Tuesday, January 17, 2012

In Barbie's Defense ....

Yesterday, I read about some recent Barbie-bashing. Yeah, look, it's Barbie and she's reporting for Reuters ....
Yeah, this is Barbie, reporting on, well, ehem, who else ...myself!
It seems, over the last three weeks, Iran's morality police have visited a number of shops in Tehran and demanded that the shopkeepers remove Barbie from the shelves. This ban is not the first. Oh, no ... Babs has had some rough times in the middle east since as far back as 1996! The middle east has shunned the girl for fear that she can impart "destructive cultural and social consequences."

I have no idea, what they're talking about!
It's just like Barbara Milicent Roberts (that's Bab's full name!). Everywhere she goes there is controversy. From her early beginnings as a young Bratz doll growing up wild in the most "raucous" of all states, yes, my dear folks ....Wisconsin - to her crazy New York runway show held in honor of her 50th birthday celebration back in 2009!
Is Barbie misunderstood or is she really trouble with a capital "T"?

I'll admit, even I have been sucked into the Barbie controversies. When my daughter was three years old, my mom-in-law came over with her first Barbie. I didn't know if girlfriend should have a Barbie - I mean after all, doesn't she promote an unrealistic idea of female body image - leading to eating disorders? Shit, that doll is 11.5inches and built! In real life, she's like 5'9" with a 36inch chest, 18inch waist and 33inch hips. That would leave her about 110 pounds and a BMI equal to 16.5 - she is definitely suffering from a distinct case of amenorrhea!
I guess I should be glad my little girl was three
in the 90's and not in the 00's?
But even on the cultural level here in the US, we have had trouble with Babs. Mattel tried to get her to look like a Sistah back in 1967, but no one was fooled. African American Barbie was just Babs with darker skin. C'mon Mattel, what were you afraid of? It took Mattel until 2009 to make Black Barbie.

In 2000, Mattel thought it a smashing idea to make a handi-capped version of Babs. The only problem, as discovered by a young lady with cerebral palsy, the doll and her wheelchair did not fit in the Barbie's dreamhouse elevator. The dreamhouse needed to be redesigned - Mattel won the bid!

And in 2003, Babs was denied acceptance to the Islam culture in Saudi Arabia. Seems her revealing clothes, shameful postures, accessories and tools are symbols of decadence. Men, woman and children were warned of her dangers!

I call BULL! 
You got Fulla, a Barbie look-alike!
It's like Madonna vs Lady Gaga!
Everyone knows Barbie winds up half-dressed with one plastic shoe on, anyway!
But in Barbie's defense, maybe we are judging the book by the cover. I mean let's stop all the catty-ness. Let's get past her curves, her perfect little nose, big eyes, great house and unbelievable fashion sense. Barbie has been jumping through hoops for the last 53 years trying to get some respect.

After all, she has had over 100 inspirational careers - everything from a teacher to a dentist, paratrooper, UNICEF Summit diplomat, police officer, astronaut and even a paleontologist! She was not some floosy, just looking to hook up with Ken (or GI Joe when I didn't get caught stealing him from my brother). Heck, no - she went to college in the 60's, she was an Olympic swimmer in the 70's, a medic in Desert Storm and she ran for President in the 90's! This girl has lived!

Yes, she is even a world traveler! I guess she did a semester abroad because she went to Europe in the 60's - and Italian was the first "Nationality" Barbie. Chi si dice?
And now, mi Amore, there are over 45 different Barbie Nationalities!
And what an entrepreneur - this girl has marketed herself in about 150 countries world-wide!
Got my passport!
And of course - why do you think? Because she never let anyone bring her down. 
She just adopted the Ivana Trump attitude: 
Looking good is the best revenge! 
Looking good IS your best revenge!
Don't think, though, for one minute, this has been an easy feat. No, no, no! About 1billion fashions have been produced for Babs since 1959. That's 105million yards of fabric, which makes Mattel one of the largest apparel manufacturers in the world! And, everyone wants in - don't overlook the fact that seventy famous designers have gone to great lengths to outfit Barbie over the past 53 years!

Currently, Barbie is a $1.5billion dollar-per-year industry! 
Move over Oprah, 'cause you got some competition! 
Wait-a-minute, Oprah is so totally cool - 
she already has one of her very own Barbies!
We miss you, O!
So, in Barbie's defense, let's not judge the book by the cover.

Wait a minute, I think I hear Barbie singing, yeah, seems she has something to say to Iran's morality patrol....

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