Have you ever noticed how things in ads or catalogs or menus always looks different than in person? We once ordered a dessert that was roughly the size of Texas. We ordered three of them and ended up taking two home. That was for nine people. Ridiculous.
How about things from those mail-order catalogs? I quit ordering stuff when I opened a bag of felt pieces for vacation bible school and found that the biggest piece was less than an inch. Since I was planning a craft for four year olds... well, let's just say that I found something else for them to do.
Naturally, merchants want to show their merchandise in the most attractive fashion, but it seems to me that they could find some way to make the size clear. Why not put something of a known size next to it, like the archeologists do in their photos? You know--place a small ruler next to the item. That way, people would have a realistic idea about the size.
I swear that some of the most creative writing in the world is done for catalog descriptions. I sometimes wonder if the writers ever have the opportunity to see and touch the items that they're describing. Or does someone tell them to mention that the sweater is warm and sensual...
I really try not to buy anything over the internet or through the mail unless I've seen it in person or even held it in my hands. I recently bought a psaltery right before my vacation. Fortunately, it arrived in time for me to take it along on my trip. My father loved it, but he was pretty concerned when he found out I'd bought it over the internet. "How did you know it would be this beautiful?"
I explained that I had not only seen one in person, but even tried playing it. In addition, I spoke to the owners of the company and discussed my reservations with them. That's the way to buy over the internet. Check it out first.
That's what I did with my Sony digital reader. I wanted to see it, hold it in my hand, try it out before spending $350 for my new electronic toy. A lot of people think that's quite a bit of money. It most certainly is! So why would I spend that much without making certain it was something I really wanted? I waited until I found a store that sold them and then I bought it there.
What do you think? How do you determine that an item is really the size you need it to be?
Yay!!! Today Magnolia--Book Four of the Flowers of Camelot is released from Ellora's Cave! It's Yule time in Avalon.