Monday, 14 July 2008

First birthday party

My Eco Self is invited to a friend’s daughter’s first birthday party. I am proud of my purchase, a small wooden pull-along dog, durable and bequeathable. I look on in horror at the scene. Half a dozen screaming children are barely visible under a mountain of brightly coloured wrapping and plastic toys. I feel embarrassed for a moment at my non-child-centric signature wrapping of brown paper and a yellow ribbon, the ribbon almost dispensed in recent times due to a lack of necessity but reintroduced to reinforce brand identity and bought in a reusable hair-tying quality. One mum is busy wiping shared plastic toys with strongly-scented antibacterial wipes before she’ll let her child touch them.

My Eco Self, still childless, and newly frugal, stands apart from the scene, feeling isolated and horrified at the piles of sweets and artificially coloured jelly overflowing from small grubby hands.
“He loves the party,” says party parent.
“Yes, I can see,” I say, almost ready to make my escape, grateful at least that my age precludes me from a goody bag of small plastic items made in China.

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