There are age recommendations for toys.  But why bother?  Either you can play with it, or you can’t.  So, I just toss the recommendations out the window…Well, I used to.

The toy that taught me and Worm a valuable life lesson is Jenga.  It’s mainly a game played (while inebriated) at an event where there’s more casual acquaintances and unknowns rather than friends.  It’s a nice ice breaker type of game.  Since Worm is lacking the traditional social skills of humans (verbal communication, nonverbal communication, emotional control, etc.), we decide that playing Jenga is a major socialization tool to increase his collection of friends at future milk and chicken pox parties.

Mattel states that Jenga is a game for “Ages 6 to adult”.  Personally, I didn’t realize that playing with blocks was conceptually advanced for a baby’s brain to wrap around.  But hey, this is America, where no child is left behind and the bar is set really low for educational pursuits so every child feels good about him or herself because that’s what’s really important in the world, not competition nor the drive to try to be the best you can be.  I digress.

I don’t know how many versions of Jenga are out there, but I’m assuming (which only makes an ass out of U and Ming, poor girl) that every Jenga has the same blocks that get stacked up and removed individually, with the reward of forcing a player to chug a beer or take a shot if one can keep the stack from crumbling to the ground.  When the Worm was presented with his new Jenga game, we allowed him to first try to get the container open.  And this is where I started to reevaluate that “Ages 6 to adult” idea.

Jenga is Dangerous For Children Under 6.

I’m impressed with his enthusiasm for the Jenga container.  But, this time enthusiasm gets the better of Worm.

I Was Appalled at the Animosity Jenga Had Towards My Innocent Child.

At Least He Got One Piece Out of the Container...

So, Jenga has set my son back mentally and emotionally.  He now wets himself, spits up, and cries.  Ok, so he was doing that before, but it seems like more liquid comes out of him now.  I blame it on the Jenga.  Worm will carry the scars of Jenga for the rest of his life all because we didn’t read the label.  Just a word of advice for parents.  Adhere to the age guidelines for toys!

Since I have nothing better to do I may have to start an organization that lobbies for pictures on the labels of toy packages showing the gory images of what happens when parents don’t adhere to the age recommendations (kind of like what the government wants to do with cigarettes).  I don’t want something like this to happen to any other child.  EVER!  Join me in my fight against parents having to read labels!

I have to give myself a point here because unlike Worm, I know how to open the Jenga container.  Besides, he’s still reeling from the trauma of the toy…I’m going to take advantage of him while he’s down!

Gavin – 8; Dad – 5