Holiday Recap & The Dreamhouse Conundrum

fictionIt has been over two weeks since I last posted anything, but needless to say – We Survived!

My wife’s surgery went smoothly and there were no follow up middle of the night visits to the ER this time around. She has been off the heavy nightmare inducing meds for about a week now, and is able to function more or less normally. Just more slowly and carefully, which is never a bad thing for anyone.

I came down with some sort of viral crud on Christmas Eve and finally started to feel somewhat normal this past Saturday. It is still lingering, but I can function.

The kids are back at school today…

My daughter jumped up and was ready to go as soon as I woke her up. My son fought it for an hour and a half, despite all my tricks, and did not even respond to his stuffed animals engaging in a rousing puppet show rendition of “Let It Go!” For the first time, I almost had to follow through with my threats and load him in the car in his underwear, but my wife intervened.

The kickstarter was a success, it sounds like I have raccoons building apartments in my attic (I hope they let me have the tools back when they are done), and I have started work on a new smaller and more mobile cart for Gandersnitch.

We had to skip our regular New Year’s festivities due to illness, but did get together with friends yesterday to test one of my new game designs and play Ticket to Ride for the first time. Both games, mine and the big name one, were a lot of fun.

Our friends also asked if my daughter would want a Barbie(tm) dream house. I balked at first, though they suggested painting it up and making it a monster high thing instead. Today I looked up pictures, just to see what we might be getting ourselves into… and I have some concerns.

dreamhouseThis is the picture on the front of the box. (I have cropped out the child, because none of this is her fault.)

First off, I get that this is a child’s toy and needs not be related to any sort of reality. But an outside elevator seems incredible dangerous! I can just imagine barbie’s poor dog barking eagerly as she descends, running around yapping happily, until… SQUISH!

Or lets look at that room in the top right corner. More to the point, lets look at the residents of this so called “Dream House”, the role models shaping our children’s aspirations of wealth and fame.

See the doll in what seems to be gym clothes with headphones on, hanging out in front of a fan trying to cool down from her strenuous workout of… lounging on the couch watching her TV? Enough said.

More concerning though is the bathroom, where a fully clothed barbie lies in the tub. You know who gets in the tub fully clothed? Drunks and drug addicts, that’s who!

Granted, I almost put my son in the tub last night fully clothed when he refused to take a bath. But in my defense, his behavior was equivalent to a raging addict…

Finally, I don’t know whether to applaud the inclusion of a toilet or not. I mean sure, it is an essential part of the home. Not that they bothered with other essentials like a microwave, washer and dryer, computer, dresser, or coffee table. But I am pretty sure you can imply the existence of the bathroom in a child’s imagination simply by having the tub, sink, and mirror. Most people, even dream house sorts, keep their tub in the bathroom.

Of course, having the toilet doesn’t break any sort of illusion here. What bugs me about it is this:
What kid is really role playing her dolls using it?

<The phone rings>

Ken: <answers the phone> Hello? Barbie residence.

Salesman: May I speak to the person in the house that handles the shopping?

Ken: <shouting> Barbie! Phone for you!

Barbie: <shouting back> Take a message! I am on the toilet!

Happy New Year Everyone!

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