Tag Archives: Toy WTF

Too Tall

At a recent trip to the mall, we were shocked to discover our kindergartner is apparently too ungainly and mature of a kid to use the mall play area.
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That’s right, she’s above the height limit for the mall play area.

She’s 6 years old!

Apparently being 6 means you are too big and dangerous to play at the mall. Admittedly, that area is usually full of toddlers, but a small kindergartner is too big for it? Really?

What exactly am I supposed to tell her when she accompanies me to the mall with her two appropriately-sized-for-the-mall-play-area sisters?
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Is the 6 year old supposed to sit on the sidelines instead of climb and play? Are we just not supposed to use the mall play area when she’s with us?

I’m usually a stickler for the rules, but here’s one thing I’m not listening to. What are they going to do if she does play on it? Kick us out of the play area? Are the security guards at the mall going to come yell at me for allowing a child to play in a child’s play area?

Somehow I doubt that.

But seriously? A kindergartner is too tall for the mall play area? Really? She may be an older kindergartner thanks to her fall birthday, but she’s still one of the shorter ones!

Next they’ll put a sign on the playground at the city park that says 6 year olds shouldn’t be playing on THAT.

Insane.

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Toy WTF: Ariel’s Boob Song

Sorry for the blogging lapse. I survived Hostess Hell week, and possibly even did a decent job of it aside for the fact that all of my other duties (blogging being one of them, laundry being another) were neglected.

Anyway, to make up for my absence, I took some pictures of toys in the toy section this week. Check out this monstrosity.
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At first glance, this doll is adorable. Look at that cute Little Mermaid smiling at you while wearing a dress. For once she’s not just wearing a seashell bra, so it’s not as “scandalous” as it could be. I never had a problem with the seashell bra, but this top is a little more modest.

But then she has a seashell BETWEEN her boobs.

Which would be fine, except you are supposed to PRESS the seashell between her boobs to get Ariel to talk.

That’s right, the “Talk” button on this Ariel doll is right between her boobs. This toy encourages you to feel up the Little Mermaid so you can make her talk.

It’s wrong on so many levels.

Why isn’t the seashell necklace up around her neck where mandatory boob poking wouldn’t be necessary to make her talk. She says some great things, but the boob poking steals her thunder.

And if that weren’t enough, Ariel is wearing a dress WHILE also having a fishtail, which makes no sense in terms of the movie. In the movie, she only wore a dress when she had legs. Do they think we can’t see her fins while she’s wearing the dress? Because we can. They are right there.

WTF?

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Toy WTF: The New Lite Brite

WTF is up with Lite Brite these days? My girls got one for Hanukkah and we were really excited about it. I last played with Lite Brite when I was a kid in the 1980s. I haven’t seen one since. Needless to say there have been some changes. It’s kind of like the old Lite Brite was a tube tv (which we still happen to have at our house because we are THAT cool). It had some depth with actual visible light bulbs behind a black plastic perforated panel. It stood up in a triangle and you had to plug it in to get it to work.

The new Lite Brite has basically been updated from a tube tv to an iPad. It’s compact and flat with an LED light inside it. It’s battery operated so you don’t have to plug it in. It even has a little tray attached for the bulbs, which I’m pretty sure my previous Lite Brite didn’t have. All of that is fine and dandy. I would love the new Lite Brite except for one thing: It takes an Olympic Champion Weight Lifter to take the damn light bulbs out of the screen after you make a picture.

Do you see how some of the bulbs are missing? Those are the only ones we could get out this time. Must conserve finger muscle energy to try again.

When I was a kid, the little light bulbs fell out easily. Sometimes if you breathed wrong a light bulb would shoot out of it. I guess that was annoying, but at least you could remove them. Now my kids come whining to me after every creation asking me to help them take the bulbs out. I pull and pull until my thumbs ache. The stupid bulbs are almost impossible to remove. When they finally pop out, they often fly across the room and land in the baby’s mouth. If they don’t land in the baby’s mouth, they either poke an eye out or land somewhere where you can’t find them until the baby crawls up and puts them in her mouth.

I mean, I know it’s a choking hazard, but STILL. It’s impossible to regulate the bulbs to the no-baby areas when I have to remove the bulbs myself every 5 seconds. For an hour. Because it’s SO HARD to remove those bulbs that it takes FOREVER.

