That's it. Enough news about the demise of Canadian chain stores. Enough reports about Canadian retailers going way of the dodo. We're Toronto's Eaton Centre shopping mall, and we're Canadianizing the whole place. Sometimes being Canadian can be more important than making money, something we picked up from the Eaton family.
With every week bringing a U.S. takeover of yet another venerable Canadian chain store, soon our mall will be having President's Day sales. It's already starting to look like the Save-A-Lot in Des Moines.
Foreign tourists, seeking authentic Canadian goods, keep asking us where they can buy pemmican, Ookpik dolls, Mitsou memorabilia and Group of Seven pillowcases. And we're tired of sending them to Wal-Mart to get these things.
As soon as we settle the lease-cancellation lawsuits with The Gap and Radio Shack, here's what's coming your way! Old Army: You'll be the peacekeeper in your house when you bring home some of the Canadian Armed Forces' surplus fashions available from Old Army! Arctic-ready tourniquets, 30-year socks, and flammable berets are "rad" with preteens! Restoration Software: Classic. Simple. Analog. The best electronic gadgetry and computer programs that Canadian mathematicians and accountants of the 1950s and '60s had the funds to design are yours to enjoy. Whether it's an Avro Arrow ejection-seat wiring diagram, or a punchclock from the St. Lawrence Seaway Sanitation Dept., you'll cherish it, and not know why. McIntosh's: You deserve a respite today, at McIntosh's, Canada's growing chain of toffee-based fast-food restaurants. Try caramel pork rinds, back bacon on a toffee slab or our delicious solid shake. Banana Constitutional Monarchy: For the working gal and shirking guy, this clothing store is very contemporary, in a Canadian kind of way. Sleeveless hydro parkas, transparent mittens and edible dickies are coming soon. Indigo-Chapters-Coles-W.H.Smith books.com: The mergers and restructuring are over -- let the remaindering begin! Visit Canada's largest e-commerce impulse-purchase bookstore, where Pierre Berton poetry, Farley Mowat libretti and 1999 polar bear calendars, while not actually on-site, can be ordered through one of our 123 Internet terminals, tied directly to our fulfillment villa in Mississaugua, Ont. Tim Hortons Superstore: Three thousand stools, no waiting! The world's largest donut shop isn't just glazed and sprinkled, it's a donut destination! Try our coffee kegs, 450 varieties of donuts (including fiddlehead and gravlax) and 1000-Timbit steamer trunk (not available at drive-through window). Barrel and Crate: You don't need to be a rum runner or citrus-fruit farmer to appreciate our lineup of barrels and crates, along with a huge selection of, well, barrel and crate accessories, from staves to sliver-removers. Don Cherry's Facemask Fiesta: Take a hike-y, Nike! This is the only sports superstore you need if hockey is your game, i.e. above-the-neck goalie equipment. Try the plaster facemask customization salon. Kids will love to suit up for the Head of Fire: Three hundred pucks shot out of a cannon directly at their masked faces!
So come, shop, and save . . . Canada! Gerry Flahive is a documentary producer in Toronto.