The Boring Word About Labels

November 12, 1986

I’ve been easing the jack-o-lanterns into the trash can the last few days and now have only one pumpkin left in the house. He came from school with hair, eyes, name etc. and has taken on a real personality.

Since my children are very particular to look at dates on cottage cheese, milk and other food products, expiration time on coupons, ratings on movies and the allowed admission height for rides at amusement parks, a good idea might be for teachers to attach labels to everything sent home from school. The jack-o-lantern could have had a label, “must discard three days after Halloween” and art work could include a sign “to be on display for one week only.”

Toy manufacturers could also improve on labeling. In addition to “not recommended for children under three” they could say – “must give away at age 10” or “warning – must be played with every week.”

Clothing manufactures should consider attaching tags in addition to the design labels – “must not be worn after being thrown on the floor.” And just think how nice it would be if a label prohibited feet on the couch and TV watching before homework is finished!

Of course I don’t want my children to become obsessed with labels. I’m still peeling umteen Mr. Yuk stickers off everything imaginable in my house.