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From me to you, highlighting challenges faced by girls

Dear Daughters, I’m Tired of Being Asked “Is that for a boy or a girl?” When it Comes to Happy Meal Toys

Dear Daughters,

As you are well aware, I think McDonald’s employees need to stop asking if the Happy Meal toy is for a boy or a girl. What they should be asking is simply, “What toy would you like?”

There are likely not too many children in North America you can name who haven’t ordered a Happy Meal from McDonald’s and received one of the infamous Happy Meal toys. The Happy Meal was first introduced in Kansas City in 1977 and by 1979 became a symbol of the McDonald’s menu. In the first Happy Meals, children did not have a choice of their toy  – what came with the meal was what they got. Nowadays, you are often given a choice between two toys – one being marketed towards boys and the other marketed towards girls. As you are also aware, I am stunned each time we order Happy Meals when the cashier asks me, “Is the toy for a boy or a girl?” Note: There has never been a time when we haven’t been asked. So I always answer, “For a girl, but what are the toys?” The cashier provides us the choices, like Pokemon or Zoobles, and then you decide which toy you prefer. We then order the toys of your choice, which not surprisingly is not always the toy intended for the girls. Remember recently when all three of you opted for Pokemon over Zoobles and previous to that when you had all opted for Spy Gear over Victorious? Unfortunately on that day our McDonald’s had run out of both Spy Gear and Victorious toys and all they had to offer were leftover Star Wars and Green Lantern toys. Here is a picture of you, my youngest daughter, upon learning that there were no Spy Gear (or toys for boys) left.

Wish You Had SpyGear

This is so disappointing!

In the end, you all chose Star Wars over Green Lantern and were very pleased with the BeyBlades you got! So much so that you went on to purchase some tornado style BeyBlades from a local toy store to add to your collections!

The way the McDonald’s cashier poses the question makes it seem that girls should opt for the toy for a girl and the boys should opt for the toy for a boy. On one particular day I could actually see the shame in you, my eldest daughter, for wanting the “toy for a boy”. It was then that I knew I had to make it abundantly clear to you that the cashiers at McDonald’s should not be asking if the toy is for a boy or a girl. The gender of the child receiving the toy is irrelevant. The question they should be asking is simply, “What toy would you like?”

Eating at McDonald's

Enjoying your Happy Meals

Ice Age Happy Meal Toy

Close up of Sid the Sloth from Ice Age – the Happy Meal toy
(she could sure use Sid’s two front teeth to better chew her food)

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