Helen Bach: Farewell to the Laminated Book of Dreams

The Argos catalogue will be missed, thinks Helen

The Argos catalogue will be missed, thinks Helen

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I have some sad news to impart to you all.

I couldn’t quite believe it when I read it in the financial section of my Sunday newspaper.

The ‘Laminated Book of Dreams’ (Bill Bailey’s description) is to be scrapped.

Yes, the great leveller of shopping – the Argos catalogue – is to be replaced with tablet computers.

Initially I believe it’s just in-store, but how long before our home catalogue disappears too I wonder, along with the little blue pens?

As long as I can remember we’ve had an Argos book in our house.

Even now, when a new one comes out, I read through it, carefully turning over the corner of a page where an item I like lurks, in the vain hope that Mr Bach might have a look at Christmas or birthday time (it’s never happened yet, though).

As a child, it supplied my ‘wish list’ for Christmas gifts – an Evel Knievel, a Mr Frosty slushy maker, a Girl’s World – a veritable cornucopia of 70s’ toy delights.

Needless to say, I didn’t actually get any of these – times then, much like now, were hard.

Sadly, I have also heard that it’s the only book in some households.

Unfortunately it wasn’t a joke that when a child was asked to bring in a book from home, they arrived with an Argos catalogue because that was the only one they possessed.

Once upon a time, every home had a Bible or similar Holy book, maybe a copy of the complete works of Shakespeare, a good dictionary, perhaps a few other classic tomes – now the Argos book has become so ubiquitous in the UK it could easily be added to this list.

If that goes, what’s left?

Not many houses have the other books listed, which I think is a shame, but perhaps I’m just old-fashioned.

Still, fewer Argos catalogues will hopefully save a lot of trees which is ultimately a good thing for all of us.

So farewell to the Laminated Book of Dreams – it’s been nice knowing you.

Read more from Helen here.