Monday, May 19, 2008

busy busy busy

ok. so i haven't gotten to post in forever. to make up for it, here's a funny anecdote that i hope you'll all enjoy; the girl who's putting together a zine about cabbage patch kids sure did. i promise that soon i'll be posting all of my would-be blogs about jury duty, getting engaged, my first open studios event, selling my first piece(s) of artwork, and teaching a classroom of brooklyn 10th graders how to stencil t-shirts. but for now:

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i was 7, about to turn 8; it was the winter of 1985. i desperately and wholeheartedly wanted a cabbage patch premie doll. how was i to live without it? but we weren't exactly well off, and even by that age i knew not to go around asking for presents that seemed fancy and expensive. plus, and this was really the kicker, my older sister was just too old for cabbage patch kids. she had just turned ten, after all, and double digits were big stuff. she thought they were stupid. so obviously i was stupid for wanting one - as far as she could see, this logic was rock solid, flawless.

but despite cool big sister taunting my desire won out, and i got up the courage to ask for my cabbage patch premie for christmas. my parents, of course, reacted like i had asked for a corvette, but they conceded to get me "the damn thing". they surprised me, though, when a few days later they came back to me for some specifics. (upon reflection, my father was probably drunk or stoned or both during this conversation.) turning slightly purple and trying not to explode with laughter, he asked me this: if i wanted a doll that was completely bald, or one that had a little hair. now in my mind, the choice was obvious. bald! bald all the way! babies are bald, you fool, don't you know?! but i was far too embarrassed to say so, especially with my parents on the brink of hysteria at my expense as they were. so, "a little bit of hair" is what escaped my shy and tortured little mouth. my stomach turned over and i knew i'd made an unforgivable error, but there was nothing to be done now. it was too late.

well, christmas came, and there under the tree was little mara kate, birth certificate from the cabbage patch and all. and there was the patch of hair, a perfectly round little circle of yarn loops in the center of her skull. the sight of the hair was so embarrassing that i considered cutting it off, but i'd learned my lesson in that department with barbies and my little ponies, and did not attempt a crop. i covered it instead with a makeshift bonnet, and my teddy bears were none the wiser.

so despite the hair, she was my best friend for a while. i even convinced my parents to get me real diapers to put on her. i knew of kids who had several cabbage patch kids, but as far as i was concerned it was a miracle that i'd managed to get the one, and i loved her and treated her as precious. more likely than not, with a minor search i would find her in my parents' attic, face dirty from our days playing in the florida sun climbing trees, catching tadpoles in the creek, and eating the petals of my mother's day lilies... meanwhile, my parents would be downstairs telling you how i "had to have that thing", and my sister would only be rolling her eyes.

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