The Jasper Chronicles

The Journal of a Cynical Dad

Monday, April 24, 2006

Chocking Hazard! Not Suitable for Anyone!

Spring is here, at least the last few days have felt like it. The sun is out, flowers are blooming, and The Boy is festooned with a jaunty new cap, which he keeps pulling off his head (you think the hat's uncomfortable kid, try a sunburn).

Spring also marks the start of playing-at-the-park season. We'd taken him a few times over the winter, but the sand is finally warm and dry enough for him to really get in there and muck around. Last weekend P, The Boy and I head off to the park, but not before stopping at a toy store to pick-up a plastic bucket and shovel, the de facto items needed for sandbox fun. We had a great time, once The Boy discovered that sand isn't as tasty as it looks. The bucket and shovel were a hit. He was picking up sand, flinging it around and dumping it inside his shirt. Other kids, also clutching buckets and shovels soon joined us - great afternoon.

Once we got home P promptly got him into the bath while I packed everything away. That's when I noticed the warning sticker on the bucket.
WARNING! Choking Hazard! Not Suitable For Children Under Three Years of Age.
Choking hazard!?! What the hell were they talking about? The bucket was about the size of The Boy's head, and the shovel even a seasoned porn actor would have trouble swallowing. I'm all for warning labels about true hazards, but for a company to stick a warning on everything just to cover their ass in a way makes all their warning labels useless.

If toy companies are going to do this, there should be a second label as well:
WARNING! Affixed Warning Label May Not be Relevant to This Toy. We're Useless. Please Use Your Own Judgement And Decide For Yourself.