Working at a major toy store can be very stressful, especially during the holidays, but the one thing that I did enjoy during my time working at one was getting to see all the new toy releases from my favorite brands — Nintendo included. Whenever I would walk around the store putting away products that customers decided they didn’t want last minute, I would get a chance to look around to see if anything new came out.
One afternoon, I came across a (literally) big surprise: Nintendo had just released a new line of giant plush toys, one of them being Toon Link. Just the sheer size of this thing had me entranced! I took a quick glance at the price and even before my “massive” discount of 10 percent, it was a pretty fair price, so I decided I would pick one up after my shift was over.
I clocked out around 3pm, and put on my hoodie so no one would interrupt me on my off-time before I made my way to the Nintendo aisle. When I got to the row, I saw there were a mother and her son scanning through the toys in that area. I waited behind them just “browsing” as the two took their time.
Once they had left an opening for me to move closer, I reached out to grab the Link plush. The boy looked at me as I took the toy and I felt an instantaneous guilt realizing that this Link was the last one left. I hoped I didn’t just take the toy that this boy wanted! I looked at him and his mother and asked:
“I’m sorry, did you want this plush?”
I would have gladly given it back in a heartbeat. When it comes to toys, kids come first. They’re made for them, after all, and if it would have made him as happy as my toys made me back in the day, I would willingly wait for the next shipment of plushes.
“No, you’re fine.” The mother replied. I smiled and gave her a quick nod as I headed off. As I turned around, I heard the boy mumble to his mom about possibly wanting it. I turned around about to offer again for them to take the doll, but then the mother responded to her son with a question and that discernible mom eye roll.
“Do you even know who that is?” She asked. Silence for a moment before he finally said no. That seemed like the end of that, so I continued on my way to leave the aisle, but I couldn’t help but overhear one last line of their conversation, which in my opinion, was pretty hilarious.
“Her name is Zelda.” The mom said. Her name is Zelda. How do you make calling Link “Zelda” even funnier? Call him a girl, too. I’ll admit, the plush of Toon Link has a rounder, more feminine facial physique, and I think at some point in our young lives, we all mistook his tunic for a dress of some sort, but knowing better as a fan of the Legend, I couldn’t help but snicker on my way to the front of the store.
It’s a silly little memory, but every now and then when I see my Toon Link plush I think of this moment. That’s one of the things I like about collectibles, though. Not only are they pretty to look at, but each of them has a memory behind them, and this plush holds one of my favorites.