Middle-aged readers, at least those who grew up in certain areas, may remember that Sears was once the definition of uncool. It was the processed cheese spread of retailing. It was stereotypical middle America. Imagine my surprise when a friend sent out the link to a story titled Sears: Where America shops for spectacular nudity . The company is selling wall posters, apparently big ones, that, well:
The poster images are graphic: four couples with arms and legs intertwined who appear to be wearing nothing but each other and some foamy waves lapping at their ankles.
The poster image is highlighted by the theme: “Safe sex is hot sex.”
Another reveals two topless women embracing, wearing only the skimpiest of shorts, a model who appears to be wearing some water and a small sponge, and a group of women wearing revealing lingerie.
The description is accurate, though it doesn’t even mention the worst one. The poster is softcore porn on the harder side of soft. It’s a bad sign when a company like Sears turns to selling the stuff. Willfully hip companies like Abercrombie & Fitch, that we expect. But Sears. Sears . Something has changed, and not for the better.
But one thing hasn’t changed. Sears’ softcore poster is still the artistic equivalent of processed cheese spread.