What on earth made Lite Brite decide to make the bulbs fit so tightly? While it’s true the bulbs could have fit in better when I was a kid, this is absolute overkill. Children are supposed to be able to work the Lite Brite by themselves, but both my husband and I struggle to remove the bulbs. We’re gym-going adults! There’s no reason for these things to be bolted to the Lite Brite. I just don’t get it. WTF, Lite Brite? WTF?

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Asian Babies on the Cheap

Today while we were window shopping at Toys R Us, I got really excited when I saw a set of Asian triplet baby dolls. In our neck of the woods, it’s hard to find a good Asian baby doll at most stores because we don’t have a large Asian demographic. There are a lot of generic “could be Asian, could be Hispanic, could be Mediterranean, who knows for sure!” dolls available, but not a lot of dolls that are blatantly Asian.

The dolls were pretty awesome, but then I noticed something odd. There was one other package of triplet dolls there that wasn’t Asian. This one contained African American triplets. At least, they were labeled as African American. The dolls could pass as dark-skinned Caucasians, but their price description labeled them as “Interactive Triplets AA”. I assume the “AA” stands for African American considering that is the race of the girl playing with them in the picture on the box. I also can assume the “AA” means African American because the Asian dolls were labeled as “Asian” on their price stickers, though the dinky pictures from my stupidphone’s camera make this hard to see.

Do you notice what was off here?

Take a closer look at the price.

The Asian baby dolls were $26.98.

The “AA” dolls were $39.99.

And they were displayed right next to each other in some sort of race pricing war.

I stood there for a long time staring and trying to figure out how the two sets of dolls might be different aside from their races, but nothing was different. The top dolls were “AA” and the bottom dolls were Asian. The Asian dolls were $13 cheaper than the African American dolls of the exact same make. The way it was set up read “Asians for sale! Cheap!” It really weirded me out.

In all honesty, I don’t think there was any intentional racism here. There were several boxes of Asian babies, only one box of African American babies and NO boxes of Caucasian babies. This leads me to believe this was a supply and demand problem. They received too many Asian triplet dolls and needed to get rid of them quick quick quick… which supports my previous post about the complete absence of Mulan baby dolls at almost all of our local toy stores (she’s at the Disney store, but they have everyone there). With low Asian demographics, stores don’t bother selling many Asian babies and when they do get some Asian inventory they have to slash the price to get the dolls out of the store because they don’t sell well. There were no Mulan, Jasmine or Pocahontas dolls of any type at this store and very few (if any) other Asian babies.

Regardless of the oversupply, I think the price cut should have waited perhaps until the other dolls sold out or the prices should not have been put side by side. It just looks bad even if that wasn’t the store’s intention. The way it’s set up right now says “Asian baby dolls just aren’t as valuable as dolls of other races!” and that just sits badly with me regardless of the true purpose of the price cut.

That said, if one race of doll is going to be deeply discounted, I suppose I’m happy that my wallet would be benefiting from it if we were actually in the market for MOAR TOYS two weeks after Christmas.

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On Pants

Every children’s museum gift shop needs to equip itself with the following items:
*wipes
*emergency diapers in size 3 (most versatile diaper size EVER)
*pants in at least sizes 2T through 4T with a museum logo
*size 3T or 4T underwear

I’m guessing I don’t need to explain why this should be, but today our children’s museum had NONE of those items. There were shirts that could pass as dresses on a toddler, but no pants. Actually the rest of the items I listed we could live without, what we really needed were the pants, but all four of the above items could come in handy at a children’s museum I’m guessing on a daily basis.

She started the museum trip appropriately dressed for winter, but it didn’t last.


Today Rose’s public toilet phobia got the better of her. She peed all over herself and the play grocery store at the children’s museum. I have an extra pair of underwear in the car, but our car had been valet parked. It would cost me $7 and two tips to get to that pair of underwear. I refused to leave the museum at that point because I’d paid about $25 to get us in and we’d only been there about 45 minutes. We drove almost that long to even get there! I was not leaving until we got our money’s worth! I don’t care how miserable everyone was, we were getting $25 worth of museum fun out of our trip!

