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Browsing in Nordstrom Rack makes Jon Caramanica feel as though he's among the Mole People: "Here we were, underground, being moved from stack to stack by forces we couldn’t fully understand, and had little hope of escaping from." And that's just the beginning of this week's Critical Shopper, which paints the new off-price store as a bleak subterranean endurance test where you'll have to spend hours combing the racks to find anything worth bringing home. "Much of the time, the clothes at Rack did not even invite the interrogation: endless fields of golf polos, track pants, textureless slacks and ties just a hair too wide to wear this decade. Clusters of shirts looked impenetrable under signs that read, 'Brands too hot to mention.' Those would be Robert Barakett, Bogosse and Zachary Prell, among others. Feeling seared?" [NYT]