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It’s Called Christmas - shopping list ‘08—update

It’s called Christmas!

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Lots of nice people have sent me the names of the stores, organizations, cities and towns which fit into our It’s Called Christmas categories of Naughty, Nice, or Marginal.  I think I’ve got it all up-to-date now.  I think nearly everyone has looked at the list, at the right margin of this site, but I’ve also made commentaries about all of the entries too.  They’re all on a pretty page right here.  But I don’t think many have looked at that page so here are the commentaries from there in a blog entry here, which may turn out to be the world’s biggest blog entry. 

THE NAUGHTY

image 1. Rogers Their, um, NON-Christmas Christmas advertising flyer is all about Christmas giving, except they refuse—clearly on purpose—to say “Christmas” even once in the multi-page flyer.  Oh they refer to “lists” that the family may be making around this time of year for, you know, some weird reason or other; and “holidays”; and “gifts”; and even “stockings”.  Apparently they’re not Christmas stockings though. image The flyer informs Canadians that they can stuff “stocking sized” gifts—like Apple iPhones—into “stockings”—but maybe all the “stockings” talk is just in reference to some sort of Rogers light porn, and they want folks to stuff iPhones into their pantyhose.  It’s a Christmas flyer that advocates Christmas buying, but purposely avoids the word Christmas COMPLETELY.  Amazing!  Shop somewhere else. …  (Go to their web site’s “giftguide” address as advertised on their flyer and you get their web site main page—nothing to do with a “giftguide”.  It’s a farce. Yet ironically, they refer to Christmas there.  WEIRDOS?  ROGER THAT.

2. These ain’t CHRISTMAS Bells.  Don’t shop at Rogers OR Bell for your cellphone needs.  At Bell, they have a “Wish Book” flyer, where it’s a “wishing wonderland”, and you can “get your fa-la-la-las to go”, and you can “make your holidays sparkle with our exclusive gift sets” and “share the season”, and “deck your calls” and “be speedy like Santa” and by golly, you can do anything but celebrate CHRISTMAS because at Bell, they managed to purposely avoid using the word CHRISTMAS even once. Alexander Graham would turn in his grave.  DING DONGS.

image 2.  Real Canadian Superstore —Really?  Canadian?  If you’re really Canadian, then how come you’re so ashamed of Canada’s traditions and heritage that you can’t even say the word Christmas ONCE in your “holiday” flyer?  The flyer is all about “holidays”. “We love holidays too!” they say on the flyer’s front page, then each page features different “holiday” product groups: • “3 times the points on President’s Choice products—our gift to you this ‘holiday’.” (complete with pictures of Christmas presents);  • “This week’s ‘holiday’ zone”;  • “Holiday Home” (full of Christmas decorations);  • “holiday beauty”;  • “holiday cooking”;  • “holiday cleaning” (yeah, holiday CLEANING.  Merry Christmas!) • “holiday fun”;  • “holiday ideas”;  • “holiday toys”;  • “holiday essentials” … GET REAL.

image 3. Nikon cameras for “holiday” giving?  No thanks.  I don’t need pictures of “holidays”, I need pictures of Christmas! 

4. Dell Computers—According to reader Loretta, Dell Computers’ flyer cover says “Joy to the Working World”.  Sounds like something out of the old Communist Soviet Union and their state-owned Pravda newspaper, or something from Jack Layton’s you’ve got to be kidding party’s internal seasonal festivus of multicultural and diversity delights “X-mas” message to his proletariat “working families” voter base.  And inside the flyer: “Simplify the Season”, with tree baubles laying about.  Hey here’s a program:  simply call it Christmas.  That’s simplifying all sorts of things.  Loretta couldn’t find the word “Christmas” anywhere in the flyer.  DOES NOT COMPUTE.  Buy an HP

image5. Home Depot sure isn’t where Santa buys stuff for his home, since they apparently don’t believe in Christmas at the Home Depot.  But gee whiz buy some “holiday flooring” at their “pre-holiday flooring event”.  Want to buy Christmas lights?  SORRY!  They don’t sell them at Home Depot.  They only have “holiday decor”, including “holiday lights”.  You know what, I think it’s for the Kwanzaa holiday!  On their “holiday” flyer, they say that “the holiday spirit, inside and out” is what you’ll find at the Home Depot.  The “holiday spirit”?  Oh man it’s like that Labor Day spirit all over again!  On their web site they have a “holiday shipping schedule” and feature the “Last order day to deliver by December 24th”.  They’ve obviously gone massively out of their way to strenuously AVOID THE WORD CHRISTMAS, ever, at the Home Depot.  It’s pathological.  SHOP ELSEWHERE.  You can do it.  We can help. 

