New Cabbage Patch dolls in the making? A sweet-faced Bernie? A cutie-pie Ruthie?
Seems like only yesterday, we were all absorbed with the Bernie and Ruthie Madoff saga.
First, there was the exposure of the Ponzi scheme itself. Then there was the who-knew-what-when speculation. Then there was Bernie’s arrest and imprisonment. Followed by Ruthie’s eviction from the family home(s). And, of course the auction of all the Madoffs’ ill-gotten not-so-goods.
But, other than the blip on the Madoff scheme about Bernie getting knocked around a bit in the stir for owing a fellow con a bit of dough, there’s been precious little Madoff news lately. It’s a wonder we’ve all survived the drought.
But last week brought the cheering news (from that fab source, The NY Post) that the Madoff flat on East 64th Street has been bought by Alfred Kahn, the CEO of 4KidsEntertainment, an outfit that markets stuff to the little ones – and the ‘marketing genius’ who, in the 1980’s, got people to stand in line for hours, and knock little old ladies to the ground, in order to get their hands on a Cabbage Patch Kid to adopt.
Personally, while I never owned or bought on, I did enjoy checking out their tags, or adoption papers, or whatever you called them, hoping to find one that shared a birthday or name with me.
Alas, I never found a birthday-mate, and most of the names were more exotic than mine. Annabelle Zenobia. Damian Carlo.
Cabbage Patch Kids are still around and, however cranky you want to be about them – they’re “adoptionist”, or whatever – they are pretty wholesome, and most people I know would rather have their kids and grandkids whining for a nice cuddly Cabbage Patcher, than begging to go to the mall and have permanent eye-liner applied.
These days, if I were in the market for a Cabbage Patch doll, I wouldn’t have to worry about lucking into a stuffed Maureen Elizabeth with a December 1 birthday. Like so many other goods, your doll can now be customized to meet your whims. Order away, and bring home the baby with the name and birthday of your choice.
Which is, I guess, better than getting stuck with a doll named Alfred.
Still, I would hope that Mr.. Kahn makes sure that, for those who want to be surprised by their newbie and take whatever name it comes with, there are Bernie and Ruthie dolls out there. Coming up with a Bernie should be pretty darned easy, given that there’s model that rather resembles him already, no? Only instead of wearing a sailor suit, the Bernie should have on an orange prison jumpsuit. (Man, if I could only photoshop, I could deck this baby out in prison garb pretty darned quick.) As for the Ruthie doll, it should have on an outfit that still has a price tag attached. The price should be below $100, because last time we heard anything about poor Ruthie, it was that she was going to have to report to some overseer every time she spent more than a hundred bucks on anything.
I also recommend a CPK doll named Ponzi, which is kind of a cute, no?
And one named Morgan, since that’s the name that one of Bernie and Ruth’s daughters-in-law petitioned the court to change hers (and that or her children) to. I can completely sympathize with her desire to protect her children from the slings and arrows that will come their way because they’re named Madoff. It’s an uncommon enough name, and the negative association, especially in NYC, will likely linger for years. But isn’t Morgan an odd pick if you don’t want to draw attention to yourself? Sure, it’s a common enough surname, but it’s also one that’s associated with finance. (JP Morgan, Morgan Stanley…) If she needs to keep with an “M” name because she wants to hang on to the monogrammed sheets – and who can blame her there: they probably have a 5,000 thread count – there are plenty of neutral “M” names – Madison, Monroe, Mercer, Mann, Morrow.
Sure, these names might also elicit questions: any relation to James Madison, Marilyn Monroe, Johnny Mercer, Thomas Mann, or Vic Morrow (the actor who was decapitated by a helicopter rotor while on location)?
But Morgan? Any relation to the captain of finance with the somewhat dubious reputation? Hmmmmm. I don’t think that daughter-in-law thought that one through all the way.
Back to the Cabbage Patch fortune’s purchase of the Madoff apartment.
It is kind of fitting that someone who made his money in part by inciting a panic of sorts – gotta get me one of them Cabbage Patch Kids or my child will never forgive me, bless her greedy, whining, easily targeted by marketing heart – is replacing a fellow who set off a panic that, while it may have not directly involved as many people, surely involved a lot more money.
Ah, the world moves in a wondrously curious and interesting way, doesn’t it? Especially when those Madoffs are involved.