Luckily she was wearing a dress, and the dress was relatively dry after her accident. However, the dress was pretty short and she’s prone to lifting it up because she’s 3 years old and has zero modesty. The girl couldn’t be walking around commando because she’d surely flash half the museum.

Where did Rose’s pants go?


Just yesterday I switched little Violet up to size 3 diapers. Thank goodness I put them in my diaper bag this morning. They just barely stretch enough to cover Rose’s girl parts. She thought it was hilarious. We rushed down to the gift shop to see if we could get some pants, but no. The shop did not sell pants. They sold t-shirts, but not pants.

I’m guessing based on the average age of their weekday child-aged clientele, that museum could easily sell at least one pair of emergency pants per day. Considering how much museum gift shops seem to mark up their merchandise, they could be making a pretty penny on these emergency pants AND get some advertising out of these kids running around with a museum logo on their butts.

The pants wouldn’t be labeled as “emergency pants” but as “museum apparel”. I mean, t-shirts are great, but what I (and probably many, many other moms) need in that gift shop are pants! If Rose had been wearing a shirt and pants when she had her accident, we’d have to leave that minute. I’m sure there are a lot of moms out there who have emergency diaper/wipe situations going on too. Establishments catering to kids should probably have these things around.

But they don’t. I wonder how much money they lose on a daily basis over this issue? Not only do they lose money on the pants they could have sold, but they lose money on the moms who have to leave with their wet kids instead of sticking around to buy lunch at the museum. So they lose pants AND lunch money.

Get some pants in the gift shop, museums!

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Inequality

Since we are in the early days of nursing and babyhood, leaving the house (and showering) is a huge triumph. Today’s excitement was a trip to Walmart, where I discovered the latest in unfairness. Lily is really short on PJs. I buy most of the girls’ clothes used, but for some reason decent hand-me-down PJs are hard to find. For some reason, new PJs run at $10-15 even at Walmart. I don’t understand why even a nightgown is $10 at Walmart when I regularly buy the girls dresses there for $5. Why the hell are PJs so expensive? You SLEEP in them. They should really cost less than most of your other clothes.

At first I decided not to buy PJs because I didn’t feel like dropping “so much” on them. Since I buy most of the girls’ clothes used, I have trouble paying more than $8ish for ANYTHING for them, especially PJs. I planned a trip to my favorite thrift store to see if I could score more PJs. The last couple trips have failed, but maybe they got in something new?

That’s when I rounded the corner and saw the BOYS’ PJs.

As I said, the girls’ PJs were at least $10, so imagine my surprise when I discovered the boys’ PJs were $5.50.

WTF? And these weren’t just generic PJs with non-character frogs and bugs on them. These PJs were two pieces with Buzz Lightyear, Diego or Thomas the Tank Engine on them. Meanwhile, the girls’ generic butterfly NIGHTGOWNS (one piece) were $10. I believe the character-wear with Disney princesses and Dora cost even more.

Why do boy PJs cost less? And SO MUCH less. It’s completely unfair. Is it because boys theoretically do not care as much about what is on their PJs? Am I paying extra for the ruffle on the edge? I don’t understand.

Needless to say, my girls came home with Thomas the Tank Engine PJs that said “Boys’ PJs” on the packaging. They might be wearing a lot more boy PJs in the future. They love Toy Story and it’s for bed, so who cares? I want the cheap PJs. Are princesses and Dora REALLY more valuable than Thomas and Buzz? It just seems wrong.

I’m sure there’s some deeper feminist message in all of this that I’m too lazy to explore deeply 15 days postpartum, so for now I’ll just whine and point out the inequality. WTF, ,Walmart/clothing manufacturers? WTF?

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Toy WTF: Out of Scale Play Sets

Here’s a simple rule that apparently is impossible to follow: If you are going to make accessories your dolls are supposed to fit inside, you better make sure your dolls fit in them before you start marketing them to the public.

We have two Disney items that don’t fit the figurines for which they were allegedly built and I absolutely don’t understand WTF the manufacturer was thinking. First, there’s Cinderella’s carriage.

It looks like a great toy, right? What’s not to love? It has everything: Cinderella, the mice, the fairy godmother, horses. Great stuff.

It SHOULD be great stuff, but it’s totally not. First of all, it falls apart very easily. The platform the mouse stands on falls off every 5 seconds and your child will ask you every 5 seconds to put it back together. The two halves of the the top of the carriage also pop off easily and you will also be asked to fix this so many times you’ll be ready to throw it out.

