Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Suggested guidelines for successfully surviving the BWS

In preparation for the melee, here are some things to remember:
- Wear shoes that are easy to take on and off, and keep track of them. I've seen women hunting for their own shoes after being too absorbed in trying on everything around them. Also, don't wear socks unless you're going for boots.
- There are no changing rooms, just a 'changing area' near a nook alongside the wall for women. Go in a bodysuit or wear underwear you wouldn't mind everyone (even men) seeing. I went jeans shopping with a cute British friend once, and her sexy lacy thong attracted quite a bit of attention.
For men, it's pretty much a free-for-all. Guys shopping for suits should probably bring a friend to hold their clothes as they strip down in the aisle.
- Don't carry a purse. If you are holding a handbag that is bigger than just a clutch, you'll be asked to check it. This not only causes needless stress, but really costs you some valuable time in getting into the mix.
- Don't loiter. If there are multiple pieces of what you want, chances are they will still be there in a week. If I can avoid being in the midst of women shoving and furiously grabbing at racks, I do. If this is your one and only trip and you are feverishly trying to decide what to keep or throw away, move away from the angry women who will be reaching through you to get stuff.
- If you want to find a 'safe spot' to rest but aren't ready to leave just yet, go hide in the Chelsea Market section downstairs, by mens tops. The only places to sit down are for trying on shoes.
- Be nice to the staff. Unfortunately they can't really hook you up in any form or fashion, but just imagine having to smile at (and clean up after) hordes of tense grabby people overflowing with adrenaline.

Good luck, my fellow New Yorkers. See you at the races tomorrow!

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