Aha! After years of searching, I think I found my life’s true calling today, and it’s not writing or even parenting, but, rather a strange combination of the two. For lack of a better word, I call it Barbie Scenario Building, and this is how it works. I play one round of very descriptive, narrative-heavy Barbies with Greta — every story has a villain, a nice arc for the male and female leads, and several colorful co-stars to keep things light and fun — and then I’m out. And if I did my work well and gave her a great story to play off of, she’ll start from the beginning and play it all over again by herself so I can, you know, do the dishes and go to the bathroom and stuff.
When it works, it’s awesome. She’s happy, I’m happy, the Barbies are happy. But, when my scenario building fails (hey, they can’t all be winners) well, then you actually have to sit down and play Barbies for a while. Don’t get me wrong, I am totally down with playing Barbies with Greta — in fact, if I could get paid for doing that all day, well, hell, we might just be able to buy that new Paul Frank Barbie bedroom set we’ve had our eyes on — but, sometimes, even Daddy needs a break.
So, that’s where Barbie Scenario Building comes in handy. Think up some cool, exciting situations, lay out a compelling, funny narrative and you’re good to go. Oh, I should add here that Greta already cooks up some rocking Barbie scenarios on her own. I’m not kidding, her imagination knows no bounds. Everything is always extremely descriptive and she’s already a pro at making up different voices too! Her Ken is hilarious, and her Robot Ken (a new addition to our troupe) is even better!
But when she’s tired, or sad, or simply finds that her Barbie play needs a little injection of juicy, high-octane, Hollywood drama, well, let’s just say she knows who to come to…