New Chinese Torture Toy

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Today we celebrate (once again) the birthday of my oldest daughter, Amanda (28). Having been put in charge of the “find something for the 2, two-year-old grandchildren to do committee”, I went to Costco, purveyor of fine Chinese goods.

I took my 19 year-old daughter, Emilie, along to assist in my quest. Emilie spotted a toy and immediately laid into me about how, when she was a child, she never had that sort of toy. Little did I know that she picked out the Chinese Torture Toy. It’s called the “Jumbo FUN Ball”. How’s that for an oxymoron?

Boxed Toy
Laid out on the driveway. It looks like a very big pile of plastic goo.
The assembly/inflation process began. The Chinese thoughtfully included a hand pump and the directions said that it only took 20 minutes to inflate the toy. I chalked it up to communist disinformation. Little red ball, indeed!
This is AMERICA, and while fifty Egyptian galley slaves might have been able to pump up the “fun ball” in twenty minutes, I decided to bring out the big guns for this project. 
A twenty-pound CO2 tank that I keep handy for just such emergencies (I was a Boy Scout) seemed to be just the ticket.
The tank (roughly the size of a scuba steel 72) provides the scale for the red blob.
Note that using the CO2 tank, blasting pressurized gas into this contraption, 
twenty minutes later, the inflation process is far from complete.
The big red blob/fun toy is so large that I had to bring it into the house through double-doors in order to get it ‘inside’ while partially inflated. There it sits on the living room floor**, malevolently daring me to complete my work.
** Floor constructed of ungauged slate.

The fully inflated “fun ball” rests between a love seat and sofa in the parlor (we have a living room, parlor and family room that adjoin. This photo provides a good scale for the Chinese Torture Toy.
Emilie, 5’6″, lays fetus-like inside the fun ball, waiting for her niece and nephew to use the toy to amuse themselves.
Something to keep in mind. While the $29.00 Costco price was more or less nominal, it took about 2.5 hours to inflate using the latest technology available. The ball is so large that I have no idea where to store it. It won’t go out the double front doors or the sliding glass doors while fully inflated — so storage is an issue. The CO2 supply people will be thrilled when I show up to refill the 20 lbs. tank every time I need it to amuse the “terrible” two-year-olds.

Notwithstanding its status as a ‘torture toy’, the kids and grandkids loved it.

13 thoughts on “New Chinese Torture Toy

  1. OK Grampa …. the only reason Costco sells these things is to get you to come back and buy one of their $200.00 Chinese compressors.

  2. Odie – I think you're onto something. The Chinese are shrewd and cunning with Costco as their agent of wealth-transfer.

    Amanda – If by kids, you mean Kelly (22) and Emilie (19), yes they did. The grandchildren enjoyed it too. The only think that kept Amanda (28) and Heather (26) out of it is their respective pregnancies…

    Opus & LA – Yes, they got a kick out of it. I didn't know how this torture toy would work out, but it seemed to be something that I'm going to have to deflate – store (who knows where?) and drag out again.

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  4. The things we do…
    I saw that big ball toy at Costco, myself and thought it looked quite fun, though not wanting to store the big ball of red fun, I think I'll pass and just live through you and yours. ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. ***WARNING***
    *Read directions before using JumboFunBall
    *Keep JumboFunBall at room temperature
    *Keep JumboFunBall out of direct sunlight
    *Do not yell at JumboFunBall
    *Do not look directly at JumboFunBall

  6. The Jumbo Fun Ball is still in play at home. I thought that the kids/grandkids would grow disinterested – but no. My 19 year old daughter spent two days curled up in it with a blanket, reading and doing homework.

  7. We got this ball for our three children, and it's great! Our kids have a blast with it every day! It took only about 20 min to blow it using a compressor (for tires). Kids usually get in it and roll down the hill – that's a lot of fun! ๐Ÿ™‚ And we bring it to the lake – it's great in the water; children dive in and out of it, and do flips on the water. Hours, and hours of fun! We store it in our garage, no problems. Great affordable toy!

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