Listen to Jeff's shows on the iPlayer
« Previous | Main | Next »

Soft Sell

Post categories:

Jeff Zycinski | 23:16 UK time, Saturday, 3 January 2009


When my children were younger and still believed in magic, I used to make up bedtime stories for them. These yarns usually involved fantastic palaces and evil wizards. My son would enjoy the bits where the wizard does battle with the prince and my daughter would ask me to expand the sections where the princess gets to choose fabulous costumes for the Royal ball. So no gender stereotyping then.

These "make-up" stories used to be a regular part of our evening routine but at some point - I'm not sure when - they simply stopped asking for them.

But then today, at the supermarket, I found myself in the aisle full of surplus Christmas stock now being offered at massive discounts. There were tubes of cheese footballs and cartons of brandy butter and... an entire rack of soft toys.

When I got home I gathered my offspring together and told them what I'd seen.

"Just think..most of the other soft toys would have been given as Christmas presents. They'd have found children to love them...but what about those that got left behind in the shop? Imagine their Christmas morning...waking up in a dark, cold supermarket with most of their friends missing..."

"Right Dad...just stop it right there," said my son, "we know what you're up to."

But I'm sure I saw a tear in my daughter's eye.

Ah yes...the old magic. I've still got it.


or register to comment.

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.