I think I’ve done a pretty good job of sheltering Minime from brand names and mass marketing mayhem each holiday season…but somehow this year, her Christmas wishlist is nothing but brand names and super expensive brand names at that. One of the dresses she asked for was $250!! Who told her about mall stores and brand names and all that crap?
We’ve since had a sitdown to talk about what she might really enjoy once the catalogs and commercials have moved on after December 25, trying to get Minime to understand that having a name brand this or that doesn’t make you a better person or more popular. I told her to think about the things on her list and consider rewriting it to be less brand name oriented and more focused on what she would actually be excited about year round.
I understand where she’s coming from on some things, why she wants them. I remember as a kid when Cabbage Patch Kids were the rage, and I wanted one worse than anything because I knew that ALL the girls in my class wanted one, so I’d better get on board with wanting one, too. I wished, I prayed, I coveted…not really comprehending at that time that my family was simply too poor to buy one. When Christmas morning rolled around, there was no Cabbage Patch Kid; instead there was some homemade doll that sort of looked like a Cabbage Patch Kid but it wasn’t the real deal. I was pretty bummed for a while…but a few weeks later, even the friends who got an authentic CPK weren’t playing with them anymore. Hell, the doll didn’t do a damn thing and was kinda ugly, too…so when the madness of the holidays passed, so did our interest in those dolls. I realized even back then that I’d gotten swept up in wanting what everyone else wanted just because it was on TV and in catalogs and in the color ads in the Sunday paper…and I never even really wanted it! I didn’t even like dolls as a kid, but I’d been sucked right into the gimmegimmegimme machine just like the retailers hoped. I don’t want Minime to be a gimmegimmegimme kid, so I’m keeping my fingers crossed that she’ll come around and create a more reasonable wish list. Cross your fingers, too.