Monday, October 13, 2008

A Plague Tearing Apart Our Nation

Gay marriage and the flailing economy are serious concerns, yes, but an even more serious concern in our immediate household is the latter-day plague of Webkinz.

In case you haven't heard, Webkinz are the stuffed animals that come with an online key to the Webkinz website, where kids receive a one-year subscription with an avatar in the same form as their real-life stuffed animal. In this online world, they can create a home for their pet and earn points to buy it stuff and play games and such.

My nine-year-old Austin and eleven-year-old Sophie are both obsessed with Webkinz, and they are currently locked in a battle to see who can earn the tiger Webkinz currently stored in our closet. Ann recently bought a few Webkinz at Costco to keep on hand for incentives, and boy, did that turn out to be a mistake. I see a lot of nauseating politics at my workplace, especially in the last two months since I inadvertently helped unseat a V.P. and he left behind a big power vacuum, but none of these corporate machinations have been so bald-faced and cut-throat as my two kids with their Webkinz ambitions.

All we hear at home now is "What job can I do to earn a Webkinz?" and endless wheedling, whining variations on that theme. Sophie has even taken to trying to sell us back the stuffed animals once she has the online code, because it turns out she doesn't really care about the real toy, just its online persona. And I suspect the main reason she wants the tiger is just for the pleasure of blocking Austin from getting it. Another source of tension is frequent competition to see who gets to use the computer to play on the Webkinz site.

I am unable to make a final voting determination in this presidential election until I hear how each candidate is planning to address this foul Webkinz trend among our elementary students.


Anonymous said...

They're not actually teaching Webkinz in the schools, are they?

Christopher Bigelow said...

When my daughter threw her Webkinz up on the school roof, the custodian got it down for her. That's even WORSE than teaching it, in my opinion.