Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Play-doh the clay of Satan

If there is one toy I could pin point as pure evil in this world, it would have to be my nemesis, play-doh. Oh sure, it looks harmless, it's colorful, the kids adore it, what on earth could I have against play-doh? Well many things. First, it has it's own smell. Back in high school I worked at a daycare. They had elevated play-doh to an almost worshiped substance there. It was revered and utilized daily... which meant I was cleaning it out of the carpet fibers and little bitty plastic kids chairs, and tiny fingernails daily as well. Back then it seemed play-doh had a much stronger scent, and it was quite overpowering. I think those fine people at Hasbro have toned it down a bit because when my kids cracked open their first play-doh (a gift mind you that I had set aside to take back but but the box was gleefully ripped open when I wasn't looking and therefore we had to keep it) I was expecting to be blown away by the stench, but alas it was more a mere gentle whiff of the play-doh of yesteryear. It seemed softer and more pliable too. Back then the nasty stuff would leave a chalky residue on your hands when you were finished, but this seemed less powdery, perhaps I should give it a second try. I thought hey maybe times have changed, technology has caught up with the preschool set... but indeed, I was wrong.
It's still the same old clay. It gets hard and crusty within days of hitting the open air, begins to crumble on contact, the colors get mixed up, it falls on the floor collecting hair, dust, crumbs, only to be scooped up and mixed back in with the parent ball so by day three you've got this dense dry cluster of floor garbage mixed in (a thought that gags me for some reason) and a clump so hard your 2-year-old can make a ball out of it. Then there are the accessories. Many times it comes with some sort of device meant to smoosh the play-doh through a tight space, to make hair, legs, squiggly things, although the brainiacs at Hasbro headquarters must never spend time playing with their product because they leave no easy method for prying the play-doh OUT of the contraptions. It gets stuck in there and hardens making it impossible to use it again. It makes one want to pitch the entire disdained lot out the back door. Grrrrr.
So apparently I am not the only woman to suffer from a hidden play-doh hatred. Just the mere mention of play-doh to a group of tired mommies will bring out cries of anguish and disgust. I have yet to cross one mother that does not detest the vile stuff. How is it that a toy that is loathed by one set (the grown ups) is adored by the small fry? It's the first toy they ask for, the first one out on the table with these little faces looking up at you saying mama play with us. How can you resist? So you cave fully knowing you'll be crawling around under the table in a few minutes dabbing the crumbs and sweeping the rest. I must love my kids a lot because I let them use play-doh. I should be nominated for saintly mother of the year for that one alone. I'm pretty sure the devil sits on a giant dry, cracked, hairy crumby throne made of multicolored play-doh, just another reason I'm not going there in the next life.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008


So I've barely blogged this month. Of course I could throw blame towards the wee ones (don't get me wrong, a good enough excuse in itself), in all actuality it's because we purchased a Wii. A magnificent specimen of video game greatness.
It all started back at Christmas time when my father (now apparent Wii-trendsetter of the family) brought it over to add to the Christmas festivities. He left it at our house for what was going to be a few weeks. When he finally wanted it back, wii were hooked. Wii had to stalk a few Gamestops to actually procure the unit. It was way back in March when they were rarer than a clean toilet seat at a seedy trucker rest stop. Since then wii have really embraced all that is Wii. Wii got into the sports, bowling especially, and who knew I could be a pro golfer let alone a tennis star? Then I found a rather amusing side light of the game, the art of Miis.

The Mii is a tiny avatar or cartoon representative of yourself. We started out they way most people do, which is to make a little you (mii) and then play the games with them. Well I started to make everyone in the family, then extended family, then friends, then extended friends, then random celebrities (Michael Jackson, Sally Jesse Rafael, GWB, and Jesus to name a few), then obscure celebrities (food network stars, late night talk show hosts, a blind Mary Ingalls) I just couldn't stop. Wii have a whole practical army of little Mii's now. They are cute, they are many. My favorite aspect of this side hobby is a game of Wii baseball, where a random group of Mii's is assigned to play on your team. In what other situation would you be playing a game with the following: An alien, Minnie Mouse, Conan O'brien, Weird AL, Lionel Richie, Mr. Potato Head, Alton Brown, and Mr. T? It sure makes for strange yet hilarious bedfellows.
So in short, wii will try not to let the Wii interfere too much with my blogging extraordinaire... at least wii hope so...
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