Tuesday, April 27, 2010

How I convinced my 8 year old son that going to Build-A-Bear Workshop is a bad idea.

Hey there son - come on over here and pull up a seat, or a bean bag chair, or the carpet. It's time you and I had THE chat.

No, not where babies come from.We'll go over that when your 30.

Now look son, I know you are mesmerised by the bright allure and enormous wooden bears in the windows of the Build-A-Bear Workshop. We ALL are, son. It's spellbinding, but there are things you need to know about that place; secret things that they don't want you to know.

I know, the entry looks so welcoming, and you are greeted by those two teenage goth girls with rings through their noses. They are pretending to be well-intentioned Disney cast members holding sewing needles. Those girls are not as nice as they look. I think they might really be vampires. They don't want to tell you that because who is going to buy stuffed animals from vampires?

I know, you're right... other vampires.

Here's another thing son: Build-A-Bear sucks you in and trains you to work for "THE MAN". Who's "the man", you ask? It's your future boss if you start buying bears at the workshop.


You see, Build-A-Bear is simply an energized, youthful assembly line. Really, it's a training course in how to build simple goods. They're trying to trick you into seeing the benefits of such simple minded work. Filling a stuffed bear today, filling Twinkies with cream tomorrow. Pushing a button today for button eyes today, pushing a button for button fly jeans tomorrow. It's all an evil game to these folks.

Have I confused you son? Well let me give you some other examples.


Do you know where stuffed animals USUALLY come from? No? Singapore. And do you know WHO is usually putting these stuffed animals together? No?


Singaporean orphan children.

They make a penny per bear, and a penny goes a long way in Singapore; that is how they buy their soup to survive. For every bear you make at Build-A-Bear, a starving orphan in Singapore goes hungry. Do you want to feel responsible for hungry orphans?

Listen son, if you can get over the training for monotonous shift work and the hungry orphans in Singapore, there is also the problem of the price of the bears. Let's see... the initial bear costs about $32.00. The clothing is at least $40.00. That's $72.00 for an 8 inch bear and an outfit made of plastic.

Do you realize you can get 72 stuffed animals at the Dollar Tree for $72.00? Why that's only 50 cents a bear!


How about this? How about I go get one of your old teddy bears and rip it apart? I'll get the needle and thread and you can go at it. It will be like Re-Build-A-Bear.

I don't mean to fill you with gloom and doom, son. I suppose there is some hope. You know the Andersons, up the street? They are loaded. They might even have a Wii! You should become friends with little Sarah Anderson. I bet she goes to Build-A-Bear for her HALF birthday parties! She probably takes friends to Build-A-Bear as a birthday party WARM UP!

So son, do you see why we can never set foot in a Build-A-Bear SWEATSHOP? I know it's tough, but I hope you understand.


What do you mean you wanted something called a "Webkinz"? How much do they cost?

Really? Why you can have two of them.


You're welcome.

53 comments:

Kristina P. said...

I am actually a big supporter of child labor, and sweat shops, in general.

Denying a child a Build A Bear is like denying them air, water, and food. I hope for your sake, CPS isn't called out.

FluffyChicky said...

I had my son convinced that Build-A-Bear wasn't manly enough for him. We were about to walk out of the store unscathed and I was ready to do my "Mama outsmarted the 8 year old Boy dance". Then the clerk helpfully told him that they had "boy" things too. Hence The Girl had a white teddy bear in a pink ballerina outfit and The Boy had an alligator in a Spiderman get-up. Damn that clerk to hell anyway.

I am a fan of the sweatshops too. Where can I sign my children up?

MiMi said...

I want to see your lecture to your son about Subway.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

You're evil - I like that!
The re-build-a-bear idea is priceless.

tiburon said...

I think I might have just fallen in love with you. Except for that part where you made fun of the goth girls. Cause there is nothing wrong with goth girls...

Lisa Loo said...

I suppose you thought I was just going to be enjoying your post sooo much that I would miss your little allusion to my sad skillz of twinkie filling.

Oh ye of little thinking...

And if you were openly mocking me--

Oh ye of little thinking....

Green-Eyed Momster said...

We don't have one here! LOL!!

I'm safe.

RawknRobynsGoneBlogWild said...

Do I detect a tad of the Jewish guilt trip? Still, the thought of progressing to stuffing twinkies is rather appealling to me - if not to your son.
Thanks for always making me laugh.
Cheers,
Robyn

Ms Bibi said...

