Obviously, any time I design a toy it’s with my boys in mind. Once it’s finished, I get various levels of feedback from them (generally just whether they like to play with it past the first day it’s done or not), but they’re getting to the point where they have things to say that are not only amusing but interesting as well. So, when I finished a little project today, I sat down with my mini-focus group for a chat and a game of lion-ball catch.
Basically, this is a ball with a tail and some comically alarmed facial features (since this poor little lion’s purpose is to be a projectile). We tossed it back and forth, and as we did, I conducted the following interview.
Me: So, you like the lion?
Charlie: I like the eyes.
Me: The eyes?
Charlie (stopping to poke them): Yeah, they’re black and white. And the pretty pink nose. Oh, look at the brown hair!
Me: Yeah, it’s nice hair, isn’t it.
Charlie: Yeah. Catch!
(The tail makes a better-than-anticipated launching handle for people with small hands.)
Me: What about you, Max? What do you like?
Max: I like about the pink nose. Hey, Mommy, let’s play again!
(Game resumes briefly)
Charlie: Look, his brown tail!
Me: His tail?
Charlie: Yes, ’cause he’s a ball!
Charlie (after a few more tosses back and forth): Look, he has ears!
Max (to Charlie): Do you like his ears, bub?
Charlie: Oh, yeah, and his pink nose. I like his pink nose.
Max: I like his pink nose!
Charlie: No, I like his pink nose!
(Squabble forgotten in giggles as the lion gets tossed around again)
Charlie (to me): You have to make a elephant.