See, the Christmas Tree Shops are in her genetic makeup, they're in her blood. They're crack. My mother-in-law knows the I-95 exit, precise topography and geographical coordinates of every Christmas Tree Shop from Maine to Maryland.
The store's slogan is, "Don't You Just Love a Bargain?" And I really do love bargains, don't get me wrong-- I'm just longing for a store to give me bargains on things that I actually want. This is not to say that, at some point in my life I won't want a Seagrass Roman window shade for $16.99, or a beaded wire wall decor lobster for $2.99, or a goddamn garden gnome for $5.99. There may come a time in my life where I might want any number of these things in a non-ironic way. Now, if I bought all three of these items, I would proudly display the garden gnome on my front lawn with the beaded lobster shoved up its ass and the window shade cord wrapped around its neck.
Won't you be my neighbor?
My wife came back from the Christmas Tree Shop with news of a product called "Forever Cheese" bags. They're exactly what you think they are: bags that, apparently, keep cheese fresh forever. Because you're absolute horn-dogs for eye-candy, here's the pic:
Now, I could go in a lot of different directions here... false advertising, ludicrous and unsubstantiated claims (I mean, forever hasn't happened yet, has it?), or just plain wrongness. I mean, even if cheese could theoretically last "forever," can you really picture yourself in the year 2032 opening the refrigerator and being remotely interested in eating a piece of cheese that was placed in one of these bags in 2010?
For the sandwich-minded among us, there's also "Forever Bread" bags. Wanna ogle?
I suppose, if I had a sense of humor this early in the morning before coffee I could find these types of products harmless and maybe even slightly funny, but I'm not sure that I do. I mean, I kind of do. It's all a big joke-- keeping perishable food "fresh" or at least "edible" forever, or at least "for a very long time." We've jack up most of our food with preservatives-- Christ, our clementines are coated with shellac, for fuck's sake. That's supposed to be used in wood shops, kids. Wood shops. We're living in a culture, I think, where nothing's supposed to break, decay, or *gasp!* die.
Look at cars. In the 1970s, you were lucky if you got four years out of the average shitbox rolling off the line in Detroit-- maybe six if the car was a Japanese import. Back in the day, car companies wouldn't dream of offering you a warranty on a brand new car that was more than 2 years. Now, all of a sudden, when cars are more complex and computer-centered than ever, prone to all kinds of electronic malfunctions, we expect our cars to last forever. Kia is offering a 10 year, 100,000 mile bumper-to-bumper warranty.
In this era, even though we know that material goods are from China and are made like shit, we are constantly befuddled and astounded when things break. OMG, you guys, like, the screen on my iPhone won't turn on! Well, holy shit, Paris, that's totally fucked up. We expect these items of electronica to be ever-reliant, never failing us, even though we tire of them within eight months and are lustily searching after the next big thing.
We want, of course, to live forever, too. And, how do we do that?
Oh, and antimicrobial nanotechnology. That's, apparently, what keeps the bread fresh "forever."