I Never Dreamed of this When I Was a Boy

Thursday, December 29, 2005

I Never Dreamed of this When I Was a Boy

The NY Times has a good article about the American Girl experience--and, for once, the consumer-hype word "experience" is apt. My kids (both the boy and the girls) have been into American Girls for years, and I reach the same reluctant conclusion as the Times reporter: sure, its gimmicky and really expensive and manipulative, but in the end the kids really do get a lot out of it.

I went to the Fifth Avenue American Girl Place at least two or three times on our recent trip back to New York, and it really is something that must be seen to be believed. We had lunch (with the dolls) at the restaurant, and the girls also had the dolls' hair done at the salon.

There was an awkward moment when my son wanted one of the kids' outfits to match his doll's clothing--he apparently didn't realize it was a girls' outfit, as is all of the American Girl clothing. But that's what you get for raising a kid in Greenwich Village and Holland--he also sometimes arrives at school with barrettes in his hair and a princess lunchbox in his hand. When Mrs. California said to him one day that he looked like a metrosexual that day, he responded: "That's a boy who is confused." Remarkably, he has yet to be beaten up. (Then again, he's only 4 years old).

One of my girls was quite pleased at the news that a Felicity TV movie was coming out, as she'd written an angry letter to American Girl a year or so ago (when she was all of six years old) complaining that they were neglecting Felicity and favoring Samantha unfairly. This may have had something to do with the fact that she had selected Felicity as her American Girl doll and her twin sister had chosen Samantha. But now Felicity has as many goodies as Samantha, if not more, so everyone is happy. Especially Mattel stockholders.

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