I almost didn’t participate in last week’s League Assignment because Santa’s bringing a Castle Grayskull to our house. I can’t wait to rip into that box on Christmas morning! (Yes, I asked Santa to wrap that monstrosity and put it under the tree. Other than stocking stuffers, that’s the only present we’re getting, since Santa’s on a budget. I’m fine with it–the year I got my Princess of Power Crystal Castle was one of the best Christmases ever!)
Then someone on my Facebook feed yesterday afternoon posted this link: http://www.ebay.com/itm/Large-oversized-JC-Penny-store-Display-PEE-WEE-HERMAN-1980s-I-Might-Ship-/221330753704.
So apparently in the late ’80s, JC Penney had a “Pee-wee Herman store” in the kids’ department that sold very stylish Pee-wee themed clothes. Marvel at the hipness of these tiny fashion plates in this commercial:
I don’t remember this at all, and I feel like I didn’t know about it. I say this because as much as I was crazy for anything Pee-wee, I would have had at least one piece of clothing from this collection. (If you watch the commercial, that black shirt with the white Pee-wee head? I want that. I would wear that to work, dress code be damned.)
So back to the auction. It’s almost a thousand bucks, so Santa laughed at me when I asked for it. But let me tell you what I’d do with it. I have a spare bedroom upstairs that is begging for a revamp. I’d paint the walls complementary bright colors and use the wall panels as accent pieces. I’d pretend to get today’s secret word from Conky and make up my own Penny cartoons. I’d gossip with the Cowntess. I’d carry that 40″ Pee-wee Herman doll around like My Buddy.
“But Stacey,” you say. “You already have a Chairry and a talking Pee-wee.” Um, yeah, but I don’t have a life-size replica of Mr. Window. And my Pee-wee doll isn’t the size of a small child. And I almost tear up every time I think of how my late uncle, who loved Pee-wee as much as I did, if not more, would have reacted had I purchased it in his lifetime. Hell, he’d probably have tried to outbid me for it.
I’m sure the seller is delighted at the page views they’re getting–every so often I open up my eBay app and scroll through the pictures to consider the possibilities. To have a hideaway that’s an exact replica of a place I always wanted to go, and that I shared with one of my favorite people on the planet, would mean so much more than the hefty price tag.
As I lay in bed last night dreaming about how I’d set up the room, my adult side flipped on like a mirror image of the old Frosted Mini-Wheats commercials. My kid side loves the idea of replicating my favorite house in the world, but the adult in me says, “Do you know how many rolls of toilet paper you can buy with that kind of money? That’s a down payment on a car and a few weeks’ worth of groceries! That’s enough to buy that MacBook you wanted, stupid!” It’s not a practical purchase at all. It’s kind of a dumb purchase, actually. It doesn’t make me want it any less. It makes my “money’s no object piece of pop culture I want to own” wish a little more within reach. It makes me think of my uncle and how much my heart hurts because I miss him. It makes me think how short life is and how Pee-Wee taught us that sometimes it’s OK to do something wacky.
So I’m crossing my fingers that it doesn’t sell, because the seller lives about an hour away from me and I’m hoping to contact them to see if there’s a way I can get it. I mean, unless one of you buys it for me. In that case, I’ll load up and head to Asheville to pick it up!
If only eBay had layaway….
UPDATE: Someone has bid on it! I’m actually glad. It’s a nice dream, but completely impractical. Enjoy it, whoever you are!
I leave you with a couple of Pee-wee holiday-related clips:
First up–the Christmas special!
Next, a couple of clips from one of Pee-wee’s appearances on Letterman. The first includes a delightfully long but adorable joke, and Pee-wee’s Christmas haul!
And Part 2:
So what are you hoping Santa brings you this year?
Here are more Christmas wishes from around the League: