Humor Journal

Dear Target, We Need To Talk

Written by Carolyn Moore

Dear Target,

I hate to do this, but it’s time we had a serious talk.

Things between us lately have been…different. 

I first noticed it a few weeks ago when I walked through your automatic doors on one of my many sanity-saving trips to your retail wonderland. I have a pack of kids, you remember, and sometimes, sneaking away to pay you a visit is all that stands between me and a one-way ticket to crazy town. There’s something soothing about your aisles full of stuff I mostly don’t need, and I can’t even really explain how your end caps always seem to lure me in with just the right mix of clearance priced wall clocks and last season’s cocktail napkins, but there it is.  

You just get me. 

At least, you used to. 

There was a sign in your entryway heralding the upcoming arrival of a handful of new brands to our little arrangement.  And I thought, “Super! There’s always room for some fun new partygoers here. The more the merrier!” 

But when I rounded the corner (after a spin through The One Spot, naturally), I started feeling a little uneasy. 

There were a few extra red and khaki-clad workers milling about the sunglasses section. Makes sense, I reasoned. Summer is officially on the way out, so it’s time to make room for scarves those exciting new brands and such. 

But as I pushed my cart towards the next department—girls’ clothing—the suspicion loitering in the back of my brain started a slightly panicked trip to consciousness as I took in the partially assembled, weirdly tall shelving units that had suddenly appeared. 

You were rearranging. 

And I did not, I repeat, DID NOT authorize it. 

 

Here’s the thing, Target. I’ve come to depend on you as a sort of constant in my life. I know how to steer my red plastic cart to the exact spot where baby fingernail clippers live, without even turning on my brain. I can overthink every other aspect of the life I live outside your doors and still find my son’s preferred orange citrus hand soap without devoting a single neuron to the task. I know your wide aisles, the ins and outs of the food section, where the Shopkins are, and how to find those blasted book light batteries I seem to replace every three weeks. 

So you see, when you move those things around, it messes with my internal feng shui—and therefore, my sanity. 

We should take a moment to address the strange Honey I Shrunk The Kids motif you’ve included in this latest redesign, too. I don’t know if Wayne Szalinski is your new director of marketing or what, but those oversized shopping basket display things? Yeah. Not so much. 

I ran into a friend after walking by a line of them, and our incredulous eyes met above the ridiculous giant gray handles. What’s next—children hanging off giant spoonfuls of soggy Cheerios? I know, you’re just trying to stay relevant. Gotta keep up with the hip millennials who heart IKEA and all that. 

Well, lean in close now, Target, because this is the crux of our issue: I DON’T WANT YOU TO CHANGE.

I like my familiar, long ago memorized layout. I like normal sized stacks of shopping baskets that aren’t trying to be cute and clever. I like clothing displays that don’t make me feel as if I’m walking through the Grand Canyon of leggings and graphic tees. 

I like you the way you were, Target. We had a good thing going, and you’re jeopardizing it. 

So, how about we make a deal: I’ll let you have your little mid-year identity crisis. You spread your wings and test them out for a few weeks. You try your overgrown displays and your confusing couch-in-the-middle-of-housewares vignettes that I repeatedly have to chase my three-year-old from. But get it out of your system before the holiday shopping season starts, ok? We’ll all be happier that way, trust me. 

Thanks for the chat. 

Love, Carolyn

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About the author

Carolyn Moore

Carolyn traded a career in local TV news for a gig as a stay-at-home mom, where the days are just as busy and the pay is only slightly worse. She lives in flyover country with her husband and four young kids, and occasionally writes about raising them at Assignment Mom