It’s that time of year again, when tons of catalogs flow into our house as retailers scurry to sell us stuff we don’t require to live.  I’m surprised there isn’t a catalog from the store at Springfield Mall (the one in the Simpsons):  “Things Unneeded.”

Wait.  It’s that time of year all year round.   Valentines Day.  Easter.  Mothers Day.  Graduation.  Fathers Day.  Beach time.  Back to school.  Halloween.  Thanksgiving.  Catalogs are here to help us shop!

I used to enjoy flipping through Pottery Barn and Smith & Hawken, Williams-Sonoma and Anthropologie, looking at all the gorgeous still life photos and artfully art-directed homes.  But in time, the charm wore off.  Everything was too tasteful.  Too perfect.  Too too.

As Martha Stewart’s taste became everyman’s taste, I actually stated to miss tackiness.  Where were the plaid couches and kitty cat clocks, the bull moose tapestries purchased from gas stations, the giant wooden salad spoons on the kitchen wall?

Now, as if reading my thoughts, I see that Anthropologie is showing models in sheer minidresses and hideous untied men’s shoes, making ugly faces under a mass of tangled bedhead while standing in front of junk-food littered counters. 

But that’s just edgy old Anthropologie.  The photos are so uber-ugly, they’re cool.  And that doesn’t count as true tackiness.

The rest of the catalogs are still being oh-so-perfect – and finally, FINALLY, someone is mocking them for it.  Check out this blog, written by an improv comedian, as she creates a fake family living in the ridiculously stage-crafted homes.  It all began, she told a reporter, when she saw a photo of a gorgeous back-yard swimming pool with stunning lounge chairs and tables.  Under one glass topped table was a plate of fruit. 

How absurd, she scoffed.  And so she wrote a caption along the lines of this:  “Oh  Gary, the guests will be here shortly.  Don’t forget to put a plate of figs under the poolside table!”  When she showed her boyfriend, he laughed.  And lo, a blog was born.

Be careful, you could easily lose an hour of your life browsing and laughing.  There are worse ways to lose an hour.  I highly recommend it.

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