Friday, January 12, 2007

Dangerous Toys Day!

You've spent the last thirty years being the top American manufacturer of the kind of unsafe knockoff toys that are only sold in 99-cent stores. Chinese and Korean manufacturing behemoths have made it harder and harder for you to stay in business, but you keep going. Because you still remember a time when Americans were able to buy cheap, harmful toys that were MADE IN AMERICA.

Today you're going to interview a woman for the nursing position that opened up. Last week, the nurse you've had on staff for the past year just couldn't take it anymore.

"I'm not going to lie to you," you'll tell her. "It's a busy job. We've got a lot of kids trying out the toys here in our product-testing department. They're from low-income neighborhoods and their parents need the extra money so they bring the kids bring in. And since our toys are pretty much lacerations waiting to happen, a lot of the kids end up getting cut pretty bad."

You'll raise your finger in the air triumphantly to add, "But we've never lost one!"

"And you're not about to," the woman will say.

"You mean you'll take the job?" you'll ask.

"I grew up very poor," she'll tell you. "Your toys were all my parents could afford to buy me. I was lucky that someone like you was willing to cut enough corners to provide cheap knockoff toys for those who couldn�t afford the real thing. And I will consider it my duty to make sure all those poor kids growing up today get a fun if potentially harmful toy for their birthday this year."

Just then, a child will run into your office with blood gushing out of his neck.

"Looks like you were having a fun time!" your new nurse will shout.

"This is Clarence," you'll say. "Clarence, meet your new nurse."

The boy will try to talk but his voice box will appear to have been sliced open. He'll be holding one of your dangerously sharp, fake 'Rambo' knives (they're called 'Rambo II Survival Knives,' but the packaging features an image clearly from the movie Cobra).

"She'll be taking care of you from now on," you'll tell Clarence. When your new nurse stabs a pen into Clarence's neck and he starts to breathe easy again, you'll start breathing easy too. You normally don't like to hire anybody who has ever played with your toys. Too often it ends up that they just want to get close to you so they can avenge the death of a sibling who died while playing on one of your knockoff slip-n-slides (called the "Trip N' Skid"). But looking at the way she takes care of Clarence, you know it won't be long before that child is having fun times with your toys again. Whatever her intentions are towards you, the important thing is that your children are in good hands.

Happy Dangerous Toys Day!