Yesterday was my nephew’s 4th birthday, so my duty as an uncle was to get him a gift. I went to Toy R Us to purchase said gift. This was my first trip to the store in about 14 years and things have changed dramatically there.
The first thing that I noticed when arriving at Toys R Us is the rather confusing floor plan of the store. Nothing was really in aisle format; the shelving had twists and turns. It wasn’t very easy to follow. Now I know people are saying, “Bobby, you might have a mild case of down syndrome if you can’t make your way around a retail store.”
But I shit you not this was the hardest place to navigate. I have driven cross country, I have driven in NYC, Boston, Philly, SF, LA, and pretty much up and down the east coast. I didn’t have as much trouble navigating any of those places as much as I did Toys R Us. To show that I am not exaggerating I made a copy of the floor plan:
The IRS tax code is less complicated than this place.
While wandering around I noticed some of the new fangled things that are out there for kids these days. One of them was a talking book like thing. Basically you put an overlay onto a tablet type of thing and it reads the book to the child. At first I thought it was pretty damn neat. Then I thought about it a little and figured that this was one of the laziest inventions ever created. Basically it helps parents that are too lazy to read to their kids and kids that are too lazy to pick up a book and learn the alphabet the old fashioned way. It’s the equivalent of a wife handing her husband the vacuum cleaner every time he wants a blowjob. Sure it may work but in the long run is anyone really coming out ahead? (there actually is no correlation between the two I just wanted to see how that looked in print)
The other thing I noticed is how crazy expensive Thomas the Train toys are. I only have heard of Thomas the Train vaguely. I know what it is but I couldn’t tell you anything other then it is about a Train named Thomas. But whoever created Thomas the Train and owns his licensing has to be laughing at every parent out there. I was in the Thomas the Train section and there was nothing under the price of twenty five bucks. There was a train engine that goes with the wooden track set… It was a glorified matchbox car… twenty five bucks… This got me thinking I need to come up with a kids toy… Here is what I came up with:
Frankie the Feltching Fox … We’ll make his golden straw sell for at least thirty dollars… It maybe rough around the edges but I think it has potential. He could have friends like Bukake Bunny, Punch the Donkey and various other little critter buddies.
Sorry back to the Toys R Us thing. I ended up having to hire a sherpa to find where the Tonka Trucks are located. Apparently though Toys R Us does not carry Tonka trucks, which I don’t get, where did Tonka trucks go? Do they still make them? My parents were getting my nephew a sandbox and I figured every kid needs a Tonka Truck for their sandbox. The only trucks I was able to find are some generic ones and a lil tikes one. Now this puts me in a weird position. At what age are kids too old to play with lil tikes stuff? Is there a social stigma attached to a kid that brings lil tikes toys to nursery school? Will he get picked on for playing with what could be perceived as a baby’s toy? The pressure was really mounting on me.
I didn’t want to be the guy that bought that gift that would get the shit kicked out of him. I decided to shift my focus onto other toys. Now I was stuck at trying to remember what he had and what he didn’t… I was starting to get freaked out. I am officially the cool… ok well the only uncle and I need to get a solid gift. So after sitting in Toys R Us deliberating for a few minutes I decided to do what I should have done in the first place. Go to Wal-mart and buy him an official Red Ryder carbine-action 200-shot range model BB rifle with a compass in the stock.
He’ll be all the rage at pre-school this week.
What store mystifies you?