Top News

STEVE BARTLETT: Wishful thinking

The 1976 Sear Canada Christmas Wish Book.
The 1976 Sear Canada Christmas Wish Book.

C’mon bell, ring.

I’ve got to get home — as fast as I can.

I’m expecting something.

It comes every fall, and when it does, it’s the best day of the year, next to Christmas, my birthday and report card day.

I believe Chris Buckle and John Norman got theirs yesterday.

And I heard Kirk Spencer might have gotten his two days ago.

So today is my turn.

It has to be.

And I’ve got to get home.

Maybe I should take the shortcut, across Green Garden Road, up Oakes Road and through the woods to Mayfair.

I might get full of mud and Mom might freak, but when I explain why, she’ll understand.

Or maybe Mom is waiting outside the school and will give us a drive home today. That’d be great!

Hmmm … Mom?

Perhaps what I’m expecting arrived earlier this week and she’s hidden it so we don’t drive her up the wall with constant questions and non-stop nagging.

Nah, she wouldn’t do that. She knows how important this is.

Come on bell, ring.

Ms. Tom is a nice teacher and all, and this Grade 4 math is easy, but I’ve got to get out of here and home.

Geez, what if my sister Jacqui gets there before me and gets her hands on it?

Worse yet, if my older brother Wayne gets it first, he might hide it for badness. He’s like that, taunting and teasing me all the time.

Ring. Bell. Ring.

I’ve got a nervous stomach and everything. I’m very, very anxious. I can’t wait to get home.

Please bell … Claaaannnnnnng!

There it goes.

I race out the door and take off, without even waiting for my friends.

Zooming across Green Garden, up Oakes Road and through the woods to Mayfair, I am filled with anticipation and excitement. It’s hard to contain.

Finally reaching home, I pull open the screen door and race up the steps to find it placed on the kitchen table.

YES!

The Sears Christmas Wish Book is here!

I quickly flip past all the clothes and grown-up stuff to the toys.

Hours are spent dreaming and noting things to ask for, like that Micronauts set, or Stretch Armstrong, or that Star Trek Phaser Battle Game. I bet Geoff Wells is getting that.

I wouldn’t mind having an electric guitar, either. And that Bionic Man doll, where you look through his eye, might be the coolest thing I’ve ever seen. I dog-ear that page and make a bionic sound.

My friends and I get on the phone to discuss what’s in the catalogue. We’re all enchanted by it.

Fast-forward 40 years. …

With Sears closing, the Christmas catalogue’s endless possibilities have ended.

No Canadian kid will ever have the experience of racing home to devour it again.

The Wish Book is closed, and I suddenly miss it.

 

Steve Bartlett is an editor with SaltWire Network. He dives into the Deep End Mondays to escape reality and to google the theme from “The Six Million Dollar Man.” Reach him at steve.bartlett@thetelegram.com.

Recent Stories