Some families are really into Nascar, others get into Baseball or Basketball.....The Magruder/Moores are Parade People. We love a good parade....with good marching bands, the clowns that interact with the crowd, and, of course, candy.
Last night was the State Fair Parade...the Mother of all parades.....a 2 1/2 hour parade through Springfield featuring some basketball player, the Governor and other politicians, the Best Buy Geek Squad, and a boatload of other groups and businesses. Melissa went with the girls and I, and we met up with Erin and our new friend, Rebecca. I had promised Melissa that this was going to be the best parade of her life and told her about some of the highlights of past parades.....let's just say, this parade didn't stack up.
I think there are 2 ways to judge a parade: Marching Bands and Candy.
In 2 1/2 hours, I think there were 3 marching bands, maybe 4. And for the most part, we didn't actually hear much music, just cadence.
The candy throwing was uncreative, to say the least. Melissa and I decided that Wal-Mart was by far the most generous, throwing handfuls of candy to each kid, but overall, there was very little variety in the way of candy...Tootsie rolls, dum-dum suckers, and bubble gum monopolized our candy bucket. Here's my thing...I think what people throw/give out says a lot about their attitude towards the parade attendees:
Tootsie Rolls - "I'm cheap, and I'm buying the cheapest candy I can give out"
Bubble-Gum - again, "I'm cheap and I don't really care enough about those coming to the parade to think up something fun or more creative to give out"
Dum-Dums - ...speaks for itself
Brochures - "For some reason, I don't think you're going to wad this up and throw it away....I'm wrong"
What happened to the days when McDonalds would hand out real hamburgers?? Or people would give out bottled water?? That said a lot about how they value the consumer....
We go to Palestine, Illinois every Labor Day weekend to Todd's grandpa's house for the Pioneer City Rodeo and Labor Day Parade. It's a town of about 1,200 people and they put on this HUGE parade every year. Heath bars are made in an equally small town nearby, and the Heath people throw full-size candy bars in that parade....thousands of them!!
That's what I'm talking about. It's not the amount of the candy....we aren't those parade people, who fight little kids for candy (my girls were saying "no, thank-you" to candy by the end of the night!)....we just appreciate some creativity...people putting thought into how they market their candidate/product/business.....
At this point, I'm wondering, how weird am I, that I would write a whole blog on the philosophy of candy-throwing in a parade?! Wait...I feel a thesis topic coming on....