Alter Lego

Lego Fam crop

“In an effort to ‘mirror the world we live in today,’ Lego is rolling out stay-at-home dad and working mom minifigures as part of their Lego City line, which debuted at the New York Toy Fair on Thursday. While the working mom wears professional attire, stay-at-home dad rocks a beard, complete with a baby in stroller and a bottle.”
— Today.com, February 22, 2016

“Sweetie, how are you enjoying your new Lego set?”

“Oh, it’s great.  My stay-at-home dad figure is so much fun.  He’s in a band, and he ferments his own vegetables, and he made me a really cool necklace out of hemp.”

“Wow! Sounds like you’re really having a great time with him.  What’s he doing now?”

“He’s crying in the corner while he sends out another resume for a job he’s probably overqualified for.  You know, he didn’t plan to be a stay-at-home dad.  But he lost his job at the Lego City Police Station and now he’s stuck hoping the music career takes off, or Lego Star Wars Ewok Village needs a handyman or something. It’s been hard to pay the rent on only one salary.  He only grew the beard because he can’t afford Lego disposable razors anymore.”

“That’s quite a backstory you’ve given him.”

“I’m only trying to mirror the world we live in today, Mom.  Just like the box says.”

“I don’t see the box.”

“They’re living in the box.  Lego Bank repossessed their house.  No stroller anymore, either.  They had to sell it for grocery money.  Prices at the Lego Supermarket are way too high.  A plastic carrot, apple, banana, four plastic cherries and a turkey drumstick retail for like $14.99.  That’s barely dinner for one.”

“But doesn’t working mom have a job?  Isn’t she a lawyer at the Lego Law Firm?”

“Yes, she is.  And between issues on Lego Prison Island and problems at Lego Arctic Base Camp — a huge waste of taxpayer money, if you ask me — she has been swamped.”

“Well, maybe she could ask for a raise.”

“Maybe, but the whole space shuttle project really zapped most of Lego City’s budget.”

“Could she at least ask for some more time off?”

“Mom, she already used all of her sick days when she was hospitalized for exhaustion.”

“Exhaustion?”

“Yes.  Between three jobs and still having to do the lion’s share of the housework, it was too much.  After all, working mom only has one professional outfit — she has to do laundry every day!”

“Don’t they have any help from family?  We had a Grandma in the old Lego set, didn’t we?”

“Sure.  But she’s in the Lego Nursing Home now.”

“There’s a Lego Nursing Home?”

“It’s the next product in the ‘world we live in today’ series.  With the baby boomer Lego figurines getting older, it was inevitable.  Nice place, though.  Colorful.  And they allow dogs, so the little Dalmation that came with our Duplos has somewhere to live, too.”

“Didn’t he have a doghouse?”

“The Lego Doghouse is too small for Duplo-sized animals.”

“Oh.”

“Shoot, it’s late. Stay at home dad has to pick up the baby from day care.”

“They can afford day care?”

“Mom, you don’t understand how it is in Lego City these days.  They got into Lego Day Care off the waiting list — and it’s such a good day care, since they have so many blocks to play with.  So of course they had to take the spot.   And if not for day care, what’s dad supposed to do when he gets a last-minute call from the Lego Recruiter?  He can’t bring the baby to a job interview!”

“There’s a Lego Recruiter?”

“Yes, she’s another member of the ‘world we live in today’ series. There’s a recruiter, an Uber driver, and some guy who wakes up early to be first in line for tickets at the Lego 3D Battle Arena and then scalps them online. Anyway, the recruiter used to work at the Lego Consulting Firm, but when she said she wanted to go part-time after she had her second kid, they forced her out.”

“That’s too bad.”

“It really is.”

“You know, maybe you should give stay at home dad some of our toy cereal boxes.  The family could eat those, couldn’t they?”

“They already did.  Tonight, they’re just going to have to eat Mr. Potato Head.”

“Mr. Potato Head?”

“They ate his wife last week, so he really doesn’t have much left to live for.”

“Honey, maybe instead of the Legos, would it be easier if you played with your Barbie Beach House?  I know it plays into the stereotypes that Lego is trying to avoid, but at least Barbie’s financially secure.”

“Global warming, mom.  Duh.  The whole place washed away last winter.”

 

Jeremy Blachman is the author of Anonymous Lawyer and the upcoming novel The Curve (written with Cameron Stracher), a satire about the world’s worst law school.  

 

Image credit: Flickr user Kenny Louie