Sunday, September 30, 2007

Trolls and Other Dolls

When I was around 8 or 9 troll dolls were the big thing. They came in a variety of hair colors and sizes. I recently found one in a box - a forlorn leftover -still naked with disintegrating hair. It brought back a fond memory.
Out of great love and affection I remember giving my dad a miniature troll with red hair for good luck. I recall taking the troll to the basement where my dad and his friends were playing cards. When I put it on the table next to him he willingly and good-naturedly accepted my token. I believe it sat there on other occasions too.
Remembering that as an adult, I realized that my dad could have just as easily shooed me away, embarrassed or annoyed, but he didn't. He accepted my gift and therefore me. Obviously I never forgot that.
Trolls are so ugly they're cute, I guess. I liked ugly dolls. My favorite was Poor Pitiful Pearl (really) a plain, waif-like doll in tattered clothes. She still sits on my shelf. Another was Lonely Lisa. A shrink might have a field day with this. When I decided to teach children with special needs my mom commented that it seemed natural since I'd always sided with the "underdog".
PS - I never owned a Barbie - but I didn't escape those ever-present body image issues. Rats.

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