I was listening to the kids talking about robotic toys while I was ironing. They’d seen some toy cats and dogs the other day at Toys R Us, and made the comment that robotic toys were new.
“Uh, no, new to YOU maybe, but robot type toys have been around a while. I even had a couple of dolls when I was little that were robotic.”
Thankfully they spared me the “Wow, that long ago?!” lines.
So, since I was ironing, I told them about one of my favorite dolls that I got when I was 6 or 7, called “Bizzie Lizzie.” She came with a little iron and ironing board, feather duster, and vacuum. I think it must have been my mother’s hope to inspire me to clean my “pigsty” of a room. Do mothers ever use any other phrase to describe their kid’s bedroom? Hmm. I remember her screaming at me when I was little, “If you don’t learn to clean up this mess, who’s going to clean it when you’re out on your own?!” My nonchalant answer back then was, “The maid!” I might have been slapped for that one but I can’t recall.
I spent a lot of happy hours with Lizzie. She had long golden pony tails that came out of her head – they were just plugged in. The plug ends looked like the ends of shoelaces. My favorite thing to play with was the feather duster because that really “worked,” being simply a miniaturized version of a regular feather duster. The iron and vacuum, not so much. Mostly, she was the giant maid that came in to clean Barbie’s Townhouse. Because Barbie was the ruler of my magical little play world, and more than anything else I wanted to grow up and be just like her. Yes, I did have a ton of Barbie shoes. And boots!
But I loved Lizzie for a time.
And the irony struck me, as I stood there ironing, that in a few ways, I ended up much like Bizzie Lizzie and not nearly as much Barbie as I’d thought I would.
Lizzie’s reality crashed my Barbie dreams I suppose. Oh well. I didn’t really want to be a Malibu beach bum anyway. I burn too easily.