People my age will remember the Cabbage Patch Doll craziness one Christmas in the 80s. Everyone wanted one of those dolls for their young girl, but there were not enough to meet the demand for those ugly creatures. People were fighting over them in stores, and I think if my folklore is accurate there might have been arrests and deaths around this doll craze. My parents did not participate in such craziness. I got a knock off Cabbage Patch doll that my parents named after one of my grandmothers. They dressed her in the outfit I came home from the hospital in, sealing her fate as very special, which meant I could not play with her. Thanks parents.
The talk of Berner statues started in social media groups before October. All true Bernese Mountain Dog owners were going to get one of these statues. This was starting to play out like those damn Cabbage Patch Dolls! These coveted statues were only available at Home Depots, but since they were a holiday item, most stores still had them in their warehouses. That little fact did not deter dedicated Berner owners. People were using the QR codes from the boxes of lucky folks who found them in their local stores and asking Home Depot employees to locate the statues in their warehouse using the code. Some employees played along and used fork lifts to get them down. Other employees said the statues could not be sold until after Halloween. I was laughing and watching the stories unfold online – where you could find them, how many were left, how to paint them to make them look more “authentic.” These Berner owners are definitely our people.
Well, it stopped being funny when the husband said that all he wanted for Christmas was a Berner Statue. Damnit. Now I had to join the craziness. I had been texting my friend Rob (who is also a dog lover) screen shots of how this find-the-statue was playing out online. He is also a semi-professional online sleuth (the dude can find things on the dark web!) so I shared the husband’s wish and lamented that I would never be able to find one in South Carolina where very few people own Berners because of their love of cold and snowy weather. Rob’s response: “challenge accepted.”
By now Halloween had come and gone and there were fewer and fewer posts about finding statues. People in the Berner groups were begging people NOT to buy the ones on Ebay, which were much more expensive. One owner literally saw a guy load an entire pallet of them from a Home Depot warehouse onto to his truck. That guy’s family will be getting all the gifts they want for Christmas with those upscale profits. Asshole entrepreneur!
Rob and I both were sleuthing around online trying to find an elusive Berner Statue. We both found one at almost the exact same time. Because of our friendship of over 20 years, maybe my sleuthing skills are improving? Or it was dumb luck we found one at the same time? Who cares….we were going to save Christmas!
The statue arrived, and I put it in the storage shed for safe keeping. Forgetting it was in there…. in a box that said Bernese Mtn Dog Statue on ALL SIDES OF THE BOX, I said I was going to clean out some of the stuff in the shed one Saturday afternoon when the husband was home for the weekend. (I am determined not to collect anything unnecessary after the purge of Wild Azalea Lane. I still have lingering PTSD from that whole traumatic experience). He offered to help, and I quickly said that I had it all under control, while mumbling under my breath that he wasn’t that eager to help with the big clean out. I covered the box up with the Christmas tree skirt and all was safe. Whew.
The posts started showing up again this weekend, and the husband said how disappointed he was that he would not be getting one (I had lied and said I looked everywhere and could not find one). I told him it was a Christmas decoration, so even if I had found one, it wasn’t time to put it out yet. Keep in mind the husband’s favorite holiday is Thanksgiving, and he gets super triggered when people jump from Halloween to Christmas. His response to it being a holiday decoration? It is a “winter decoration” so could definitely be on display mid November.
I put on my coat and headed to the shed, and he started to put it together. His face when he realized he was getting his Christmas miracle was priceless. I did establish one rule: no lights on the statue until after Thanksgiving to which he agreed.
Rob and I saved Christmas, and we will take to our graves where we found the most coveted 2023 Christmas item for dog lovers. Everyone needs a friend like Rob.