Each year, toy makers pull out all the stops to come up with Christmas hits. In this techno-savvy society where toddlers can operate cell phones and computers better than the average adult, the bar is set high to design something new and exciting.

Each year, toy makers pull out all the stops to come up with Christmas hits. In this techno-savvy society where toddlers can operate cell phones and computers better than the average adult, the bar is set high to design something new and exciting.


I’m happy to report that some of this year’s top toys I might be able to operate without adult supervision. There are, however, a few that are either way beyond me, would get me in big trouble or are just not right.


You can’t go wrong with Sesame street and there’s a new hugging Elmo. I like that one, but the giggly monkey and robot dog are another story. They’re both supposed to be almost like the real thing – sort of. The monkey laughs, plays and apparently gets hungry because you feed it and keep it diapered. So does the dog that the owners can train just like a real dog – sort of. But it goes a step farther. It develops emotions. (Hello! Didn’t anyone watch those "Chucky" the doll horror flicks?) If the dog gets bored or mad, it finds a favorite spot, probably on the carpet, and whizzes. Sorry, but I can’t see that toy making it too far past Christmas night


Speaking of educatable objects, there’s a new Furby. The old one wasn’t that fun in my book (Yes. I got one.), but the new one is different. It’s so advanced that it learns everything from its user. It’s whole personality and brain power hinges on what the owner is like. Don’t worry. I won’t be getting one. Poor little thing would be doomed.


One of the reportedly top toys is the "Fart Blaster." The name pretty much says it all. That’s another one that won’t survive 10 minutes past being opened on Christmas morning.


Another worrisome toy is some kind of little doctor’s office. That concept is cute, but the fact that the toy patient it comes with makes noises while on the exam table could be problematic. If that thing lets out a blood-curdling scream during a pretend shot, the child may have to be sedated before going to the doctor for the next 20 years.


Among the top toys are also a couple of remote control flying objects that would be fun, especially the one that bounces off things. Unfortunately, in my hands, it could inadvertently become dangerous. I can see it now – explaining how one of the cats or my spouse got knocked out while I was flying my bouncing ball thingie. Yeah. Like they’d believe me.