Being admin of a kinda sorta super famous Facebook group, I have to rake the board for unrelated posts, mostly advertisement, and delete them sometimes several times a day.
Regularly, the picture above comes back to haunt me. The ad for the porcelain dogs.
My first reaction is always the same: I imagine a city sized sweatshop, where innocent children are being held hostage to mold, bake and paint these ridiculous lumps of ceramic.
I cringe at the greed of their ’employer’, most probably a very fat man with a combover and a greasy mustache, who’s been fostering bitterness like a pet since the first flare of his now chronic butt-acne and the first drop of his ever running nose, a man probably called Brottus Fraps, or whatever sounds the closest to a cow fart.
Then I tell myself that it can’t be that bad. Maybe Brottus is actually the one tirelessly shaping and painting these little things, knowing that his hatred for everything alive won’t allow him any love but the one found in the empty gaze of immobile canine imitation.
But wait a minute… if poor ol’Brot (if he had friends, they’d probably call him that, I’m sure) is selling his reduced doggies, it might mean someone, out there, is buying them.
It means that, somewhere in the most dusty corners of Facebook, where recluse members have been waiting for old crushes to poke them back since 2006, someone, between two hours long games of candy crush, is spending money to acquire the sum of Brottus Fraps inert melancholy.
Why in the world, why in everything under our benevolent sun would anyone find these things attractive, cute, funny or worth anything more that a quick eye roll and maybe a sneeze of disdain? (You do that too, right?)
I look again at the figurines, and it gets me thinking. I remember grandmas, of the kind type, with their shelves littered with similar trinkets -shepherds and maids, cats, dogs, and gods forbid, dolphins.
And then, I remember my transformers. I didn’t grow up rich, but my sweet auntie made sure I had quite a few. I wore my cousin’s 3rd hand clothes, but I had my own toys, because when you’re 8 years old, toys make you forget how boring clothes are (plus, toys don’t shrink as you grow up, it’s an important economic factor).
I had them all lined up on my shelves. I fixed them into victorious pauses. I saw them fierce, made of awesome and charisma, 10cm of shape-shifting invincibility. Crack a dirty joke here if you want, but I wish I still had them. All in all, they were good friends.
What’s the difference between me and a kind grandma, then? Me and Brottus? Me, us, and the little porcelain dog? To be honest, near to none.
We all seem to be looking in the distance, an air of sad nostalgia in our gaze, at a time when things seemed to be simpler, warmer, punctuated by a trinket and a hug. We secretly wish that the Yorkshires on the picture, which seems to be smiling, would address its welcome directly at us, because, behind the door, there’s hot chocolate and the smell of home. And maybe a toy or two. Or a sweet auntie, Or a nephew who hasn’t come home is, owh, ages.
Then I delete the post. Because I’d be damned if I let greedy people advertise goods made in sweatshops, or something. Like, seriously. Pff.