Um, yeah. A bit of a hiatus there while I figured out what I want to do with this blog. But I’m back now, and since it’s December, I want to talk about Christmas shopping. Specifically, Christmas shopping for things for kids.
This is a thing for girls. It says “Ideal for a child‘s room”, but it has a glittery pink stand and a picture of a girl on the packaging.
This, however, is a thing for boys. It says so right there on the packaging. Which is a shame, because Firstborn would love these toys.
These are things for boys and things for girls. The picture’s a bit blurry (sorry), but there are tape recorders and electric keyboards, identical but for colour and decoration (pink with flowers; blue with circle-y things). The packaging on each shows girls and boys respectively; posed almost identically in what is clearly the same set. Look here for a nice clear illustration.
The final proof comes at the checkout, by the way. It might be “Cool Keyboard – blue” on the website, but take it to the cash desk in the shop and I’ll guarantee it comes up as “keyboard boys”. I know because I bought Firstborn this easel once.
This one’s interesting, though: the pink is a “Winter 4 piece outfit” while the blue is a “Boys 5 piece outfit.”
This relates back to the earlier stuff, doesn’t it? Stuff for girls only needs a girl on the packaging or a pink element to be off-limits for boys. But stuff for boys, like the Tonka toys, needs to be explicitly labelled, because “boy” isn’t as untouchable for girls as “girl” is for boys.
[Personal anecdote breakout: while people always assumed Firstborn was a boy when she wasn't dressed in pink (which she pretty much never was), I never had anyone modify her blue clothes by force. Secondborn, when wearing faux-leopard-print bootees with pink lining, has had total strangers on the bus pull his trousers over the bootee cuffs to hide the pink.]
I’m sure I’ll return to this topic soon. I’m very sure, because I already have more shoddy camera-phone pictures to share.