Sunday, May 3, 2009
Forever Twenty One and in Denial, kind of.
I guess life is funny like that sometimes. I used to avoid this particular store in the mall. I physically sped up my walking pace so that the mesh of neon colors and funky patterns would be but a blur. I was 18 and naïve then. Now, here I am at 21. And, well, open my closet, pull out my drawers, search through my dirty hampers, and what you will find are season trends of Forever 21 designs of yore.
Yes. I am 21. Yes. I am addicted.
The clothes are trendy, colorful, and, better yet, CHEAP. I can’t deny that I’m not itching to drive to Arden Fair Mall right now to see what the newest weekly trend is and what discount prices await me.
While my fingers glide over the hangers, I am experiencing Forever Euphoria unaware of the fingers that strained to make my euphoria happen. Chuck Q. Byun’s “Forever in Trouble,” sheds light on a particular laborer’s plight working for this retail giant. According to Byun, Erika Contreas “was working 60 hours a week and earning about $4 per hour in a factory where humans competed with rats and roaches for space” (Byun).
But this idea of unfair labor practices isn’t something new consumers are learning. I remember the Kathy Lee fiasco. In this case, the National Labor Committee points out that “approximately 100 of the workers at Global Fashion [the company responsible for producing Lee’s clothing line] were young teenage girls, thirteen, fourteen, fifteen years old” (NLCNET.org).
As part of the compact challenge, I am STILL attempting to avoid any contact with my deceivingly beloved store. It has been 2 weeks since I last stepped inside to even just look around. With hot temperatures appearing yet again in Davis and Sacramento, it is going to be difficult not to buy more summer dresses. In fact, the last time I succumbed to this store’s bright lights was around Picnic Day.
I’m not sure what it is exactly that lures me to this store. But I refuse to be Forever an idiot.
Chuck Q. Byun. “Forever in Trouble?” 4. April 2003
www.nlcnet.org. “ Children Exploited by Kath Lee/ Walmart”
-Danielle Samara R. Acala