August 22, 2005

Life did turn out to be much easier today. We're all set to do some cooking ahead tomorrow, in preparation for the craziness that always is September.

And now, a pet peeve I've been meaning to publicize: LOUD toys for kids. I have no problem with toys that make noise. I am not one of those people who scream and run the other way when I see one of those xylophone-things at garage sales (a whole 'nother topic is, why are so many of them up for grabs at garage sales? Could they be annoying??? Hmmm...) No, my objection is to the toys that are amazingly, obnoxiously, and probably ear-damagingly loud, and HAVE NO VOLUME CONTROL. (sorry to shout, but some of you probably can't hear me unless I do. Especially if you've been near one of those suckers.) So, o.k., I know manufacturers probably figure they have to contend with the background noise that would appear in a "Calgon, Take Me Away" commercial, but we don't even watch TV here. The background noise tends to be (at the loudest), the radio playing old '80's tunes or NPR. The occasional toddler squeals, baby's cries, and the like. No Nintendo. Few kettledrums. No jackhammers. So why must toys have volumes that would outpace any of the above?

Aside from my peevishness, I actually worry about my kids. They're the ones so close to these objects, pressing the buttons gleefully...haven't we always been told that exposure to loud noise is bad for our hearing? (Witness Matt, who figures he blasted his with loud rock music as a teen....sadly for this peeve, my hearing works JUST FINE.) Both my kids passed their hearing tests in the hospital; it'd be nice if they could still hear when they're, oh, five or so, ya know? So, I don't mind musical or noisy or whatever toys...but please, please, please, provide a volume control. Here endeth the ranting.

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