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Is Barbie Headed for Early Retirement?


Barbara Millicent Roberts stood her ground in the face of less-than-classy  rivals before, but some analysts say the 53-year-old doll may need to up her game to stay in fashion.

Mattel’s first quarter earnings plunged 53%, the toymaker reported Monday, and gross sales of Barbie fell 6% during that period in contrast to a 4% rise in sales for American Girl Brands. The iconic doll’s fortunes see-sawed in recent years, leading some analysts to question whether she needs another makeover. (She already received a facelift in 2009 for her 50th birthday.) “One of the great paradoxes of branding is that you must keep changing to remain consistent,” says Derrick Daye, managing partner at LA-based consultancy The Blake Project, “and Mattel appears to be losing the struggle to keep Barbie contemporary.”

Barbie faces competition from MGA Entertainment’s leopard print-clad Bratz  and outdoorsy Moxie Girlz,  and even Mattel’s less coiffed, freckle-faced American Girl dolls and Monster High dolls. The first three have plumper figures than Barbie’s svelte frame. Monster High is based on famous monsters and capitalizes on books, movies and TV shows like “Twilight” and “Vampire Diaries.” Jim Silver, editor-in-chief of, says, “Instead of playing with Barbie, a lot of six year olds are playing with Monster High.” But he says Barbie is still the “queen” of the 3-, 4- and 5-year-old age group. Mattel spokesman Alan Hilowitz says Barbie remains “culturally relevant” and aspirational with an “I Can Be… President” doll coming in July with a dress by Chris Benz, who has designed for Michelle Obama.

That said, Barbie has also been slower than other toymakers to tackle some social issues herself. In February, MGA released bald versions (pdf) of its Bratz and Moxie Girlz dolls after social networking pages called for toymakers to create hairless dolls to support children with cancer. MGA will donate $1 from every doll to the City of Hope charity for cancer research. Mattel responded last week to a “Beautiful and Bald Barbie” Facebook page – which has nearly 160,000 likes – by distributing a bald “Friend of Barbie” rather than actual official Barbie doll to children’s hospitals in early 2013 with accessories like wigs, hats and scarves. “We made the decision not to sell these dolls at retail stores and profit from them,” Hilowitz says.

Barbie does have a few quick wardrobe changes planned for 2012. “Barbie continues to be aspirational, as only she can be,” Hilowitz says. In July, there will be a “Hunger Games” Barbie and a Barbie Photo Fashion doll with a fully functioning digital camera in the Fall. But, analysts say, she’s a prisoner of the past. “A main problem for Barbie is that she was created in the mold of the 50s archetypal, idealized woman: blonde, blue-eyed and impossibly slim,” Daye says. Independent retail analyst Jeff Green says that regardless of how fast Barbie changes, the world will change faster. He’s not convinced by her planned wardrobe changes. “She’s pretty, sure, but she isn’t high-tech enough,” he says. “She is to toys what Kodak is to outdated photographic technology.”


