Malibu, California's most fashionable resident is moving. Today, Barbie officially put her coastal Dreamhouse on the market and is packing up her three-story pink palace.... Over the next few months, Barbie will embark on a worldwide tour to find a new dream home.
—Mattel press release, Feb. 6
MJ@matteldesign: OK, I can't believe they're all, "OK, come up with a new Barbie, and make her totally cool, oh, only, she can't live in Malibu, for no reason."
PM@matteldesign: Right? OK, sorry, Barbie just IS Malibu. She loves her tiny pink surfboard and to lay on top of Ken in a bikini on her tiny pink towel!
MJ: Well. Whatevs. :-) Just so you know, this list of cities they gave us is TOTALLY RANDOM. K here we go. Boston. Boston Barbie!
PM: OK. I went to Boston once. Ken has to be named Kevin. And he has to be really mean.
MJ: LOL. That's sad. No to Boston Barbie. Chicago Barbie.
PM: You're going to think this is stupid, but I think of Boston and Chicago as the same place.
MJ: I think that's pretty normal. Philadelphia Barbie.
PM: Doesn't Philadelphia Barbie already live in New Jersey and really just want move to New York?
MJ: Probably. New York Barbie. She's … a writer?
PM: Too depressing. She's ... a publicist!
MJ: Yeah, a really smart book publicist! She wears glasses and she's super-opinionated but not mean.
PM: And there's a little pink subway, sold separately!
MJ: Mmm, the branding guidelines say, "Barbie's transportation accessories must be limited to privately owned motor vehicles."
PM: We could give her a Zipcar.
MJ: But don't you sometimes go to get your Zipcar and you're all, "But where is it?" When a toy has a car it should always be available.
MJ: What about Seattle Barbie? She's … an environmentalist?
PM: Yes! Seattle Barbie is fighting to save sea otters!
MJ: She has a pink raincoat. And a pet otter and a little pink otter cage.
PM: OK, which of us is going to say "little pink otter cage" in our meeting? Because I am not. Next?
MJ: Toronto Barbie.
MJ: I'm serious. They're also thinking about Vancouver Barbie.
PM: I just don't think Canada is fun enough for Barbie.
MJ: OMG OMG I was going to say that too but I literally felt so bad. OK. Next. Bentonville Barbie? Bentonville is in … Arkansas?
PM: Oh, yeah, I was asking that weird IT guy Justin about this. BRB … He said: "Bentonville Barbie comes wearing her Wal-Mart uniform. She's carrying a Barbie-sized application for Obamacare. You pull a cord on her back and she says, 'I can't believe I'm finally going to the doctor for the first time in my life.'"
PM: Right??? Uh, Justin, what are you even TALKING about?
MJ: OK. Minneapolis Barbie.
MJ: Looking it up. Check this out: "Minneapolis/St. Paul is the 16th-largest city in America."
PM: Weird. Well. I can't make up a Barbie from someplace I literally just heard about. I swear to God I'll come up with something for the next one.
MJ: Dallas Barbie.
PM: Oh right! I asked my stepmom — she went there once. She said: "Either a cheerleader, a cardiologist's wife or works in HR at an oil company."
MJ: Your stepmom knows a lot about Dallas!!!
PM: I think she was just kind of wasted. LOL.
MJ: LOL. Next is Phoenix Barbie.
PM: I only know one thing about Phoenix — people burn their hands on car doors there. I saw it on Arrested Development LOL.
MJ: OK, but … sorry, but that just makes me think of why Malibu Barbie was so good. I mean, the beach …
PM: I know. The beach! Malibu Barbie was so much easier!
We can't be like, "OK, this is Phoenix Barbie …"
MJ: "... and every day what she does is she burns her hand on a car door." Right?
PM: Ugh. We're almost at the end of the list of cities on her tour. San Francisco Barbie.
MJ: Barbie lives in a freezing cold Victorian? And knows lots of boring stuff about computers? And wears fleece? Or she's a lesbian who rides a bike everywhere?
PM: There's only one left.
Los Angeles Barbie.
MJ: I have ideas for this one!
PM: :-) :-) :-)
MJ: Malibu Barbie was Westside Barbie, right? So. This is Eastside Barbie. She comes dressed in a short calico dress and scuffed vinyl knee-high boots. She's got pink ombre hair.
PM: Yeah, and like, one side is shaved. She's got the total grubby kitten look. I wonder if they can make Barbie slouch a little? Instead of a boyfriend she gets a new friend who is …
MJ: I actually feel OK about this one!
PM: I can't believe we couldn't come up with anything and for this one we came up with so much.
MJ: I can. I mean, we just needed to finally picture Barbie in a place that was like, normal!
Sarah Miller is the author of the novels "Inside the Mind of Gideon Rayburn" and "The Other Girl." She lives in Nevada City, Calif.