Patient 'not a retail store' John Lewis sent gift by namesake department shop
American academic John Lewis has received a large box of gifts from the UK department store of the same name after he politely tolerated another year of Twitter feedback to the retailer's Christmas advert.
Mr Lewis, a computer science teacher from Blacksburg, Virginia, whose @JohnLewis Twitter account has 19,800 followers, has become a festive tradition for many who enjoy his unfailingly polite responses to customers who either berate or congratulate him for the John Lewis Christmas campaign.
His Twitter bio reads "Computer science educator, father of four, social liberal, atheist, and not a retail store."
But this year Mr Lewis once again tolerated an onslaught of tweets about the latest "Buster the Boxer" advert featuring a party of animals testing out a new trampoline, responding with the line: "Saw the ad, giggled, then opened twitter and ended in tears."
He told one man who congratulated him on the advert: "Thanks! The one from @johnlewisretail is good, too."
He also responded to a customer who complained that scenes of a father assembling the trampoline ruined the spirit of Christmas with the response: "You're a Grinch! Santa was running behind, dropped off the trampoline and asked Dad for a little help."
Mr Lewis was even asked by one Twitter user if she could do some free shopping in the women's department, replying: "I can give you first shot at the clothes I can't fit into any more, but that's about it."
On Tuesday, he posted a picture of the large box of gifts John Lewis sent him for his troubles, including a cushion emblazoned with the words: Merry Christmas @johnlewis "not a retail store".
Captioning the picture, he wrote: "Received a huge package from @johnlewisretail including this amazing embroidered cushion. So cool! Thank you very much!"
John Lewis - the department store - said the latest advert had been viewed more than 52 million times on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube alone and shared more than one million times on social media - a 182% increase already on total views of last year's advert.