I enjoyed this humorous collection of essays by Patricia Pearson. My favorite piece--perhaps her most serious--is The Top Ten Toys In The Pearson Household, in which the author says she has grown to resent every toy she's ever bought her children. She describes the continual upgrading and marketing of toy kitchens: from a standard, long-lived sink/oven/fridge set to the one with the microwave oven to the one whose computer talks to you, finally, to the pie cabinet accessory at Pottery Barn Kids. I was reading along and thinking, hey, maybe they're just training us to be future compulsive kitchen upgraders in the process!
I'd like to quote from her conclusion:
"The great irony of this is that children themselves are capable of keeping wealth in perspective, in the sense that they can rest content with far less than what we showe upon them. True, they will jump up and down in glee when you present them with the Barbie "Cook with Me" smart kitchen that they saw advertised on TV. Otherwise, they will achieve marvels with sticks. It is our job, not theirs, to stand back and ask ourselves what we wish for ourselves as families in a resource-scarce world (p.35)." Area Woman Blows Gasket by Patricia Pearson, 2005.