Several months ago, while shopping at one of those $6 sales, I found some funny looking circular metal objects in the displays. I asked the ladies in charge, “What on earth are these?”
They both chimed in to tell me that they were Fidget Spinners, and that these toys were the rage among the younger “tween” crowd.
Fidget Spinners are small, ball bearing devices that the user can rotate between his or her fingers. In truth, it is the hottest toy of this season and is marketed for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, anxiety, and autism, but is being banned in most classrooms throughout the country. There are even Youtube videos showing one how to twirl, transfer and toss the things.
So, like any good grandmother would do, I bought two. I just had to have several to send to my then 12-year-old grandson, just to show him how “hip” I am. NOT.
What does this crazy toy show us about our society?
I guess it shows that we love toys. If it’s not a Rubik’s cube, or a Slinky, it may as well be a Fidget. Babies have their rattles and busy boxes. We never outgrow that love of toys, and we are not so different from the little child in that respect.
But I have another more maudlin opinion!
As a society, we are a nervous mess. Even though we have everything, we cannot handle it all. We stuff ourselves with information, entertainment, conversation (on our cell phones) and we rush here and there, trying to fit it all in.
As a result, we are stressed, big time.
Greta’s husband just returned from a convention where the different booths gave away little gifts. You know, like pens, candy, tape measures and key chains. What he brought home was a variety of fidgets. A ball to squeeze, a rectangular shaped object, bright yellow, meant to squeeze as well, and a square plastic box with buttons, wheels to turn, switches to click on and off.
They serve their purpose if one has to keep moving all the time. Some swing their foot when the legs are crossed, some shake their leg when sitting down. (Fred makes the pew vibrate in church when he does that trick.) These little gadgets would keep my attention about 30 seconds, max.
Now here’s my point I wish to make.
The Bible speaks prophetically in the book of Daniel 12:4 about the days ahead. We don’t know when those days will come, but the signs are evident today. “But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro (rush), and knowledge shall be increased.”
Luke 21.26: “Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.”
We are rushing to and fro — like ants. Stress. There doesn’t seem to be enough time to do it all, and it’s getting worse. No one sits on the front porch and rocks any more. Few kids get to lie on the grass and watch the clouds. Families don’t even have time to sit down at the table together once a day. And “The family who prays together, stays together?” If only.
We are increased in knowledge. Oh boy yes. We know a lot about many subjects. But, we are like hamsters on a wheel. Technology continues to increase. The internet gives us immediate access to any topic. And let’s not forget all the wonderful time savers! Those time savers are dominating our time, and they are not saving us any time at all in actuality, We then take on more duties and obligations. We think we are supermen.
We witness disasters around the world, even close to home. We see families fail, drug abuse, alcoholism. Our hearts are failing us for the stress.
This is a cheery article, isn’t it?
So, how does the toy industry solve it? With fidgets, of course. If we are crazy from activity and worries, then just twirl a little wheel. Let our kids twirl a little wheel. Good. That will fix them.
However, the answer is not any of the above. We need God. We need Him. We need peace, joy, comfort, assurance, and love. We need time. Not time to fill; time to be bored, to sit still, to think. We need to put away the cell phones and talk to each other.
I might then flip my fidget wheel, but only as I sit thinking.
A Woman’s View” is Judi Tabler’s reflection of her experiences and events. She is a wife, mother, writer, teacher, grandmother, and even a great grandmother. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.