image 6.  Sears “wishes” things, like wishing the word CHRISTMAS didn’t exist in our history or heritage or vocabulary.  Their “wish” season flyer says “Hugs and Wishes”.  Oh… HUGS, Canada!  Their bra-wearing models are holding Christmas tree baubles; their Levi’s blue jean models have Christmas presents stuffed in their back pockets, and their bedding department pages offer you (quote) “holiday dreaming”, but you won’t find the word CHRISTMAS anywhere except where they have to describe something as a Christmas decoration. 

image 7.  Bombay —a shop ostensibly from the exotic—and apparently far superior—India, presents their “HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE” for you Canadians and your funky “holiday” which they at the Bombay central office refuse to call Christmas, perhaps because it might give them bad “Karma”.  So they offer you the “Season’s Best”.  The “Holiday Gift Guide” includes fancy chess sets where they suggest you “LET THE HOLIDAY GAMES BEGIN”.  Ironically, or insultingly, the back page suggests (and this is for real) that you “Give Tradition”, and this was meant not as an ironic joke, but in order to prod you into buying a Mountie doll hand-crafted out of solid wood —wood possibly from CANADA.  Maybe they should adopt and embrace Canada and its traditions before trying to sell you their products, rather than trying to change Canada.  Their Mahatma Gandhi famously said “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.”  And maybe that’s their credo. So SPEND YOUR CHANGE SOMEWHERE ELSE, Canadians.

8.  Best Buy—has the “best gifts”, for “the best reactions” for this “holiday season”.  Apparently they’ve deployed electronic gadgetry to REMOVE THE WORD CHRISTMAS FROM THEIR VOCABULARY.  Well here’s a word you should become familiar with:  ZAP.  That’s me zipping off and shopping somewhere else.

image 9. Future Shop, the corporate sister of Best Buy, is equally against Christmas and apparently hopes the FUTURE of Canada is one which excludes CHRISTMAS, but still they’re fully in favor of you wasting your hard-earned cash on their products “for the holidays”.  They’ve bent over backwards to avoid the word Christmas.  But they do have a cute little graphic on their flyers and at their web site which reads—in English and fully unnecessarily also in French in order to appease the French speakers—“Give the best gifts / Offrez les plus beaux cadeaux”.  So you should bend over backwards and avoid the store and the words Future Shop this Christmas.  When they’re prepared to appease YOU, the Canadian, and our traditions and heritage—and not just French— then you might reconsider.  MERCI, and BONSOIR, Les Future Shoppes.

10.  Wal*Mart—it’s an annual debate here at PTBC.  Which camp do they belong in?  In the past couple of years or more, the debate went ballistic in the U.S. where Wal*Mart caved to pressure from sane Americans, who hated that Wal*Mart staff never said CHRISTMAS, and so Wal*Mart finally stopped what they finally admitted was their BAN ON CHRISTMAS, by allowing their staff to once again utter the word “Christmas” to the customers they were talking to, and to say things like “Merry Christmas” like normal people do at Christmas.  They went so far as to tell their famous Wal*Mart greeters that they might consider saying “Merry Christmas” as folks came to their stores, instead of insulting them by avoiding it. image No such thing in Canada though.  And to complicate matters further, Wal*Mart has reportedly been supporting many “progressive” liberal-left causes such as gay pride festivals and what not, so they lose favor with Canadian conservatives that way.  But all of that aside, the Wal*Mart flyer in front of me says “Make the most of your HOLIDAYS FOR LESS!”.  And like the Bombay shop (above), they somewhat ironically presume to advance the notion of “tradition”—“Timeless tradition” even—in their pages.  They speak of “holidays” and “gifts” all over the flyer but studiously AVOID THE WORD CHRISTMAS even once in their multi-page flyer and at their web site.  Wal*Mart Canada might want to check with U.S. head office and get the blue-plate special on CHRISTMAS.  It’s a sales-getter, as the U.S. home office discovered.

