MamaBlogger365 – Kachooz Ka-What? by Loren Christie

Imagine you blow your nose and someone puts a plastic face on the tissue and sells it as a toy. The next thing you know, your 6 year-old daughter wants one for Christmas. This year, the “elves” (toy manufacturers located somewhere in China) are laughing their Kachooz off at American parents. What’s a Kachooz, you ask? That’s the name of a new species of dysfunctional pencil toppers, described above, that just happen to be one of the most requested toys this holiday season.

“But Mommy, Kachooz are separated from their moops. You have to collect them all so they can be together,” my daughter told me, completely unaware of the marketing “cookie” lodged in her brain, a result of television exposure.

“What’s a moop?” I asked.

“Don’t worry about that, Mama. Santa knows. Just give him my list,” she said, stuffing it in my purse.

So I went to Toys ‘R Us and approached the Information Desk with my daughter’s list in hand.

“I’m looking for a Kachooz,” I said. “Please help.”

“God bless you,” a bleary-eyed young woman in a blue apron said, laughing.

“That’s not funny,” I answered.

“Seriously, I’ve never heard of that. Good luck,” she said.

“Well, can you call someone who knows – like a manager or Santa Claus? Come on, you guys must have his cell number,” I insisted.

But she was so sorry that she had never heard of such a toy and maybe if I looked down aisles one through twelve I might find a Kachooz.

And after circling the store twice, I found them.

It turns out there are six “moops” (which means groups) of Kachooz and these pencil toppers have different personalities. Families of Kachooz have annoying individual quirks – making them so realistic! My daughter requested the 2Faced Kachooz moop. According to the box they are “a pack of moody characters. One day they are sweet and the next day they are rude.”

However, how do I pick just one moop when I’m feeling like I “just gotta have them all?” There is also the Nervous Kachooz, a moop of anxious fur balls who jitter and shake because they are always in a hurry. I also considered a moop of Mohawk Kachooz. They are loud and crazy but always stick to their friends.

So I bought a bunch of Kachooz- the premenstrual moop of 2Faced pencil toppers, (like I really need more drama in my house), because that’s what parents do at Christmas for their kids. I added the Kachooz carry case to my shopping cart and the Kachooz hair salon, because the whole moop of them absolutely needs that to avoid bad hair days. Then I got on line.

“Oh, so that’s what a Kachooz is,” the cashier said, reading the box. “I’ve never heard of this toy,” she added.

“Don’t you remember those fuzzy pencil toppers that were popular in the 1980’s with the googly eyes? I think I had a red one in elementary school,” I said.

But she told me she didn’t remember because she was born in 1993, which happens to be the year I graduated from high school.

“That’s not funny,” I said, feeling the urge to mope as I turned to leave with my moody Kachooz moop.

Bio: Loren Christie is a mom and journalist for three local weekly newspapers in NY. Check out her book, I Hope God is Laughing: Confessions of an Imperfect Parent on A portion of the proceeds goes to The Life Center of Long Island, a non-profit organization that supports mothers in crisis and their children.

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