Saturday, November 14, 2009

Just asking

Before I allowed Sophie to move in with visit the neighbors this weekend, I required her to help clean her room and sort through old toys she no longer plays with.

It was time, she admitted, for the Calico Critters, all the rage the past few years, to be packed away. She wants them to be shallow storage because she might want to play with them again. At some point they will migrate to deep storage where they will wait for her children to play with them.

We spent over an hour sorting out all the landfill donations—headless Polly Pockets, bald Barbies, and plastic ponies with manes hopelessly matted— from the Critters wonderful stuff, which we both admit is pretty amazing.

Unlike Polly, Barbie, and those ponies, the Calicos area wonderful and charming family that we have been happy to host. They are well-made, soft, fuzzy little creatures with a lovely Victorian house, cute outfits, and an astounding assortment of furniture and accessories.

So I was puzzled that Sophie insisted on including in their box this character:

"Oh, I need her. They use her as a maid sometimes."

Really? So when and from where do children acquire the idea that someone who waits on you or cleans your house should be someone different from you? Did I do that? Probably. I guess my message of "Work hard enough and earn enough money or be nice enough to your mother-in-law, and you'll never have to scrub a toilet!" went terribly wrong somewhere along the line. Crap. Liberal guilt's a bummer.

Do you think the Calicos paid the maid a living wage? I'm going to ask about that.


Trish said...

I love the Calico Critters stuff too, especially the mouse family and penguin babies and the amazing Victorian house and the incredible furniture. Notsomuch the 1,000 itty-bitty lifelike plastic accessories that accompany every playset.

Dags has never used any other critters for cleaning services but we get lots of cross-species babysitting. Also did Sophie like to undress them? Our critters are usually nekkid.

Rachella said...

Those are cute. In the UK they're called Sylvian families. I'm assuming "Calico Critters" doesn't translate well to British?

Kristin said...

I think the maid is really a Richard Scarry nurse character. Maybe someone in the Calico household has an illness requiring 24 hour nursing care. Regardless, I'm sure she was paid a living wage, complete with healthcare & a retirement package.