I like cardboard tubes. I always have. It's the best thing about wrapping presents - the left over cardboard tubes. They make great swords. It's fun to thwack your kids in the head with them. Most of all - it's fun to speak into them. Grab a tube and talk into it. That is quality fun. If you don't see the value of speaking into a cardboard tube, you haven't done it recently. The joy of the tube has been lost to you for too long. Try it. Advanced tube play includes - blowing up balloons and attaching them to the ends of a long tube. You can then pretend it's a barbell and you're the worlds strongest person. You can use them as binoculars in your make believe world. I keep my tubes nearby all Christmas season. Whenever I need to raise my spirits - or those around me - I break out the old dependable tubes. Enjoy your tubes, they've always been there - you were just too quick to call them trash. Sometimes it's the little things right under your nose that make all the difference, and there's nothing more fun than "thwacking" your kids with a tube.
Soon, my father will turn 75 years old. He's losing his ability to order a hamburger. He admits this. The thought of never again being able to order a hamburger frightens him. He's not senile. He doesn't show signs of Alzheimers. At times, he's more lucid than me. Then why on Earth can't he seem to order a hamburger? He can - it's just becoming a more lengthy process.