I had the misfortune of visiting the mall recently, and it never ceases to amaze me how people just lose their damn minds when faced with the modern retail environment. Well, let me back up the truck a few feet here to testify that Americans have just lost their damn minds period. Americans fall into one of three categories: fundamentalist, indifferent or “spiritual.” What is “spiritual”? Well…I don’t know exactly. What’s worse is that all these “spiritual” people don’t know either. The conversation goes something like this:
Me: “I don’t believe in much these days except the growing power of American plutocracy and gravity. Both pretty much have you screwed in the end.”
Other Person: “You’re so damn negative. There are so many reasons to be happy and grateful. You just have to have faith.”
Me: “Faith in what?”
Other Person: “Well…you know… faith. You have to believe things are going to get better.”
Me: “Against all evidence to the contrary? Sounds like a profoundly dumb strategy to me. Besides, which god is actually going to beam down here and fix this shit?”
Other Person: “God isn’t going to ‘beam down’ here. But you have to have faith. I mean, I may not believe in any particular god, but I am very spiritual.”
Me: “Spiritual? Is that like believing in ghosts or something?”
Other Person: “No, it means having faith. You know…being…spiritual.”
Me: “So you believe in ghosts then?”
Other Person rolls eyes: “No. It has nothing to do with ghosts or God. You just have to be spiritual.”
Me: “Define spiritual.”
Other Person who is now clearly frustrated with my apparent stupidity in the face of fuzzy and undefined logic: “You know…it’s…spiritual. It’s about spirituality. It means that you’re not tied to any religion, but you’re, you know…spiritual.”
Shyeah. Still waiting on that definition. Somebody call me when you come up with that. “Spiritual” is another one of those vague bullshit terms people use to describe fuzzy feely stuff they don’t know how to articulate and can’t really defend on rational grounds. And I must confess I am a total bastard if you confront me with this.
So, finally I’m getting to the point. I was in the mall minding my own damn business trying to buy tea. I shop at Teavana because, well, I like tea. I’m rather a fan, and working around people from the UK has only inflamed this very un-American tendency. I like to buy my loose leaf specialty teas and go home where I proceed to brew them. I enjoy tea. Here’s a picture from my local Teavana:
There’s a lot of distraction happening at the tea store, not the least of which is the same pack of anonymous bimbos that manages to show up every time I’m in there. These bitches assault me relentlessly whenever I go there. I’ve been screamed at for taking somebody else’s free sample of tea. (There were a paltry 20 cups on the tray, but apparently I took “hers.” I’m guessing that was the last good one in the bunch.) I’ve been shoved through the store so somebody’s kid could look at the blooming tea when my fat ass was in the way.
Then there’s the worst of the worst: the spiritual idiots. See, Teavana isn’t just about leaves, it’s about atmosphere. I can’t blame them for pulling out all the stops in staging, even if they erect a pseudo-altar in the middle of the store.
Bitch pushes past me and starts gushing about how coming to this store is one of the most “spiritual” things she does. I’m sure it is. I’m also sure that if you’re so fucking shallow and thoughtless that a retail display is a religious experience, you’re probably still trying to figure out who turns out the light in the fridge when you close the door. Yet there she is, spewing out bullshit about how she is sooooooooo deeply spiritual that a ceramic Buddha in a retail outlet can move her. That’s not spiritual, that’s bullshit and lip service to that idiotic American fixation with faith. I can buy liking the display, but this bitch ain’t a saint walking among insects and you can’t buy a deeper connection to the universe in Teavana. It just never ceases to amaze and amuse me how attached we Americans are to paying lip service to some religion–any religion just to fit in. I guess it’s all part of the culture of forced and false positivity, but I still can’t seem to choke it down like the rest of you. You can’t buy enlightenment in the tea store. No, really, you can’t, and neither could she. Stop making excuses and justifications and accept this. If you find shopping spiritual, you need a new set of priorities. Possibly an exorcism or something.
Now, if she said that in the liquor store, that would have been a completely different matter. Hell, the liquor store is just rife with spirits. If you can’t get in touch with somebody or something in there; there really is no hope for you. If you claim to be able to find God in the bottom of a bottle of 50 year old scotch, I can get on board with that.