Oh my goodness. Have you seen the TV ad for Playskool’s Kota the Triceratops? This thing is a riot. My college-student daughter and I thought it was a joke when the ad came on — as if we had somehow unknowingly wandered into Saturday-Night-Live territory. We literally were rolling on the floor laughing — mainly because we were already sitting on the floor watching TV, but still. This 2 1/2-foot baby dinosaur roars, moves his head, blinks his eyes and opens and closes his mouth. Kids can climb on his back, give him hugs and even feed him (it is a him, right?) with greenery he comes with. I mean, I realize that kids love dinosaurs and as far as we know, a triceratops never actually ate anybody, but I don’t know — the image of sweet little children jumping up and down and squealing with the delight at the sight of a three-horned foot-stomping plant-chomping dinosaur is somewhat unnerving. As is the $300 price tag. Check it out yourself at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=10RTgbPlgqU
On the other hand, almost-8-months-old grandson Nolan Thomas Behel was content with chewing on an empty box of diapers the other day. In fact, this was more than a chew toy (and let’s not dwell on possible toxic components of diaper-box cardboard). His mom — my older daughter — looped one of her stretchy exercise bands (you can see a bit of the green in the photo behind Nolan’s head) through one of the box’s handholds and pulled baby and box around their apartment, thoroughly delighting both mom and baby and befuddling the confused cats. I can only imagine what the cats would think of a roaring, laughing and blinking baby dinosaur. And would chewing on a triceratops be as much fun for Nolan as chewing on a box? I don’t think so. Whoo-hoo — $300 and cats’ sanity saved!!!!