image 11.  Black’s Cameras—Blacks Cameras is in the dark room.  Their flyer has photos of sales associate nerds informing us that nerds like them enjoy giving folks gifts (indisputably CHRISTMAS gifts, as you can see at left) from Blacks.  Like I want to be just like them.  Here honey!  It’s camera-nerd recommended!  Hope ya like it!  Zoom-in on this, Black’s:  it’s called Christmas, not “holidays” and if you want me to buy from your store, you’ll snap out of it and picture Christmas as that “holiday” you’re framing on your flyer.  You’re exposing yourselves as anti-Christmas and possibly anti-Christian and possibly anti-Canada’s-heritage.  Just stop trying so hard to manually focus your lens to avoid saying “Christmas”, and let the autofocus do its work.  Then simply shoot and let the light into that aperture of yours, baby!  It’s actually pretty F-stoppin’ fun! 

image 12.  HMV— Don’t buy your Madonna and Britney Spears CDs at HMV this Christmas, since they don’t have Christmas at HMV.  Instead, they have “holidays”.  In fact it’s the “holiday season”.  And you can “wrap up your holiday gift” if you go the HMV.  image  You’d think they’d get a clue when on their flyer page headlined “tis the season to be jolly”, they include DVD titles such as called “Barbie in A Christmas Carol” and “Christmas Classics Gift Set”.  (I love it when they HAVE to say it even though they’re trying desperately to avoid it!)  Here’s some trivia that I bet even HMV executives and their PR and advertising stooges don’t know:  HMV stands for His Master’s Voice, and was a slogan based on a painting created way back in 1899 —back when they called it Christmas in Canada, and still do.  You see, “HMV” is really all about HERITAGE then isn’t it?  And TRADITIONS.  Yes, HMV as a brand thrives on—exists as—a salute to heritage and tradition and historical roots.  Yet here they are today ignoring it for some weird, liberal-left-induced politically-correct, possibly ignorant, or even idiotic reason.  Like so many CDs and DVDs, I’d SKIP this store and buy CDs and DVDs somewhere else

image 13.  Blockbuster— The blockheads at Blockbuster think you should shop there for “Holiday Stocking Stuffers”.  What’s that now?  “Holiday Stockings”?  Again?  I’ve tried jamming one of my favorite Christmas movies, Nativity Story, into a pair of stockings and it doesn’t really work.  Maybe the Blockbuster advertising is like another of those scratchy skippy DVDs!  Can we rewind that anti-Christmas Blockbuster DVD to see if what they meant to say before it skipped, was “CHRISTMAS” stocking?  OK.  Nope, they mean “holiday stocking”.  Well they must be stupid then.  CRAPPY MOVIE.  RETURN IT LATE. 

image 14.  Amazon.ca— I found it funny how at Amazon.ca they also suggest stuffing “holiday stockings”.  Not Christmas ones.  Also duly noted that they advertise that not only can you “stuff stockings”—possibly like the fishnets I imagined in my Blockbuster and Rogers stocking stuffer critiques which could be seen as quasi porno if you look at it in that non-Christmas stockings way that us real conservative men might at times; but they also suggest something about a box set.  Pervs

Meanwhile, still on Amazon, our friend Mark Steyn wrote today in his blog spot in “the corner” at National Review.com:

Don we now our vague apparel

I see Amazon (to whom I am generally well disposed, even though they grossly underestimated demand and have thus managed to sell out of my own Christmas single) are having a special sale called “The Twelve Days Of Holiday”.

That’s an even lamer PC rewrite than the one offered up by the Royal Canadian Mint a couple of holiday seasons back to promote their range of grisly commemorative coin sets – “The Twelve Days Of Giving”:

On the first day of giving, my true love gave to me…

Etc. Even by the standards of the age, the ability of the marketing department to combine the reflex urge to eliminate all references to the offensive word “Christmas” with the savvy to exploit beloved old songs about, er, Christmas is impressive.

I’m also in something of a quandary over Amazon, because I get at least $4 per year worth of commissions from them when PTBC readers buy their books—including Mark Steyn books which I’ve heavily promoted at PTBC, as it turns out—through our links.  I do believe Mr. Steyn earns more. 
(Hat tip to Warren D. for the Mark Steyn tip)

imageP.S. — Having checked it out after reading Steyn’s reference, Royal Canadian Mint has been placed in the Marginal category this year after I saw the strangely related graphic at right.  But the rest of their web site’s “Holiday” gift pages seem to squirm and strain like a liberal at church, to avoid, at all costs, to say or depict in their “gift sets”, any mention of Christmas. 

15.

THE NICE

image   1. The Bay – Perennial favorites, they’re on the NICE list every year.  This year it’s an “Enchanted Christmas”.  Enchanté, Canadians! 

