Jeanette Sekan
Jeanette Sekan
By Jeanette Sekan
The Cody (Wyo.) Enterprise
HCP columnist

One of the many secret pleasures I get when I open my mailbox this time of year is the annual onslaught of catalogs.

I admit I love to browse in the comfort of my pjs rather than walking through the aisles in stores. In years gone by when I had to wear high heels and more professional attire than my jeans and turtleneck of today, my friends and I would make a day of it going to the mall and oohing and aahing at the latest fashions and trends.

I didn’t know it then, but I would grow to think of shopping as a necessary evil. George probably wished that evolution had happened sooner as I recall the shock of some of our credit card bills after a day at the mall. But, those sales …

On this particular day I hit the motherlode of catalogs. There must be some unwritten rule that at some magic date on the calendar everyone sends out their catalogs on the same day. I think I may have gotten a hernia lugging the 20-plus catalogs from the mailbox to the house.

It really was embarrassing, but I was secretly thinking how much fun it was going to be casually flipping through each to see what treasures await. As I browsed the stack, I realized I hit the jackpot. I actually received “The 2019 Christmas Book” … the decadent treasure I think I have only received a couple of times in years past.

This, of course, is the Neiman Marcus holiday offerings of everything most average Americans can never afford, much less need or want. How I made the cut and got on the mailing list is beyond me, as my actual catalog expenditures are fairly mundane and boring. I’m more a browser than a buyer.

So, when I had the fire going, my pjs-slippers on, and wine nearby, I took the plunge with “the book.” I recognize one’s views of the plethora of overpriced, unusual, and largely irrelevant items can change over time.

As with everything, this is usually a product of aging – one of life’s most consistent lessons. This lesson was born out again. I saw some interesting items that would be cute as gifts and unique tchotchkes that would be conversation starters (and dust gatherers on the already crowded shelf).

The clothes were for people who don’t have a butt or a bosom. But I was really waiting to see the car and the trip, NM’s signature overpriced Christmas gifts.

I exercised patience as I slowly turned each page. With typical marketing efficiency they hold the crème de la crème til the final pages: the 007 Aston Martin ($700,000-plus) and a fabulous “Taste of Italy” ($200,000).

To offset the low brow Italy trip, they added a two-night stay at a fashion house in Paris ($695,000 … that’s more like it). Embarrassingly, what tickled my fancy was the $70,000-plus pet paradise house. Alas, where would BeBe stay since Toby is the bed hog?

The rich are different – let me count the ways. Since pet paradise won’t be arriving on my doorstep by misguided impulse spending, or Santa, it really was a hoot to browse “the book.”