Thursday, December 15, 2005 A.D.
V for Vendetta
It seemed like such a good idea when I read the newspaper this morning. Apparently, Virra Mall has re-opened and Toy Kingdom is holding hourly raffles for the day. It's my one chance to do my last minute Christmas shopping and maybe win a couple of prizes in doing so, I thought. I especially wanted the raffle prizes for 11am and 12pm.

I got there a little before lunch, thanks to the holiday traffic, so I hurriedly went to Toy Kingdom where I was instantly refused entry by the guard. He told me that only VIPs were allowed to shop there and that I should instead come back three hours later. None too pleased with the plodding traffic I endured, I snapped at the guard (who I knew was only doing his job). I told him loudly (and within the hearing range of several VIPs with their children) that they shouldn't have placed the misleading ads in the newspapers to begin with.

Virra Mall is gone, by the way, because the structure that has replaced Virra Mall is now called VMall. The new name probably sounded hip and cool to the people who approved the name change (sadly, anyone who uses hip and cool as adjectives is probably not). The new name is hardly more interesting than the old one, I think: the V isn't exactly mysterious or exciting and VMall just sounds more impotent that Virra Mall.

I have to admit to having a severe bias regarding the renovation in the first place because I've always loved Virra Mall, even at its most dilapidated state prior to the renovation. I practically grew up with the shopping complex, a virtual witness to its evolution. Maybe it held a certain degree of nostalgia, but Virra Mall for me was one of the last shopping centers that hadn't yet been infected by the prevalent super-mall culture. It was definitely one of the last malls that exuded a more personal feel, similar to all my favorite shopping districts in the region (we evidently have more super-malls per person in the Philippines than elsewhere in Asia). Virra Mall, described by my philosophy teacher as a good example of post-modernism, was for me symbolic of a way of life that hadn't yet been gobbled up by modern macro-business practices.

To put it bluntly, I have reservations about VMall, name change and all, because Virra Mall has transformed into an SM Supermall (but without the department store), and we're pretty much overrun with SM Supermalls as it is.

Yes, I'm still pissed at the guard for not letting me finish my Christmas shopping today. I still needed to complete my Christmas list though, so I went ahead to the next logical place to shop - Toy Kingdom Megamall... case in point that I'm merely a sour-graping Scrooge with a grudge.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -