“What do you mean you gave it away!?” I screeched at my mother, the full complement of my nine-year-old lungs bursting forth in disbelief. She wouldn’t have. She couldn’t have.
She totally did.
My dear mother had made a grievous error by donating my Ghostbusters firehouse building to charity. Did she not understand that the firehouse could act as any building, for any game? It was the center of every game for my entire life at that point.
I remember clearly that my older brother and I staged an epic sequel to “Jurassic Park,” wherein the survivors from the original are trapped in that firehouse, and must escape the dinosaurs and make it to my father’s desk.
I’m 21 years old now. I don’t have much time to play, and what I do have is usually given to the Internet, video game systems, or my truck (Ford F-150, not Tonka). I miss the hours I spent on the carpet, peering into that hollow hunk of plastic and imagining all the things I could do in there, if only I could stay up later.
Thanks to the miracles of technology, I looked up my old buddy, the firehouse, on ebay. Just looking at it, I wish I could stage one more epic battle between my American Gladiators on the roof. The price isn’t even very high on some of the firehouses for sale, but I know I shouldn’t.
It’s a tragedy that I’ve grown up. I belonged on that carpet, making hushed explosion noises and wondering if I should become a professional idea man. I don’t blame my mom for donating it. I do blame myself for growing up. What other toys do we all miss? What other toys defined our adventures as kids?