  2.  London Drugs – Perennial favorites, they’re on the NICE list every year.  Their motto at this time of year every year is “Nobody does Christmas better”.  Unfortunately for those not in the West, they’re not national.

image  3. Chapter/Indigo – REFORMED!  In previous years, they’ve been on our NAUGHTY and our MARGINAL lists.  Now they openly celebrate Christmas.  Bet their sales go up! 

  4.  Michaels – REFORMED! Fairly marginal but the flyer I’ve got says Christmas on it in a couple of spots.  This varies from last years, when they were firmly on our NAUGHTY list

  5.  Ben Moss Jewelers – Shiny and sparkly!

  6. Leon’s furniture – No locations on the west coast but Christmas-friendly year after year. 

  7.  Township of Langley B.C. – they hold an annual—and happily and aptly-named—Christmas at Williams Park, starting December 1st.  VISIT THEM! 

image   8. Canadian Tire’s web site is Canadian-y and Christmas-y!  And they have a Christmas flyer—I know this because it’s called their “Christmas flyer”.  I never get TIRED of that!

image 9.  IRLY building Centers calls it CHRISTMAS.  And as we know, the IRLY bird gets the worm, so fly on over to BC and buy something at and IRLY store.  Offer to pay with worms just for a little fun.  … Sadly IRLY Building Centers are only in BC.  Many are family-owned and operated and have been around for years, successfully competing against huge big-box stores. So support these folks!  Help them build their sales!

image  10.   As I said about the (Marginal) Royal Canadian Mint, it’s only a matter of time before some liberal-left, politically-correct, atheist wingnut proclaims, with a loud report, and in high dudgeon, “CHURCH AND STATE!  CHURCH AND STATE!”, and this will be changed to “Naughty”.  Nonetheless, Canada Post fits into a unique spot this year.  They’ve been naughty and they’ve been nice, over the years.  This year as usual, their main pages avoid saying “Christmas”, almost like they avoid being careful when a parcel says “FRAGILE”, but they do sell nice Christmas stamps that are all about actual CHRISTMAS—even Mary and Joseph and that other one—what’s his name again… oh yeah…. JESUS!… stamps!  So they’re in both the NICE and the MARGINAL section. 

10.

THE MARGINAL

1. Save-On Foods, a competitor to Safeway in the West, owned by billionaire Jim Pattison, sells what we call Christmas trees, but their flyer sells “more festive season savings”, according to PTBC reader Loretta.  Like lots of other stores, they avoid the word Christmas unless they sort of have to use the word, like when describing their products, which are Christmas products.  So they sell “Christmas Gift Wrap” and “Christmas Scene Winter Globes”.  Which of course you use at “festive season” time. 

2. Henry’s photography (Ontario only)—mentions Christmas in their flyer, available online, but barely, in amongst the talk of “holidays” and “seasonal”.  At least they’re not purposely avoiding the word like others do. 

3.  Home Outfitters —Mentions Christmas, seemingly reluctantly, but at least they aren’t avoiding it like the plague.  Their (supposedly) Christmas flyer is fronted with the words “my seasonal home”, but inside they speak of “Christmas” things which dominates most Canadians’ “seasonal home” during this “season”. 

4.  Shoppers Drug Mart—One of those stores which mentions Christmas but calls it “the holidays” or “the season” far more often.  They simply don’t really care, as best I can tell, but once again, at least they’re not trying to avoid calling it Christmas. 

GNC – the kind of place you wouldn’t necessarily expect to see “Christmas”, displays “Christmas” nonetheless, at least at the St. Laurent Shopping Centre in Ottawa, according to our Ottawa correspondent, Pat F.  However their web site campaign seems to imply you should buy gifts from them “for the holidays”.  I’m pretty sure they only mean the Christmas “holidays”, since it would be a little nutty to buy gifts for labor day, so I’m not exactly sure why they purposely avoid that word. 

image  9.  Royal Canadian Mint mentions Christmas—but it’s only a matter of time before some leftist atheist politically-correct wingnut proclaims, in high dudgeon, “CHURCH AND STATE!  CHURCH AND STATE!”

image  10. Speaking of “CHURCH AND STATE!  CHURCH AND STATE!”, and I know you liberals were, Canada Post fits into a unique spot this year.  They’ve been naughty and they’ve been nice, over the years.  This year as usual, their main pages avoid saying “Christmas”, almost like they avoid being careful when a parcel says “FRAGILE”, but they do sell nice Christmas stamps that are all about actual CHRISTMAS—even Mary and Joseph and that other one—what’s his name again… oh yeah…. JESUS!… stamps!  So they’re in both the NICE and the MARGINAL section. 

 
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