GENDER ROLE BIASES
That probably over-intellectualizes it, but a naked headless Barbie carelessly left out by the rubbish tip really speaks to me.
Yes, it reminds me off my childhood. At which time I did not associate such things with what girls actually looked like or could possibly look like, but with the end of day, autumn, and warmth. "It's getting cold and dark, we should go inside, and have a warm beverage around the kitchen table."
And just like that, little pink headless naked Barbie gets forgotten.
She's soulless, and has absolutely no personality.
There is no empathy possible.
That isn't a person, boys and girls, nor even a representation of one the genders, but an inanimate object of weird shape. A temporary totem, like a decorated stick, or a tin can with two eyes and a smile painted on.
I find it incredible hard to accept, much less sympathize, with the fact that some little girls identify with Barbie, or see that doll as in any way an embodiment of them or their eventual worth in the world.
That's what trolls and stuffed animals are for.
And other reductionistic simulacra.
Plus Hello Kitty.
I defy anyone to find a single thing that is masculine or feminine there.
There is no simpering, there are no frills. And conversely no spikes, leather, or a G. I. Joe machine gun. No pigskin, no football helmet, no biker tats.
Hello Kitty just "is". No role play.
With a matter-of-fact defiance she informs us that she ate all the cookies, there are none left, no not sorry (probably because there will be more eventually), and she is enjoying a fine post-snack smoke. Whatever the tobacco is, is somewhat immaterial -- women and men have the same tastebuds, so it is probably NOT a ghastly vanilla custard raspberry truffle cavendish; those are for pimple-faced fat boys who live in their mommy's basement and play violent video games all night -- but it may very well be something startling like a full Latakia blend (Dunhill 'Nightcap', Greg Pease 'Odyssey', Esoterica 'And So To Bed'). Or perhaps Peter Heinrich's 'Dark Strong Flake'. Even HH MacBaren 'Old Dark Fired'.
I cannot imagine Barbie smoking anything decent in a pipe. Primarily because she's got no head or clothes on, but also because she seems to have surrounded herself with all the trappings of suburbia, including a plastic boy toy who looks like her and disapproves of individuality.
Together, they watch football on teevee while machine-gunning the neighbors' pet cat.
Positively the worst thing that you can say about either of them is that they don't always go to church on Sunday, have perfect hair, drink Starbucks Hazelnut Caramel Frappe, and have matching cellphones.
Which, honestly, I find pretty repulsive.
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