Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Baby Alive is reALIVE

One Christmas, when I was about 7 or so, Baby Alive was on top of my Christmas wish list. Baby Alive was a doll that you could feed and then it would pee and poop. You looked in its diaper to find out which surprise Baby Alive had left you. Somehow this appealed to me, and I wanted Baby Alive more than anything else that year.

Much to the chagrin of my parents, Santa brought her to me. However, I quickly lost interest when I anxiously searched for realistic urine and feces in the doll's diaper and found only the water and yellow goo I had fed her only moments before. ("What? No poop?!") I think that's when I learned an important lesson about human anatomy. Also, Baby Alive smelled like plastic. She was really disappointing.

For some reason, Hasbro brought back the pissing and shitting doll for this past Christmas. In retrospect, I don't think Baby Alive is such a great product. Originally debuted in 1973, they seem to bring it back each generation, for a new group of parents to be disgusted anew, and for their innocent girls to demand it from them.

As one of those girls, I feel for the recipients of this year's Baby Alive scheme. Even though the 2008 model comes with ethnic options and green beans, they will inevitably be failed by the doll's lack of an intestinal and rectal system. If a girl unwrapped Baby Alive for Christmas, by this time, or perhaps in a few days, the gift will be abandoned. However, the girl will be endlessly amused by the word "poop" for many, many years.

On an unrelated note: Last night, in a random search, I learned there's a band named Poop. Listen on!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Who is: the Smoke Duke of Durham?

My new love: NYPL Digital Gallery

He is a nobleman who knows that mannish children love tobacco; not candy, cakes, or pie.

Friday, December 12, 2008

My common cold

I've had a bad cold this week. Tuesday was the first day of my (still short) professional working career that I've ever called in sick. I laid in bed and finally gave in to watching Sex & the City: the movie. It was even more vapid and materialistic than I thought it would be. I couldn't help but wonder, Carrie Bradshaw-style, could this movie have been released after we've declared a recession and articles are citing cutbacks at luxury labels? Maybe men are like bound-to-be-outdated movies, after all.

Anyhow. The cold hit my office pretty hard. Today, my first full day back (between going home early, staying home late, and taking a disorienting nap in the Relaxation Room aka quiet room with a couch), I found this article:

Hot Drinks Help Fight Cold and Flu

The research was done by Cardiff University's Centre for the Common Cold.

Published in the December 2008 edition of the clinical journal Rhinology, the research compared the effects of a commercially produced cordial apple and blackcurrant drink either 'hot' or at room temperature in 30 volunteers with common cold symptoms.

The Centre's Director, Professor Ron Eccles, is urging people suffering from colds or flu to have a hot drink to help reduce their symptoms.

Professor Eccles said: "It is surprising that this is the first scientific research on the benefit of a hot drink for treating cold and flu symptoms."

Seriously? A whole center focused on the common cold and this is all they've come up with? Hey, Professor Eccles, maybe there's been no scientific research because benefits of hot drink seemed like common sense?

I'm drinking some Lemon Lift right now, and I got started on it before I even saw the scientific proof that it might make me feel better. Sadly, I've also seen scientific papers saying that homemade chicken soup is indeed good for your cold (and the soul) because it's made with love. Science said that. My mom, on her frequent calls to check in, kept telling me she wished she could make me some chicken soup. "I feel like I'm in second grade," I told her.

As a mark of my growing up, my boyfriend brought me carrot ginger soup instead, because I said no chunks and he really likes carrots. My contribution to the meal was to be some toasted French bread - until I noticed smoke emanating from toaster and my toast seriously on fire. It was a two alarm toaster oven fire. Having spent all afternoon unable to get out of bed, I got an adrenaline surge which allowed me to jump up and down and yell, "Marshall! My toast is on fire!"

He ran to my aid and demanded a fire extinguisher. I got it out from under the sink and handed it to him. Then he stood trying to figure out how to work the thing while the toast continued to flame. "Marshall, decisive action!" I yelled, cowering behind him. I've seen many a cockroach scurry away while he considers what to do with his shoe and I hide under a blanket.

Eventually the toast burned down, due to lack of oxygen in the toaster, and then Marshall blew it out. The toast looked like it had burned through a few layers of bread epidermis. We had survived.

Monday, December 01, 2008

The circle is complete

I am, right now, eating a child's Halloween candy. The child, and the candy, belong to a coworker. As I picked through the five pound plastic bag of unwanted Whoppers, M&Ms, mini Tootsie Roll Pops, and High School Musical 3 milk chocolate flavored Strawberry Rockin Pop (artificially and confoundedly flavored) candy for a 3 Musketeers bar, an early and traumatic experience came to mind. My parents taking my pillowcase full of Halloween candy by force, to the office.

"Adults don't like candy!" I protested, gripping the bag into my body.

It was useless (and untrue). All my hard-earned, delicious loot went to the bland, tasteless place called "the office," realm of adults who don't earn candy for themselves, and don't appreciate it.

Years later, that candy has returned to me, in the office. And it's true, I don't appreciate it as much. But I still feel the sting of my candy being forcibly taken.

I told this to my boss. She said, "Oh, she [co-worker's daughter] doesn't care, she probably doesn't even want it."

"That's what my parents probably told their co-workers," I said. I felt eerie.