Brought to you by Play-Doh and the smell of it squishing between your adult fingers.
I was on the hunt for the perfect, huge doll house to hold down 1000 balloons Friday night for an event Saturday which is the way I do things. I wait until the night before or the moment before and try to make perfection happen.
Toys 'R' Us was all out of perfect, huge doll houses. They had lots of small, lovely, dainty ones and pretty, delicate, tiny ones that would break if you looked at them wrong. Those type don't hold down 1000 balloons. They cry in the corner at the thought of 1000 balloons.
Still, I learned a couple things during my Toys 'R' Us visit.
1. Middle aged men should probably not roam the store smelling of beer and hovering in the Barbie aisle. Can you say creepy and cops are on the way?
2. If you are single and childless or have long since entered a toy store of this sort, follow a parent-type in. They know the entrances from the exits and will help you from looking like a jacka**.
3. Toy stores are not really intimidating. Simply think of them like giant Targets but with sirens and eternal supplies of batteries.
4. Everybody needs a pink Barbie microphone. (I'll be right back.)
5. If you see a stuffed hippo sitting all by himself, yes him, it is your duty to save. Try not to talk to Jack, yes Jack, in a loud voice for fear of someone taking you out in a straight jacket.
6. Play-Doh helps. It helps in nearly any situation. I gave some to a co-worker today that was having a tough go of things. If you squish it between your hands and smell the Play-Dohness of it all, you'll begin to feel much better, much sooner than if you don't. Promise.
7. The woman in front of you in line that is melting down because she doesn't have her Toys 'R' Us Rewards card needs: to get a grip and wear denim shorts that cover her fifty year old a**. (Wait a second while I light your cigarette. Ugh.)
8. Don't get mad at the check out guy for asking Would you like batteries with your purchase? even if you don't need batteries for your stuffed hippo or your Play-Doh. He's doing his job and following the sign and if he doesn't ask he's going to get written up so go along with it and thank him for asking. Just play along, won't you?
9. Look. Look at the six foot tall man made out of Legos and stop to stare at the new backpacks coming in just in time for Back to School and think about your excitment when you would pick out your backpack and how important that was and then, for a moment, spend some time bouncing a big, red, rubber ball, well, just because it's in that bin. You don't have to pretend to be a child but you can still play. No one said you can't.
Much play to you,