To get us in a patriotic mood, we decided to do a little retail therapy on the morning of July 4th. I was pining for new socks, so naturally my thoughts turned to Kobey's Swap Meet. I've been buying my socks there for 15 years--it's an American tradition.
In addition to old junk, Kobey's has a slightly varying array of new goods, mostly of the sock, cell phone and sunglasses ilk, with the occasional flip-flop and knock-off purse. It's the kind of place you can spend a couple of hours but only 17 dollars, and walk away with that new banana clip you've been craving. I love it, and occasionally need my fix.
Jarrah was not in a compliant mood when we arrived at Kobey's. In general, she's been a bit teenage-esque in her eye-rolling and feet-dragging these days. She picked up a lion Beanie Baby and demanded that we purchase it. "Um...six dollars. That looks like a lot of things you already have. So no."
That did not go over well. She said she hated the swap meet and wanted to leave immediately. She was only slightly mollified when I said she might be able to get something else later on.
Later on turned out to be in about five minutes. We strolled by a wall of hot pink toy sets, which if you squinted, looked like stuff you'd find in Target. Your Barbies, your Bratz, your Lil Pet Shops. Upon closer inspection, however, it became clear that this loot came from The Land of Misfit Toys, and spent a lot of time playing cards and smoking cigars instead of making it onto the sleigh. Everything was some sort of off-brand, masquerading as a well-known toy. It was like getting Nicki Hilton to show up at your event when you really wanted Paris.
Jarrah homed right in on the set you see above. She's been craving a girlie pink cell phone for a while. And this one came with a CD player and (what I assumed) were fake CDs. (Note: the CDs are not fake. They play really high-pitched techno that sounds like attending a rave with Dr. Evil. And the cell phone sings, too, when you press its buttons: "AY YI YI, oh heed a great big pie, AY YI YI, oh heed a great big pie..." It also barks.)
This was just too fabulous to pass up. Because, really, what could be more appealing?
Hey Parents! Worried that your daughter is going to be one of those sullen Goth chicks in ripped fishnets who refuses to do her homework? Concerned that you'll have a "misunderstood" teen who stays in her room and blasts Morrissey around the clock? Eager to avoid an "artistic" young person who pens overblown poetry, reads Kerouac, consorts with a bad element and looks guilty when you open her door?
Then this set is for YOU! If you start now, you can set the stage for fairy-love and precious hair ornaments! Your child will crave ice rink birthday parties, enjoy manicures with Mom, confide her crushes over ice cream sundaes and sigh over Mr. Darcy. IF you act now and purchase this set.
DON'T DELAY! INDOCTRINATE YOUR BENIGN GIRL...TODAY!
But wait, Readers. You ask if I'm worried about my girl getting any dangerous ideas from Benign Girl? Not in the least. Of this I can be certain: my girl will never be a Benign Girl. They'll have to go peddle benign somewhere else. Though I hope she still confides her crushes and sighs over Mr. Darcy--BELIEVE IT.
I mean, how could she be a Benign Girl, when her mother thought it was a peachy idea to bling out her phone with purple bedazzling on that same trip to Kobey's? Did I consider whether I was too staid and settled for such adornment? Did I flinch when my friend Steph answered the question "Wait, are these only for 15-year-olds?" with "Um, yeah?" Readers, I did not. I wasn't a Benign Girl then, and I'm not about to go there now.