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Four Items From Urban Outfitters Clearance Rack That Say: My Parents Were Absent During My Developmental Years


Photo by HanaSeligman / CC BY 2.0

Known for its undying commitment to the skinny Caucasian female population and its penchant for playing Frank Ocean’s 2012 album channel ORANGE in stores 24/7, Urban Outfitters, Inc. is a retail fashion chain store based in Philadelphia. The store’s target customers range from prepubescent, portly young adults who recently put the links to their VSCO pages in their Instagram bios to mentally ill second-year grad students who are considering applying for jobs at CoStar. Take a walk in Rittenhouse Square and you will spot many a young woman sporting head-to-toe Urban Outfitters attire, and you will think to yourself, “Girllll!”

Every piece of clothing in Urban Outfitters tells a story. Some say, "I just moved from Rural Virginia to Philly, and boy do I need to stop wearing skinny jeans." Some say, "My average screen time every day is nine hours, and six of those are for TikTok." Others say, "I just deleted Hinge for the sixth time, but this Saturday night I will redownload it." Here are four items from the Urban Outfitters clearance rack that say, "My parents were absent during my major developmental years."

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Photo by Liwa Sun

This marked-down, XS long-sleeved dress looks proper for church in the front but absolutely whorish in the back, with the hollowed-out design. The light blue tone suggests a remnant of innocence, yet the print of roses suggests a ferocious sexual appetite. This dress, with its full coverage of the chest area and its heinous texture, will have your parents saying, "Liwa, baby, this looks OK, but please stop buying clearance clothes, if it’s money you need …" 

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Photo by Liwa Sun

This skirt screams, "What you’ve heard is true — I did go to catholic school for a year, and it gave me an eating disorder and a sex addiction." You can style various tops with this skirt: a white button up, or a white tank top, or a white polo shirt. Any of these choices will be guaranteed to bring back fond memories of freshman year, when you hid in the bathroom to avoid going to Mass in the gym. Your parents were in a different country, and you hadn't seen them in six months. You took German. No one spoke to you in biology. You had a crush on Jason Ziegler. His friends made fun of you in the cafeteria, so you spent lunch periods in the library for the next two weeks, starving and lonely. 

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Photo by Liwa Sun

This fluffy pink jacket says, "This was what kept me warm during rush, and I felt the need to join a Greek organization because I was an only child and spent many weekends of my childhood alone in the living room, reading the same book over and over again, and I often wonder what it would be like to have siblings, and I think it would even be good for my parents because they would be less obsessed with me, and they really gotta stop being so obsessed with me since I have been gone for four years now, and it’s time for them to realize that this will be a fact of our family dynamic for the rest of our lives, and they need to get a life somehow."

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Photo by Liwa Sun

This pair of heart-shaped sunglasses is deeply redolent of the Nabokov novel as well as Lana Del Rey’s song of the same name. It says, "Feel free to sexualize me because my mother failed to impart a healthy sense of sexuality because I was too young back then, and I spent my major developmental years away from my parents, and during the limited amount of time I actually got to spend with my mother she realized I had acquired a sex education on my own time, and she didn’t feel comfortable discussing the topic with me due to the coy nature of Chinese people so we never talked about it. This is the reason why I overplay my sexuality, even though I'm not even that horny. I just want to be loved for once.