Holiday times are crazy times. I don’t mean “crazy” in the “madcap, zany” way. I mean crazy in a schizophrenia and padded rooms kinda way.
Have you been to a mall this month? It’s like our country’s water supply is tainted by some sanity-eroding chemical compound.
I hear about people stockpiling canned goods and moving to the hills in anticipation of a Y2K disaster. But I think the holiday shopping season has a much higher probability of panic and rioting. It’s survival of the fittest in the toy stores across America.
Toys-R-Us is beginning to resemble Thunderdome: “Two men enter. One man leaves with a Furby.”
You’ve seen Furbies, right? They’re little gremlin looking dolls that have their own languange and “learn” from you? They look kinda creepy to me, but it’s the “must-have” toy of X-mas ’98. Parents are camping out in front of Wal-mart for a chance to buy one. On-line auctions are selling the dolls at 7 times the list price.
The whole capitalist model comes crashing down into chaos as a single toy takes over our culture. We lose our minds. We spend more energy focussed on that Toy then we do on Jesus or dreidels or whatever we’re supposed to be thinking about. If Jesus is the reason for the season, why are the lines outside of Toys-R-us…not the Church?
Cabbage Patch Kids, Tickle Me Elmos, Furbies: Each year we worship a new cuddly plush toy as our culture’s golden cow. The Quest for Toys excites more passion and fervor than the most impassioned social cause. If parents dedicated as much energy to feeding the hungry as they did to tracking down these scarce toys, we’d live in a beautiful utopia.
Well, maybe not utopia…but at least it would be easier to park at the mall.
Wanna rip the ears off a Furby?