HIGHTOWER: It's a Neiman Marcus World

Well Ho-Ho-Ho and Jingle All the Way -- I've gotten my holiday shopping done, thanks to the Neiman Marcus Christmas catalog.Wondering how to find something for your mom that's a step above another gadget for the kitchen. Well right up front in the catalog is a dazzling diamond necklace that'll make her the talk of the Luby's Crowd the next time she steps out to dinner. Unlike your standard diamonds, these are multi-hued and, gosh, there must be a hundred of them clustered together to form this eye-catching chunk of jewelry. Yes it's a little pricey at $620,000 -- but, hey, you've only got one mom.And what to get Dear Old Dad? Why not have a lifelike marionette made to look like him?! Yes, indeed, Neiman's artist will visit the old geezer in his own home to take photos and get a feel for his personality, then go off and sculpt a realistic, three-foot tall puppet of him, complete with clothing and other accessories that capture the real him. Great. A puppet sitting in a La-Z-Boy with a beer can in one hand and the TV clicker in the other. Only $8000.Now here's just the thing for your brother-in-law: a cigar shirt! Cotton twill with decorative cigar buttons and a front pocket with four slots for the lazy bum's favorite cigars. $190 for the shirt; cigars extra.Got a young son or daughter who enjoy setting-up a little lemonade stand to make money in the summer? Well, raise the bar a notch on these budding business barons by buying them a genuine diner. That's right, Neiman's offers a custom-built, classic diner, with four booths and a formica-topped counter with eleven stools. It comes fully equipped with food & beverage service and a Rock-Ola jukebox. For just $195,000 (including delivery) your kids can be first on their block to run a diner!This is Jim Hightower saying ... Thank you Neiman Marcus for making all of our dreams come true.Source:"Neiman Marcus catalog makes waves for Christmas gift" by Katie Fairbank. Associated Press: Sept. 17, 1997. Neiman Marcus: The Christmas Book: 1997.

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