Remember when we were kids? Remember life before ubiquitous computers and a laptop for every lap? And remember life before eleventy-thousand cable channels all telling us what to buy? Remember before cross-marketing - before your toys appeared on cartoons, had their own website, and little substandard versions would appear in your Happy Meals?
Remember when the Sears catalog would come out around Thanksgiving? Remember sitting hip-to-hip and cheek-to-cheek pouring over that inch-and-a-half thick tome with such loving reverence and awe? Remember turning that last page that transitioned from the bikes to the camping equipment? Remember starting back at the beginning of the toy section again and again?
Remember the hell that would come crashing down on the unsuspecting child who dared rip a page from its spine? Remember fighting tooth and nail with your siblings for the opportunity to browse through its pages alone? Remember imagining receiving just the right Barbie Townhouse/Dream Car/Giant Hairstyle-able Head? Who are we kidding? We wanted them all. Remember when Christmastime started *after* Thanksgiving, not before Halloween had even ended?
Today, I remembered all those things in an instant. When the IKEA catalog came.
15 hours ago