We have a saying in my family regarding giving gifts to children, “Paybacks are a bitch.” This all started because when I, the firstborn grandchild, was about two years old my aunt and uncle gave me a monkey with cymbals. It was so obnoxious and creepy all at the same time.(I still have it, hidden in a storage room, because I am rather afraid of it coming to life at night and killing me. I also cannot get rid of it for fear of angering it.) Anyway, my mother did not find this to be a great gift for a child, so she bided her time, and when my aunt and uncle had two children the ages of two and four, she struck back. She bought EACH OF THEM a
Yes, a drum, complete with drumsticks. My mother handed the gift wrapped headache inducers to my cousins, smiled at my aunt and uncle and said, “Paybacks are a bitch.” (My mother has a mouth as dirty as a Paris sewer.) So, the rule was established, if you give a kid in our family an obnoxious gift, you’d better hope you are childless or your kids are too old for toys.
I think this probably happens in every family. Given that the official kick off to the Christmas shopping season, Black Friday, is rapidly approaching, I thought I’d help you out with a list of awful toys. You know, just in case it is your year to deliver the payback or if you just know some kids and hate their parents.
I have given each of these toys a Payback Scale Rating from 1 to 10, 1 being that you are a wimp and 10 being that you not only want revenge but never want the parents to speak to you again.
Popcorn Popper –PSR of 4 - I LOATHE this toy and its heinous poppity pop noise. It is SO annoying and there is no off switch and no batteries to take out to claim the toy is “broken”. You are just stuck with it.
Furby - PSR of 7 – It’s irritating b/c it speaks in gibberish, has no off switch, and can randomly turn itself on. It is also irresistible to toddlers when it belongs to their older sister. Snark Girl has owned it for a week and I already want to smash it with a hammer.
V-Tech Learning Tunes Karaoke – PSR of 8 - My boys have this toy (given to them by my father, his payback is going to be a bad nursing home some day). It has different voices and one of them is super creepy like a serial killer/child molester voice from “Criminal Minds”. This toy is now hidden away because it came on in the middle of the night and scared me half to death when I heard it over the baby monitor.
Baby Alive – PSR of 9 – This doll is a pain in the tush. It eats, drinks, and then pees and poops. My girls had this toy; it was super creepy. Its eyes moved and made a weird clicking noise. I also had to pour water through the doll every time the girls “fed” it because if I didn’t the “food” would harden to cement and render the doll inoperable. It was heinous and I was so glad to sell it at a garage sale!
Handy Manny Toolbox – PSR of 10 – My sons had this toy. It is the DEVIL. It is ridiculously loud and there is no volume switch. We even covered the speaker with duct tape and it was still crazy loud! This ranks as Darling Husband’s least favorite toy of all time and his mother gave it to The Boy (you can imagine how bad HER nursing home is going to be.)
So while these are not all the horrible toys you could use for paybacks, they are few of mine and Darling Husband’s least favorites to see our children receive. As you go about your Christmas shopping this year, perhaps beginning on Black Friday, keep in mind what can happen when you give an obnoxious toy and what obnoxious toys for which you might need to say, "Payback is a bitch"!