Drivel that cannot fit in a single panel comic.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

I'm Alive!

I finally emerge from the time warp that is Radio MASH. 4,887 children in the Brazos Valley will receive at least one gift for Christmas this year. Again, the Brazos Valley came through generously.

I spent most of Monday resting and my rhythms got thrown out of whack from all the sleeping and anxiety about Loki. I finally went to bed at 1:00 am, got up at 6:00 am to go to work.

I'm taking a week off from the gym and running to rest. I will walk and stretch. I probably the the equivalent amount of pounding pavement over 4 days of the toy drive as a single marathon plus lifting, twisting and bending. My lower back is a bit stiff.

Lessons from Radio MASH, ideas for improvement and random thoughts (I'm putting this on the blog so that a record will exist):

  1. The separate tents for incoming toys/ repair and order filling were a godsend. Thank you, National Guard. Please do that again next year.
  2. No child wants a stuffed animal for Christmas. I know some animals were quite nice and expensive but we had a list with some requests and stuffed animal did not appear. Specific characters that have plush versions were requested but no generic stuffed animals.
  3. Signs under each box on the age group tables. Things get misfiled on the edges. Candyland is a game for 5 - 7 year olds. 8 - 10 year olds don't play Candyland unless they have a younger sibling.
  4. A poster with examples of the types of things each age group likes over each table. This will take some advanced planning, glue, scissors and pictures. I started the project by printing pictures but did not get any further this year.
  5. As many sets of dominoes that went out this year, I expect several dominoes champions to emerge from the Brazos Valley in a few years.
  6. Found out what a Barkyardigan is. Have to remember that not all the volunteers are up to date on the interests of children and teens. Add logos to the posters in number 4.
  7. I don't want to give another Uno Card Game ever again. There is a budget, otherwise I would never pick up an Uno Card Game ever.
  8. A separate area for taping batteries on to new toys. We have a great toy doctor who would rather concentrate on the various interpretations of gently used electronic toys. Any volunteer can tape batteries on to boxes.
  9. Knot tying demonstration for volunteers.
  10. Pallets and tarps for boxes of loose toys. A more organized filing system for loose toys.
  11. A check list of things that need to be done in case some volunteers show up or there is a lull.
  12. A sign saying where bikes, trikes and big backyard toys go.
  13. Good idea from this year: tubs for toys ready-to-go.
  14. How did we end up with so many 8 - 10 year old girls?
  15. Underprivileged kids: wait and you will receive that fad toy from four years ago! That and a stuffed animal. The first used Nintendo Wii should show up at Radio MASH 2011.
  16. There is a very special place in the afterlife for the toy designer that made toys without off switches.
  17. I'm sure it is a fine toy but I doubt that little toy train will give you infinite pleasure. The Engrish on the Chinese toys was entertaining and had a poetic quality to it. the eden of the movement. the aquatic animals of the movement.

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