Monday, August 27, 2007
So, I was at Del Taco for lunch on Saturday. The Del Taco by my house has one of those crane games, where you can win a stuffed animal. Lately, I'd noticed the prizes were a bit odd. The standard stuffed animals filled the case, but at the top, the most easily accessible prize for some time was a Dwight David Eisenhower plush doll. Because kids just love Ike. Eventually, someone apparently won that doll. I didn't see that, but on Saturday, as I walked up to the glass door, I saw a kid of about nine or ten playing with a doll of about 18 inches of height, wearing a conservative suit and spotting a beard. The doll was dancing wildly, much to the boy's delight. Turns out, he was the proud winner of a Ulysses S. Grant plush doll. I'd always wondered how people felt, after no doubt dumping dollar bill after dollar bill into the machine, when they win a peculiarly designed plush doll of a relatively dull former president (a General Grant doll I could see, but this was a President Grant doll). Now I know; the reaction is bemused excitement. And it turns out President Grant's secret passion was playing in the ball pits at second-teir fast food restaurants.