You won't be needing an AK47 for the mall. However, there are items for combat shopping that you'll regret not having, and those are pretty basic.
Gather ads from mail circulars over the few weeks before shopping, buy a Sunday newspaper, and clip all the ads and coupons you can find. Put these for handy reference into your left leg’s camouflage pants. Charge your cell phone the night before you shop. And do a little workout so you can slip sideways between people and aisle merchandise.
Prepare yourself! Comfortable shoes are not just for women who look like men in bad clothing. You'll need them. Not only that, you'll be smart to take another pair in your newfound friend—the mesh picnic bag. Consider a foldable fabric bag with wheels. Aisles are no longer aisles—they're now supply dumps for un-saleable items, and are a huge obstruction to shopping carts, even if the store you choose happens to have such a thing. Toss a pair of small flat shoes, a bottle of water and a can of diet drink into the bag. When you're convinced your toes will never be the same, simply change shoes. A drink of water will cost you $2.00 at the mall. When it nears and you stop for lunch, you'll find yourself in a 30-person line. Then it'll be a tossup as to whether you'll live long enough to reach the counter. But you'll have your handy diet drink to sustain you while you wait out the line. You could even skip lunch this way and eat at your line-free kitchen when you get home. I’ve known some people who go to Costco on Saturdays for the sample ladies. The little wieners and tasty chip dips feed them lunch every week. But I digress.
A tiny camp stool isn't a bad idea either, since stores discourage sitting and there are often no seats available in the entire mall!
Even if it's minus two degrees outside, the mall will be 80 degrees inside, so wear a vest you can take off and stuff into your mesh/rolling bag as well.
Put money, credit cards, ID and keys into a little makeup case and Velcro it shut inside the right leg’s pocket of your camouflage fatigue pants. Don't forget to take your cell phone or bring a set of walkie talkies if someone goes with you. A field compass is a must for mall stores larger than a WalMart.
Whatever you do, don't take a husband along. I lost mine after seeing him bobbing and weaving around a department store cologne counter, dodging a sales clerk determined to expose him to the latest fragrance. He disappeared and it took two weeks for me to find him after that. He was suffering from Mall Knees and had to be sedated.
Don't even think about taking a small grandchild along. That's akin to having an unpinned hand grenade with you. Not only will your shopping be interrupted because she will want to eat four times, but she will suddenly cry from neglect. Or he will suddenly clear the aisle by stretching out his arms and running full tilt down between stacks of merchandise that have attracted a bending fat lady, incidentally dragging his hand over her fanny, causing an immediate screech and full force explosion.
I’ve often thought a motorhome coach would be the perfect island for cat-napping between sales, and even solves the “Sales Begin At ” issue. But then there is a whole other set of logistics most people won’t want to mess with. Getting the thing parked properly out in the East 40, noise created by the generator, hogging parking spots, and the array of petty issues which could arise, like the mall having rules against such brilliant ideas. The fines might offset your sale deals.
The ideal thing would be to get somebody to drop you off at the door so you don’t have to waste energy just getting to the big box mall. Then of course being picked up for the same reason, especially if you haven’t taken a collapsible bag with you which would then be very full.
With the shopping season for Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas looming in the next few months, I wish you good luck and happy shopping.