Everybody knows women are so busy. It used to be that they were busy at home. Now they're busy at work, and also at home. Even in these challenging economic times, when everybody else is sitting at home in their underwear playing XBox, women are busy. But wherever their busy lives take them, Heather Staible of the Houston Chronicle will be right there to help them figure out what kind of sweaters to buy. Thank God for that!
Staible's recent story on in-home shopping is possibly the most unintentionally hilarious piece of service journalism I've read since John Quinlan's famous paean to the Olive Garden. It begins with what appears to be a line from a press release from 1952...
Home, these days, is where the shopping is shared by women who value personal service and timeless fashion.
...and just gets better from there. Industry spokesman Neil O'Keefe has this to say:
"Twenty to 30 years ago, women typically were at home and busy with family but didn’t have access to the variety of products that exist today..."
Ah yes. Who could forget the terrible '80s, when we spent our days squatting before the family cauldron, stirring the soup with a stick and praying that the mailman might one day bring us the Montgomery Ward catalog.
"...Today, many women are busy with jobs and the family, and shopping from home is a tremendous convenience. We also can’t overlook the increase in desire or need to create a source of income, especially in these challenging economic conditions."
No, we certainly can't. I have no idea how shopping from home can satisfy my increased desire or need to create a source of income, but by all means sign me up.
Further on, "collection recruiter associate" Lisa Liles offers a Zen koan on the benefits of trunk shows:
"The nice thing about trunk shows is that you won’t see yourself coming and going,"
What does that mean? Anyone?
In this desperate hour at the Houston Chronicle, what a relief it is that Heather Staible is still toiling away at her lonely desk, bravely recycling press releases amid the corpses of her fallen colleagues. Soldier on, busy woman. You're not alone.