Sunday, August 7, 2016

The State of the School Supplies Shopping Season, Quality Down the Drain, and Vera

My fellow Americans:

It wasn't long ago, about two score, that this nation was introduced to a remarkable concept where papers and portfolios were made secure - kept, if you will - from forces both natural and unnatural.  Yes, friends; I am referring to the holy grail of school supply super social status: the Mead Trapper Keeper.

Fast forward to today, and you can't find the damn thing at your local discount grocery store, your national big box store, or anywhere in between for that matter.

A Mead Trapper Keeper, with its original label. Seen on Etsy. 
Heh, when my elders spoke about products not being made anymore like they used to be, they must have included the Trapper Keeper.  I mean, even I had a few when I was in elementary and middle school. Those notebooks (binders, whatever) had not just the ability to hold all of your classes' paperwork, but it gave you a social status that not even the best clothing, shoe game, or even hair and makeup tutorials could give you; it make you look hella smarter than your peers, and you weren't afraid to show it off, either.

Enter into today's societal realm - the world of media as a social status, folks chasing intangible creature fighters instead of champagne wishes and caviar dreams (a nod to Robin Leach), voters following blindly to a presidential candidate instead of having the proverbial organic cantaloupes to have their potential last vote mean something before this beloved nation goes to Hell in a handbasket - an educational storage device is no longer associated with the Trapper Keeper.  In its place, there are countless applications one can download onto their smartphone for free in regards to "keeping" their notes and such in a place.

Where did we go wrong, my fellow Americans?

Was it when Mead decided to go into the geometric faux pas phase in 1992?

Was it when the company decided to partner with Lisa Frank back in 1989?

Or, was it when the designs of the mid-80s ("Kittens in a Basket," "Rainbow Hearts," and "Touchdown" to name a few) did not get the upgrade that their late 80s successors did, with a sturdier construction, a cooler looking mesh inner pocket, and an all-around interior that wasn't that flat primer white color?

Don't even get me started on the Designer Series.  Don't even.

Whatever had happened, in the early 00s, the Trapper Keeper all but died in its quest to remain relevant to the school student.  By the end of the decade, however, Mead thought it was a good idea to reintroduce the scholastic blaze of glory by redesigning it and making it look so foreign that it had an import ban from some disgruntled third world country.  And even after that, enter into the early 10s, where the Trapper Keeper decided to make a big comeback, returning to their roots of relevance by introducing color schemes and marketable characters (Hello Kitty and Star Wars, for example) into their organizational lineup.

At the end of the day, my fellow Americans, the quality of such an amazing product that serves either as a nostalgia item for pencil neck nerds, like myself, or as a cover to stash both your smartphone and tablet while you catch a light snooze during that mandatory college course, has gone down the drain, along with the intelligence and the integrity of young American minds across this great land.

My fellow Americans.

It is time to ask Mead this one question:

Reintroduce the classic designs of the Trapper Keeper into today's society.

Currently, the only way to obtain such vintage vestibules, whether it had rainbows, teddy bears, fast cars, or even chillaxing on the beach, is paying out the proverbial nose on Trapper Keepers via market sites, like eBay, Etsy, and Bonanza.  This, my fellow Americans, is unacceptable.

We should have Trapper Keepers with all of the classic designs, from the mid-70s (when the notebooks were only one color with a separate color border) to the early 90s (those Designer Series geometric crap can be buried along with the only other thing that came out during that time - political correctness).  Have these epic educational emissaries return to its former glory with multi color interiors, that higher mesh inner pocket, and portfolio folders that gave the answers to all the federal and state mandatory test questions on each side, based on grade level. I would actually go to the 1.5" rings instead of the 1" rings, but make the 1.5" rings slide in and out like its predecessors had once before.  Also, instead of that annoying velcro, keep the current pop up snap, which is a lot more tolerable to the ears.

Yes, my fellow Americans, we can create change. We can be the change. But as long as we have delusional dickheads running for the position of Bellend Boss of the Benevolence Bounty, we have to start somewhere. Make an impact. Protest and march and vote with what YOU believe in, and not what the Establishment tells you to believe in order for them to secretly line their pockets with your hard earned money.

Demand better. For your children and their progeny. For you today. For us all.

Thank you.  And may G-d bless these United States of America.

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