I am not really a collector.
I escaped all the frenzied collection trends of the last 40 years – friendship beads, cabbage patch kids, beanie babies and webkinz are all items for which I have avoided seeking and spending.
A few weeks ago Ryan started talking about the “animal shaped rubber bands“.
He was pretty sure that he would die some sort of grade school social death if he didn’t obtain them immediately.
I was pretty sure that he wouldn’t.
I remembered seeing the rubber bands in different shapes online a few months prior to his plea and thinking how stupid they were because when you put them on your wrist the shape was inconsequential.
Yep, I can really spot those trends.
As the days went on, Ryan became more and more insistent that animal shaped rubber bands were a necessity.
On a day when he was particularly agreeable, I said we would go to the store to see if we could find some Silly Bandz.
Oh how naive I am.
We started at Wal-Mart who then sent us to Hobby Lobby who then sent us to Brilliant Sky who then sent us to Charming Charlie who then sent us to Justice who then sent us to Hallmark.
The wild rubber band goose chase was on.
At first I was trying to help Ryan and then my competitive nature took over and I was pretty sure that if any rubber band existed within a 30 mile radius of my home and it had any shape at all, I was going to find it.
I might not be a collector, but I am a competitor.
I soon learned that my hometown in the suburbs of Dallas might be the capitol of competitive collectin’ moms. The more stores we visited, the more shake of the heads we received. Each location had a similar tale of rubber band lacking woe…
We had them. A lot of them. But they sold out. Good luck finding them. We should have another shipment soon.
I decided to give up and haunt the Facebook page of the local toy store that promised to announce the new shipment arrival.
We went down to Fort Worth the next day to visit my in-laws. We passed a Walgreens and I asked blog-Stedman to stop so I could run in and do one more check for Silly Bandz before I declared complete defeat.
They had them by the BOX.
As I sat down in the aisle and placed all the style of bands in neat little piles so I could assess the treasure. My head filled the flighty dream of buying them all and selling them out of the back of my minivan for profit.
These things are rubber gold just 45 minutes North!
I shook myself back into reality and restrained myself. Kinda. I bought 3 of each style not doing the math that each box contains 12 bands…that is a grand total of 288 bands that will be floating around my house being chewed on by the cat and swallowed by the vacuum.
The boys don’t know how many I have. I handed out a few the first day and on each day of successful summer reading completion they earn one more band. Little do they know that they will be receiving them as special treats well into their college days.
I feel a little silly, but relieved that I am not having to talk them into potato shaped bands…
…because what self-respecting grade school-er wears a tuber on his wrist?