April 25, 2005

Don’t Flatter Us

Don’t Flatter Us

As you might imagine, dear reader, we here at “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly” receive an awful lot of mail each day. In fact, we have assigned one of our least intelligent interns to mail duty alone.

Unfortunately, he seems to be more concerned with female duties. If you catch our drift. And we’re pretty sure you do.

Anyway, nary a day goes by in which we don’t get all kinds of irksome items from our postman. Fan mail, various awards, death threats—you know, the usual stuff. Recently, it’s gotten so bad that we wish that the postman only rang twice.

In yesterday’s batch of snail mail, however, we got a curiously ugly catalogue. Normally, we receive all kinds of catalogs: Mail-order brides; Phil Collins record clubs; toaster strudel; &c. Yet this catalog was so aesthetically challenged that it made us pine for a Thomas Kincaid painting.

We refer to the Travel Smith Summer 2005 catalogue.

The reader of said catalogue is immediately struck by a strikingly unattractive cover, which features a vomit-inducing color palette. More importantly, the Travel Smith rag offers the following hook: “Swimwear to Flatter Every Body.”

To which we, the crack young staff of “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly,” respond: Have the folks at Travel Smith every seen every body? If they had, they would certainly recognize that almost all of humanity looks rather ridiculous in swimwear.

Sure, not Jason Alexander. But pretty darn close to everyone else. Even Delta Burke looks a bit chubby in a two-piece.

And then there’s the horrid advertising-ese attached to each piece of merchandise. For instance, dear reader, take a gander at some of the overblown rhetoric that accompanies the manifestly unimpressive “Cotton Separates”:

For sultry climates where the last breeze blew through town long before you arrived, packing our Crinkle Cotton separates is as good as packing a zephyr in your overnight bag.

Uh, “a zephyr” in our “overnight bag”? Come on! We once knew a gal named Zephyr, and believe us when we tell you that she did not enjoy being packed in an overnight bag. Even if it saved us some money on a flight.

Or check out this ghastly bit of prose, which accompanies the “Soft Tees” collection (and to which we have affixed our own humble commentary):

Don’t be fooled by their deliciously soft texture.

Don’t worry: We were not fooled by their “deliciously soft texture.” In fact, given that we can’t touch them in the catalogue, it’s highly unlikely that we’d be tricked.

These tees are heavyweight champs when it comes to easy care and high performance….Oh, and did we mention that they’re also stylish? Both tees have a jewel-style neck.

We know what you are thinking, dear reader: A jewel style neck. That is awful stylish. We wonder if the folks at Travel Smith have bothered to inform the eight-year-old Indian children who make their clothing just how sexy it is.

Posted at April 25, 2005 12:01 AM | TrackBack