Posts Tagged ‘BigW’

A present of IPod for Grandson

April 20, 2012


The promise was rock-solid. The nine year old grandson was to get an IPod which he had saved up for with the help of grandparents who lived in self- denial. The denial was to do with unselfishly depositing money in little carton boxes at regular intervals so the grandkids could buy electronic things with buttons and batteries. The carton money boxes had names on them were well hidden especially when one of the boxes had been found with less money than before. After this discovery one of the grandsons was unusual emotional and getting very teary. He wasn’t the one who had less money in the box. He seemed all of a sudden full of goodwill and even made his bed and picked flowers for his Oma. Where did all this benevolence come from?

We held council and instead of holding an inquisition decided not to push the matter. The one whose carton box had been pillaged had become unusual philosophical and somewhat sanguine. We felt that the little brothers had come to a satisfactory financial agreement between themselves and with harmony and order returning between each other felt that our intervention would indeed have been superfluous.

The next stage for buying the IPod was to investigate all available options. I had heard of different IPod/Pad but as with most of those fashion items was totally an ignoramus of what they entailed or indeed what they did. I know that the grandson with a Pod was forever flicking the screen and clearly things were moving on the screen. They could play games, if pushing or touching a small screen can be called a game.

In my days we would lay small incendiary devices on tram-rails made of match heads and hollow metal pipes. My younger brothers had burnt down a disused town-hall in The Hague and another one had whacked frail old ladies with an even older umbrella while riding pillion on the bicycle. They were the games of former times. We were made of so much sterner stuff.

We thought a fair start would be to go and pay a visit to Dick Smith. He was after all the man of ‘buy Australian’. Didn’t he try and safe vegemite from being taken over?  Even though, personally, I was never enthusiastic about smearing brown stuff over a piece of white Tip Top, I was patriotic enough and supportive of Dick in trying to safe this iconic true Australian delicacy.

The blond girl at Dick Smith wasn’t too helpful and decided to; rightly so, put me in the geriatric section of IPod buyers. She kind of looked me up and down. I retaliated by staring over her shoulders at the same movie that was being played on about twenty screens against the back wall. Twenty green monsters, deep in a forest, were all blowing smoke from their nostrils, all in perfect time. I asked her earnestly if an IPod would support a shopping list and if it had a smoke alarm in case of forgetting about the pizza in the oven.  I think she got the hint that her sales service was somewhat lacking.

We then walked across the usual parking dessert of a major shopping centers, through a food court in full swing with dozens of hungry shoppers bent over their Big Macs and slurping slushies and walked into a BigW store. Now, there was a service. A sharp young man of about 17 explained very crisply the how’s and why’s of an IPod. It turns out it is an Apple product and that there are other similar products which are different and have different names. He was resolute in his explanations and ,above all, kept the information simple and precise.

This coming Sunday we will return with our grandson and his carton money box and buy him the Apple IPod.

There is hope for all of us.

A Pox on Advertising

January 6, 2011

A Pox on AdvertisingPosted on January 6, 2011 by gerard oosterman



Here in our compound of 8 villas/town-houses there is just one post box which has ‘no-junk’ on it. This is rather surprising because each week now we get a bundle in one package of about 12 different advertising folders. They are colourful brochures singing the praise of many different bargains to be had for the canny shopper. They run the gamut from Big W to The Good Guys and include such mouth-watering shopping venues as Fantastic Furniture, Dick Smith, IGA and even good old Woollies.

Did you know that SUPER IGA this week has, wait for it: Whole Economy Rump for $ 5.99 a kilo and it includes 200% guarantee on freshness & quality. Now, I ask you, how could anyone resist the 200% guarantee? But it gets even better. They have Peters Overload ice cream at $3.99, Minties at $1.99 and a 2 litre tomato sauce and 2 litre Barbeque sauce at both for a mere $3.99. Can you imagine 4 litres for $3.99? The mind boggles. I simply can’t imagine rushing out and get 4 litres of sauce to squeeze over food. I am not going to live that long, neither would you want to suffer that fate.

And that’s just the beginning. Cop this. At Fantastic Furniture, just for you, and as advertised, the magnificent Dallas Chaise in ‘living fabric’ reduced from $ 399.- to $299.- included 5  year structural and 10 years foundation guarantee. It’s all too much. I’ll just have to lay down on my own battered Euro Chaise and rest, rejoice in all those bargains.

Seriously though, who in earth studies those brochures? I must admit I have always felt a terrible bout of weariness coming on when it comes to anything with advertising. I just don’t get it. Do people really look at TV ads or newspaper ads? I must confess to having peeked into a Real Estate window when we were looking for a place to live. Mind you, I probably would look that up on the computer now.

When the kids come over they watch The Simpsons and they now know how to get to that channel.  Apart from SBS we never ever watch a commercial channel. SBS has ads but I never really know what they are advertising because my eyes are on automatic when faced with advertising and just glaze over, and I take a nano nap.

I remember going to Moscow many year ago. It was heaven, not a billboard or ad in sight. No shops either. On SBS’s I love watching global village especially when it features continental Europe.  It’s pure bliss seeing street scapes without those advertising hoardings so familiar here. Do Europeans buy less because advertising is so much more modest? It is all rather puzzling. I do think much man made architecture in Australia could be improved by making advertising subject to some sort of control.

Any trip along Sydney’s Parramatta Rd almost results in the need for a rehab, or a solid bout of counselling. Nothing in the world could possibly get any uglier. How can addicts to alcohol or drugs remain clean when visually assaulted everywhere they go? Trying to get repeat tourism to Australia the best thing would be to get some kind of aesthetics committee up and running and try and introduce standards in public use of advertising space like they do in most countries that are more sensitive to the world of vision. After all, why should we have the freedom to visually insult so many locals, let alone tourists, by imposing ugliness in the form of hoardings and screaming advertisements?

Anyway, Coles Beef has No added HORMONES and No added COST to you.

Fantastic, I must rush out, go to IGA for the 4 litres of sauce and 200% fresher Economy Rump then of to Big W to snap up the 5pack of Bonds hipsters.