Thursday, January 8, 2009

Profound Pixos

The other day I was once again cleaning up Sweetpea's spilled Pixos. In case you don't know what Pixos are, here's the official Pixos website. Basically, Pixos are little, tiny, colored, bead-like balls about twice the size of a BB. A pattern is attached to the underside of a Pixos tray, which is made of translucent pink or blue plastic, with little divots in it just the size of the Pixos. The Pixos are then placed on the tray following the pattern, using either a Pixos Pen, or Pixos Station to form a design. Once the design is complete, it is sprayed with water and allowed to dry. The water causes the Pixos to stick together. Once dry, they remain together permanently. The dry design can be used for a key chain, coat clip, standing decoration, magnet or sticker-type decoration. Sweetpea received the Pixos Station and several refill kits from Santa for Christmas.

On a side note, Santa and I are going to have to have a serious conversation about bringing Sweetpea items which contain teeny tiny beads that have a tendency to scatter everywhere and become hopelessly embedded in deep pile carpeting when not properly contained and then even slightly nudged, requiring her mother to spend hours and hours a long time on her knees recovering said beads and re-sorting them by color into the divided craft box purchased for just such a sorting.

So anyhoo... at Christmas time when we were opening all the little packets of different colored Pixos, we discovered that several of the colors, while they looked the same in their original packaging, were actually subtly different shades of the same color. Unfortunately we didn't discover this until after we had dumped the packets out into their allotted sections in the craft box. I spent days hours digging through the sections, separating the shades, often having to switch gears and work on a different color, just because my eyes were no longer differentiating between the shades I was working on. Also unfortunate is the fact that this is a practice I've had to engage in repeatedly - every time Sweetpea accidentally topples, kicks, bumps, nudges, brushes or breathes on the craft box while the lid is open. I've also noticed, though, that once Sweetpea chooses the Pixos and puts them in a design, it doesn't seem to matter whether she has all the same shade or not.

So there I was, on my hands and knees, digging Pixos out of the carpet and trying desperately to get them into their appropriate section in the craft box the first time, when I had a bit of an epiphany. It occurred to me how the color issue with the Pixos is similar to people and our stages in life. It seems to me that when we arrive, we pretty much look like everyone else. There is no apparent difference between us. (I'm speaking generally, of course.) Then, after a while, when we are placed in situations which require us to be around/with other people, our differences start to become emphasized. As we grow, many of us make a concerted effort to avoid standing out from the crowd. Anything about us that makes us different is viewed as a bad thing. We just want to "fit in". As we grow older still, we find the need, even the desire, to set ourselves apart from others. We want to be unique, special, remembered. It no longer matters whether we fit in, since just being ourselves, our own special selves, makes us one of the crowd.

Who would've thought children's toys could be so philosophical?