We are coming up to that time of year again.
It is time for the annual consumer-fest that is the Late Late Toy Show.
For those of you who are fortunate enough to live in far off lands, The Late Late Toy Show is an annual institution here, where the latest toys, gadgets and gizmos are put on display on television. For two hours, we are treated to an embarrassing display of consumerism at its worst.
I did some babysitting the other day. I call it babysitting, but Puppychild is five now so she is hardly a baby, but you know what I mean. As a result, the television was put on at her insistence. I don’t approve of plonking kids in front of televisions, but Puppychild always ignores it anyway. Maybe she wanted it on to entertain me? Anyhow, there I was with the television on, so I couldn’t help but witness some of the advertisements that are pumped at the kids of today.
One thing that struck me about the toys on offer, and that is their uniformity.
They are all around €50.
They all require batteries.
Most require remote controls.
They all have a mechanical lifespan of about a month and an attention lifespan of a day.
They all required the intelligence of a gnat to operate.
In other words, the kids are going to end up getting more pleasure out of the packaging than they are out of the toy.
The advertisements are all slanted in a particular way too. They are not so much aimed at the children as aimed at generating a group frenzy, so that peer pressure comes into play and God help the parents when that happens.
I have never seen so much unadulterated overpriced crap in all my years.
So the Late Late Crap Show is going to consist of two hours of overpriced, overhyped, worthless, ephemeral rubbish. Jedward are on too, which kind of proves my point?
And what was Puppychild doing while all this was on?
She was very happily playing on the floor with my collection of Dinky cars, that are nearly sixty years old. She had ascribed a different personality to each car and was having a whale of a time, and her imagination was running at full throttle. There wasn’t a silicon chip, a battery or a remote control to be seen.
When she eventually tired of her game on the floor, she tidied up and did some jig-saws.
I rest my case, M’Lud.