No returns. No exchanges. No dressing rooms.

Posted on July 27, 2010


where to start?

Life in the Boomer Lane and her friend Susan, in a never-ending quest for adventure totally beneath the maturity level that they should aspire to, found a new, humongous “store” to go to in the DC area. This store is called “Unique,” and they name is apt. The store is housed in the airplane-hanger-like space that used to be occupied by the now-defunct Levitz Furniture Store.

Unique is the world’s largest (LBL just made that up) combination of a Florida flea market and a Goodwill store. Susan headed directly to the boutiques area, having catchy names like #Boutique 1, Boutique #2, Boutique #3… they went to one that was selling “Designer Bag Knockoffs That Look Exactly Like the Real Thing If You Have No Idea What the Real Thing Looks Like.” While those in the know would be assessing the exact size and placement of the hardware and logos on the bags so as to compare them to the real thing, LBL’s knowledge of designer bags limited her to saying, “Oh, that’s cute” several times while Susan, with eyes spinning around in her head, grabbed one after the other and asked, “How’s this?”

After the handbags and the jewelry, they attacked the endless flea market clothing racks. Somewhere, millions of people are giving clothes to this store. Or else millions of people are on vacation and will come home to empty closets (If the Unique attorneys are reading this, LBL WAS JUST KIDDING.) The array was mind-boggling. Along with the usual Goodwill caliber stuff, LBL did find some clothes with tags still in place (Note to Unique attorneys: I will refrain from making an obvious joke here), and some actual designer clothing.

Then, the shoes. Rows and rows and rows. Again, some new and some actual designer shoes. And lots and lots of shoes with big, chunky 1990s heels. Like there was a warehouse somewhere that stored what remained of the chunky 1990s heel inventory). Oh, and the world’s largest selection (LBL just made that up) of pre-owned bowling shoes. While she was perusing the shoes, the Loudspeaker Lady announced that “For the next 30 minutes, all shoes are half price!” This means the $4.00 shoes she was looking at were now $2.00. She was tempted to buy one of the pairs with big chunky see-through heels that had little colorful pieces of what looked like candy suspended in a liquid so that when you walked, they would swim around (A bargain is a bargain, after all), but she refrained.

On to the housewares area. The quality here was decidedly a step down. LBL found a clay pencil/pen/whatever container obviously made by a child. She knows this because she has one just like it at home (Or maybe she should check to see if it’s still there). Note to Unique attorneys: I’M KIDDING, AGAIN.

In the end, LBL bought nothing. Susan found a beautiful black and white gauzy summer tunic that looked unworn and swore LBL to secrecy as to where she got it (As you can tell, LBL isn’t not really good at keeping secrets). She also picked up two CDs without opening the cases. The cashier, on the other hand, did. One of the CD cases was empty.

Will they go back? LBL don’t know. Maybe if Susan wants another look at that “Looks-Exactly-Like-A-Gucci” bag…