Two Things I'm Not Going to Buy

Wednesday, January 14, 2009
Did you (secretly or not-so-secretly) watch the Real Housewives of New York City? I did. Sometimes secretly. Sometimes in the open. It was a trainwreck, bejeweled and with great shoes. The true "star" of the show, in terms of trainwreck magnitude, was Alex McCord, who (1) unapologetically explained that she and her creepily- feminine husband, Simon, went to events in New York city in order to meet "socially important" people; (2) pretentiously insisted that her children speak French at all times, for no good reason; and (3) sat by with the calm of a Valium-addict and watched her children throw tantrums of epic proportion...and then insisted that her kids were the most well-behaved children she has ever encountered. Apparently being a social-climbing, affected mother with bad hair and a penchance for ill-fitting, extremely expensive clothing is what makes a "parenting expert" these days: Alex and Simon are co-authoring a parenting book based on their experiences with their children. For a bit more flavor, keep in mind that these are the same people who woefully explained on television that their kindergardener only got into his "15th choice" school and then immediately set on the path of finding the "right" people to get him into a better school. In between looking for photos of themselves in the paper.

Then there is this new "toy" that Janie T in Ohio emailed me about: Kidsling, a toddler-sized version of baby carrier sling. First of all, can't our kids just use the huge pile of baby crap we already have in our homes if they really want to copy us? Secondly, is it just me, or is there something a little creepy about seeing children pretending to hold babies and stroller them around in those mini-strollers? I know this is probably not a popular thing to say and I know it's natural for kids to mimic their parents, but something about it feels funny to me. Like our kids are these mini-adults. Or, to go further, what about our kids wanting to mimic us nursing a baby while the baby is in the sling. Is this as "cute" and "adorable" as some people find the notion of kids toting around their stuffed animals?

Then again, I suppose every little kid has a doll of some sort so maybe I'm the crazy one.

Speaking of dolls: Have you seen the new "American Girl" doll Sonali? She is only the third non-white doll the ridiculously popular AG outfit has put out (check this out if you are unfamiliar with the AG phenom) and, according to the official AG literature, she is "at least part South Asian" and "she is also quite smart." She is also depicted as one of the "mean girls" of the AG pack, which I hope doesn't influence the legions of little Brown Girls who will buy her too much. Thanks to Parul in Chicago for the tip!
8 comments:
paw said...

My daughter begged and begged for the American Girl doll and while I was happy that she wanted something "Indian" I truly hated the whole American Girl craziness. As for the sling, most kids play house but I can't imagine buying my kids mini versions of everything you need in a house!

Anonymous said...

Wow, next up they will have Britney writing a parenting book!

Anonymous said...

they let that lady write a book?? I wouldn't trust her advise on how to raise a pet rock let alone a child!

SJG said...

I totally felt the same way about little strollers for kids! I wondered why anybody would want their kids to play with that kind of stuff. But lo and behold, my 3 year old daughter saw one (as well as a mini kitchen, and a mini washer and dryer) and immeidately wanted it. Who knows why.

desipolitan said...

"...at least part South Asian ... quite smart ... and mean"?!?!

That's a little disconcerting. While I'm all "woo" about desis in the mainstream as evidenced by an at least part desi AG doll, I'm less "woo" about the other descriptions of this doll. "Quite smart"? Well aren't all Asians smart (much sarcasm)?

I admittedly know very little about the AG phenomenon other than walking down Mich Ave in the dead of winter and feeling bad for legions of parents hauling giant AG boxes. However, why is there a "mean girl" group at all? And why is our darling, smart, partially desi Sonali a part of such a thing?

DPatel said...

Agree! I'm not out to start a crusade against a doll or anything but isn't it a little 80s to depict an Asian doll as "smart"? Whatever, I guess it's better than having her say "math is hard"!

Anonymous said...

Lordy I don't know what I would rather not buy: This book or those vomit bags you posted about! Why does this stuff get made??

As for the baby sling: I can only hazard to guess that that idea made sense in an econonmy when people had money to burn,.

Lyvia said...

Wait til someone makes a 'designer pretend vomit bag' ...

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