There’s a famous doll store near my house. *cough* American Girl Doll Store *cough* Tourists come in droves with their wide-eyed little daughters to this mecca on the Magnificent Mile. I’ve witnessed countless weary (wealthy) parents struggling under the weight of the signature red bags, while trying to hail cabs so they can collapse back at their hotels. The store is supposed to be a place where a little girl can have “real” experiences”—modeled, one supposes, on the “real experiences” she’ll have when she’s older. Tea parties. Hair salons. Ear piercings. You know, big stuff that a girl should practice and be exposed to before adulthood.
What about all the services the American Girl Doll Store is ignoring? The brand should recognize the untapped potential of the experiences they’re ignoring. And it’s too bad. There’s major bank to be made if they would think outside of the jewelry box.
How about these:
- Go to rehab with your doll! Right? Think of how many young girls will grow up to struggle with substance abuse. It’s not a joke. Have you read Jennifer Weiner’s newest book All Fall Down? The mom’s a pill popper of the highest order. Let’s prepare our daughters. Let’s get the American Girl people to offer rehab (think group therapy sessions ($150), AA meetings ($100), anger management classes ($130)) for our daughters and their dolls. They can always get their ears pierced afterwards.
- Botox and Lipo services! Ya’ll, let’s get real. Our cherub-faced little girls are going to grow up and want this no matter how many Dove commercials they see. It would be wrong to not prepare them to celebrate and honor these future milestones by letting them “practice” getting the fat sucked out of them ($500) or having bovine whatever-Botox-is pumped into them ($250).
- Divorce court proceedings! I probably don’t even have to sell this to you. Half of all marriages end in divorce, right? Think about it: more girls will get divorced than get their ears pierced. Let’s give our girls some real life practice standing before a family court judge to argue that she should have more alimony ($120) or full custody ($120) or that the Judge should ignore her extramarital affairs because her Baby Daddy cheated first ($200). These are real life situations just waiting for our daughters. AmIright?
- Unemployment office visit! In this economy, it would be wrong not to expose our daughters to this slice of bureaucratic life. She and her doll could fill out paperwork, then languish in a waiting room for over an hour before being informed that she’s not yet eligible because she filled out her paperwork incorrectly ($300). This office could be set up next door to a fake DMV, where a young girl and her matching doll can stand in line for hours only to be told that her proof of insurance is expired so she’ll have to come back tomorrow ($100).
All I’m saying is that they could make a mint, while giving our daughters some “real life” experiences. Sure blow outs and fake eyelashes make for great memories, but 12-step meetings and family court have their charms as well. Shouldn’t we share those with our precious little ones?