Thursday, November 02, 2006

Wanna grow a frog?

It’s catalogue season at our house.
It started right before school with the school supplies, office supplies and paper products. All of which make me very happy.
Then we started getting birthday party catalogues, Oriental Trading Company catalogues themed to everything from crafts to religious paraphernalia.
Long about October the real avalanche hit the house. We have toy catalogues, knick knack catalogues, catalogues dedicated to beads, or paper or books.
They crawl out of our mailbox, cover kitchen counters and stack up in untidy piles in the bathroom, where they make great reading material for all jobs, long or short.
And the sad truth is, I love them.
I grew up in a very small town where catalogue shopping was rather necessary if you wanted any kind of variety in your purchases.
Mom bought Christmas from J.C. Pennys or Sears. Nothing said holidays at our house like the little pink “you have a package” slips in our mailbox.
Back then, packages either came to the catalogue store or the post office. Both were downtown.
Now the goods are delivered via UPS directly to the door. What joy!
Both catalogues and brown paper packages still give me a thrill. Oh, the possibilities.
There is a trick to thumbing through a catalogue, and every member of my family has their own technique.
DS-7 is hard core. He sits down with a marker and after carefully perusing every page, reading the descriptions, asking me and his father to read the descriptions and studying it all once again, he circles his favorite items.
If DS-12 has a technique I have yet to see it, but I suspect it is on the line of DHs style, casually glancing at the pages then putting it down again.
I’m almost as dedicated as DS-7, my Wyoming Sister taught me a game to make the catalogue experience more fulfilling. I study each page and decide what I would buy if I had to buy something from each page. Sometimes I cheat and store up a page or two so I can buy several items from one page. It’s all imaginary money, anyway. So it doesn’t deplete my bank account or clutter up my house.
If I do, perchance, order something from the book I have the added fun of anticipating the arrival and opening the package to see if what I ordered is actually what I wanted. Sometimes it is, often it is not, but the anticipation always remains.
When I worked for Deseret Book my favorite job was unpacking the boxes. It was like finding a little treasure every time I slit the seal and opened the lid. Yes, I might be confronted with 24 copies of “The Work and the Glory,” but then again, the box could contain stuffed toys, or gel pens, or even scrapbook paper. (Yep, I was an addict, even then.)
Since I know I am not the only member of my extended family with a catalogue fetish, I have included a few links. Chances are good you will never order anything from any of the catalogues. But golly, they surely do pass time I might otherwise spend doing something useful and productive, and who wants that?

Update: I just checked today's mail and found: "," "Gardener's Supply Company," "HP Home & Home office Store" and "Construction Playthings" cataloges. Maybe I'll go eat lunch now.

1 comment:

Wyo sis said...

I got a construction Playthings too! Oh, I do love them catalogs! I stack them up by my bed until there is just a little pathway to get to my bed. You can tell when I finally bite the bullet and throw them away, the trash can weighs 500 pounds. It's a good thing it has wheels. The other day I had to put the full-of-catalogs trash bag on the skateboard to get it to the trash can.
I do not want to grow a frog, but I am very tempted to buy the playmobile manger scene, only the $30.00 price is holding me back. I am tremendously interested in the jewelry, but I don't know why. I never wear jewelry and when I do I can't leave it alone, I have to play with it.
I have the fiddle-with-everything gene like all of Ray Hall's grand children and great grand children.I think it is on the same DNA strand that causes me to want to cut paper up, and fold things. (except laundry of course)