I thank the good Lord every day for websites like Regretsy. The site where you can buy crap handmade by people who have no idea its absolute crap!
But even better are places like the Bradford Exchange, where you can find canvas tennis shoes bedazzled with photos of Elvis at all stages of life, sans slumped dead on the toilet with a peanut butter and banana sandwich hanging from his jowls. The name “Elvis” is also bedazzled on the shoes in imitation Swarovski crystals. The BONUS is the awesome sparkly charm on the laces in the form of a lightning bolt and the initials TCB. I don’t know what TCB stands for, which could perhaps be explained by the fact that 1) I’m not an Elvis fan, and 2) I make fun of the Bradford Exchange.
These shoes are being marketed by the Bradford Exchange (hereinafter B.E.) as “First-of-a-Kind Fashion Footwear.” Yep. I’m sold. I like to be the first of my kind to look like an idiot. If only they came in platforms.
I find that gems like the Elvis shoes are best found in TV Guide Magazine. Not only does B.E. have full-page ads for ridiculous shit no one should waste their hard-earned money one, but they also pull out all the stops by including tear-out cardboard order forms for priceless pieces of jewelry and other useless knick-knacks. I could either renew my subscription or buy some dust-gathering snow globe featuring the annoying…er…artistic work of Thomas Kinkade, painter of light.
Two pages after the full-page Elvis shoe ad is another full-page ad for M&M salt and pepper shakers. Personally, I’d like to see any and all M&M figurines melt in my hand. I would wind up with a feeling of ultimate power – being able to finally make an M&M melt in my hand, not in my mouth.
I recently learned that Prince William of Wales and his bride-to-be, Kate Middleton, have asked for all gifts to be donations to charity. But how are they going to get the entire set of commemorative plates bearing their likenesses? Don’t get me started on the coins, which had probably been minted as many as five years ago in anticipation of England getting Princess Diana II, sans the scandals.
Now, for a mere $119, lucky women throughout Wisconsin can purchase the Green Bay Packers Super Bowl Champions charm bracelet. Less lucky women might be able to purchase a Cubic Zirconium encrusted replica of Brett Favre’s penis.
B.E. markets itself as having products of “Innovation, Artistry and Design of Enduring Value.” Yet not ONCE have I seen someone try to get an estimate for one of these priceless tchotchkes on Antiques Roadshow. Not so enduring NOW, are you, B.E.???
Perhaps the greatest of all items I’ve ever seen (Seriously! EVER!!!) is the glow-in-the-dark set of Native American “Spirit Warrior” plates that you can hang on your wall in a setting dripping with feathers likely from whatever bird B.E. sells in taxidermy-stuffed form. I’m sorry, but if you have children, these glowing plates are only going to confirm to them that ghosts are real and there’s a good chance your house was built on a Native American burial site.
If you’re not cuckoo for Cocoa Puffs, you might be cuckoo for the cuckoo clocks offered. They run the gamut from Disney Princess to Harley Davidson. How adorable would it be to have a motorcycle pop out of your clock every hour with a Hell’s Angel on top threatening your life if you forget to adjust for Daylight Savings time. Obviously, there are several versions of the Elvis cuckoo clock, but the only other celebrity amazing enough to warrant popping out of a clock every hour on the hour is John Wayne, pilgrim.
The only must-have item NOT available on B.E.’s website is the classically tragic Three Wolves tee. For that, you need to go to Amazon.com. And be sure to read the reviews before buying! Not only will you learn whether or not you’ve decided on a good purchase, but you will also discover why this shirt has its own page on Wikipedia.
While the Bradford Exchange is ideal for the person in your life who has everything and whom you also happen to despise, Regretsy really is the go-to place to support budding talentless artists. Plus, it makes no claims of “designs of enduring value” when a stop at your local flea market might be more lucrative.
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to www.bradfordexchange.com to purchase the first of what I hope will be many John Deere belt buckles. I can only get one at a time, at $40 a pop, so I’d best get shopping.