Have you seen this doll? It has big button eyes and zombie arms. Sure, it’s cute, but not when you are passing your daughter’s bedroom in the dark, late at night.
I’m sitting at the kitchen table, surrounded by the store catalogs and coupon flyers that have invaded my weekend newspapers. “Mama, I really want a Lalaloopsy Doll for Christmas,” my daughter “Princess” calls to me from the den, after she sees the toy’s image on a television commercial.
“Well, what if Santa can’t deliver one to you in time for Christmas? It’s written here that his elves have not made enough for all the children in the world,” I lie, pointing to an article in the New York Post.
“Yeah, but Santa knows me, Mommy. I met him outside Pathmark and he asked me what I want for Christmas and I told him Lalaloopsy. Santa can do anything. He’s magical,” she says, putting her little hands on her hips, exasperated.
I go online and secretly Google Lalaloopsy. She is out of stock all over the universe. Then I call the nearest Walmart. I’m calling on my cell phone from the coat closet, in the dark. Princess is in the next room eating her breakfast.
“Do you have any Lalaloopsy dolls in stock?” My voice is muffled by the arm of a coat that is in my face, and the Walmart employee cannot hear me clearly.
“Lala WHAT?” she asks.
I push the coat out of the way and repeat myself.
“Hold on while I go search,” she says. I wait, listening to her walk around the store, then type on a computer. Next I hear her laughing.
“It’s the ugliest doll you’ve ever seen, right?” I say into the phone.
“Yes,” she admits, adding, “I’m sorry, but they are all out of stock.”
I hang up.
Oh crap, I think. Now I have to save Christmas. Why does the media do this to me every year? Why don’t they just leave my kid’s brain alone and stop the marketing frenzy?
“But Christmas is not about Santa bringing gifts. It’s really about the gift of baby Jesus to the world. So it doesn’t matter what toys you get, really,” I say, hoping to reason with my five year-old.
“Okay Mama,” she says, happily. “If Santa can’t deliver Lalaloopsy, then I’m sure Jesus will.”
OMG, I think.
(Pictured here: Princess makes her Christmas list.)