Happy National Play-Doh Day (9/18)

Today was a weird day for me, because The List is supposed to be a celebration of National Food Days. It’s why I subscribed to tracking the freaking thing. But somehow this National Play-Doh Day got slipped in. I mean, if I wanted to celebrate an invention or a toy each day, I would have gone with some other list. Listing National Play-Doh Day in the middle of a bunch of food holidays seems off. The error has to be due to either sloppiness or laziness on the creator’s part, especially considering that the Cattlemen’s Beef Board declared September 18th to be National Cheeseburger Day, and that’s a day just dying to be celebrated! But, here it is, “National Play-Doh Day.”

To celebrate, I walked around all day with a fresh canister of Play-Doh in my pocket, and do you know what I learned? Becoming a grown-up means forgetting how to play with Play-Doh. Whenever I pulled the canister out of my pocket and started mushing it in my fingers, peoples’ eyes lit up as if I had just produced a living Smurf from my pocket. A couple of people actually asked me, “Where did you get Play-Doh?” as if it hasn’t been available in every drug store, grocery store and Wal-mart in the nation for the duration of their lives. Funny, though. Almost none of them actually wanted to play with it. Most just wanted to sniff it.

The two that did volunteer to play with the Doh, though, really weren’t able to do much better than flail around at exactly what came next once they got it in their hands. One flattened it, and then rounded it. The other put a few indentations into it, and then balled it and made a hole in the center which was used to peer through with one eye. That was about it. I’m not

Play-Doh Molded Food

sure what I was actually expecting. I kind of assumed people would revert back to making whatever favorite thing they had perfected sculpting with clay-like products as a child. Those skills may have begun to dissipate, however, once Play-Doh started marketing accessories like the “Fun Factory” in the 60’s and the “Barber & Beauty Shop” in the 70’s, which shaped and molded the stuff without having to use the mind’s creativity at all.

Since a Playdough can be simply made from salt, flour, and a bit of oil, you might have encountered a mom who has insisted that she could whip up a batch of the stuff. Thing is, considering you can grab a pretty decent dose of Play-Doh for less than five bucks just about anywhere, makes that option not so cost effective. Well, unless it’s some kind of Playdough party, I suppose. Otherwise, the moms prepping up a batch would mostly be the ones who live way out in the woods. If I was a kid, and there was going to be a mess made in the kitchen, I would rather help mom whip up a batch of chocolate chip cookies to eat while I played with my Play-Doh.

A Salty Play-Doh Burger

Like I said up front, I made the best of it. I played with my Play-Doh, and I got my burger, and after I did, this is what I can tell you. Play-Doh still smells great, but it still tastes awful! Even if it looks like a burger. Bleh!

See you Wednesday for National Butterscotch Pudding Day.

About Jim Clark

"If it was worth doing, then it is worth writing!" -- Jim Clark -- Someone else probably said that before, and I'm sure that each semester she starts her Creative Writing 101 class by writing it on the board, but I never took that lady's class so I am taking her quote! I work in the world of advertising, but I write for a living. Here in the second decade of the '00s, we find ourselves in a culture where virtually everyone writes for a living. With all the clicking and clacking on Facebook, Twitter, emails and texts, our lives are more than ever intertwined with writing. At the same time, it's also become increasingly more important to shorten our thoughts down to as few characters as possible. So, now, more than ever, I think it's also important to hold a place in our lives for expanding and honing our thoughts through writing. This is my place for that.
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