Thursday, August 4, 2011

Cowtown and the Creepiest. Doll. Ever.

Peek-a-boo, where are you?  Where are you hiding?  I'll find you...  Peek-a-boo, peek-a-boo, where...are...you?

When I was a child, my grandparents took me to the Cowtown Rodeo on a few occasions.  It was a magical, mythical place that catered to every child's deepest desires, from funnel cakes to cowboy hats, dolls and dress-up clothes.  My eyes would go wide with excitement as I spotted the giant cowboy standing watch over the property from the side of the road like a sentinel.  (Think Toy Story's Woody on steroids.)  It was so very, very far away, and on those evenings that I was treated to the joys of Cowtown, I would invariably fall asleep in the car on the oh-so-long ride home.  In actuality, it was only about an hour away, and was a giant flea market - a mecca of kitsch.  But that's what childhood fantasies are made of right?  My most prized Cowtown find was a suede cowboy hat with silver rivets, but I'm sure I came home with plenty of other treasures - crap to my parents, I'm sure.  And while all the years have made my memory a bit fuzzy and I can't be positive, I don't think I ever actually saw the rodeo itself, the event that Cowtown is so famous for.  

Not Woody, not my photo...
  I have driven past Cowtown many times since then, but have never stopped to take a look.  From the outside it doesn't seem like much has changed, and I usually went by on days when it was closed.  Saturday, as Samantha and I drove to my father's house, I decided to make a pitstop.  Just because.  She was in a happy mood, and I had some time to spare.



The place is huge.  It just so happened that we found a parking spot right away, right next to a stall selling dolls.  And not just any dolls...dolls that talk and sing and look like her (okay, other than the freaky, vacant, brown eyes).  Instantly suckered  drawn in, Samantha wouldn't let go of one particularly sweet one (I liked another one, but it spoke Spanish, so I put her back - can I just say how suspicious I always am of the voiceboxes of cheap, foreign, mass-produced dolls?).  Cute clothes, double-braids and pink, pink, pink, and that. was. that.  $15 (and a new pair of sunglasses from another stall) later, and baby was ours (after listening very carefully to everything she had to say...).  And can I tell you how eternally grateful I am that the freaking thing has an off-switch?  Seriously.  Whoa.  On the rest of the ride to the farm all I heard was her sing-song-y voice chanting, "Peek-a-boo, I love you, I can't see you, where are you?  Peek-a-boo, peek-a-boo, where...are...you?  I see you, do you see me?"  Okay, so the voice sounds innocent enough, but aren't the words reminiscent of a million different horror movies?  Peek-a-boo, I love you, where are you hiding, I'll find you!  (Omg, I'm in the freaking closet holding a knife, you crazy beeeyotch psycho-doll!)  And trust me, that's exactly where I will be if I so much as hear a peep out of that thing one night when I know full-well I've left the switch in the off position. 



Baby's clothes were off by the time we got to my dad's.  Me:  "Sammi, what are you doing?"  Sammi:  "Taking a clothes off!"  Me:  "Why?"  Sammi:  "Because...it's too hot!"  So it was, considering the poor thing was wearing a knit cap, a puffy vest, a turtleneck and boots.  What am I gonna say to that?

17 comments:

Alicia said...

awwww love girls with dolls :)

and totally agree to the "turn off buttons" lol, Elias had a music toy that didnt turn off, it was, crazy loud, and of course his favorite toy, did I mention he HAD it? lol

doozee said...

I want to go to that flea market! I LOVE FLEA MARKETS and that looks like a real winner. Freaky doll lady?!!! Woo-hoo!

They do scare me though. Talking dolls and maybe even dolls in general.

Jenny said...

Haha, Brad would LOVE Cow Town!!!

Anna said...

