June 4, 2014
I swear I’m not a curmudgeon. I’ve never uttered the phrase “those kids today” without a healthy dose of cool, urban-dad irony.
Yet here I am today, in full “Get off my lawn!” mode, lamenting the never-ending proliferation of electronic gizmos aimed at kids.
I’m not squawking here about video games, phones and other such devices. Those are part of the flow of technological progress. The march of time and all that.
What gets my goat is how batteries and electronics continually creep into realms where they serve no real purpose. In fact, I feel like a many toys and games are more fun and more memorable without the circuitry.
This rant has been brewing for years. I have kids who are ages 10 and 9, so you know they’ve received scores of toys that require batteries. Many of the items are great. I love a remote-controlled monster truck as much as my son. “Dad, Dad … DAD! … Give me a turn!”
But we’ve taken in a lot of toys (mainly via birthday parties and holidays) that have no business slapping the “batteries not included” phrase on the packaging. We have a classic board game with an electronic device thrown in for no reason. We have toys with battery-powered sounds that actually thwart a child’s imagination. We have bleeping things that captivated the kids for all of five minutes before being ditched into the Forgotten Toy Graveyard under the bed.
Is nothing sacred? When I was a boy…
Oh, forget it.
Here’s my list of five toys and games that should never require batteries.