In The Washington Post, Carrie Melgao laments the demise of Toys “R” Us, especially its annual toy catalogue. She writes:
I’m one of those nostalgic Gen-Xers who remembers lying on my stomach, legs crossed at the ankles, poring over the Sears Wish Book every Christmas. I’d circle the Lil’ Lady Buggy, Barbie Dreamhouse, Sweet Tears baby doll, then present my list to the Santa at the local VFW.
For years, my sons and I were able to re-create the tradition each winter with that season’s dog-eared Toys “R” Us catalogue. We’d cuddle up on the couch, circling the giant Imaginext Batcave and ogling the overly complicated Hot Wheels tracks. I’d find the boys early in the morning scrutinizing the catalogue in bed or over cereal. They recited their choices to Santa, then I’d refer to the weathered catalogue when it was time to shop.
But Toys “R” Us went belly up earlier this year, and with it went the only toy catalogue I’d ever found in my mailbox. So I set out to get my hands on a catalogue a few weeks back — and it was a lot harder than I imagined it would be.
When the toy giant closed its doors in March, the end of its 100-page “big book” didn’t cross my mind. But Amazon sure thought about it. In July, the online behemoth announced that it would take the decidedly retro step of printing its own toy catalogue. “A Holiday of Play” would be sent to millions of homes and be available at Whole Foods, also owned by Amazon. (Amazon founder and chief executive Jeffrey P. Bezos owns The Washington Post.) There are no prices, but there are QR codes to scan and visit product pages.
Only I never got it.
I reached out to Amazon, and a representative told me the company is no longer delivering the catalogue through the mail but sent me a link to download it onto my Kindle. My kids only get to use tablets on airplanes — and besides, there’s no way to circle toys on a Kindle — so this was a no-go for me.
Read more here.