The (shopping) mall is mobbed!

Tour buses clog Arlington, Va., streets.

By Rebecca Traister

Published January 20, 2009 2:39AM (EST)

At 8 o'clock tonight, Hayes Street in Arlington, Va., was awash with the flashing blue of police car lights. At least five cars were parked outside, as people poured in and out of the Nordstrom entrance at the Fashion Centre mall. Had there been an incident? Was there a gala inside? A dignitary stocking up on long underwear for tomorrow? Nope, according to an officer sitting in his car, "We're just directing traffic. There were too many tour buses, and not enough parking spaces, and the road got blocked." He shook his head. "I guess all the people in town really wanted to go shopping," he said. "You should go inside the mall; it's a frickin' zoo."

See? said War Room. Obama is already helping the economy! The cop looked distinctly unmoved by our enthusiasm. "I have no idea if anyone is actually buying anything," he said.

Rebecca Traister

Rebecca Traister writes for Salon. She is the author of "Big Girls Don't Cry: The Election that Changed Everything for American Women" (Free Press). Follow @rtraister on Twitter.

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