McChild’s play

WHEN I was a young girl, I enjoyed playing house (more fool me, I know). I would steal several kitchen utensils, blankets and buckets and set up a home underneath the canopy of a mango tree.

I would tell my brother (who always wanted to play the family dog or the son who owned a motorbike) which areas were the lounge, kitchen and bedrooms.

He never really listened – keen as he was to run around barking, then jump on his BMX and ride off into the sunset.

But while I was shopping for Christmas gifts earlier this week, I noticed a frightening thing.

A McDonald’s stand for children where they can pretend they’re a worldly 15-years old and ask “would you like fries with that?”

How childhood games have changed.

Okay, so playing house may be as much a chore as working the drive-thru – but it’s just so flagrantly commercial.

It’s not like playing shops with the notes from Monopoly and fruit from the kitchen.

This set even has an outfit for the kids to wear.

What chance will small business ever have if kids are subjected to McDonald’s recruitment drives at such a young age?

Or do kids – dare I say it – want to play this? I never worked at Maccas myself but had a sufficient stint at Red Rooster. 

There was enough serving, register work, mopping and abuse from 20-year old managers to end my childhood completely.

What if I’d been bought a Red Rooster play set? Well, I would have had something for my resume, not to mention more experience than some bosses.

But playing McDonald’s hardly seems to be a thought-provoking or stimulating exercise for children.

Then again, games like Brandy (where brothers pegged a soaking tennis ball at me) wasn’t exactly intellectual either.

My father was never a fan of McDonald’s.

Late-night shopping for him was always a chore of the “no, we’re not having McDonald’s for tea” variety.

That response always evoked tears and at least one sulky child who pushed her boring crumbed sausage and chips around her plate.

If you’d told me then that I would grow to abhor the McDonald’s arrogant capitalist approach to business… well (once you explained what that meant) I would have scoffed.

No, I loved McDonald’s.

Strangely enough, Dad’s sentiment appears to have rubbed off. Well, at least on the days I can be bothered to make dinner.

 

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1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. jen
    Jun 29, 2009 @ 07:28:20

    you rock! 🙂

    Reply

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