Lego Friends: A City Gone Mad

By: Jacob Lewis

A week ago I saw one of those little everyday things that seem to stick in my mind and refuse to go away until I either write down my thoughts about it or decide to suck the life force from a stray cat and allow its death rattle to cleanse my mind of its presence. Both, are clearly fine choices, but I opted for the former due to a recent drought of cats in my neighborhood.

Now, to the story. I was in Target with my daughter when she showed me the above pictured item and said she wanted it for Christmas. In case some of you aren’t familiar with the Lego Friends brand, it’s a set of Lego specifically marketed to young girls. The Friends are high school students, with different economical, racial and religious backgrounds, who live in Heartlake City and who are…wait for it…all friends. They do the normal things that all high school friends do; they go to school, horse back riding lessons, the mall, the amazon jungle on baby animal rescue missions and tour the country as mega pop stars. Its like someone took a picture of my own high school experience and then built it out of tiny plastic bricks.

After Athena handed it to me I was about to dismiss the Lego set as simply just one of the forty or so other items she had claimed since we entered the store that she was going to put on her Christmas list (top of which is an ipad and a real Fairy – I hope you like disappointment Athena because Santa is bringing a big ol bag of it and he forgot the gift receipt), but after glancing at it, the image on the box stuck with me. The following is my rambling explanation as to why:

I don’t know how they run things in the Heartlake municipality but the whole idea that the set represents seems to be a colossal waste of tax payer resources. A veterinarian ambulance? Why? I can understand that it’s nice to think that the City could offer a service where animals could receive immediate medical attention, but I don’t think the tax payers should really be footing the bill for this, especially when if it’s being used for the pictured purpose. Specifically, a sick/hungry hedgehog, that requires a bottle to be fed. I can’t fully determine the amount of wasted tax payer resources that went into this job (the vet’s hourly pay, gasoline, administrative expenses) but I can tell you it is certainly more than the value of a hedgehog, in the eyes of nature, society and our creator. Plus, the hedgehog doesn’t even appear to be sick, it’s just hungry and needs to be fed by a bottle – IMMEDIATELY. Now, the animal is either someone’s pet, in which case the owner should get off his/her ass and either make it a stupid hedgehog sandwich or just give up and flush it down the toilet already, or it’s a wild animal, in which case if it can’t find food on its own, natural selection dictates that it needs to get out of the gene pool.

Also, the Friends girls are supposed to be in high school. Is Heartlake City employing a child labor force as a means to cut down on the extremely unnecessary cost of this public service? Plus, how much schooling has this girl had in animal medicine? A veterinarian position requires an advanced degree. I’m not even sure she’s old enough to drive a vehicle.

And don’t get me even started on her medical equipment. She has a lil’stretcher for an animal the size of a softball. Who is designing custom stretchers for an animal you can fit into a lunchbox or, more appropriately, a ziplock bag, and why is this City purchasing them? Quite honestly, I know Lego already makes pieces that look like burlap sacks and a baseball bats, they could just rebrand this as Heartlake animal control and the whole scenario would make a lot more sense. They could even replace the bottle with a lil’ syringe piece, which, strangely enough, Lego actually makes.

Finally, forgetting the idea of the unnecessary expenses for a moment, why does the vet ambulance have a light and siren? If I saw an ambulance that said vet on it driving behind me with its lights on and a lil’tiny hedgehog in the back, not only would I refuse to pull over to let it by, but I might pull in front of it, get out my car and pop its tires before going across the street to buy a Mcflurry. Then, afterwards, when Dr. Tween complained how my hindrance caused her to lose her patient, I would remind her that her patient was a hedgehog, which immediately invalidates any point she could make on anything ever, and that, like hamsters, turtles and goldfish, they are the Gillette Razor of the animal kingdom. They’re great for a while, but when they wear out don’t get it fixed up and sharpened, you just throw it in the trash and get another one from the twelve pack under the sink. Then, while she is pondering this logic, I might decide to hit her with her wee lil’stretcher, take her shoes and drive away.

In summary, I guess what’s been keeping me up is that this box clearly shows that Heartlake City is a classic example of what happens with no government oversight and rampant tax payer waste. You get a bunch of unlicensed kids, driving around in ambulances, dispensing medical services to baby animals.

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