shopping mall - quotes and descriptions to inspire creative writing
I'm back in 2015, the slave era and it's scary. I've reappeared in a western country mall and the people walk around dressed in clothing made from slave labour with plastics even being part of the fabric. They show no awareness that they are literally clothed in what are many children's tears and indeed death shrouds for the Earth. They wear these garments with no thought to their origins, the real human being who made them or where the materials came from and how they were extracted from the earth. Everywhere there are gadgets, the ones they used to make from rare earth minerals. I want to eat but I'm not sure the food will go down. How can I touch the plastic wrappers, smell meat from caged mammals? The best I can do is go to a bakers and a green grocers. So I'm heading out, casting my eyes low like the hundreds of people around me. No-one I know has been born yet and I didn't believe them when they said I was going back, but they showed me a history book and there I am, so I know what to do because I did it already.
Once outside the air looses the chemical perfume smells and instead I detect the gasoline the cars burn, back home that's just something they show a traveller to orient them to their new time and I had hoped that part was just a joke. The people move about as if free, but I can see their chains. They are on the bill boards of the mall, smiling at them with perfect teeth. They'll want to be those billboard people so much they'll hand their children over to daycare as babies. They'll willingly walk into cubical farms for ten hours a day or more while they dream of one week in the sun and rack up credit card expenses. This is the era when no-one questioned the money system. It was when the most basic level of workers could not afford the most basic level of housing and food. It was when children were put under so much pressure in schools and by the media that their mortality rates soared. I want to scream at these drones, yell, but they're still asleep.
The shopping mall has architecture the schools and hospitals can only dream of. The ceiling is domed higher than any cathedral and made of the most beautiful glass. The walkways flow like tributaries to the main rivers of people, not a sharp angle to be seen. It smells like heaven in a hand-basket and the floor shines like the surface of a lake at sunrise. In the background is music to soothe, gentle flowing notes to take the shopper's cares far away. In a world so chaotic it is order. In a world of pollution and desecration it is clean perfection in bubble-wrap.
The shopping mall is sensory overload. Only overtures for purchases are permitted in here; the messages and carefully styled images to seduce consumers are wherever the eyes may fall. There is everything I want and very little I need. To move through the crowd means getting closer to other people than I would usually allow, but internet shopping won't cut it this time. Tyler needs new basketball shoes and the big game is tomorrow.
There are no shopping malls anymore, not real ones anyway. The only way to shop now is in virtual reality. Put on a headset and you're ready to wander the largest shopping malls in the world. You can try things on, smell fragrances and feel the texture of the fabrics. Whatever you buy is deducted from your credits. They say the rich have different malls and the poor have to go to real markets no better than crude tables in the old train stations.
It was the biggest shopping mall in the world. A moving platform ran along all the walkways in both directions just like in the airports. There was a shuttle service from the far ends of the car parks to the entrance and food outlets were scattered throughout instead of being on one courtyard. There were professional shopping guides smiling at every entrance, always ready for more business. Gayla stepped inside, holding her hands out to the petals raining down from the clear ceiling. They were virtual, of course they were...
The shopping malls near me sit on the landscape like decaying carcasses, long ago stripped by the zombie hoard vultures. They always promised to split the rich from the poor and they did. Of course then the malls fell into their own gaping chasm - the poor not having enough money to shop and the rich choosing not to rub shoulders with the riff-raff. And so they joined the ranks of the great ironies of our age, a footnote for a species that so loves beauty they will destroy what they seek while they're seeking it.
The shopping mall is my Mecca, make-up and shoes my guilty pleasure. I can roam the aisles, take inspiration from the stores and make myself anew. I come in feeling ordinary and leave as if I'm walking on a podium, my purchases already speaking for me on all my social media channels. I can see myself at the clubs already, soaking in the attention faster than the cocktails, hundreds of "likes" on my selfies. I'll be the belle of the ball. Move over Paris Hilton, I'm the new generation and you're old.
The shopping mall is the same temperature inside no matter what the season is. The light is the same, the scent, the polished floor, the tense faces on the shoppers. Only the piped music and the fashions change. People aren't people in here, they're consumers. They see one another as obstacles - both to walk around and wait behind for a turn to reach the tills. The only smiling faces are the ones who sell, their humanity used like a crude fishing line to real the buyers in. It's a friendly enough place if you've got digits on your card, if you can line the pockets of the purveyors...
The shopping mall is a candy store: eye candy, gadget candy, ego candy. Every item in here costs something to our planet to produce, does anyone ask if the cost is worth it? Do our addictions really hold up as excuses? Do we really need plastic eyelashes for our car headlamps? Why is it our children need tonnes of plastic crap for their brains to develop right? Didn't Leonardo da'Vinci do OK? Is twenty-first century wisdom only as deep as a balance sheet?
The shopping mall cuts into the greying sky like an unholy temple, casting a long shadow onto the earth around. It is the engine of this town, the final exhaust of so many industries. When the soundless bell chimes the parking lot fills, acres of shiny paintwork over smooth black tarmac.
If I were a genie I would grant myself a few wishes. I would wish for all the pollution caused by the goods in the shopping malls to gather above them in dense choking clouds. I would wish for the pain and misery caused by their production to crawl from the loud-speakers instead of inviting music. I would wish that the billboards showed the faces of the "disposable" humans, the ones whose lives were sacrificed to the almighty alter of commercialism. Our actions have consequences. I'm no luddite, I want technology to be part of our future. But when dirty is made to look clean and desirable the world falls into a negative spin, too confused to make the necessary corrections.