Over the weekend I bundled up my misgivings and attempted a trip to the mall with my Beautiful Wife, who wished to return some things.
I don't normally thrive in the mall. Too much stuff, too many people, too much bad behavior. The mall has all the bad smells of a hospital with none of the compassion. You may be able to tell that I was not in the Christmas spirit.
I had just taken a shortcut through the "Gifts" section of one of the anchor stores, a sad collection of wallets and scarves for the "Man who may or may not have everything, I don't know. I just need to cross him off the blasted list." Also there was a wall of World Series of Poker branded video games and tubs of WSOP merchandise. I'm not sure when the Flop, the Turn and the River took over from the Three Wise Men but it was fairly clear that Christmas 2005 would be the Poker Holiday for a lot of people.
I moved on to the belts and tried to not act too perturbed when I heard a young voice from over by the Wall of Poker. "Mom? Is this 'propriate? Mom, it's a money game. Is this a "propriate toy?"
I didn't listen for her answer. I was pretty sure I knew what it would be. I started grinning like the old fool that I am just because I had heard one child ask if something was an appropriate gift. He didn't whinge and creeb over it. He knew that some toys would have to wait for later and that Mom's answer was the final say.
My heart soared. There are holdouts in against the all-consumer society. We may have a chance.