I scorn those mindless consumers whose personal tastes are defined by logos and brand names.
Yet the truth is: I will buy any product called Trade Winds that is decorated with a picture of a clipper ship. Sometimes, as in the case of Pinaud Bay Rum after shave, I just need the clipper ship to be inspired to make a purchase.
So I'm just as bad as the shopping mall fodder, if not worse.
Instead of insipid fashions and shameless celebrities, my shopping prejudices are formed by a romantic nostalgia for an idealised, colonial West Indies: hibiscus scented evenings on the terrace at Government House, dressed in a crisp white linen suit, sipping gin and tonic while watching the local fishermen bring their catch to shore. There are elements of mid-century Hawaii and South Sea Islands fantasy mixed in there too.
This melange of pseudo-tropical lifestyle images guides my decisions when buying toiletries, summer clothing, foodstuffs, and drinks. Have you seen the Kraken dark spiced rum bottle? It's a thing of beauty. I actually prefer to drink Gosling but buy Kraken purely for the aesthetic packaging.
Of course, I know the Kraken is a Scandinavian sea monster rather than a Caribbean beast, but it's always a Dark 'n' Stormy night in this shopaholic's world.