Posted by: Loren Coleman on February 17th, 2010
Vendors pose with 2010 Games mascots (left to right) Miga, Sumi, Mukmuk and Quatchi in a shop selling Olympic merchandise in Whistler. Photograph by Michael Kappeler, Vancouver Sun.
For those that didn’t believe me when I said there was going to be a buying frenzy during the limited time existence of Quatchis, read the following:
There is, hanging from my purse, a small fuzzy thing. If you are at all tuned into the 2010 Olympics, you’d recognize it as a pocket-sized Quatchi.
Not everyone understands, of course. A colleague of mine, a classy woman who is much younger than I and thus should be minding her manners, saw it the other day and said: “Shelley, you are a grown woman. Why is there a toy dangling off you?”
Which leads me to the 2010 Olympic Superstore, where hundreds of locals and tourists have been lining up every morning, well before the store opens, so many there is a stanchion to keep them at bay and a burly guy guarding the door, in case those seniors from Seattle decide to rush the place.
The line grows as the day goes on — an estimated 10,000 daily, by some accounts — and if you think these shoppers aren’t packing enough cash or Visa limit, ’cause that’s all they take at this store, then you haven’t been in the middle of the feeding frenzy when a pallet of those mittens comes rolling down the aisle.
Truth is, you’d be hard-pressed to find someone in this town right now who isn’t sporting or carrying something 2010-related, something emblazoned with five rings, something red.
Caps, scarves, hoodies, toques, T-shirts, bags and pins, the Olympic tchotchke list goes on and on, much like the superstore itself, which consumes fully h alf of the main floor of the big Bay store downtown and which, on any given day over the next two weeks will be, as they say, a zoo.
What, exactly, is this compulsion that sees us desperately seeking a $20 plaid scarf, that had 60,000 people hugging their souvenir cardboard drum cases, containing a plastic cloak, a flashlight, a drumstick, a candle torch and a flag, as they streamed out of the opening ceremony Friday night?
Why do we line up, as if our life depended on it, to buy stuff with logos?
For the rest of the article, see here.
The International Cryptozoology Museum appears to have the last population of little Quatchis for sale on the East Coast.
International Cryptozoology Museum
661 Congress St.
Portland, ME 04101
Wed-Sat, 11-6, Sunday, Noon-5.
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