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Barbie - The Fucking Bluebird of Goddamn Happiness [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Zoethe

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Barbie [Nov. 23rd, 2015|12:57 pm]
Zoethe
A couple days ago tfcocs had an entry about getting a Barbie. She had a picture of the boxed doll, and then said, "Deboxed, she probably looks like this:"

And my thought was "naked, with her hairdo wrecked."

I have never seen a Barbie, be she a standard one or an Elsa one for whom a little girl has begged incessantly, survive more than 15 minutes before that little girl had her stripped and her carefully manufactured coif pulled out. The ones that last 15 minutes are generally because Mom is standing over the child, scolding her that the doll will never look the same again, once she takes her hair down. The moment Mom's back is turned? BOOM, out come those tiny rubberbands that held the braid so nicely.

Frequently, this rifling of Barbie's outfit is followed by the child bringing the doll to Mom and begging her to "fix it." And then recrimination and tears. But if you handed that child a pristine duplicate of Elsa/Anna/Cinderella/Ariel, the result would be the same: tiny plastic shoes lost, mermaid tail removed, hair asunder.

I know, because I did the same with my Barbies when I was a kid. I can't remember exactly why, except that I was always itching to brush her hair, and to fashion new clothes for her out of fabric scraps.

Barbies spend most of their life naked, it seems, stripped by little girls who never quite get around to dressing them again. And it doesn't seem to matter to them that the doll they clamored for becomes just one more Barbie, once she's stripped of her regalia. They have to have that special one. And drive Mom crazy with the way they play.
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: sylphon
2015-11-23 06:23 pm (UTC)
I decapitated mine with a homemade guillotine at my parent's dinner party :-) She had her clothes on though...
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2015-11-23 06:29 pm (UTC)
The Wednesday Addams was strong in you.
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[User Picture]From: sylphon
2015-11-23 06:43 pm (UTC)
Yeppers. Minus the braids anyway :-) I always gravitated toward the horror and scifi sections in the library.
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[User Picture]From: evaleastaristev
2015-11-23 07:34 pm (UTC)
I think mine lasted...a day at most. Mostly because I wasn't interested in her as much as the book I got.
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[User Picture]From: finding_helena
2015-11-23 09:44 pm (UTC)
I don't relate to the naked Barbie business. We did undress Barbie but we dressed her again subsequently. We also didn't have any Kens. But even if we had it's hard to imagine young me having had them get it on... I just wasn't interested in that kind of play back when I was playing with Barbies. Perhaps I am unusual.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2015-11-24 12:13 am (UTC)
That kind of came out of left field. I wasn't implying that the Barbies were naked for any nefarious purpose, only that they always seem to be naked.
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[User Picture]From: throbinson
2015-11-24 12:28 am (UTC)
My son used to pull the legs off my daughter's Barbie dolls just to piss her off...
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2015-11-24 01:14 am (UTC)
Why do siblings love to make each other mad/sad? I know we did it, too, and I just don't understand why.
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[User Picture]From: throbinson
2015-11-24 01:22 am (UTC)
They still do it, at 31 and 34. Sigh.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2015-11-24 07:04 pm (UTC)
Mine get along well now, and I get along well with my siblings.

It probably helps that we live very far away from each other. ;-)
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[User Picture]From: finding_helena
2015-11-24 12:39 am (UTC)
When I hear people talking about Barbie spending a lot of her time being naked, a discussion of Barbie being used to simulate sexual practices frequently follows. :) Obviously that is not the case in all instances. I realize that was only tangentially related to your post though. I was just following up the naked Barbie conversation.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2015-11-24 01:15 am (UTC)
Considering where other parts of this are going, I suppose you're right.
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[User Picture]From: tfcocs
2015-11-24 12:48 am (UTC)
As a child, I never had Ken dolls. As such, my Barbies were lesbians. :-)
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[User Picture]From: tfcocs
2015-11-24 12:50 am (UTC)
BTW, I made the entry public for your reader's viewing pleasure!
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[User Picture]From: funwithrage
2015-11-24 12:56 am (UTC)
I painted my Barbie's hair with clear nail polish, once. I was five and thought it'd make it shinier.

