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#51 :: Flight helmet

March 28, 2004

Something about society needs to republish its artifacts of war in miniature, 3-D facsimile format. Not content with model planes, we make model pilots for our children to play with, and model pilots require tiny helmets with teensy glare shields and ittybitty microphones. The constant surf of children’s toys into our house washes up objects like this – weapons, gear and accoutrements of characters whose “real-ness” and play value are validated by the amount of stuff strapped to their blowmolded bodies. We often visit the Pasadena Swap Meet and look quickly for the dollar-a-toy vendors to give the kids something “new” and durable to fidget with while in abject fascination while we look at pricier, more fragile merchandise that we can be trusted not to break. My 2½-year-old daughter is going through a very girly doll phase, and something possessed her to grab a six-inch-high pilot in a flight suit, complete with this helmet. We can’t find the pilot at the moment, but this object verifies his service in the name of eternal toy vigilance.

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