The Target Obsession

So it's been a week since my Target adventure and in retrospect it seems like a funny story to tell – and yes, Anya you can share this too…

It all started with an ad (a full page ad) in GQ for a great looking herringbone blazer – just great for the holidays that I thought would do me well; so I set out to look for it. Of course there are no big-box stores on Manhattan (and according to the site the closest are Jersey & Brooklyn). So my next best bet had to be Banana Republic where they had a great looking blazer for $248; unfortunately, 3 days, 4 stores, a lot of site surfing and a call to BR customer services later, it transpired that they didn't make the blazer in the size I wanted… Now when you've invested this much time and energy to find something, it becomes kinda an obsession…

So going back to the heart of the matter, I decided that Target was the place to go, and since an errand in Jersey City was on the cards it seemed like an ideal opportunity. This was my first mistake.

We walked about the equivalent of 30 city blocks, through most of Jersey City, a deserted industrial estate, two mall car parks and the mall itself before arriving at the entrance to the Holland Tunnel – no sign of Target. A friendly salesperson in Sears who asked "where are you parked?" tried to give some helpful directions – which might have worked if we'd been driving, but on foot no way. Enter the friendliest cop in Jersey (and she was blonde too)- this one person has given me confidence in the entire metro police force who gave us exact directions to get to Target, of course there wasn't really a sidewalk and we had to cross twelve lanes of traffic going into the tunnel – but we made it.

Target was wonderful, everything we had ever dreamed of, and a I bought two blazers for $60 each!

But the story doesn't end here, because how to do two pedestrians in NJ get back to Manhattan at 7pm on a Saturday evening? Re-enter (stage left or north side of the Holland Tunnel entrance) the friendly cop who explains that NY cabs can't pick you up in NJ – lesson number two – and that we'd better walk to the PATH station, which was only about 5 blocks away. Lazy Brit steps up and decides that it's too cold, too late and he's too lazy to work with public transport and we begin to try and convince a cab to take us back to the city.

Three cabs later, a friendly chap who's prepared to break the law and take on two crazies in NJ. So he says "how much do you normally pay from here to the city?" So the billion dollar winner's curse question… I guess and replied between $10 and $12 plus the tolls and he seemed to agree.

The end of the story goes that we made it back, happy and warm, and above all overjoyed with our purchases and I'd spent less at Target plus the cab fare than I would have done at our friends BR.

By Lex Bradshaw-Zanger

A digital native and integrated brand marketer with a passion for marketing-communications and product design, Lex has a truly international outlook and experience, having worked both in major marketing agencies and client-side brands across Europe, the US and the Middle East.

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