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Ostomy Memories of Catalogs


The catalogs that we receive in a year could insulate a medium-sized home. They pour in through the mail, as if the stream of solicitation e-mail from the same companies weren't enough. Sometimes we will get duplicate catalogs on the same day, one addressed to me and the other to my wife. Once we got three from LL Bean, my daughter accounting for the third one.

The trash bag gets awfully heavy when it is filled with catalogs.

Most of them repeat the same old merchandize from catalog to catalog with perhaps a few new things thrown in to make it appear different. Sometimes I look through them while eating breakfast. One the other day had three different plastic “guns” with which to shoot marshmallows! Who buys these things?

The type of family you are is reflected in the catalogs you receive. My wife receives bike supply catalogs, though she hasn't ridden either of her two bikes in months. My daughter receives upscale women's clothing (and underclothing) catalogs. As for myself, I get catalogs from outdoor suppliers and cigar purveyors, though I've long since given up overpriced stogies. Catalogs, then, may be as much a measure of one's past as one's future. And, like the past, they are always there, endless, undeterred, innumerable.

With the holiday season upon us, the crush of catalogs will only get worse. It is akin to a feeding frenzy of sorts, the ones with the merchandisers jumping up and down trying to gain the attention of potential customers. You want this! Buy this! HAVE WE GOT A DEAL FOR YOU!

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When I was young..our house would receive the large Spiegel (my Mom would order our Christmas and Easter outfits) and Sears catalog ( for winter coats) and the best one was the Sears Christmas catalog which was almost shredded by Christmas time because all of us loved dreaming about our toys from Santa.


Hello HenryM.

The catalogues  recieved in our house almost all come from organisations from whom we have purchsed items previously. So, I presume that if we don't want any, we shouldn't buy anything. I look forward to the couple of garden produce catalogues, as they make me wonder how the hell they manage to get such beautiful blooms and crops, when the stuff they send me seems to be closer to weeds than to what they have advertised.

My wife and daughters recieve heaps of catalogues about clothing, but none of them ever buy these things except in store. Both my daughters have long-since left home, so the catalogues get recycled immediately without being read. 

As you say they seem to be a reflection of our past, but there are ways of cutting the supply. Whenever I purchase something from a store, I make it abundantly clear that if I start getting any advertising from them, I will never shop there again. This tactic has been quite effective. Online, I always unsubscribe to any site that sends me advertisements, although a number of them make this process very difficult.

The other thing I insist on when in store, is that nothing I buy has advertising on it. This cuts the number of things available for me to purchase down to almost nothing, which suits me fine. Some of the staff at garages that I have bought cars from, look at me as if I am some kind of alien for insisting on them removing any advertising from the vehicles before I buy them, but most of them comply to get a sale and those that don't miss out to someone that will. 

I usually explain that if they want to advertise on my goods, then they should pay me at the going rate for doing so. When I inform them of how much that will cost, they are only too willing to remove the offending ads. 

Best wishes



Boy, I can relate to your antipathy for products with advertising or logos on them.  I've been thinking of doing a post on "golf whores," the golfers who are all plastered with product logos for which I'm sure they are compensated quite well. 


Hi Henry,  Maybe it's a Canadian thing, but we don't get catalogues anymore.  I remember, as a kid, waiting eagerly for the Hudson's Bay and Simpson Sears catalogues, both summer and winter editions.  The only exceptions now are a catalogue from Canadian Tire (an auto and household goods retailer for you non-Canadians) and a small publication that might charitably be called a catalogue from London Drugs at Christmas.  

We get boat loads of advertising fliers, they far outnumber real mail, especially this time of year.  I can only guess that Canadian retailers have decided that printing up and mailing out catalogues to potential buyers is just not worth the expense.  Fine by me, saves a lot of trees.

Now Henry, are you really putting all those catalogues in the trash and not recyling them?? For shame!




LOL   No, we recycle. 

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