Martinsville Bulletin, Inc.
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204 Broad Street
Martinsville, Virginia 24115
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Sunday, April 29, 2012
By HOLLY KOZELSKY - Bulletin Accent Editor
By HOLLY KOZELSKY
Bulletin Accent Editor
I’m sorry, Mama Doll. What was I thinking?
Mama Doll is our toddler’s faithful sidekick. She is a fabric doll with black yarn hair, embroidered features and a handmade blue dress with yellow rickrack trim. She can stand up to a lot of things — falls in the dirt, sloppy tea parties and being hauled around town by one arm.
She finally met her match, though, in Barbie.
Mama Doll’s name came about last year. As Mary Evelyn was changing the diapers on two babydolls, she brought in the cloth doll to help her. Since she’s not a baby, obviously, she must be a Mama.
Since then, the other dolls are long forgotten, and Mama Doll is Mary Evelyn’s loyal henchman.
That is ... until Real Mama stupidly brought two Barbie dolls into the house.
I should have known better. I long ago had decided this would be Barbie-Free Zone ... at least, as long as I could get away with it. When Mary Evelyn was a baby, I came home with several fancy porcelain dolls from my mother’s collection.
My husband was horrified. He said he thought they were creepy and weird.
“It’s OK if you think that,” I said. “You’re a man. Dolls are for little girls.”
“Sure, I figured she’d play with dolls, but I thought they would be real dolls.”
“What do you mean, ‘real dolls?’”
“You know, what do you call them ... Barbies.”
“What?!” I replied. “Barbie’s a floozy. Mary Evelyn won’t grow up with that image.”
I explained about how Barbie’s looks are unrealistic. If she were scaled to real life proportions, Barbies’ measurements would be 36-18-33, according to “Body Wars” by Dr. Margo Maine. She’d have to be an anorexic hooked on plastic surgery to achieve that foolishness.
She’s a materialistic clotheshound with an unhealthy appetite for fancy cars, homes and vacations.
Plus, I said, Barbie doesn’t just have weddings anymore. I remember seeing plenty of my little friends sending Barbie and Ken off behind the Barbie house to make out or worse (without even the wedding).
My mistake was in two toy sets I bought 50 percent off during the after-Christmas sales. I pondered over the Barbies, but they just seemed to be props in the whole set-ups, one a kitchen with appliances and food, the other, a veterinarian’s office. I saved them away until her third birthday on Sunday.
I figured Mary Evelyn would like to playact those scenes. Well, after having Barbie wash her hands at the little plastic sink a few times, that was the end of that.
Forget the settings. Barbie simply replaced Mama Doll in the activities at home and trips to town. Plus, Mary Evelyn was always taking her clothes off and not able to get them back on.
Barbie was getting on my nerves, and meanwhile, poor Mama Doll was dumped in a corner.
Luckily, this usually barracuda-sharp 3-year-old, when it comes to what she wants, was easy to trick this time. Thursday night, I hid the Barbies.
The next morning, Mary Evelyn picked up Mama Doll from the corner just as if nothing had happened. Now Mama Doll is back in her good graces, Barbies at least momentarily forgotten.
Real Mama has really learned a lesson this time. Sure, Mary Evelyn will encounter Barbies later, but there’s no need to rush it.
I swear I think I just saw Mama Doll wink at me.