The Big Scoop: Mattel Recalls Pooping Barbie Dog

Though Ernestine may not be getting a pony for Christmas, there’s a distinct possibility that she’ll find a pooping dog under the tree this year:

The only problem is that the Consumer Product Safety Commission has reported that a small magnet in Barbie’s pooper scooper could come loose and pose a choking hazard to small children, thus forcing Mattel to recall the doll, her dog, and his magnetic poop.

What’s especially amazing about the recall is that the CPSC estimated that about 683,000 of the play sets were in circulation at the time — which means that someone at Mattel gave the go-ahead on the pooping dog toy and had over half-million of them made. What’s even more amazing is that the CPSC reports three incidents of the magnet coming loose — which means that three people actually bought Barbie’s fake pooping dog.*

Photo courtesy of Consumer Product Safety Commission.

The good news, however, is that the problem has since been rectified. According to the CPSC, the recall only involves “Barbie and Tanner™ play sets — model numbers J9472 and J9560. The toys include a ‘scooper’ accessory with a magnetic end. Recalled scoopers have a visible, silver colored, disc-shaped magnet on the end of the scooper.” Fortunately, the report goes on to explain that “Scoopers with a white material covering the magnet and products manufactured after January 31, 2007 are not recalled.”

One additional thing that’s worth noting, however, is that the CPSC has not said a word about the psychological damage this toy might cause as a result of glamorizing poop scooping. Needless to say, we’ve all heard countless experts tell us that Barbie’s unrealistic proportions have a tendency to give young children odd ideas about what women’s bodies should look like — thus leading to everything from eating disorders to plastic surgery fetishes.

Along similar lines, it’s not hard to imagine a world in the not too distant future where kids everywhere start to stake out dog parks for a chance to scoop some strange dog’s poop. Why? Because they saw Barbie doing it. Is this future we want for America? More to the point, is this the future we want for our kids? I, for one, don’t think so. But I don’t have any better ideas for Ernestine’s Christmas gift, so it’ll just have to do.

* Yes, this post is just an excuse for me to write “poop” a lot.

Pulitzer Prize!

While we’re on the subject of awards, here’s some incredibly lowbrow toilet humor that’s bound to appeal to literary types:

  • First, as grandiosely as possible, say, “Did I tell you about my Pulitzer Prize?”
  • Wait for someone to say, “No! Please, tell me about your Pulitzer Prize!”
  • Hold out your index finger.
  • Say, “Pull it!”
  • When the person pulls your finger, fart proudly and say, “Surprise!”

To ensure maximum impact, eat plenty of beans and raw vegetables an hour before attempting this joke.

Bad Uncle Award!

The awards keep coming! Yesterday, it was the Versatile Blogger Award, and today it’s the Bad Uncle Award. The irony is that I won it by trying to be a good uncle…

With the holidays approaching, I know that my sister has her hands full with her two kids, Ernestine and Paulo,* so I figured I’d give her a hand. Ernestine, who is in the second year of her terrible twos, has been especially rambunctious since her brother Paulo was born this past summer. (Or spring. I forget the exact details.)

But the point is that Ernestine has been doing some very bad things lately, like stealing cars and tagging people’s garages with graffiti. At the same time, Ernestine still believes in Santa Claus — and she really, really wants a pony for Christmas. To get her to behave, my sister placed an Elf on the Shelf on the shelf in Ernestine’s bedroom. Taking this strategy a step further, I called my sister’s house and asked to speak to my niece.

“Why?” my sister said, as I’d never expressed an interest in speaking to Ernestine before.

“Trust me,” I said. “I’m going to pretend to be Santa Claus. It’ll be great.”

“Okay,” my sister said, barely concealing her skepticism.

“Hello?” Ernestine said when she picked up the phone.

“Ho! Ho! Ho!” I said in my holliest, jolliest voice. “Is this Ernestine?”

“Yes,” Ernestine said.

“Do you know who this is?”

“Santa?” Ernestine said.

“Ho! Ho! Ho!” I said. “That’s right! It’s Santa Claus! I’m just calling to say that I was going to bring you a pony this year, but your Elf on the Shelf tells me you’ve been a bad little girl, so I had to put you on the naughty list. There’s always next year, I suppose, but this year, it just isn’t happening. I’m sure you understand. Ho! Ho! Ho! Goodbye.”

I’d barely hung up the phone when my sister called back — and she was angry.

“What did you say to her?” my sister demanded.

“Nothing,” I said. “I mean, I told her I was Santa Claus.”

“I know that,” my sister shouted over Ernestine’s tears. “Why is she crying?”

“I told her she wasn’t getting a pony,” I said. “Is that wrong? Is she getting a pony? Because from what I’ve seen, she doesn’t deserve a pony.”

“No,” my sister said. “She’s not getting a pony.”

Upon hearing her mother vehemently confirm Santa’s prediction, Ernestine went into hysterics.

“So what’s the problem?” I asked.

But my sister had already hung up on me.

Which means I’ll have to come up with a really good Krampus costume to work my way back into her good graces in time for Christmas.

*Names have been changed to protect the innocent. And to protect Ernestine.