Happy Birthday,Barbie! Countless little girls have dreamed of having a Barbie doll for 50 years now. It’s been an American status symbol for girls,like the Cadillac used to be for adults. Since it’s inception, Barbie dolls have now become a worldwide phenomenon!
Not only do they want to possess the doll,some women have tried to get plastic surgery to look just like Barbie. A British woman broke the world plastic surgery record trying to become a real-life Barbie. I don’t think she succeeded,so she needs to get a refund! Talk about a waste of money!
Here’s more on that from Yahoo:
“Talk about “plastic” surgery (cue the sitcom laugh track): A 49-year-old British woman (and self-proclaimed “Real Life Barbie”) Sarah Burge has broken the world record for cosmetic procedures (she’s had more than 100) in an effort to turn herself into a living doll. Her actions trump the previous record-holder, our own stateside “Barbie” Cindy Jackson, who also says her surgery obsession is spurred by her desire to look like the iconic Mattel toy. (FYI Jackson now seems to make a living through sales of her autobiography and microdermabrasion products, among other things) Now, I’m no doctor but…
I would think that this Barbie-copying business could be a sign of body dysmorphic disorder, where your perception of your physical appearance becomes very distorted. Granted, I could be wrong and these surgery fiends–with their good “I wanted to look just like Barbie-and now I do!” line–could just be incredibly PR-savvy. Either way, what really stumps me is why anyone would want to look like a plastic doll at all–she’s a toy, people! Why you’d tinker with yourself (and spend more than $800,000 as Burge has) to look more like what is essentially an inanimate object is beyond me.”(End of Excerpt) Read the rest here.
The birth of Barbie is a very interesting story,indeed. She’s based on a female German cartoon character. But an even more intriguing fact is that she may have been “inspired by a sexually-themed gag toy for men.” Here’s more from CNN:
Roll out the pink carpet, grab a feather boa and throw open those Malibu Dream House doors. It’s Barbie’s 50th, and the iconic doll, unveiled today in her latest swimsuit, has plenty to celebrate.
Only this American institution could have inspired Barbara Karleskint, 48, to spend nearly $700 so she and one of her dolls could wear matching red chiffon gowns and capes at an annual collectors gathering.
“Look, we’re not as bad as the Star Trek convention people,” Karleskint, who lives outside of Orlando, Florida, said with a laugh. Collecting Barbies “brings me joy; that’s all I can say. And life’s not worth living unless you have some joy.”
With 8 million active collectors dotting the globe, according to Mattel, Karleskint is hardly alone.
Since Mattel introduced Barbie in 1959, she has become a household name — owned by 90 percent of American girls ages 3 to 10 and sold in 150 countries, said Lauren Dougherty, a Mattel spokeswoman. Barbie attracts 50 million visitors to her Web site each month, she added.
Along the way, she spawned a cosmetics line, apparel stores throughout Asia and an entertainment franchise that has sold more than 65 million DVDs.
Last week, a six-story flagship store opened in Shanghai, China. And a real-life Malibu Dream House, a temporary home tricked out for Barbie’s birthday — including a chandelier made of her hair — is currently on display in California.
Not bad for a doll that, according to author Robin Gerber, was initially inspired by “a sexually-themed gag toy for men.”
The now-legendary doll was conceived by Ruth Handler, a daughter of Polish immigrants, said Gerber, author of the newly published “Barbie and Ruth: The Story of the World’s Most Famous Doll and the Woman Who Created Her.” She and her husband, Elliott, owned Mattel until a scandal involving accusations of cooked books drove them out in 1975, Gerber said.
Handler, who died in 2002, used to watch her own daughter, Barbara, play with paper dolls. Then, on a trip to Europe, Barbara became fascinated with a buxom doll that Gerber said was based on a female German cartoon character, named Lilli, who used sex to get what she wanted.
“My guess is she didn’t know what it was when she bought it,” because at that point, four years after the Lilli doll’s release, it had landed in European toy stores, the author explained.Handler took the doll back to the states and insisted Mattel designers get to work.
“Who would have thought,” Gerber said. Barbie was thought up by a woman and modeled on a cartoon character “who was essentially a prostitute.”
Though the men at Mattel, a company that had never sold dolls before, were skeptical at best, Handler proved to be “a corporate genius,” Gerber said. In the three years after Barbie’s release, Mattel’s worth grew to $200 million, doubling the value earned in the first 20 years of business.
Handler’s daughter, now Barbara Segal, 67, is a bit dumbfounded by all the hype.
“It’s been quite an interesting ride,” she said from her Los Angeles, California, area home. “I can’t believe this doll’s created all of this.”
Barbie’s collector line (not what’s seen on Wal-Mart shelves) is designed for the grown-ups who still relish Barbie. Many say Barbie is an antidote to adult woes, allowing them to recapture their youth and revisit simpler times.”(End of Excerpt) Read the rest here.
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