This past Friday, I left game night and hit up the local Walmart toy aisle. I was casually exploring the Transformers options as I have since reignited my love of collecting those alien robot toys. As I was walking down the toy aisle I was taken back to the numerous toy aisles I have explored over the years on my countless treasure hunts for the perfect toy.

In recent years my experience has been limited to frantically scrambling to get one niece or nephew that special Christmas present I put off shopping for the last minute. This was the first time I had investigated a local toy shop for my own purposes in a number of years. That is, unless you count the occasional drift into a hobby shop to pick up items for my model railroad hobby but those are often entirely different stores altogether.

My first observation was the sheer volume of toys. Of course, I’ve always been overwhelmed by the amount of toys retailers market towards children and collectors alike. That wasn’t as much of a surprise as the next two things I noticed, the increasing amount of shelf space devoted to the ever-expanding Lego family, and the diversity of the Hot Wheels product line.

Truth be told I was never a collector of Lego or Hot Wheels toys, although I purchased more than my fair share of die cast metal cars over the years. Still, it was interesting for me to discover how much variety there actually was in the die cast metal car selection. Not just looking at things like the different brands such as Johnny Lightning or even Matchbox.

What boggled my mind was how there appeared to be nearly an entire aisle devoted just to metal toy cars. I never shopped for those before so I can’t say if it was unusual or not, what I can say is it was itself overwhelming. As for those transforming alien robots from the planet Cybertron, well I managed to pick up an entry level, $5 Bumblee Bee figure to add to my collection and called it a minor victory..

Happy birthday to Becky Robertson of Tom Bean; Lois Riggs, Tre Evans, Michael Luper and Etta Slate, all of Sherman; Joe Barrett of Whitesboro; Dominique Johnson of Fort Washington; Amanda Morrow of Bonham; Becca Hutt Williams of Fort Worth; Sarah Armstrong of Mineola;