IT STARTED WITH AN but 265,000 of her citizens
OLD ROCKING HORSE THOUSANDS
By PAT JONES
MORE money is spent on model trains than on any other hobby except stamp collecting. This toy manufacturing business is an increasingly complex industry, and after a visit to the biggest toy factory in the world, where the Lines Bros. turn out at least five and a half million dolls a year, and manufacture 3.000 different types of toys, I came out suitably bewildered by the display.
These toys our children play with are like a mirror held up to a modern, and industrialised. world. The Lines brothers (three of them. hence the triangular sign on the toys) originally came from a company which manufactured the old wooden rocking horse.
Now, side by side with traditional toys like the rubber duck, the skittles, and the baby dolls, arc washing machines which really work, clockwork mixing machines for cake mixtures complete with
Mainly; for Women
lemon squeezer, or one for drinks. and miniature harbours with all the breakwaters, storage tanks,
THE pedal car is hardly recognisable as the unsophisticated toy of yesterday
it now has an engine with plugs which can be tinkered with, headlights, gear change. radio (clockwork) and the brash bright fittings of the latest automobile. The owner, however, still drives it under his own steam.
The model trains keep pace with developments on a modern railway. and so close behind the real world are the toy manufacturers that they are already experimenting with the monorail car.
New materials have gone into the making of traditional toys— Teddy now has nylon fur, foam filling, and eyes which won't pull out. A doll of vinyl has "skin" like a peach, is quite unbreakable, and her special nylon hair is knotted into the scalp, thus facilitating a wash, brush-up and shampoo.
If you buy a pretty "Mamselle" baby doll, you can then choose from 50 packs containing every thing a little lady would need in the way of clothes.
The teenage dolls, as they are popularly called, are fully grown ladies of fashion, and dress as such even down to nylon stockings.
nNE doll (which gave
me a fright, for it is far too much like the real thing) is quite a fair sized baby doll sat in a high chair, with a realistic grin on its little face — none of the artificial placid faces of other dolls. When a lever is pressed at the back, it jumps up and down wildly in the chair and bangs on the tray in front of it. Obviously taken from life.
The "Busy Baby" range of extra bright toys is usually rpade from coloured blocks, which will occupy the toddler, and teach him also. There are rubber "bricks" for building. and a large rubber engine—very bright, for the toddler, which can neither damage nor be damaged.
After seeing this vast range of toys, it is obvious that this Christmas there is something to please every child. and for that matter. every parent.
"MODEL your lives on "MODEL is the advice
given in many good little books. Although the few words on the Mother of God given in the Gospels, together with the prayers which make use of the Old Testament, should be sufficient subject matter for a life time of meditation, it can be difficult to bring them The mental picture of Our Lady may be inextricably entangled with, say, a stylised, statue of Our Lady of Lourdes, and of these, St. Bernadette could only say rather sadly, in praise of the best of them, that it was the "least unlike" of the many representations of Mary of Nazareth.
We may picture her, dressed in blue and white, the eyes gazing skywards, still and lifeless, while devotion struggles against the imagination instead of being helped by it.
Nbringing this picture • of Our Lady to life,
"My Lady Miriam", by Melanie Mamas (translated by Fr. S. A. Racmers) is invaluable, for so vivid is this book that one can feel the spirit of the age in which Jesus, Mary and Joseph lived, and worked, and prayed.
The immensely rich rhythm of the Jewish year is evoked for us, the customs, the journeys they undertook. and the historical events against which their lives were played out.
Regarding the reconstruction of Our Lady's early life, her probable family events. I do not agree with the author. preferring the speculations of other writers.
However, since people may differ about these non-essentials to the end of time, this does not deter me from recommending it to all readers. Published by the Newman Press of America. it sells in this country for 28s. 6d.
GROUPS of people have been meeting for an uninspiring meal of boiled rice and curry. They paid for their "banquet", and the difference between what they paid and the cost of their frugal meal was given to refugee funds.
The Anglican Rector of Lowestoft said at the local dinner arranged by the Lowestoft Committee for World Refugee Year, "This plateful before us is not just something between a ham tea and fish and chips on the way home. It is someone's main meal each day."
Local Catholic Women's League or Union of Catholic Mothers groups might like to copy this idea of an austerity lunch. the balance going to swell the funds for refugees. (Though I fear some mothers will retort "mine's usually an austerity lunch anyway!") People who work in offices might have similar ideas.
IF anyone ever feels the • need to air their views on advertising, complaints or comments can be sent to the Director General. The Advertising Association, I Bell Yard, London, W.C.2. The Advertising Association has its own Consumer Advisory Committee to promote understanding between advertisers and consumers.