Friday, April 19, 2019

Plastic Eggs & Deadly Plagues


March 2011 

The kids and I went grocery shopping at Safeway this morning and when we were finished, decided to browse through the Easter display.

I was sifting through the shelves - and half ignoring their desperate requests for jelly beans, stuffed chicks and chocolate bunnies - when Cal hands me this.




I beg your pardon?

I read the label again, confirming that yes, that there was a bag of PLAGUES. Who knew? The calamities suffered by the Egyptians? The disease, the darkness, the locusts…Turns out those weren’t just the wrath of God unleashed on Pharaoh. Those are toys you can put in your child’s Easter basket.

And I for one could not resist. I had just told the kids we didn’t have enough money for popsicles, then I turned around and tossed a bag of plagues into the cart.

The fun started at the register. Perhaps I’m easily amused, but I loved seeing “bag of plagues” on my grocery receipt, right between “Tostitos” and “parmesan cheese.”





Now let’s take a look inside -

First, we find the usual items one would expect in a child’s bag of plagues. Blood, lice, locusts, wild beasts…





Then of course there are boils. 





Most kids today have never even heard of boils, and I think it's high time they learned. Boil Handz could be the next Silly Bandz.

The cow is cute, but don’t be fooled.




He is diseased.





The frog? Not diseased. Leah loved the frog.






Until I told her to imagine millions of him, overflowing the neighbor’s pool, filling up the streets, spilling through our windows and into her bedroom….





Fun's over.

Here is Cal, plagued by darkness...




The bag also contains a puzzle,






Which will go in Jolie’s basket, obviously.






She might be disturbed at first, but rest assured I can comfort her with stories of people slaying innocent lambs, slathering their blood above the door, and then listening to the deafening wail of Egyptians whose firstborns had been killed. Sweet dreams, darling, that is the final plague. 

The label promises that all 10 are “Fun & Educational,” and I would have to agree. I think another selling point are the kinds of arguments these toys are likely to prompt among siblings (“Quit touching my boils!” “Take the lice out of your mouth!!” “Where’d you hide the blood??” etc.). With a little luck, these kinds of exchanges will occur in public.

I highly recommend offering up the $5.49 sacrifice. 

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