The Kmart at Astor Place has never managed to Tar-jay itself into ironic hipsterdom.  The fashion stylings of Jaclyn Smith just don’t quite cut the mustard, I guess, when  you can hike out to Target in Brooklyn or the Bronx and find equally cheap Mizrahi or McCartney or the hot youngster du jour.

Despite the lack of hipster fashions, I still love my Astor Place Kmart, where cynical, black-clad New Yorkers stumble around in suburbanly wide aisles:  mohawked holdovers from the late 1980s browse the cat food aisles; multiply pierced couples in matching skinny jeans and studded leather jackets debate which laundry detergent is best; downtown club kids cruising in for a few Red Bulls to tide them over drift past sensibly shod Orthodox women price-checking paper towels. We’re all here, cruising the aisles for whatever we need—and who knows, maybe a Selena Gomez sweatshirt is just the thing.

The other day I went in for laundry detergent (on special!) and then remembered that Caleb has outgrown most of his underpants, so I went upstairs to the sock-and-underwear section.  And that’s when I realized that perhaps the buyers for Kmart don’t realize who, exactly, is shopping at this store:

If you don’t like these light colored shirts (so great for spring, don’t you think?) perhaps you’d like something in New York black?

You’re right. It’s no good to be promoting drinking, particularly since some of these t-shirts are clearly sized for kids. We wouldn’t want that, would we? Maybe something with a message that’s more about community, connection, and friendship?

And my personal favorite:

I can totally see the guys in the Cooper Union math department wearing these.

I mean, do you think anyone in K-mart, or even a twenty-block radius of K-mart, knows that there is a hunting season, much less when it begins and ends?

Somewhere in K-Mart’s middle management is a merchandise buyer (perhaps now unemployed) who somehow, inexplicably, confused Astor Place with Wasilla.

hey! another post of mine is up at technorati!