If that weren’t bad enough, Cinderella literally can not sit in the carriage while she is wearing her little rubber dress. Her legs don’t bend while she’s wearing it, which means she can’t sit. The carriage lid can not shut while she is standing. What’s hilarious about this is they clearly discovered there were problems with this toy during the promotional photo shoots, but didn’t do anything to fix it.

See how Cinderella is standing instead of sitting? See how the carriage is open? It can not close while she’s in there. If you move the carriage, she will fall over.

WTF? Make the carriage a little taller and this problem goes away. Put these damn figurines in cloth dresses instead of immobile rubber dresses that rip easily and the problem will disappear. I don’t understand why they thought this was acceptable.

Look at the hilarity– on Amazon there’s not just one promo picture like this, there’s two!

And this is just one of probably many toys for these figurines that isn’t to scale and doesn’t work with the dolls. We also have a set of Tinker Bell fairies that don’t fit in the little fairy house we have for them.

Tinker Bell can not stand up all the way in this house. She can not sit on the little thimble stool without falling over. It’s ridiculous. They seriously need to play with these toys in the toy engineering department place before selling them.

I mean that’s two out of two accessories for our Disney dolls that don’t actually fit the dolls for which they were designed. That’s just not right. WTF?

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Toy WTF: Tiny Princess Wardrobe Choices

WTF is up with Disney Princess Favorite Moment Dolls and their teeny, tiny changeable rubber outfits that rip the second a child tries to change them? Why on earth would you make little rubber outfits so tight that when a child tries to change them they rip? Our first Cinderella doll ripped her dress immediately. For some reason, we kept buying these things and I put in place the new rule that only Mommy and Daddy could change the dolls. This means that Dr. Toy Warden and I are CONSTANTLY changing teeny, tiny easy-to-rip rubber clothes. Why did they go with rubber? Why didn’t they go with cloth? Even the tiny cloth clothes are hard to change, but at least you aren’t stretching them over teeny, tiny oddly bent arms.

I’m particularly pissed off about the Ariel doll.

You see Ariel’s little purple shell bra? You can take it off for no good reason. It doesn’t fit quite right and slips around a lot.

Do you know what’s under Ariel’s purple shell bra? A green painted-on bra.

Why the hell isn’t Ariel’s purple bra just painted on her? It would make so much more sense and work so much better. The purple rubber bra is so little that it’s totally going to get lost. I’m amazed it hasn’t been lost yet.

Also, Ariel’s shoes are painted green. Her dress is pink. The shoes and bra don’t match her dress at all. Purple shoes matching the purple bra would look much better, but I guess the toy designer decided to make the shoes match her green tail. The thing is, when she’s wearing the tail you can’t see her shoes and you aren’t supposed to be able to see her green bra either. It doesn’t make any sense.

WTF?

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Toy WTF: Sing-A-Ma-Jigs are MULTIPLYING

Because ONE Sing-A-Ma-Jig wasn’t bizarre enough, now you have the option of having conjoined twin freaks of nature!

Now when you squeeze the Sing-A-Ma-Jig, both dolls open their little inappropriately suggestive mouths and sing their strange songs.

Source: walmart.com via Jenica on Pinterest

 

I guess one monstrosity just wasn’t enough? Is that the bigger Sing-A-Ma-Jigs baby? Clone? Girlfriend? Appendage? Dummy? What is going on here?

This development among the Sing-A-Ma-Jigs earns them an unprecedented THIRD appearance in Toy WTF.

I just don’t get these things.

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Toy WTF: Vain Pony

Rose got a Princess Celestia My Little Pony for her birthday next week. She loves it, but all of us, including the gift-giver (my mother) are appalled by what Princess Celestia has to say about herself. She has to be the most narcissistic talking toy I’ve ever seen/heard.

Things Princess Celestia has to say about herself:

*My wings are so pretty.

*My barrettes look so pretty.

*I love when you comb my hair.

*Oh, my hair looks beautiful!

Wow. I mean, great that she has a good self-esteem, but that’s a little over the top. She says maybe four other things, so half of what she says is describing how beautiful she finds herself.

And while she is indeed a beautiful pony, WTF?

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