Friday, October 06, 2006
Back when I was a kid, the countdown to Christmas always started with the arrival of the Sears catalog, aka- "The Wish Book." This catalog was so coveted that to avoid any possible rioting, my mom had no choice but to lay down the ground rules- which mostly amounted to a bunch of "seniority rules" gibberish that placed the book squarely in my oldest sister's hands, and then my middle sister's hands, until it eventually trickled its way down to me.
There were advantages to being last. Like being able to peek at my sister's choices, so I could make sure not to waste my own precious picks on a duplicate item. Though being born five years apart, pretty much guaranteed that I was the only one jonesing for both the Barbie Country Camper and the Racer Green Corvette for midlife crises Ken.
But now that I'm older (notice I didn't say "grown up") the early holiday rush always starts with the arrival of the Neiman Marcus "Christmas Book." And my husband's steadfast refusal to even acknowledge its existence, means I get the book all to myself. And just like the Wishbook before it, this catalog is also overwhelming. Filled with all manner of luxuries I can hardly believe I've been doing without. So in my need to reign it all in and bring it down to a more manageable level, I relegate myself to just two items to fixate on- one that I can both use and afford (trickier than it sounds), and one that I couldn't possibly use, can in no way afford, but now that I know of its existence, desperately need.
This years picks are-
1. The Swarovski Crystal Encrusted Pen found on page 79. This sparkly little gem is the perfect accompaniment for those Border's and Barnes and Noble book store signings. And at $60 is only about $58.01 more than my usual four pack of Bics. Not to mention how it's practically guaranteed to do wonders for my image, boost me onto the NYT bestseller list, and make me seem uber glamorous.
2. The Virgin Galactic Charter to Space found on page 87. Anyone who's read FAKING 19, knows all about my mad Richard Branson crush. And even though I was lucky enough to actually meet him, and even hug him (that sweater is now securely tucked away with a couple cedar chips in an undisclosed safety deposit box), this opportunity far surpasses that Virgin Record Store Grand Opening chance encounter. This is an chance to undergo three days of medical testing and astronaut training, to launch into space where one can experience weightlessness (that alone is worth the price of admission!), tool around way up high in the sky for awhile, before landing safely and being whisked off to Branson's very own PRIVATE VIRGIN ISLAND where I and a guest of my choosing will enjoy four nights of luxury accomodations along with an exclusive celebration hosted by Sir Richard Branson himself, where he will present all of us astronauts with a set of Virgin Galactic astronaut wings! (Which probably won't be made of plastic like my OTHER airline wings).
I realize that at first glance the price tag of $1,764,000.00 may seem a bit daunting. But since there will be six of us astronauts, and six of our guests, I think if we divide it up evenly we should be able to make this work!
Besides how often does an opportunity like this come around? Only once a year that I know of.