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Lileks: The smallest possible Target on Earth

  • Article by: JAMES LILEKS
  • Star Tribune
  • August 9, 2014 - 3:59 PM

Target Express will open its second branch in St. Paul soon, so people who find normal Targets too horrifyingly overwhelming won’t have to drive to Dinkytown to visit the first one. Personally, I want larger Targets. I want 237 choices for pasta sauce. Don’t you tell me Paul Newman hasn’t come up with Basil & Asiago Cheese with Fire-Roasted Peppers. I’ve heard rumors. I want to stand in the aisle confused by the riot of sauce possibilities.

But some like the convenience, hence Target Express. Eventually this will result in a refined ­version, an even smaller store. Target Express Express. One aisle, but with all the features you’ve come to love:

• Magazine rack at check-out replaced by placard that says “Some pretty people are happy, and that one girl lost weight, and some country singer had baby heartache.” Because that about covers it.

• Optometry department only does one eye, and sells only monocles; “Minute Clinic” consists of a dish of aspirin.

• Entire clothing department reduced down to one shelf called “Bras and Socks.”

• Cereal department does not carry the latest innovations, like Cheerios Protein Greek Yogurt Peanut Butter Probiotic Kale-Flecked Clusters; just Blastin’ Bran and Lucky Charms, because frankly that’s what it comes down to.

• Wall of interchangeable and arbitrarily priced Coke and Pepsi products replaced by chewable moist towelettes in popular flavors.

• Meat department in four words: Nuthin’ but Slim Jims.

• Prepacked Wad O’ Staples, which consisted of milk, bread, eggs, and toilet paper.

All well and good, but what I really want is a Target Solo, which is located at the parking lot exit, and sells just one thing:

The item you went to get in the first place, and forgot to pick up.

jlileks@startribune.com • 612-673-7858

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