Print Catalogs Are A Thing Again?!

I get one of those once in a while. They’re weird.

In some cases, they’re companies that I remember occasionally getting a catalog from years ago, before they developed what’s effectively a porno section in the middle. I think it started with the occasional fairly discreetly described vibrator, but then built up from there. I wonder whether they get a lot of such business from people who would be embarrassed to buy from a sex toy store?

I’m not sure if the old Spencer Gifts catalogs sold dildos, but I wouldn’t put it past them.

Not so long ago electronic supply companies used to send out dead tree catalogs. I always found them easier to navigate than trying to use their website search function. Their website search tended to suck when I didn’t know EXACTLY what I was looking for. With the catalog I could just flip thru the pages looking for pics of items similar to what I needed. Once I found the group of pages matching my general area of interest it was very easy to narrow my search to the exact item.

Some suppliers have improved their website search engines a bit, allowing searches for a general category of item with the ability to use filters to narrow down the search. Frequently the filters are based on poorly selected or irrelevant criteria. Or there might be 4-5 different commonly used terms to identify an item. If I don’t use the same terminology they use, their search engine is of little use.

MCM was one of my main suppliers and I looked forward to their “big” annual catalog. It was reference book about 2 1/2" thick. I still keep one around because the part numbers haven’t changed for the most part, even tho the catalog is about 6-7 years old. Once armed with the part number I can go to the website to place my order, even tho MCM has since merged with Newark and now call themselves “element 13”. They used to be my go-to for electronic parts. Now they are my last choice.

Who was the musical instrument dealer that had the big catalogs about 15 years ago? Musician’s Friend? I couldn’t put those down.