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4 Problems with Childrens Toys Today.

My son’s birthday party was yesterday. He’s two. Because of this, I thought I would make a quick list of things that are wrong with childrens toys today. I have been stewing over this since Christmas, but the birthday presents finally put me over the edge.

  1. Packaging – Is it really necessary to use so much, tape, plastic, wire ties, twist ties, and screws to keep a toy in the package? I mean, seriously, the toy won’t even hold my son’s attention for the amount of time it takes me to open the packaging. You shouldn’t need tools to open a cardboard box.
  2. Batteries – Are there any toy companies left that make toys that don’t need batteries? I swore I would never say this next phrase, but… When I was a kid, we made our own noises for cars, trucks and trains.
  3. Volume Control – For the love of God, would it kill toy companies to design volume control into a toy. These days, toys have only one volume level – excruciatingly loud.
  4. On/Off Switch – You’d think this would be a no-brainer, but you would be shocked about how many toys do not have on/off switches. I need a break, dammit.

I guess the toy companies spent all their budgets on packaging material and didn’t have enough money left over for bonus features like power buttons and volume control.

I am not sure what the solution is to this, a boycott might get the toy companies attention, but what do you get the kid instead? Socks? That’s just mean. Books? Don’t get me started on what’s wrong with childrens books today. I am thinking about teaching my kid to bite, so he won’t be as popular and will therefore get less gifts next year.

What do you think?

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Governor’s Cup for Brewing

Governor Ehrlich awards Governor’s Cup certificates to Maryland brewers. Best in show went to Clipper City’s Heavy Seas Loose Cannon Ale.

The awards were sponsored by the Brewer’s Association of Maryland in an attempt to increase the awareness of the many fine Maryland beers. While the brewers were down in Annapolis they were also hoping to do a little lobbying for a law that would make it easier for microbreweries to distribute their goods.

I hope their legislation efforts bear fruit, because Maryland has some mighty tasty beers and it is a shame that they can’t get a wider audience because of Marylands archaic and counter productive distribution laws.

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Events: Anita Hagan’s Art Opening

What: Anita Hagan’s new Art Exhibition
Where: 49 West Coffeehouse/Winebar/Gallery, Annapolis Maryland
Address: 49 West Street, Annapolis, MD 21401
When: Show runs January 8, 2006 – January 31, 2006

Opening Reception: Sunday, January 8, 2006, 5-8 pm (Refreshments will be served)

Summary: Anita uses her unique style to create rich, emotional block prints that are inspired by the natural world and the incredible human spirit. It’s going to be a great show with over 30 pieces including linoleum block with watercolor, and acrylic paintings.

Tell your friends!

References: Anita Hagan
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Google Earth

I may be late to the game here, but I just discovered Google Earth this week. Boy is it cool. I daresay it’s the coolest thing that ever came out of the internet.


It’s cooler than email and instant messaging.

It’s cooler than shopping in your underwear.

It is a travelers dream.

Anyway, go out to and download the free version. It only works on Windows now, but they say they are working on a version for Mac. You need high speed internet access to use it properly, so don’t try it on dial up.

Boy is it cool.

References: Google Earth
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