And so it begins....
The annual receiving of Christmas catalogues and the ire that follows due to the frankly ridiculous way the children's section is set out.
Let me give you a sneak peak of the Boots Christmas Catalogue. This year the catalogue started out quite promisingly with a "Gifts for Kids" section (OK, I cannot abide the term kids but at least it's inclusive!) full of bright, primary coloured toys. Good start Boots, I thought. This continued for 20 or so pages and I'm beginning to think that they've sorted themselves out from last year. Until I find the section entitled "girl's toys".....yawn.
And I'm sure you don't need me to tell you what this section includes. Baby dolls, fashion dolls, Hello Kitty, Barbie, a pink fluffy hamster. An awful range entitled "Glitter Babes" which comes with the strap line "gorgeous girlie treats and sparkly make-up for little girls who want to be pretty in pink"- shame it doesn't come with a sick bucket for the parent too. This continues to the craft section which - I foolishly -hope will be better. Except it isn't. There's a princess making kit, a tea set painting kit, and various jewellery kits.
Onto the boys' section. This includes dinosaurs, Lego, scooters, playmobil, Dr Who, Star Wars, Toy Story (all of which my 5 year old girl loves - clearly she didn't get the memo about liking pink and sparkles).
The worst offender of all is the Science Museum and National Geographic kits which appear only in the boys section. Because apparently only boys like science. Although I do tell a lie. We're lucky to have on offer, for the girls in our lives, a "Super Science Make Your Own Perfume" kit.
I'm not saying girls and boys shouldn't like different things. What I am saying is why are places that sell toys so keen to segregate. Why can't there just be a toy section. Is it so unheard of for a girl to want to play with dinosaurs and playmobil or a boy to like baking and baby dolls.
So that's it. Tune in next week for a rant at WHSmiths and why they see the necessity for a pink globe to teach girls about geography.