicked deals thrown at me by red polos and khakis.
When I walked in, I feel like I was joined by every other patron in the sense that we were simply in awe. Several of us just walked around in a daze for several minutes, smiling at something new and clean and full of cheap things in DC. My friend and I went straight to the electronics and DVD’s, picked up a few necessities, mental noted others we could get for even cheaper on Amazon, then played in the toy section.
Seriously, that’s one of the best things about Target. You can run in and grab what you need and get out, or you could spend hours just making your way through the sections and seeing what’s cool and new out there. Por ejemplo, did you know that Star Wars and Transformers had hot sex and made a bastard child of Star Wars Transformers? The Empire’s jet turns into Darth Vader. I shit you not.
Sometimes you honestly need to not visit something for weeks, months, or years and then you fully come to appreciate its perfection. Without going to Target for almost two full years, I was taken aback by how incredible it really is. And while this post is obvious and pathetic pandering to the capitalist machine, it’s also a musing on recapturing the innocence of childhood…just a little bit. I can’t go back in time and ride my bike through the woods on the way to my friends’ houses or run up to the book mobile and get some new books for the week, but I can remember some great memories from middle school, high school, college, and the bullshit antics we got into – including meaningless trips to Target.