Stolen from Africa.
This is the last known picture of our Sophie the Giraffe toy. The picture was taken during a birthday party at an indoor playground. When the cake came out we must have left Sophie behind. Later that day we called the playground’s lost and found to recover Sophie. They never found Sophie. Sophie was missing. I suspect that Sophie was taken by another child or misguided parent.
You see, Sophie the Giraffe is a very popular children’s toy. She is hip. She is trendy. And like most giraffes Sophie is from France. She was likely taken from Africa during the height of France’s colonial power. Just like Babar the Elephant. The French seem to have a penchant for co-opting large grazing animals from the African interior.
If you’ve had a baby in the last 5 years or so, you own a Sophie. Teething babies across North America are spreading their teething spittle over the antlers of this little French giraffe. The antlers of an immature giraffe being a natural nipple substitute.
Sophie the Giraffe is a squeaky chew toy. She’s made of soft rubber and squeaks with the slightest pressure. When Sophie first arrived in our household, all of these characteristics made our dog very interested. Sophie looked and sounded quite similar to his squeaky chew toys. Our poor dog doesn’t understand marketing which is the only thing that distinguishes Sophie as a baby squeak toy and not a dog squeak toy. That and maybe a higher grade of rubber.
After Sophie’s disappearance we tried to entice our daughter with Sophie’s lesser known companion, a mushroom. Not a hippopotamus or a zebra, a mushroom. More proof that Sophie is of French origin. This mushroom, let’s call him Maurice, is similar to Sophie is many ways. Maurice has chewable antlers atop his head and Maurice squeaks when squeezed. But Maurice is not Sophie. Our daughter recognized this and rejected Maurice like he was a cast member of the Jersey Shore applying for a master’s degree.
Sophie was the expensive, molded rubber, Afri-Franco chew toy that our daughter wanted to masticate. Not some second-rate unnamed mushroom. It’s a shame that Sophie was stolen from her home for yet another time.