Sometimes, sitcoms are so true to life that it is scary.
“Mama’s Family” did that to me not too long ago.
Mama is ordering all kinds of items from a shopping network. Her family stages an intervention, a funny intervention of course, to get her to face her shopping addiction.
I thought that was what I might need after I realized I had just ordered another coffee pot.
We already had a coffee pot, lots and lots of coffee pots, but the Vermont Country Store catalog knew just how to draw me in.
“Our stovetop percolator brews a hearty, satisfying cup of coffee,” the headline read, just below a shimmery, perky-looking silver percolator that would complement our new gas range. “For people who insist on smooth, strong coffee, nothing beats a stovetop coffee percolator,” the brilliant copywriter scripted.
Who are these people who know what will bring out my debit card?
I was online ordering the thing before I finished reading those glorious words.
Do I want a hearty, satisfying cup of coffee? Yes! Do I insist on smooth, strong coffee? Double Yes! Do I need another coffee pot? Triple No!
We already have a couple Keurigs and a couple electric pots. Those four, or is it five? Who is counting? The pots we have do not include the numerous coffee pots we have tossed or given away.
But none of those pots we have warehoused in our overpriced storage unit offer “the inviting sound of coffee perking.”
I visualized walking into the kitchen at 4:25 a.m. (yes, we are early risers) and beholding the soothing brown liquid percolating in its clear plastic knob at the top.
The sneaky writer invited me to “inhale its rich aroma and sip its robust flavor.”
He or she sold me. No other coffee pot in the world could satisfy my coffee craving the way this stovetop percolator would.
It arrived less than a week later.
It was all the copywriter wrote that it would be.
Oh, the smell. The comforting sound as it perked. And the taste. Stout and hearty, for sure.
I wrapped the practically new Keurig up, ready to store it away, and saw all our other Keurigs and electric pots. That’s when I knew, like Thelma on “Mama’s Family,” that I had a shopping addiction – for coffee pots.
Unfortunately, none of them are collector-worthy except for the “I Love Lucy” percolator coffee pot, a Mirro-Matic electric coffee percolator just like the aluminum pot that Lucy used to pour Ricky’s coffee. Very 1950s. Very, very stylish. Yes, you can still order them.
The problem is that it is a pain to clean since it cannot be immersed in water, and the coffee is, well, ho-hum. The cheapest Keurig makes better coffee.
People collect all kinds of things. I worked with a lady who collected shot glasses. She had hundreds, maybe thousands. Another colleague never bought one item of anything. If she saw a cute miniature Christmas tree, she would buy 10 of them.
The top collectibles are obvious. Vinyl records. Comic books. Coins. Dolls, Toys. Stamps. Sneakers.
Sneakers? Yes, people are making a living trading sneakers. The sneaker resale market is worth $10 billion. Why? My go-to source for useless information, Axios, says the pandemic is a major reason. People were bored and needed to make extra money since they lost their jobs. And people just love sneakers. The sneaker makers are smart enough to make “limited edition” sneakers they can hype, price exorbitantly and sell to collectors who hope to resell at a nice profit later.
I know, sounds weird. Almost as weird as collecting coffee pots. I may be giving myself too much credit. I don’t collect them. I compulsively buy them.
I did a little Googling and discovered that one in 20 Americans suffers from compulsive buying disorder. Yup, the National Institutes of Health has given it a name and says an occasional bit of frivolous spending is not a bad thing if it does not overtake your life as you spend money you don’t have.
I think I have got this coffee pot compulsion whipped. We love our stovetop pot. Warning, though. If, in a future column I expound on the glorious new coffee pot I discovered, well, send in the interventionists!