Yeah, so, the IKEA �03 catalog came today.
Which is you know, not newsworthy other than the fact I have a total love/hate relationship with that place.
But of further interest - said catalog was sitting on my desk earlier today and one of my co-workers walked by and said, �ohhh, hmmm. IKEA. Yeah, you shouldn�t buy anything from them anymore � they allegedly* give money to Afghanistan.�
And I am all, �what? You mean all it along it was allegedly* the Swedes who supported the freedom fighters of the 1980�s by hawking affordable and functional furniture to the masses? The bastards!�
No, no, that wasn�t it at all. Upon further inspection of the situation (aka a quick look at the washingtonpost.com), it turns out IKEA had allegedly* recently been fined for stepping on the toes of a U.S. embargo.
IKEA allegedly* purchased 150 hand-woven rugs from a Taliban-run part of Afghanistan. They allegedly* did not know that part of Afghanistan was run by the Taliban. So they allegedly* paid OFAC** a $8,000 fine for futzing with such rules. Then, allegedly* no longer able to sell the hand-woven rugs, IKEA allegedly* wanted to give them charity but the OFAC said no go.
So, the rugs were allegedly impounded.
And there they sit.
I don�t know about you, but that makes me think, somewhere in the U.S., there�s like, some sort of X-Files type warehouse full of illegally obtained hand woven rugs, endangered animal pelts and Cuban cigars � a virtual embarrassment of riches soccer moms all across the U.S. are just chomping at the bit to get their hands on.
You know, not unlike in the 80�s hit movie The Goonies where a loveable group of misfits join together in search of One-Eyed Willy�s legendary pirate treasure, I imagine there�s some kind of Urban Legend about that warehouse that circulates Oprah Book Club gatherings and PTA meetings in Chicago�s Western Suburbs where minivans full of soccer moms, hipsters and those who frequent trendy Cigar Bars alike, team together to form some sort of super top secret echelon that�ll one day, in a Mission Impossible-meets-Robin-Hood-type fashion, shimmy up a drain pipe somewhere gaining access through a ventilation system all the while eluding some complicated red-type-security-lasers with their heat-sensitive, infrared technology and bungee harnesses (discreetly funded by Better Homes and Gardens) to one day free the booty*** liberating stylish knick-knacks and modern accessories for all!
I mean, allegedly* Of course.
Dear fade-in : I smell screenplay!
Next time you�re in town, we�ll punch out the details over lunch. In the meantime, be a pal and feel out the Buffy people for possible interest, okay?
*rumor has it someone from IKEA is paid to surf the web looking for people who �dis their store � so the folks in ann-frank legal told me it might be a good idea to throw in a handful of �the allegedly� in there so as not to get in any trouble for any very lame attempts at satire I might try.
** Office of Foreign Assets Control
*** you know, booty: as pointed out on the track Professor Booty as released on the Beastie Boy�s legendary album �Check Your Head