Remember when the only time you were able to give Santa ideas for Christmas gifts was when the Sears catalog arrived in the mail. For those who don't know, it was a phone-book sized tome that had everything from appliances to zippers.
The clothes were in the front, but, much more importantly, the toys were in the back. In my memory, half the book was filled with pictures of toys. There were cars, trains, blocks, games, lions, tigers and bears, oh my. We spent hour after hour going through the book, making a list, crossing things out, making another list. There were toys to ask Santa for, there were toys to ask your grandparents for and there were toys for every interest.
When Christmas morning came along, most of the gifts were from the clothes front, but, hey, there were toys in there as well.
"Look, Dad, Santa brought the electric football game I always wanted!!!"
Of course, that electric football game never worked quite right. After setting up the plays and turning on the vibrating field, all the players 'ran' to the sidelines. Hey, it was still fun.
Now, though, there is no Sears catalog in the mail. Instead, it's been replaced by about 1,000 other catalogs that arrive on a daily basis. Every Web site that offers toys sends along a catalog.
Now, with three children who are making lists, crossing things out and making other lists, I long for the Sears catalog. At least it was all in one place. Now, there is a different list each day after 'reading' each catalog.
Yeah, our parents had it easy.
Then again, they didn't have this:
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