The Death and (Pretentious) Return of Supermall

The renaming of the Supermall in Auburn to “The Outlet Collection” annoys me because “The Outlet Collection” sounds like something a fashionista would nickname the clothes she (or he) had purchased at affordable prices from outlet stores.  On a regional level, the new name is incorrect.  The official name is “The Outlet Collection Seattle.”  As Auburn Councilwoman Nancy Backus was quoted in an Auburn-Reporter.com article (“Auburn’s Supermall to get new look, name,” June 6, 2012), “It says The Outlet Collection Seattle…We’re Auburn.”

When I came to Washington State in 2010 and my parents were showing me around, one of the first local places I visited was the Supermall.  I thought that “Supermall” was the coolest name for a mall.  Back where I came from in South Bay, California, the names of the malls were Del Amo and the Galleria—not very exciting.

But “Supermall”, that’s a real name for a mall.  It sounds like the name of a superhero whose atomic structure consists of shops.  On the periphery of the mall’s lot, there are even more stores and restaurants.  When I moved here, there were two GameStops: one in the main building and another on the outskirts.  The one inside the main building closed.  There was also an arcade called Tilt.  I always played “Time Crisis 3” and “Capcom vs. SNK.”  The “Capcom vs. SNK” monitor’s screen wasn’t sharp; it was badly worn out, but it was still fun to play.  Arcades in malls were a rarity.  There were price tags on the cabinets, however – a bad omen.  Tilt closed a few months later.

I hate outlets, mainly because I don’t like shopping for clothes, shoes, or any other kinds of accessories.  Yes, there are more to outlets than just fashion, like dining and games, but to me fashion seems to be the main attraction.

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