Red Alert: Stay Away From the Malls Because Tax-Free Weekend is Here (Unless You Really Really Need to Go)

If you woke up this morning with a sinking feeling in your stomach that you couldn't explain, there's a good chance it's because subconsciously you know about the dark cloud hanging over Texas the next few days.

Tax-free weekend has returned.

Those of you who made the mistake of deciding to stop by the mall "real quick" this morning already know the horror, but for the rest of you safe in your offices and homes take this advice: do as little shopping as possible this weekend.

It's just not worth it. Yes, you do save a bit, but at what cost? Is it really worth it to have to fight past hordes of crazed shoppers looking to save, store workers in the midst of nervous breakdowns, and the worst parking lot traffic you'll see all year?

Heaven help you if it rains.

Take our advice: do something else. Go to a movie. Have a picnic. Print out the Houston Bucket List and knock out a few things that don't involve malls, strip centers, or big-box retailers. Visit your folks. Take a nap. Avoid the chaos.

We know some of you will not heed our advice. Some folks can't resist a deal. Some folks just like to play with fire. Whatever the reason, if you absolutely, positively must get in the car and go looking for clothes, shoes, and school supplies be safe. Know your surroundings. Bring a snack; who knows how long you'll have to wait in line.

The rest of us will be anywhere else, away from the chaos, waiting for the madness to end.

Or we'll be shopping online because we live in the future and getting stuff sent to your door is the best. Yeah, it costs a bit more, but at least we're not going to have anyone try and run us over walking to the front door.

It's scary now, but come Monday it'll all be over, and once again it'll be safe to visit your local shopping center... at least until Black Friday comes around. Here's hoping our suit of armor arrives at our doorstep before then.

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