A couple teenage relatives of mine recently celebrated their birthdays. They live in Europe and I hardly ever see them, so I decided to get them presents. I drove to the Glendale Galleria, the nearest mall to my house, and tried to imagine what kids that age want. I decided that clothes were the way to go, even though I haven't seen them in years and have no idea how big they are now.
I walked through the mall and saw a bunch of kids going into a very dim store. It turned out to be Abercrombie. I've never been into an Abercrombie. When I was a teenager, everyone was shopping at GAP, J. Crew and Banana Republic. Abercrombie was just beginning to open shops and I remember their clothes were being sporty and boring. Kinda like Eddie Bauer. Well, times have changed because now it's jumping. After Abercrombie, I followed kids into another store. Something called Hollister.
These stores made me feel old and crotchety. They were both really dark (I felt like I was in a club), packed to the hilt with everything from clothes and plants to flat screens and couches, and had a fragrance that hit you over the heard the minute you walked in. My senses were being assaulted. Help! I like my stores to be open, bright and spare.. So after I bought some clothes, I made a beeline to my idea of shopping heaven: Williams-Sonoma.