A Turtle Ashtray

University City Patch Editor Myra Lopez recently found a clay ashtray she had made for her mom, and it got her wondering if kids are still making their parents ashtrays.

My mom saves everything. 

On a recent trip to her house I encountered all of my old clay art projects; a lopsided coffee mug, a candle-holder and a turtle ashtray. 

I had to laugh at the turtle ashtray - thinking how totally un-PC it would be to make something like that nowadays.

I was in elementary school when I made it for my parents, sometime in the mid to late 1980s. And I have to tell you, no one batted an eye when I made it. My mom was a smoker, so I thought it was a great idea. I even included grooves to hold the cigarettes. I was not alone in making an ashtray, other people in my class did the same for their parents.

Fast forward to 2011. Are children still making ashtrays for their parents? My son is almost three so he's not making clay projects yet. I have to admit I would freak if he made me an ashtray. I don't smoke, so that's probably why I would find it a pretty unusual gift.

I guess the equivalent would be for my son to make me a clay wine glass. Which, I have to admit would also freak me out.


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