Thursday, December 6, 2007

Dear Target,

Screw you, too.

We've been friends for a long time. I loved you when you were Gemco, and if that doesn't speak of my loyalty I don't know what does. But, lately you've been letting me down.

Take today as a prime example. Last week I dutifully entered your red den of commercialism looking for wrapping paper. This wrapping paper had to wrap presents for my brother-in-law's 40th birthday and my own brother's wedding. I didn't like much of what I saw (we'll talk about your selection later), but decided on a metallic ring pattern against a white background. I also found some brown ribbon that complemented nicely the copper in the paper. I gave you my money and went home to wrap brother-in-law's one present. I used ribbon from my own collection for the birthday present, choosing to save your brown ribbon for my brother's three wedding presents.

Well, low and behold today I sit down to wrap my brother's three measly, little presents and guess who runs out of paper after wrapping only one present? Now, I'm not a mathematician, but if I wrapped brother-in-law's present last week, and one of my brother's presents this week that means the wrapping paper lasted for all of two presents. What the Hell is that?! I was in some sort of denial at first, quickly unwrapping the first present to see if there was a more efficient way to wrap all three presents without having to go out and buy more paper. But, alas, no amount of inventive geometry could hide the fact that I had to go buy more wrapping paper because you are a cheap bastard. And so I did.

And you know what?

By God, if I take the time, with a migraine, to pack up my two sniffling boys and head over to buy more wrapping paper you could at least have the decency to have said wrapping paper in stock! OK, fine. Popular paper is frequently out of stock. Sure, it happens. But how do you explain the 17 rolls of ugly you have in its place? Pink and purple hearts with swirls?! Really? That's the best you can do? Unacceptable, Target. Unacceptable.

Having no choice but to find something that worked, I settled on a roll of ecru paper. Ecru, which we all know is code for "cream with way too much yellow in it." Ecru, which is nowhere to be found in my original wrapping paper selection. Ecru, Target. Ecru.

My hands were tied. I had to start combining papers, like some color-blind MacGyver, in hopes of having something presentable to give to my brother and his new wife. You might be wondering, Target, why I didn't just use the new roll to wrap all three presents. I would have, but your paper is so extraordinarily cheap and thin it kept tearing on the corners of my packages (the ones apparently made of razor blades) leaving me with just enough paper to wrap everything. Thanks, Target. You manged to be both cheap and ugly. Way to go. Behold Exhibit A:


(I added ecru bands around the other packages to keep the fabulousness consistent)

Target II

I thought, "at least I have the brown ribbon!"

Well played, Target. Well played.

Why did I think a three inch spool would contain more than a yard of ribbon? You think I would have learned from the wrapping paper debacle, but no. I remain an optimist to the end. I have to hand it to you, at least you're consistent. One roll = two presents. One spool = two presents. Beautiful math, but you still suck.

So there I was, searching the house for a way to multiple ribbon like loaves and fishes except, you know, I'm not Jesus so I can't perform miracles. Twenty minutes later, I decided what the brown, silver, copper, white, and ecru presents needed was a little gold tulle. I mean, how obvious! Doesn't that sound lovely? I didn't think so. At least the lighting today was poor enough that in this picture it actually looks like it all matches. It doesn't. Behold Exhibit B:

Done, no thanks to Target

Yeah, it doesn't look that bad in the picture. We're dealing with a case of "good from afar, but far from good." I blame you entirely, Target. If these presents look good, you get none of the credit.

Frankly (you know I'm upset when I start sentences with adverbs), you're getting cocky. I think all this Isaac Mizrahi, Thomas O'Brien, and now Jessie Randall is going to your head. I hate to be the one to break it to you, Target, but you're not so hot. Sure, I can walk into my neighborhood bullseye and pick up a nifty wool coat for the season. But I can also pick up a tube of Preparation H. (So I hear.) In my mind, any store where I can simultaneously buy something "fabuless" and something to "soothe the itch" shouldn't press their luck with wrapping paper subterfuge.

I can't quit you just yet, so consider this a warning. Lose the ugly paper, keep the good ones in stock, and package it all so I can wrap more than two A5-sized presents at a time. I don't think I'm asking much. Remember, K-Mart has Martha. And a pharmacy section.