I was browsing the web last night, something I do often, when I stumbled upon this ad for Golden Dream Fashion Face Barbie.
If you haven’t seen a Barbie Fashion face, the commercial should teach you everything you need to know. If you hate watching commercials, let me sum up what you are missing. Barbie Fashion Face is a toy head that kids can put make-up and do stuff with the hair. The most important detail about that sentence is the part about it being a head.
Both of my sisters had these toys when I was a kid and that was all fine and dandy until one night, while peering into their room and spotting them on my sisters’ dresser I yelled out in fear. I am not sure what I thought they were, but they looked like weird heads and at that age it was enough to scare me. It got everyone’s attention and that is where the fun began, at least for my sisters. For me it was a multi-month nightmare.
My sisters started putting these fashion faces in weird places that I liked to visit. Places like the cereal cabinet or (shudder) the basement. Each time I would see it, I would be surprised and would shriek and my sisters would quickly appear, laughing so hard sometimes that they fell on the floor. Even after being scolded by my Mom, their antics would continue.
This taught me a very important lesson. If something terrifies you and you want people to stop using it for that purpose, you need to stifle your reaction. For several weeks more I would continue to find the Barbie head in weird places and when I began to freak out, I would do so quietly. Eventually my sisters lost interest and the Barbie Fashion faces went away. They were already at an age where they didn’t play with them much. So when they went away, they went away for good. At least so I hoped.
Barbie had her last moment in the limelight a decade later when we were cleaning out the basement and I found these heads in a box labeled “sweaters”. I remember it so well because I jumped when I saw them. Which brought the whole thing back (the trauma and the laughter). It was with great satisfaction that I was finally able to throw those stupid heads in the trash, but I know that is not the end of it.
Those Barbie heads are sitting buried in some trash dump in New Jersey…waiting. One day, when I least expect it, they will come to finish their work and scare me one last time. I am sure as a fall to the floor, clutching my chest and passing from this world to the next from fright, I will hear my sisters giggling in the distance and I will know “they got me”.