Monday, September 03, 2007

Hello, Old Friend


She’s a bit bedraggled but she’s still Barbie. How many women of a “certain age” have tucked their Barbie away in a box just waiting to bring her out for a special little girl to love and appreciate? I came across my old friend this week down in the basement, which is hardly a fitting place for the young lady who once lived in a fine dream home, drove the coolest convertible and had a promising life ahead of her. After you graduated from Mattel U, oh sweet Barbie, did you fall upon hard times and the reality of middle age take its toll?

Nope. Not really. Barbie is going strong. She’s tech-savvy and quite at home today with a new generation of girls. Despite feminist critics, she’s shown that she is one tough cookie just like the girls who once loved to spend rainy summer days plotting adventures in faraway places and picking out what should be worn to them.

11 comments:

Jay Cam said...

wow that sounds like some people i know today! oh... and if you are still trying to get a better name for your blog don't! its unique as it is now, and i think you should keep it.

Barrett Laurie said...

I agree, I love the name! Oh Barbie, I must admit I played with my older sisters dolls! Great post!

Sheila said...

Glad you stopped by jay cam. The blog name has certainly caused me some thought since I'm no longer in Alabama. I may take your advice and just let it be.

Barrett,
Barbie is one of those American icons I hope we have around for a while. I wonder if kids still use their imaginations as much as I did way back when.

sank said...

Hi Sheila,
I hate to be the downer... Barbie has hit on some seriously hardtimes.. Matter of fact her demise is a case study these days in the retail management world about how companies, like Mattel, miss trends and are not in touch with their customers.
I hate to say this, but Barbie is second, a growingly distant second to the upstart Bratz dolls. The ones I hate. But you know, now that I think about my own daughter doesn't own a Barbie. She's never even asked about...

Her market is mostly collectors at this point.

Sheila said...

Well, Sank, you can tell I'm out of the loop on that. However, the fact that she is still alive at all and second is okay. Fads come and go and maybe Barbie will gradually lose her appeal to the next generation like your daughter. Time will tell. I don't have any young children around my house these days, and I wonder if those readers who do, would comment. I know Barbie is still big among old boomer collectors like me, but what about younger consumers?

And on a different topic somewhat--isn't about time to bring back pogs and Garbage Pail Kids?

What goes around, comes around. Go out and PLAY!

Sheila said...

Sank is right about Barbie and I guess I need to do a little more research before waxing nostalgic or else subscribe to Newsweek and watch CBS News, both of which covered the rivalry. And hey, I can admit it when I'm wrong.

So, now that I see Barbie is like the first wife tossed aside by the man in favor of a snazzy, younger chick, I guess I want to know of these parents buying the sexier, poutier Bratz dolls, what parents think? Do dolls and playthings help mold values or are they simply playthings? At least my Barbie was going to college and was going to make something of herself. About all these Bratz girls are going to do is street walk. Do I sound bitter? Nah, I'm just being an old codger today who longs for the good ole days.

Dirty Butter said...

You do know that your Barbie could well be worth some big bucks, don't you? Not that you'd want to sell her, but if you can find the number on her (on her bottom I think) you might want to check her out on eBay, just out of curiosity.

And didn't you know?? Today's Bratz dolls ARE the Garbage Pail Kids of our day LOL!! I can't stand them, either!!

But then, I never liked Barbie, either. I may have been too old when she came out, I don't know. But I have always gravitated towards soft dolls and stuffed animals.

I didn't know you were thinking about changing your blog's name. Is Kitchen Sink available? If so, that would do just fine, if you really want to change it. Otherwise, I wouldn't consider it, if I were you. You can take the girl out of Alabama, but you can't take Alabama out of the girl, right?

Sheila said...

DB,
I will have to check out the old gal's tush, not that I'd part with her. I heard where Mattel is having another recall and this one involves Chinese Barbies.

Thanks for your input on the potential name change. The more I think about it, the more I guess I'll keep what I have. I've seen cases where people change or have a new version and that's a bit confusing. And yes, Alabama has left her mark on me and I'll keep that no matter where I am.

Naomi said...

Gosh this brings back fond memories Sheila! As a child, I spent many happy hours playing with my Barbie doll. It's nice to see they're still going strong after all these years.

KJ said...

I wish I had not departed with my Barbie. My cousins had even given me everything that they had owned. Looking at your Barbie case sure brings back memories.

KJ

Sheila said...

Naomi,
Barbie had that worldwide appeal. And now that she's second string, I'm a bit sad. Maybe she'll survive the competition. I hope so.

KJ,
When I opened my case, I realized how many of the outfits were missing. I don't know what happened to them. I wish I had more things from my childhood but we just have so much room I guess.