Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Demonizing Barbie

Why do people have to hate on Barbie?  All she ever wanted to do was have fun (Malibu Barbie), excel at her career (Registered Nurse Barbie), keep fit (Great Shape Barbie), travel the world (Cinco De Mayo Barbie), and just look Fabulous (Pink and Pretty Barbie - along with many others to be sure).
Yes, she has made a few missteps in her illustrious lifetime.  Maybe her proportions should exist in the realm of non-fiction, rather than as a hybrid cross of a sand wasp, Stretch Armstrong, and a watermelon patch.  But it stills peeves me that Barbie should be the scape-doll for so many problems.  Is that smiling plastic face really causing self confidence problems in American girls?  Are those petite feet really walking their way to the creation of eating disorders, early sexual activity, and another myriad of female issues?
The idea of evil Barbie is a personal peeve, because I spent so many years loving her so dearly.  I never thought she was real.  Never expected to look like her.  Quite the opposite, in fact.  I created, along with my favorite co-conspirator (the Ms. V), a world for Barbie filled with so much intrigue, triumph, heartbreak, devastation, and excitement that no living human could have ever been expected to survive it.  This on-going, live soap opera continued for years.  New Barbies came in, an old Barbie was demoted to a lesser role, a better looking Ken took up residence in the corvette, the dream house was remodeled.  I imagine that the whirlwind lifestyle of these Barbies continues.  (And likely would have continued even further into our childhood if the fifth grade "cool" guy hadn't sauntered into Ms. V's basement while we guiltily clutched our Barbies which should have likely been respectfully set aside in the third grade.)  They were just so hard to let go!  
If you have hardened your heart to Barbie and her cause, please see the photo of Peaches and Cream Barbie below.  (One of the greatest ever made.)  And see if that doesn't soften you up a bit.


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