Baby doctor

I pick up a Steffi-baby doctor while I am in Michigan.

For whom, you say?

For ME. I collect mother/baby images and statues. I have photographs, statues and toys, of mothers and babies and of pregnant women. Some family ones too. I am a Family Practice doctor, after all.

The Steffi is in with a bunch of Barbies. I am glad to see Barbie Princesses that are ethnically diverse. Next I hope the Disney will decide that adult women who are not virgins are human too, but judging by the way the second Frozen was received, I am not holding my breath. The only good Disney Queen is a dead one. The ones who survive, well, sex apparently turns them evil. It is pretty consistent in the Disney animated movies.

So, Steffi. I was thinking of Skipper, Barbie’s friend, but I realize that Steffi is not Skipper. Note that the baby has a facial rash. This apparently resolves if a cool washcloth is used on the baby’s face. I wish all babies were that easy to treat.

I look up Steffi on the internet and she is German. The packaging confirms this, with an instruction sheet in German and multiple other languages. I like Steffi a lot better than the Disney Princesses. She has tools: a stethoscope and a bottle and an otoscope and a thermometer and a rather mysterious looking caliper set. She has a green version of the white coat and a dress with hearts to reassure the babies. And LOOK! Steffi is wearing a MASK!

I love it. Up with Steffi, who can do things. I am not totally against princesses, I am just against the whole princesses are waiting for some prince to arrive and then their life will… well, they will die in childbirth if they remain nice and they will turn evil if they live. It seems like a poor choice of careers, honestly. My favorite princess is the Dealing with Dragons series, because that princess decides not to follow the usual princess path. The first thing she does is follow a frog’s advice and runs away. And the dragons are wonderful too.

For the Ragtag Daily Prompt: worry. I worry about the message of the Disney Princesses.

Yard Art

There is a fabulous garden in Portland, Oregon decorated with bowling balls.

i have decided to decorate with oxygen tanks.

if anyone has any oxygen paraphernalia, I want it, please.

This art installation is titled “Tethered”. Or possibly “Chained.”

Sink

Sink

I tried for a long time but now I am back in the water. My tail is back. I am so happy with it that for 20 minutes I just swim and dive and play with my own tail, chasing it. I am ready, strong again. I call my people and the waves.

I tried awfully hard on land. I hid the knife that my sisters bought. He married the other one and kept me in the little building in the garden. Everyone knew including her, it was normal for them. She didn’t enjoy his tidal pull, his pounding, the waves. It gave me so much joy. I sang without my tongue. My tongue was not cut out, that is a myth, one of those stories. It’s just that that is how they like the women: voiceless. Silent. Obedient. Admiring. Wounded: oh, he would kiss the poor feet, mangled jangled feet that I am forced to wear on land.

All for love. But: she had children. Three. And I watched as he treated the males as princes and ignored the girl. Mere princess, valueless, to be trained for a strategic wedding. Added value for the land, a pawn in training. She found me. And I pitied her and raised her and told her tales of my home, where people are people, not a gender. Not raised as a separate species.

She disobeyed and her father had her beaten, only where it would not show, and locked up. Bread and water. Cold and cruelty. And suddenly my love was slain. It was as if I was awakened and looked about and saw his cruelty to women and to his wife and his daughter and to me. I was a toy, an amusement, loved only if I kept silent and was crippled by my feet.

I rose and called the waves. The land flooded and the castle was broken and I reached the little princess in time to change her, to give her a tail too.

She is so surprised: in the water. She keeps trying to go up and breathe air and it chokes her. She swims in wild panicky circles, choking on the air, as I drag her out from the castle.

Now we are in the sea and the waters recede, full of broken bodies. Male bodies. I changed every woman I could find and the children if they were young enough and the girls. I called my family, my people. They came and each grabbed one, to drag towards the sea. The ex-humans fight and cough and wail and cry, but we drag them.

And now we sink, each holding one. We sink into the depths. They hold their breath, fighting, but we are so used to our tails and are stronger. And one by one they let the air go and breathe: and breathe the ocean. Breathe. We are entering the dark and the phosphorescent fishes come to see.

Soon we will be home. Just a little further into the ink black: sink.

 

I took the photograph in 2012 at the Pacific Northwest Synchronized Swimming Regionals. This is a young team routine with eight swimmers. These two are each lifted by three teammates, using only swimming, never touching bottom……