Monday, October 03, 2005

Plastic Toys

Yay Fall. Pumpkin has taken over everything - supermarkets, houses, farm markets, coffee shops, you name it. Driving home from Jiffey Lube (with my Starbucks Pumpkin Misto), I saw moms and kids outside planting colorful blooms and rigging Halloween paraphenalia. Some homes were quite put together (making me yearn for days post wedding when I might actually have disposable income again) and others just looked like they'd stepped out of the past with obnoxious bright orange plastic pumpkins everywhere and white sheets already dangling from trees and lamp posts, blowing in the breeze.

Why? It's like people who hang Easter eggs from trees at Easter. Or litter their entire front lawn with draculas and ghouls. Or plastic Christmas decor. Now the new fad are those blow up snowmen, Pooh characters and the absolute worst? The blow up Eagles football player.

I think I can handle it when I cruise through South Philly - I expect these things from the residents. They've been there their whole lives and maybe never really left 1954. Who knows. But praying plastic hands, a plastic Blessed Mother, tacky lights and plastic Santas don't bother me there. That's their place. But their place isn't next door to me, crapping up the 'hood.

Is there a particular type of person who does this and thinks it's cool? Attractive? To some extent, I understand when you have small children and you do these things for them. But still. I wanted colored lights outside my house when I was small. Did mom ever do that? Hell no. I wanted plastic crap all over the front yard, but mom said no way. It was her house. And now I thank god she had taste. Actually, I thank god she had the balls to know her kids didn't run her life and have a say in the way her house was presented to the neighborhood. Mom had class.

My fiance's parent's erected one of those blow up Tigger's outside their house last year and in classic Italian South Philly style, decked out the front of their Media abode in every colored light imaginable. It was freakin General Electric. It looked TERRIBLE! And they did it for their grandchild who, by the way, was 3. I'm not certain she truly appreciated the light show. Do people stop caring about themselves? Is it always about the kids? It seems unselfish...but at the expense of your house? At the expense of the neighborhood? Your house, like your kids, like your friends, like everything we associate with, are all relections of ourselves.

And I hate HATE Tigger.

I think there's line - a fine line - between getting older and not caring about what others think, and keeping up with the Jones'. I'd like to think my kids will rule the fridge and have a tree of their own to do with what they will. But the exterior of the house - No Italian South Philly for this Italian chick.

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