Name of new obsession: Firefighter. As in, Max is going to be one when he grows up.
Level of obsession (on a scale of 1 to 10): 7, but inching upward.
Quality of obsession: High. As a waiter recently said when Max informed him that he will be a fireman when he grows up, "It's a noble calling!" As the guy behind the counter at the dry cleaning store noted, "You need to be brave!"
Cost factor: Low. Unlike Lightning McQueen merchandise (that obsession started about three years ago) or purple stuff (four years and running), you cannot purchase fire stations at Target or on eBay. Or, for that matter, firefighters. Max's new Fire Chief plastic hat: free, from the station.
Time factor: Moderate. Requires weekly/biweekly trips to the local fire house for approximately a half hour. Also: Occasionally need to do a drive by.
Clutter factor: Low. We have a couple of toy fire trucks, but they are not threatening to take over the entire household, unlike the Lightning McQueen crapola.
|Yes, we keep a Lightning McQueen car in our breakfront|
Therapy factor: High. Max doesn't yet say the letters ""w" "b" "f" or "t" so repeatedly uttering "I want to be a firefighter!" could really help.
Education factor: High. A whole new book topic to explore! Then there's the fire house knowledge: "What's that?" Max likes to ask as we walk around. He is getting to know the different parts of a fire truck. He is learning how calls come in to the station. He has gotten an insider tour of the firefighters' living quarters (and he has already picked out his bed).
Entertainment factor: High. One of the firefighters slid down the pole three times in a row for Max. At home, Max loves to stand in front of the bathroom mirror in the Fire Chief hat and stare at himself in awe.
Nuisance factor: Medium. Parent required to regularly say "Yes! You are going to be a firefighter when you grow up! And you will live in the fire house! And you will ride in the back of the fire truck!" Parent required to regularly tell that to total strangers as well. Also: Child may not be willing to part with Fire Chief hat at bath time.
Public perception factor: High. A kid wanting to be a fireman is easy to understand. People were definitely perplexed, however, during Max's spaghetti phase (also circa 2010) when I had to write "Max eats spaghetti sauce!" on a foot cast.
Bliss factor: High. When you say "Hi, fireman!" to Max, he squeals and his face lights up.
Cuteness factor: OMG.