Saturday, February 20, 2010

The Girl Can't Help It

I just found out today, while doing some background research for this post, that not only is Peteena supposed to be wearing a green bikini and a sun hat, but she’s also supposed to have A TAIL—and a retractable one, at that!

I apologize. If you’ve never seen Peteena before, we probably need to start at the very beginning. She’s a doll. And she’s a poodle. And Hasbro made her in 1966.

Some of you may know about my early publishing days at DOLLS magazine, and my purchase of Peteena on eBay was a definite tip-of-the-hat to my career there. I’m actually really uncomfortable around dolls (it’s like they absorb the sad, scary secrets of their owners, and their heads can swivel!), but I always liked vintage Barbies—the true tough broad, circa 1959, not the airhead she turned into—and Peteena was created in the fashion doll tradition. (Oh yeah, Mod Hair Ken is pretty hot, too.)

Anyway, if you want to know more about Peteena, this is a pretty funny site. I personally don’t think she’s as big a b*tch as portrayed here, but heck, just look at her.

Music to feed your inner Peteena
Little Richard, The Girl Can’t Help It
Look at Little Richard Penniman. Look at Peteena. Now look at Little Richard again. Great gosh a’mighty!

Nick Lowe, Switchboard Susan
Oh, I can totally imagine Peteena as the canine version of the vamp in this song. I always imagined her (Susan, that is) with a headset, of course, wearing a very tight, sexy librarian-esque orange ribbed turtleneck sweater. Well, not quite orange, but rust. And just think, Peteena-as-Susan could probably connect multiple calls at once—one per paw, while the tail does triple duty at a switchboard behind her. (Oh wait, that’s assuming her tail’s prehensile, not retractable. Oh wait, that’s assuming the telephone company only hired Peteenas who hadn’t misplaced their tails.)

P.S. Learn more: No one writes about Nick Lowe better than Holly over at The Song In My Head Today.


  1. I love, love, love, your post. And I remember learning about Peteena back at DOLLS magazine, too. She gives new meaning to the "dog eat dog" fashion business. You are a very funny and insightful writer, Pune. I enjoyed this thoroughly.

    Regarding Nick Lowe, I actually met him in front of St. Patrick's Cathedral in NYC back in the 1980s. He was looking for an E.J. Korvette's department store because he was told they had interesting cheap discount albums. I walked with him for about six blocks and then parted ways. True story! He seemed very kind, and not cruel at all. I think he was married to Carlene Carter at the time. (She was Johnny Cash's stepdaughter.)

    Keep up the good work, and stay away from pull-string talking dolls. They give a lot of people the "willies."

  2. I don't know how I lived without knowing about Peteena. My life has changed forever.

    You're right, Mod Hair Ken IS pretty hot!

    I can't wait to read about more treasures in your house..this blog is a total journey into your world!