Made me laugh. My oldest daughter and I giggle LOUDLY when we walk down the doll aisle at Target, they KNOW you are there are instantly all start crying, moving, and talking. C.R.A.Z.Y. Grace has one that speaks in Spanish, flip the switch English, flip the switch both, and OFF. She spent 6 months on off. I put fresh batteries in and turned on two days ago, that and the stupid red cell phone we all detest that speaks spanish came out of the closet. I am feeling the need to donate them both to Goodwill. bad mommy. Baaaad mommy.

Carol N. said...

Becca, you're hilarious! Thanks for the chuckle :o)

Rochelle said...

You are crackers girl! Still laughing, hopefully the doll doesn't sleep walk. Hahaha

Chromosomally Enhanced said...

gotta love the talking dolls! they always kinds freak me out..and the ones that breast feed and pee are a little much! but maybe for Christmas! the doll is really cute and her Sammi's sunglasses are so cute and love the pose! smiles

Monique said...

I have to say the talking dolls freak me out. Too many horror movies in my youth. I am very thankful for off switches on toys. Those that do not get "lost" fast. I love the doll though. It looks really pretty.

stephanie said...

I'm dying laughing!! I just watched an old old episode of the Twilight Zone with a possessed doll that looked a lot like the one Sammi is holding. It was hysterical!she loved the little girl but not the dad. So she had to kill him. But she had the sweetest little voice box! LOL
Keep one eye open when you sleep!

Sammi looks beautiful!

Cory said...

I hate talking dolls! Ha! And that huge man in the start... those things are classic. We have one in our town too, and the reason his hands are positioned like that is cuz I bet he use to hold a muffler. Our still does. He is the Joor Muffler Man. There is only a few of them left around. :)

Becca said...

Cory's comment got me doing a bit of research, and I found this fascinating little tidbit on a website:

"My (Cowtown's owner) granddad bought it at an auction in the early 1970s," he said. "Our neighbors here are farmers, and they had a flatbed semi. They are the ones that hauled him in here. They had to hire a crane, or a boon truck to stand him up."

According to RoadsideAmerica.com's interview with former owner of International Fiberglass Steve Dashew, the muffler men were made to stand tall in front of businesses nationwide. Cousins of the cowboy exist from the Salsa Muffler Man in Malibu, Calif., sporting a poncho and sombrero; to an Indian Brave in Bemidji, Minn., a character in Seaside Heights, and the Canuck Coke Muffler Man in Iberville, P.Q., Canada, dressed in 1950s soda shop garb. All of the muffler men were derivatives of the same mold, Dashew told Roadside America, and most of the characters have the same hand positioning -- arms bent at the elbows with the left hand down, and the right up.

"(The cowboy) had a lariat rope in his hand, and people kept swinging on it, and they took the rope down," Harris said.

Other muffler men held axes, guns, helmets, flags and other accessories.


Thanks, Cory!!

Andi said...

Is the doll an Amazing Amanda? My mom gave Sarah Kate one a few years ago - we called it Chuckie. She was incredibly "high maintenance", too. On the second day, she was saying "I want to put my clothes on now, Mommy" or something like that. Sarah Kate pointed looked at the doll, then pointed to the clothes and said "They're over there."

Amanda didn't last long in the Sligh household. :)

Becca said...

LOL, Andi! No, it's not anything you'd typically find in a store - it's very cheaply mass-produced doll from somewhere foreign, made for selling at stalls like this one. But she is pretty!

Lacey said...

I think the doll is so cute! But then I'm dying to buy dolls instead of trucks! But if the doll ever made a peep out of the blue, it would be gone!

RobMonroe said...

I would not say creepy, but only because I like you! Ay Ay Ay! If it makes Sammi happy that's all that matters, right?

Crazy Beautiful Love said...

Man I love me some Sammi.
You know the BEST part of when they take the clothes off while you're driving the car?? When they start begging you to help them put the clothes BACK on...while you're driving a machine that weighs a ton! :)
-erin

Carrie said...

LOL--I am very particular about the dolls we can have...I think accidently watching some of a Chuckie movie when I was too young for it, left me a bit wary of those little fake people. A lot of them have sketchy eyes that wierd me out...I can't imagine being able to handle one that talks!!