Happy Holidays From the Shack

Apparently the American Family Association has issued a “Scrooge Alert” calling for a “limited one-month” boycott of Radio Shack this Christmas. I think I speak for a lot of Americans when I say “There’s still a Radio Shack?” and furthermore “People still shop there?” and “What on earth do they buy there?”

Crowdsourcing revealed nothing so I called the AFA to get a little more info.

“Sure, I get that Radio Shack is refusing to use the word Christmas in its literature—but seriously, gender-neutral usage of ‘guys,’ a lot of people do that these days. We live in a somewhat pluralistic society where citizens may or may not celebrate holidays as they wish. I’m celebrating Hanukkah, Christmas and Yule* this year, but I like to mix it up like that. The more the merrier, right?”

“Wrong,” said AFA’s spokesman, Jim Peterson. “This is a Christian nation, founded on Christian—”

“I hate to interrupt you,” I said. “What I really want to know is: why Radio Shack? Of all places? What do you buy there??!?!?

“You don’t shop at the Shack, Mary?”

“No, not since my dad needed some, I don’t know, batteries or something? Like on a Saturday?”

“They have all kinds of stuff there, Mary! They have great deals on things like remotes for your video game unit that you can turn around and sell on Ebay!”

I wasn’t convinced. “What else?”

“Mary, you can get coaxial cables, telephone line splitters, and their own fantastic line of Realistic brand stereo components!”

“Hmm,” I said. “Can you get one of those analog-digital clocks with the little flaps that turn over but not a $75 dollar reproduction that makes you want to barf because you feel accused of and guilty of twee techno-nostalgia? Like, if you had the ‘real’ one you could just pretend it was already in the house when you moved in —imagine that!”

“In a word, Mary, yes. Mary, do you need a small AM radio to hang around your neck while you’re walking your dog?”

“Yes! I was just thinking that the other day! I don’t want to wear headphones because it’s dangerous! And I love right-wing talk shows, gospel music and sports!”

I could hear Jim Peterson nodding quietly.

“So that’s the reason for the ‘limited one-month’ boycott.”

“Yes, ma’am,” he said. “Now, Mary, you have a real good day even though you’re a Jew, a Catholic and an idolater.”

The line went dead. Darn, I thought. I didn’t even get a chance to ask him if he observes Advent and, if so, are purple candles and one special pink one involved?

Anyway, I need one of those three-prong plug adapters. Now I know where to get one. I’m going to the Shack this week, Jim Peterson. This week.

Twee logo-nostalgia

Twee logo-nostalgia


*it’s pronounced “you’ll.” Thank you, Eric Scott.

Thanks to Ali Mooney for the tip.

Mary Valle lives in Baltimore and is the author of Cancer Doesn't Give a Shit About Your Stupid Attitude: Reflections on Cancer and Catholicism. She blogs on KtB as The Communicant. For more Mary, check out her blog or follow her on Twitter.