Several months ago I was hanging in my local housewares store when I saw the perfect gift for my son’s summer birthday: a Zoku Quick Pop Maker. Now, trust me: kids do not need this expensive gadget. Nor does anybody for that matter, despite what you may have read. Which is exactly what I was thinking when a lithe young woman ran into the store while I was standing there eyeing the Zoku and its many accoutrements. “You’ve got it!” she shouted to the shopkeep, shelling out twenty bucks for a storage container for her Quick Pops while simultaneously rhapsodizing about the product.
I overheard her carrying on, at length, about how her boyfriend’s family bought her a Zoku. And about how, ever since, she’d been blending bananas and other fruits, pouring the mixture into her prized Quick Pop maker (kept cold in her freezer), and only minutes later — voila! — a nutritious, low-cal treat. I was sold. And I promised myself this would be a far better gift than the latest video game for a 13-year-old who loves to experiment in the kitchen. I was right. Nate loves his Quick Pop Maker.
Take OJ, add strawberries, quick-freeze. Ask dad to pose with fruit-pop.
That said, I refuse to buy the storage container when a plastic bag will do. That, he can save his allowance for. After all, my present good fortune aside, I grew up as the oldest of four, in a household where pennies were pinched till Abe Lincoln screamed. In fact, I still recall getting my butt kicked for coming home from the store with the milk my mother asked me to pick up — and an “extra” box of Crayola Crayons. Which were later marched back, “Right now!” my tuchis still stinging.