Obviously, since childhood, toys have spurred my creativity, especially as a writer. Back then of course, I didn’t realize how spending hours upon hours using action figures to create dialog, drama, conflict, and suspense, strictly on the fly, would become such a handy skill-set as it is for me now.
Unfortunately, as most children do, as I grew older, toys became less and less important and the treasure trove I used to have slowly dwindled to nothing. Where it went, I couldn’t even tell you. I don’t remember throwing them away, or giving them away either. I retained my imagination and fantasy making skills but, my old tools are no longer with me. They’re just gone.
Daddy, can you play with me?
BUT, With the birth of my son, they have returned. Oh, sure, in somewhat different forms, but my old tools, my inspirations are back. I initially brought them for my son, sharing and passing on what I enjoyed in my childhood to him. Most of what I played with back then, stood the test of time and still stand today. I still get excited going down the toy isle in stores smiling at my old favorite toy lines and criticizing the new ones, ha.
Watching my son play with his toys brought me joy. I was like an old oracle, explaining the history of this character and that character, especially with The Transformers. Of course, on that fateful day when he asked, “Daddy, can you play with me?” Oh, it was a welcome excuse to be a kid again and play with his toys, showing him the PROPER WAY to make gun-fire and laser blast sounds with your mouth.
Soon, he was on YouTube and Netflix watching the old cartoons, the 1st Gen Transformers I grew up with. He got into them quickly, and I slowly realized how horrible their dialog was. Eh, they got their point across anyway. They did their job and inspired me as a child, so I can’t really complain.
Then came time for my son to introduce me to something new, Transfers Prime. It was/is a really good show. It was like the Transformers grew up, matured as I had. Dialog was great, storylines gripping, and characters actually died. I was like what is this, The walking Dead? I wound up binge watching the entire series with my son…and my wife.
Watching the animation, I became emerged in the toy world again. My son wanted them and I did to. So, I just bought doubles, one for him to play with and…destroy and one for me display and pass back on to him when he gets older and gains a real appreciation for them.
Finding a lot of the characters were hard as we entered the game late, but we were able to find a couple of favorites. For those that were not in abundance, I had to convince my son that it would be better put them up so they won’t get broken. Yeah, that’s what I told him…
It went over well, thankfully, because right now my son’s mind is like—SQUIRREL! As long as he has SOMETHING to play with, he’s fine.
Sure, he gets upset now and then when he can’t play with the ones on display, but there are many more times when he just looks at them, all intact, and admires them as I do. Then, he goes back his graveyard of broken transformers and other toys and plays just the same. Ah, you’ll thank me later, Son. These will be worth something one day.
So, do you have anything from your childhood that still brings you joy, still inspires you, and gets your creative juices flowing?
Come on, we’re all adults here. We won’t laugh. I know I won’t. I still have a few toys to commandeer from my son in the name of Toy Preservation and I’m not ashamed at all.