If I could go back in time, I would love to sit down at the meeting where toy executives gave the thumbs up on some of the designs of the first generation of Transformers.
"Yeah, let's just go with that. I mean, kids won't care if their toy doesn't even closely resemble the character on the show."
I'm looking at you, guy who approved the design of Ironhide.
One can only imagine the scorn heaped upon unsuspecting parents who purchased that toy by their discontented child. The thing cost $15 in 1984 ($1.6 million in today's dollars, judging the value of money by the way my mom refused to buy them back then.)
It was a travesty. A mockery of the intelligence of children. At least Megatron looked like a real gun (and apparently had a healthy libido as a robot). Luckily, my mother never bought me the Ironhide toy, but I had a friend who had him. He's a serial killer now, or probably at least poorly-adjusted.
Cartoon makers take heed - never draw anything for your animated show that cannot be made into a toy. Heed the tale of Ironhide.
When school gets cancelled or delayed because it is too cold, a funny thing happens.
Parents who normally are overprotective (and overbearing) talk about how that never happened when they were kids and that kids aren't tough nowadays. It's funny to me because these are the very same parents who might be largely responsible for any lack of "toughness" in today's youth.
When we went to school, there were no parents who would sue the school district for making us wait for the bus in cold weather. When we went to school, we actually rode the bus, come to think of it. You got dropped off at school by an irritated parent if you missed the school bus.
When we went to school, we ate the hell out of gluten, peanut butter and eggs. Kids were only allergic to bee stings back then. Snow days were a rare thing, but no one had to scramble for child care. We had it nice. You stayed at home with mom or went to grandma's house.
And most importantly, by the time we went to school, they figured out how to make hills uphill in only one direction.
A miniature deck of cards? Tiny handcuffs? A sticker with the logo of your favorite team? Fat chance.
I was duped many a time by those machines in the entryway to the department store. I would happily forfeit my only quarter for a shot at those tiny playing cards. They looked cool.
One turn of the metal knob later, plastic disappointment would roll down to the door. Nowhere in the display did it show a plastic ant that could be worn as a ring. There were no stickers of the Pittsburgh Steelers or Dallas Cowboys in those machines. Heck, you were lucky to even get a football sticker half of the time.
Someone out there stocked those machines. I hope they feel immense guilt at duping millions of children out of their quarters. If not, I hope one of them can find it in their heart to send me a miniature batting helmet from the Pittsburgh Pirates. Lord knows I probably put your kids through college, it's the least you could do.
Anytime the show "Newhart" was about to come on, there was a scramble for each person to take a position.
One person plopped down on the couch to watch the television. One ran over to the doorway to the outside. The last person went to the TV antenna.
Then there was a two-minute relay of hollering instructions back and forth until the station came in. This was almost always followed by the person on the couch yelling out that the station went away after the person turning the antenna stopped touching it.
Oh, we had it so rough. But how else were you going to watch Daryl, his brother Larry, and his other brother Daryl?
My brain is a curious thing. It bounces from place to place, from the exceedingly strange to the terribly mundane. Every once in awhile, something will pop into my head that is just completely out of nowhere. Totally random.