Remember, when you were little, going over to some kid’s house and being miserable? Not miserable because of anything you’d done, but because of where you were.

I remember these scenarios vividly. It’d be a trashed-out bedroom literally filled with broken plastic toys. Even at a young age I was a pretty obsessive perfectionist and so I would try to put their toys back together. I would try to re-assemble the exploded Transformers or match up the uniforms on the soldiers or at least try to put all the Hot Wheels back into one bin. But it was a lost cause, every single time. Because no matter how many plastic components I gathered, they’d still be coated in a film of child mucus. They’d still be missing all the smaller parts. They’d still smell like underwear and rancid upchuck. In the end I would just sit there in the middle of the floor, watching these demons leap off beds, wail in anger and jealousy, throw toys against the wall, and smash open bins of Legos. For a little kid, I could get pretty depressed because I knew I’d have to clean it up before my mom let me leave.

Flash forward to today, and at some point these kids grew up. I was wondering what happened to them when they reached an age of maturity, then I realized they never did. What were they like? They had become just like the parents who spawned them: disheveled & disorganized paragons of mediocrity.

The kids who I found literally buried under a mound of neon Chinese toy plastic in 1993 are now figuratively buried under a mound of gaudy American lifestyle plastic in 2013.

They’re still squatting in the middle of squalor, rolling around in a back bedroom amidst piles of shredded toilet paper and screaming toddlers…

…and plastic.