That's funny I had to buy Webkinz instead of stupid hockey player build-a-bear last time we went to Vegas. Yes, that's right I take my kids to Vegas, but I won't let them build a bear,lol.
If I mentioned to my 7 year old that he'll end up stuffing Twinkies he'll be so all over it.

Melissa@Suger Coat It said...

Haha. Great post. What are taking on next, Santa?

Teachinfourth said...

Man, I wish I had a son...

Krista said...

Now I'm really curious of the talk about where babies come from!

Bossy Betty said...

Why don't you just get a rock and provide that for the heart when he does go to Build-a-Bear next time?

Sco said...

Just don't lose the login info for those Webkinz, or let your kid change their Webkinz password. Then Webkinz are the devil.

And a rock Betty? Pretty funny, but I'm with Cheeseboy on this. I'd rather save the $70 of family cash for something cool.

The Empress said...

I think I could've used you on April 14. That's the day I went to "build a bear and then try and pay your mortgage."

(got that from Jessica Bern)

True, nonetheless...

Connie said...

My son-in-law took my 3-year-old granddaughter to Build a Bear. Came out with a pink poodle that she called "Fee Fee" and put it between her legs and rode it all around the mall.
Don't let your 8-year-old son go there!

Serene is my name, not my life! said...

I feel strangely relieved we've always been too poor to get a Build-a-bear.

Powdered Toast Man said...

lol...that was fantastic. I was giggling the whole way through. Bravo!! Whether real or fictional, that story was funny as hell.

I concur with your feelings about build-a-bear. Let the elves do all the work. Isn't why we believe in Santa?

thanks for voting on the battle.

ScoMan said...

So you mean I could be building bears?

Why was I not told about this place? Who's behind keeping this from me?

I know why I wasn't told.

Because I don't give a crap about the orphans in Sinagpore. I want to build a bear!

Mamma has spoken said...

Wow that made me wonder what you would be saying about Lubby Lou if you had a daughter.
Oh and the rage here right now is the rubber bands shaped like animals. Cost $2.50 for a pack of 20. The kids wear as many as the can on their wrists and trade them at lunch. Build a bear is for those 'special' ocassions.

Sharon's New Life said...

This is hilarious! I'm not looking forward to the day our children want to go into Build-A-Bear, but now I have a story to tell them. Thanks!
Sharon:)

Ally said...

I hear kids get totally addicted to that Build-A-Bear joint and the American Doll store too. When I was a kid things were cheaper, I was addicted to collecting ET trading cards - easy to get and inexpensive.

FourthGradeNothing.com

Queenie Jeannie said...

LOL! Well I love Build-A-Bear!!! It's for my daughter (and me) so it's totally worth it.

Anne said...

Ha! Will you come and lecture my husband on just why we shouldn't shop at WalMart? Nevermind...I think I can do that one on my own ;) Good post!!

onlyoublog said...

We'd been successful at steering our son away from Build a Bear...until grandma came to town. I like your idea of getting your son to hook up with the rich family down the street...LOL!

Vanessa said...

I will read this script to my soon to be 6 year old son. He has been wanting one for his b.day.

Sara @ Domestically Challenged said...

so basically, I should be glad my boys never wanted to go there, so I don't have to scare them to death?! LOVE IT! I bet the parents in my classroom would too!

Tyler and Lyndsay said...

You just diminished all my hopes of one day going there. I am ruined now! I will never think of Build-A-Bear the same. I think I'll head to the Dollar Tree after work....

Martha said...

Wow, this is really a glimpse into the Dark Side. Thanks for the funny, yet slightly disturbing post. Thank you also for your visit and comment at my blog, I appreciate it.

Lindzena said...

I can't remember the last time I went to Build-A-Bear. It might be a fun date, but I think I'd rather go to Singapore.

Kelly said...

I like your idea of recycling a ripped up bear at home. You are a serious genius.

My 13 yr old and his (guy) friend share a build a bear between them. They swap him on the weekends for a week at a time. I have mixed emotions about this...

Nancy C said...

One of the great things about living in the sticks is that our son has no idea such places exist. He just found out about Chuck E Cheese, and I would LOVE to but that genie back in the bottle.

Melinda said...

I hope this doesn't go the same way as your review on Yo Gabba Gabba...oh wait, yes I do!

