TOYS IN BONDAGE
It would drive me insane when my kids would get a new toy at the store and then on the way home want to play with it. All electronic toys came in layers and layers of plastic clamshells with layers of plastic inserts pushing the toy to the front. Opening a simple doll is not quite as difficult, but just as frustrating. Once through the outside package, each of the dolls arms was zip-tied down. The hair was sewn in place, tiny frustrated fingers not patient enough to do anything but tear it out of the stitches, losing the lustrous shine of new doll hair.
I tried to fix this problem by keeping a pair of scissors in the car. The problem is, it didn’t occur to any of us to remove the packaging before we drove off.
When I started to work for Oddzon, a Hasbro company, I was determined to change these infuriating packages! But, I soon learned that there were reasons toys had to be packaged this way. The large plastic packages we call clamshells, help keep people from stealing tiny products. They are supposed to make it easier to display and hang. They add value and if the other comparative products are using it, you have to as well, or look inferior. So much plastic, plastic, plastic all over the shelves and many of them non-recyclable.
But the biggest eye-opener to these frustrating packages was because they were shipped to us from overseas. Giant ships stacked high with freight boxes usually take 30-60 days to cross the ocean. This is like being in a rock tumbler for 60 days. This rough bouncing at sea and constant rubbing of parts together removes paint, creates ugly abrasions, and breaks the toy itself. Companies found a way to prevent this: No part of the toy can touch another part of the toy. Ah ha!
Sadly, I had to give into these methods but as often as possible, I requested twist ties when possible instead of maddening plastic zip ties and other softer openings.
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