Thursday, September 25, 2008

Planes, trains, and automobiles...or just trains

M and J love trains. Love all types of trains, squeal at the sight of train tracks (with or without trains, it really doesn't matter) on the side of the road, spend hours scooting toy trains around their room, and know all the characters from the Island of Sodor and Tidmouth Sheds and Knapford Station and all...and they know which of these characters they own and which they do not so as to be fully prepared to pick up a new one at any given outing. I am no longer the keeper of this vital information. This is a clue as to how I lost track...

M and J laying with all their trains pre-move

Bird's eye view without the boys


Please read that first caption; these pictures were taken before the packing and moving. The boys were allowed 10 trains each to bring along the ride. They have accumulated at least another 10 each since we left. The miles of tracks of all varieties and stations and all other types of accessories obviously couldn't fit in the pictures. Spoiled much, you think?

Anyway, the point is, they love trains more than anything else. All other toys not train-related are played with for approximately two days or twenty minutes and then cast aside in favor of more train play, even if the trains aren't as new as the other toys. So, what reason would someone - someone who calls himself a parent of these charming boys and demands that others regard him as a parent of them - what reason could he possibly have for not wanting them to play with trains?

I could understand if we were talking about kids obsessed with something like pirates, so much so that they constantly ran around leaping from furniture into imaginary sword fights, shouting about how they will pillage, plunder, and/or ravage any who dare get in their way, threatening everyone with walks on a plank. That could be construed as a bit violent, and I could sort of understand someone's objection to that, but trains? Really?!? What harm is there in train play?

His condemnation that trains were no longer age appropriate is beyond my comprehension abilities. How, exactly, are trains to be deemed inappropriate for 4-5 year-old boys? Why must he act so exasperated at their desire for all things train and ask me so desperately if they will outgrow this soon? Somehow I think he wouldn't be so displeased with their interest in transportation if they were more interested in planes, his favorite. I can only imagine the eye rolls and disgust he would express if they had taken to boats or, even better, submarines!

So, instead of taking full advantage of the opportunity to win the boys over again and again by indulging them in their passion for trains, he's vowed to never buy them trains again. That's alright with us, their family, because we certainly have no problem enabling their train addiction. It may not always be "Thomas" trains as they get older, but I don't see their train fascination dwindling anytime soon, not when one of them is so certain he wants to become a conductor when he grows up.

7 comments:

NoRegrets said...

Oh, tell him that it could be worse. They could like barbie dolls. (not that you would care, but from what I can tell, HE would)

Sheppitsgal said...

So - do I tell Sheppit (age 42) that his rail enthusiasm is not 'age appropriate'? Or me, for that matter, I love riding on the things! It's a hobby for all ages and, when they are old enough, will enable them to see the country, if not the world!

Churlita said...

There are plenty of adults who are into trains. It sounds like a control issue thing to me. If he had got them into trains, then he'd be fine with it.

Belle - A Beauty livin with her Beast said...

you could have moved to our po-dunk little town where we actual have 2 weekends each OCT that we celebrate "train days" they would really love that!

Jomama said...

Wow, that is a lot of trains. I thought my son was obsessed with all things associated with trains. Have you guys been to the Day out with Thomas event? They would probably love that.

Victoria said...

Choooo chooooooo!

I love trains :)

Susan said...

my 45 y/o boss has trains all over our office..