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January 19, 2004
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Where did I read that toy stores were not places where parents should look for toys for their children? Toy stores were for those busy uncles and aunts visiting from abroad. Those who did not really know the child, or culture, who needed to make a quick, age appropriate homerun. ("Say thank you to uncle Shlomo for the golden bongo."... ..."thank you uncle BAMBAMBAMBAMBAMBAM")

Toys given by parents should be the beginnings of stories, not the final word of such.
Do you remember the packaging of your very favorite toy? (I don't.)
Do you remember the packaging of your most useless toy?... The one that was the biggest disappointment when pulled out of its promising box?

What happens in a time and place where biological parents technically become the aunts and uncles, the rare visitors who only come home for the highlights? How many tv commercials show parents observing their children from a safe distance, while the superbly focused kids interact with some sort of device that perfectly replaces true human interaction?
Sometimes a pet is present: a drugged kitten, a loving puppy or a fascinated, cheerful, freshly changed sibling.
Children themselves are often seen as something that comes pre-packaged with pre recorded messages that just need to be activated and many well accessorized fun activities, and a whole bunch of matching clothes to buy for.
And God forbid that perfect kid turns out too active, too tired, too heavy, too fast, too slow, too different... too something that was not covered on the back of the box or in the manual...
oh, wait... things can indeed be adjusted these days... most conditions are the result of a chemical imbalance of the ingrediens anyway...
try me... press my heart, gimme that, feed me that. Or as a one 5 year old hyperactive boy recently put it while pretending to hit me with the hand that did not hold a starbucks hot chocolate: "I did not take my pills today!, I did not take my pills today!, I did not take my pills today!!!" (What appeared to be his grandmother was a neighbor who only borrowed him for a day, to overcome her own depression after the death of her husband 13 months ago, as she told me... and so the story continues.)


Too bad they haven't invented the off-button yet - that would realy come in handy! And where is the 24/7 helpdesk with free service?

I so agree with you...

Maybe there should be some kind of course for wannabe-parents?

Posted by: Inge on January 19, 2004 06:10 PM

and while we're at it, how about a course for prescription-happy pediatricians, teachers and principals? my god.

Posted by: lavonne on January 19, 2004 10:54 PM

are we living in a world of quick fix solutions?
or the quest for such?

Posted by: Witold Riedel on January 19, 2004 11:01 PM

i think the best toy i ever got was the giant cardboard box our family's new refrigerator came in. my brother & i decorated it with our crayons, we cut a 'window' in the wall, and pretended like we lived in a very upright building. i think this probably went on for months.

Posted by: christa on January 20, 2004 02:27 PM


Posted by: Witold Riedel on January 20, 2004 11:52 PM

In one wonderful exhibition they put life sizes dolls in the space. They came wrapped and packaged and all. It was spacey experience to feel the same size as the dolls.

Posted by: Tom on January 21, 2004 02:15 PM

You need a permit to run a little motorboat. But if you get a woodie and bring a new human into the world God help ya.

Posted by: Fritz on January 22, 2004 03:59 PM

so true!
: )

Posted by: Witold Riedel on January 22, 2004 04:40 PM

hey! you made fun of that heart shape "try me sticker" i slapped to my brown jacket. the one with the sheep skin!

ANYwaaayyyyzzz...my favorite toy didn't come in any kind of packaging. She has four legs and one blue eye and one brown eye. And then there's this other toy that is also a favorite...

Posted by: Emily on January 24, 2004 05:13 AM

Oooh, Emily, I had no idea... haha...

It is a bit of a bizarre way of looking at this, but I think even dogs come in little packages. They are wrapped in other dogs?... This is really a weird idea... hmm... most living things came packaged into their previous generation?...
Wow, my strange Saturday morning thinking scares me.

Posted by: Witold Riedel on January 24, 2004 08:15 AM

Hmmmm...she was maybe wrapped in...placenta?

Posted by: Emily on January 28, 2004 03:26 AM
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