Every mother knows there are certain staples of life that you just cannot leave the house without. These staples can change with the age of the child. As a mother of a four year old boy, these staples are a litter of Matchbox cars and Hot Wheels that line the bottom of my purse, ranging in colors, shapes and sizes. I believe in the value of a Matchbox car.
To adult females, little cars hold very little to no value whatsoever. They are small annoyances, usually scattered in high traffic areas of the house, that will never fail to stab the bottom of a foot in the middle of the night. This usually results of muttered swears as the victim hobbles onward to the bathroom, along with a silent vow to have the child pick up those blasted things first thing in the morning. They do get picked up, but only to be driven, raced or crashed to a new area the very next day.
To most men, these little cars are pleasant reveries into a long ago childhood. Just show a man a box of Hot Wheels and you’ll see a look of nostalgia come over them as they start to carefully pick through the selection, muttering things like, “I had this same exact one when I was a kid” or “Man, check out this classic Monte Carlo”. My sense of disappointment at having lost my boyfriend to my son and a box of cars is overcome, though, when I later peek in to see a grown man lying prone making car noises as he completes yet another circuit on the plastic racetrack.
I’m stuck in a doctor’s office full of sick, crying kids. My son is either bored, tired or sick, or all of the above. Fish out a couple of these little diecast lifesavers and all is well. I can relax and watch as my son makes imaginary roads out of chairs, armrests, walls, tables, my legs, or just about any surface. I’d be in big trouble, though, if I didn’t happen to have one of the treasured favorites on me. Not knowing which ones it might be this week, I try to keep a safe average of about twenty cars on me at any given time.
These little cars can be life savers, favorite pastimes or just an endless source of entertainment for a little boy. Either way a few dollars a piece isn’t a lot to pay for what will be a very good investment. It’s a cost I pay time and again, as I’m sure parents of little boys will be doing for years to come. There is something to be said for a toy that has gone through 40 or more years of little boys.
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