If you've been in the doll hobby long enough you'll eventually have at least one story that will make your friends either laugh or raise an eyebrow. I've got several, so I think I'll waste a few moments of everyone's time and share my moments of dolly humor.
When my sister was a toddler she had a peculiar way of treating her Barbie dolls. Within five minutes of opening the box she'd disrobe the doll and...leave it that way! Such behavior amused our parents and annoyed me, because even back then the clothes were the best part of the doll. We never learned my sister's reasoning behind this until an incident involving Sonja, my Sun Jewel Teresa.
Dolly Dress Discussion I spoke of Sonja losing her swimsuit in a humorous manner, and this is how it happened. My sister was playing with the doll on a Saturday morning while Mama did laundry and Daddy and I watched a little TV. As small children often do, my sister suddenly lost interest in Sonja and shifted her attention to some other play item. She peeled Sonja's swimsuit off, tossed the suit in one direction, tossed the doll in another direction, and tore out of the room. Daddy was stunned.
"Hey, go over and get that doll! Bring her and that swimsuit here!" he said. I did as instructed. Daddy spent the next few minutes dressing Sonja and setting her right, and set her on the coffee table. A few minutes later my sister came back into the room, saw her doll redressed, and pitched a minor fit. She proceeded to disrobe Sonja a second time, then ran out of the room again.
"That little turd!" Daddy exclaimed, and he once again made Sonja look decent. Soon after my sister returned, and upon seeing Sonja dressed again she flopped onto the floor and threw a fill-tilt tantrum.
"What in the world is the matter?" Daddy demanded, bemused by this sudden tizzy.
"WANT HER TO BE SMOOF!!!" my sister shrieked, and she pulled off Sonja's swimsuit again and stormed out of the room. We didn't try to dress the doll again, and the swimsuit eventually vanished. It turned out that "smoof" was my sister's word for "smooth," and in this case "smooth" meant butt naked. My sister never explained why she preferred her doll's "smoof" despite our repeated asking, and we eventually chalked it up to her toddler mind working in a very unusual way. This story sets the stage for story two.
A month or so passed, and a few more dolls came into the house, some of which (oddly enough) were for me. I wasn't a dolly lover during my early childhood, but I did get a few that I had to keep up out of my sister's reach, lest they suddenly become "smoof." Anyway, one day my sister got this doll.
"WANT HER TO BE SMOOF!!! SHE WON'T GET SMOOF!!!" my sister bellowed. Daddy laughed at such an idea and gently explained that not all Barbie dolls could get "smoof."
"I DON'T LIKE THAT DOLL!!!" my sister wailed, and she made such a fuss that Mama put her to bed early. When my bedtime came, about an hour and a half later, I could still hear her raising Cain over that doll.
This happened when I was...oh, I'd say about eleven. In one of my parents' less-than-bright ideas my sister and I were packed into a single room. Supposedly it was for security reasons, but I think it was really so Daddy could have a man cave. That got annoying after awhile, but that's beside the point. At some time during the beginning of this arrangement I obtained my aunt's Chatty Cathy.
Time passed, and Sister and I continued sharing a room. Cathy occupied the tallest shelf in the room, flanked by our American Girls (just Felicity and Molly at the time), and their shelf was right in front of a window. Every time light came through that window it made the stereotypical big shadows that one sees in horror movies, so the setting was perfect. On one particular weekend a middle-of-the-night thunderstorm came through, one of those that comes out of nowhere during warm weather and scares the crap out of small children with overactive imaginations. I was old enough at that time to know that not all thunderstorms spawned tornadoes...but my sister wasn't, and I could hear her thrashing about in the bed. Remembering that Cathy was still on the top of the shelf, lording over the both of us, I lay very still in my bed and growled in my best June-Foray-meets-Freddie-Krueger voice, "WILL YOU PLAY WITH ME???"
Sister gasped in horror. "Was that you?" she asked in a small, frightened voice. Being the evil sister that I am, I lay completely still, not letting on that anything was out of the ordinary. About five minutes passed and she lay down. Still thirsting for a good prank I continued my charade, this time growling "I KNOW WHERE YOU LIVE!" Sister gasped again and whimpered for awhile, while I went back to sleep.
I learned much, much later (about ten years after the fact) that my prank had some very long-lasting consequences. Sister informed me that she cried under the cover for the rest of the night, and she NEVER liked dolls again. At Christmas she received another American Girl doll (Samantha that time), and she never once played with her. Nor did she want to play dolls with me, especially if I brought along the possessed Chatty Cathy. Within a year of that prank she'd given me both Samantha and Molly, stating that she wanted nothing more to do with them, and she's hated dolls ever since. On a very recent visit home she ventured back into my spare bedroom where I keep my inanimate crew, and her response to the sight was "Dammit, that's a lot of dolls." I'm mean, you say? Read the next story, which is a classic "God'll getcha for that" moment.
This story took place about five years ago. By this time I'd extended my collection to include a few composition dolls, including Tommy and Sally (better known as the Creepy Babies)...
This happened about a year ago, when I was new to the ball-jointed doll hobby and when Johnny was the only one I had. I wagged him around with me everywhere, so pleased was I to have my first BJD, and one of the places we often went was my grandmother's place. To set the scene, here's what Johnny was wearing on the evening this story took place. Normally his glasses are on straight; I must've knocked them sideways when I set the picture up.
"I'll get my butt out of your way in a minute," I reassured him.
"Oh, don't mind me," Second Uncle responded. "I'm just sitting here looking at your Barbie."
"Oh, he's not a Barbie," I casually responded.
"He?" came the shocked reply.
Third time wasn't the charm, either. I constantly have to remind Second Uncle that Johnny and his friend Alistair are boys. I'll admit that they both look a little girly when they're wearing yukata, but this happens even when they're NOT in yukata!
On the other hand, Second Uncle has been very positive about the hobby. Grandma is humorously negative, reserving a special vitriol for Johnny's unorthodox wig. One evening she glanced over at the doll, turned to Second Uncle, and said "Don't you think he's the ugliest thing?"
"No, I think he's kinda neat!" Second Uncle responded. That one time he remembered that Johnny is a he. Undeterred, Grandma begged me to "get that poor doll a new wig!" Johnny's character is supposed to have uncombable hair syndrome, hence my admittedly odd choice for a wig and my refusal to change it.
This one is the most recent, and...let's just say that I never expected to have to yell something this weird at one of my cats. I was putting the Little Miss Revlon review together when this incident happened. Remember that one?
"HEY!!! You gimmie back those panties!" I yelped. It took a short chase around the kitchen table, but I got the panties back, and the petticoat that Lily had also absconded with. Life with cats is rarely dull, but that's one thing I NEVER dreamed I'd have to say to Lily!
Soooo...do any of y'all have any good stories? Share your memories.