Also we had a dog, which did not help anything.
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From: serakit
2015-11-24 03:58 am (UTC)
I never got Barbie naked, but my Barbies were all quite unimaginatively named based on features of their dresses, so if I took their clothes off I wouldn't know who they were, and since they all had a consistent character that they maintained, the idea was just horrifying to me. My sister's actually managed to change outfits on occasion.
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[User Picture]From: ba1126
2015-11-24 03:02 pm (UTC)
I was an earlier generation and had mostly 'baby' dolls. I did get a Ginny doll,which was a forerunner of Barbie. She was more 'childlike' than Barbie, but not a 'baby'. She had an extensive wardrobe available and she was my favorite of all the many dolls I had. Recently, my Hubby found and bought an "Irish" Ginny and she sits on a shelf in my bedroom!! My best friend had a "Toni" doll, which was another of the early 'fashion 'dolls, much larger than Barbie.

My daughter bought slews of 'used' Barbies at yard sales and thrift stores and had a display of them on her hutch. She also got a boxed "Holiday Barbie" dressed in red. I remember having a discussion about whether she should open it or keep it pristine for resale (at this point she was a teen) and she still sits up in her former bedroom, accumulating value, hopefully!!
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2015-11-24 07:03 pm (UTC)
I had lots of baby dolls, too. I was a mother from birth.
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[User Picture]From: ba1126
2015-11-25 04:01 pm (UTC)
Same here. I used to hold bottles for my baby brothers while Mom cooked supper and even changed a few diapers. I was about 9. I started baby-sitting for neighbors at 12, was a Mother's Helper on weekends in my teens, married at 20 and had 7 of my own! Now I work as a nanny (on my third nanny family. First two families have the kids in college or married now!)
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2015-11-25 05:28 pm (UTC)
I was regularly changing diapers for my youngest sister when I was 9--even the poopy ones, and babysat all the time from 12 on. I only had the two, though.
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[User Picture]From: kagomeshuko
2015-11-24 08:09 pm (UTC)
My sister was the "doll undresser" in the family. I tended to keep their clothes on. The first Barbie I got had this pink apron and I kept it on for as long as I could. Eventually my sister got it off.

I never understood why her dolls were undressed.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2015-11-25 05:30 pm (UTC)
I don't get it, either.
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[User Picture]From: jume
2015-11-26 06:48 am (UTC)
I had a barbie one time that was supposed to let you style her hair and came with a velcro hair extension...

I didn't see the point because you could still only cut it once!
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2015-11-27 04:29 am (UTC)
I remember that one. So many distraught little girls.
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[User Picture]From: wolflady26
2015-11-26 02:35 pm (UTC)
I hated Barbies for just that reason. What was the point? There was pretty much nothing to do with them except put their clothes on and off, and mess up their hair. Bah.
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From: anonymousalex
2015-11-26 07:32 pm (UTC)
IMO, Barbie was all about the accessories. Get yourself a car, a workplace, a Dream House, then you've got something to play. The doll itself? I agree, not much to do, there.

-Alex
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[User Picture]From: wolflady26
2015-11-26 08:18 pm (UTC)
Yeah, that could be. I never had accessories, people just kept giving me Barbies against my will.

Ironically, I was perfectly content to play with Breyer horses for hours, despite them not even having the remove clothing/fix hair possibilities. Go figure ;)
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From: anonymousalex
2015-11-27 03:56 pm (UTC)
Hmm. I'm not familiar with that toy, but my initial thought is that horses do stuff1 without clothing, hence something to play about.

-Alex

1that children are aware of and interested in
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2015-11-27 04:29 am (UTC)
My cousin Roxanne and I spent HOURS playing. But most of those hours consisted of constructing furniture from cardboard and fabric scraps, and laying out Barbie's "house" by using other fabric scraps as carpets for each room. Barbie and friends hardly had time to enter the house before these sessions would have to end, and then the next time we got to reimagine the best layout for her house.

I always thought the Barbie Dreamhouse and such things were an unfortunate expense that really cut down on the fun.
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[User Picture]From: wolflady26
2015-11-27 06:13 am (UTC)
See, that kind of playing, I probably would have loved.
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From: anonymousalex
2015-11-27 03:58 pm (UTC)
So you weren't so much playing Barbie as playing architect and/or interior designer. Cool.

-Alex
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2015-11-28 04:44 am (UTC)
Most definitely!
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[User Picture]From: cosmicbandit
2015-12-01 06:42 pm (UTC)

stuffed animals

My barbies went in to the closet at night because they creeped me out. I mostly played with stuffed animals, which I made clothes for. They had all kinds of adventures. I also played with them fairly late.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2015-12-01 06:45 pm (UTC)

Re: stuffed animals

I loved my stuffed animals.
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