Hutch said...

It's great to teach kids the ways of the world early on, especially how to screw the Man.

tammy said...

I'm sensing an email from the Build-a-Bear corporation in your future. Possibly with a coupon.

Beth said...

The 4 year old wasn't buying this?

See Mom Smile said...

I needed to have that talk with my kids about a dozen build-a-bears ago!

Artist said...

Reading your comments was just fun.

Just SO said...

I, thankfully, have been able to steer clear of BAB. My oldest girl talked about going there for one of her birthday's but I dodged that bullet.

Joann Mannix said...

I hate the Build-A-Bear store as much as I hate Kate Gosselin. It is an evil, evil place.

And if you ever happen to be in there when the birthday parties are a-happening, those Goth teenagers are instructed to yell at the top of their lungs announcing all the birthday going ons so the entire store can feel as if someone is stabbing them in the ears over and over and over again with the sounds of their shrieky Build-A-Bear proclamations.

so, yeah, not such a good place for me.

C'est La Vie said...

oh for crying out loud! poor little boy

not gonna lie....you got me thinking....haha

FabuLeslie said...

Here I think this post is going to be about gender roles, and then it's about child labor and the evils of the rampant consumerism in this country! That's why you write comedic genius.

And don't even get me started on your use of the word "spellbinding." I need to give myself a thesaurus challenge if I'm gonna be worthy of being in your cyber-company much. Thanks for the kind words on my blog. And for the lung reinserter idea! I got a few miles out of that, and will also link to you if I can think of a way to use "spellbinding" or another equally explosive word.

Thanks for being a truly blogular inspiration!

Rachel said...

Uncle Rush! You have Matthew!! :D

We made the HUGE mistake of getting our at that time young son a koala from Build A Bear when we were visiting the zoo down in Arizona. In the zoo for some reason it was a lot less at the time. We had no idea who or what Build A Bear was.....until....the koala was lost. Any of the other Native's and I'd have told them to get over it but this was Levi and the koala was me to him when I wasn't there. Namely at night. He had to have one and YESTERDAY. So, we've been keeping Build A Bear in business for several years. I refuse to keep and wash puked on koalas. I don't care where they come from....

GrammyMouseTails said...

I am so surprised the vampire line didn't back fire on you ! immortality and all that is hard to say no to! I do think you got a gimmic with the re-build a bear... steal one from the dogs toys basket, and get all the twinkies out of the closet where you have them hidden. suck out all the creamy gooey stuff with mom's turkey baster & shove it inside the bear! He will smell yummy, and the dog will attack him for it back! then you can take an old can of Barasol shaving cream & squirt in the twinkies for next halloween! so for about the price of a can of Barabsol you can kill too dreams in one time!

Mr. Stupid said...

Goth girls have rings on their nose? Very educative. Thank you... :)
Loved this post. Wonderfully written!
Build-A-Bear, here I (don't) come.

Have a good day!

mama-face said...

If my boy sees this post he will hunt you down and send you to Singapore.

He has switched alliances to webkinz; a decision that has me questioning a few things. He belongs to a webkinz club at Hallmark; it takes him 45 hours to decide which one to buy each time...I do not understand his criteria.

Phew...I needed to get that out into the open. Thanks for the post.

Anonymous said...

Re-Build a bear! Priceless.

At least with Webkinz you get a membership to on-line games and activities, many of them educational.

I had to do that convincing too. I hate Build-a-Bear. My kids actually grew out of it on their own, but not before we suffered through a birthday party or two. Ugh. I guess I'm a bad mom.

Emmy said...

This is awesome!
And you should totally start a re-build a bear store :)

Susan Tipton said...

Anyplace that keeps a vat of hearts for you to kiss is a bit suspect.

Pedaling said...

my youngest has way too many of these overpriced stuffed creatures....along with webkins, beanies...you name it...
why?
because she's the youngest!

Bumpkin on a Swing said...

Too funny......A peek inside the life that is Parenthood. How do you afford it all? The bears are an arm and a leg. On every corner something to lure them in....and your money along with it.

ASBLACKASOBAMA said...

I love the idea! Re-Build-A-Bear! My wife convinced me to buy my son a 25 dollar stuffed Eeyore toy at Disneyland last weekend.... He's played with it once....

Katie's Dailies said...

Oh my Lord! You were right about EVERYTHING!! GREAT stuff!! ; )