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    • By WebOsPublisher

      Alexandra’s Journal » Blog Archive » ACCESS CONSCIOUSNESS is the way to be~
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      Alexandra’s Journal
      My Conscious Way Of Being
      ACCESS CONSCIOUSNESS is the way to be~
      I hope your thirsty my dear friends of AQUAMANTRA. I have so many goodies to share with you in this newsletter, that you are going to want to keep this one for a while! I am grateful for your patience with me, as this newsletter is a few months behind… as with anything, as our time speeds up so does the ability to accomplish everything we used to be able to do. Now we have to be more selective about what our choices are. I choose to only write to you with impactful information that can help you, not just to get our name out there with another email for your in-box, believe me when I say I appreciate a good newsletter, worth reading.
      This newsletter is divinely paramount because recently I attended what I am calling my break through in the ability to access consciousness and for those of you that know my story, I’ve done a lot of exploring… and now, I’m going to share with you how it will get better for all of us. First, I want to share with all of our authentic supporters, fans and lifestyle members that we have answered the call and if you haven’t heard already we are going to be releasing the first ever in the world, 100% biodegradable and recyclable bottles coming sometime in May. Last year I made a statement to myself that I wanted AQUAMANTRA to be the first company to release these bottles. I sent the thought out, went on my quest and then lost sight of it a bit to focus on which raises money for malnourished children in the U.S. Around January I was told to contact a company called ENSO Bottles through someone in our company. Simultaneously, ENSO found AQUAMANTRA in Arizona and bought a bottle, wanting to align with us excited by the mission and direction of our company and voila (wink, wink)… we are the first company to release to the public and in Whole Foods, the bottle.
      If you click here or the big green icons on our homepage, you’ll learn about the bottles and see videos with me talking about it. We are so unbelievably excited to finally be the best bottle of consciousness we can be! Tell your friends and share the news, support our direction by buying AQUAMANTRA in a local store near you. What else is possible I ask you?
      Well… at the conscious life expo this March, we had the extreme pleasure of interacting with a couple of amazing ladies by the name of Summer and Rikka. They were doing what is called “bars” on people for donation, which required me to lie down on a massage table while they put their hands on my head for about 15-30 minutes, a highly pleasurable experience. When I got up, I was higher than a kite in a most enjoyable way, I almost couldn’t even complete a sentence… the space I was in was amazing and I really didn’t want to come back down to this ‘reality’ if you will… but when I did, one of the guys working the booth said, “Did you like it?” my mouth opened, I’m not quite sure if anything came out, it was open like you do when you’re in a positive outrageous shock, “uh…yeah!” I finally said with super duper enthusiasm… “More, more!” I was thinking and he said, okay say this then… “How does it get better than this?” and I knew he meant ask that question, but didn’t really grasp what it meant. Later that week, I got a message from Rikka and Summer (from$s=564$e=001a1COK96FoWq6j4alWfgd0jfFUUeDkJWIxUbATdyyWAXQKBGsJgF9E7qJQWcCkmJFZbXXfxqGe3pAcsZkKm-WBO-9HHBQ638K5IIya6Sebr-EMB95Cild8Q_OSt4apQbH) that in Santa Barbara they were having a one night workshop called Right Body. Now I live about 4 hours away, and yet somehow I made a good enough reason for me to get up to that class and what I learned to start there inched me closer to opening up my portal of greatness, which I will share with you. I learned about how our bodies have their own consciousness, like my new puppy Layla
      and I would never think ill or wrong of her if she wasn’t thin enough or too fat, or ate a plastic bottle, so why do I think that of my own body? And when I judge my body I am actually solidifying that information! When we judge we actually collapse the energetic flow to us. So when I say I don’t like that pudgey spot, I’m actually telling my body that the pudgey spot exists, keep it and don’t let go! Holy cow… are you kidding! I also learned the Mantra of ACCESS which is to say as often as you can, “ALL OF LIFE COMES TO ME WITH EASE AND JOY AND GLORY” and by God, the universe and source energy – ain’t that the truth! So I tested it out along with the phrase “How does it get better than this?” and I am uber excited to share with you my results. I took my new tools to the Natural Products Expo West Show in Anaheim, where all the who’s who of natural and organic products show up, and every where I went I shared my new found tools… If you ask a question of the universe, it has to answer! If I ask it “what else is possible?” it has to answer and it opens the flow of energy up. If we answer our own questions, we are actually shutting down the flow of energy. To show this point do this, right now… say ” I have always had more money than I know what to do with” which has been a mantra I’ve been saying for some time now. Feel the energy of that statement, we want it to exist and yet, it doesn’t feel as solid or real because we are knowing it doesn’t exist. Now: Say, “what would it look like if I had more money than I know what to do with?” how does that feel? Do you see how that opens up the flow of energy? And “what would it look like if all my bills were paid in full?” How awesome would that be? And “what would it look like if I had enough money to take all my friends on vacation?” etc, etc… I got a little carried away and that is the point, you start to get excited about the possibility of what is coming, the universe can answer… although you don’t have to answer those questions… answering closes the flow, you’re job is to keep asking “What else is possible?” Are we having fun yet? I went to the show and whether I was at my booth or walking the floor, I was asking “how does it get better than this?” and when I thought to myself, I need to find someone who makes organic paper hang tags for my new ENSO bottles I remembered and said, ” ALL OF LIFE COMES TO ME WITH EASE AND JOY AND GLORY” and I’m not kidding when I say the next day, as I’m running out of time to go find such a company, I was told a woman was waiting to speak to me. She says I have organic paper supplies and would like to talk with you, I almost dismissed her saying I didn’t need her supplies at this time and she opened her display case to the next page and said, what about organic paper hang tags? I seriously, turned my head and started giggling. I apologized for my outburst of joy and then told her my story of wanting to find someone like her, and then I said ” How does it get any better than this?” – Now most people when you say this, will say “It doesn’t!” and like the losing sound of a game show – merr, merr… your energy flow stops! You don’t need to answer, just keep asking the question what else is possible! This is how I relate to it, you know how every time you have sex its super great or at least just as or better than the last time , every time though? You remember that last time was awesome, but this time… well, it was pretty awesome too! When you keep asking “how does it get better than this?” it’s like that better sex, when you consistently get the experiences that make you orgasmic! I have got my friends hooked, even my Roman Catholic Husband says, how does it get better than this? (in Polish!) Because we’re all seeing the results… the FLOW is open and we can feel it. Instead of judging my situation whether good or bad, I just ask “what else is possible.” AND it totally takes me out of the mind rat race of what happens after you judge a situation, right? “I didn’t call that person back, shoot, now what is she going to think? Or now I have to make an excuse why I didn’t call and I don’t have time, blah, blah, blah…” instead say, “What else is possible?” and watch, that person most likely wasn’t in the office and will call you at the perfect space in time, and might even offer you something you didn’t expect. It’s so fabulous! Now that’s all I’m going to share for this newsletter from my toolbox. I will tell you that I was so intrigued after the Right Body Class that I really wanted to go to the Intro Class, more, more, more please… but it was the same weekend as the one my husband was planning our 9 year anniversary on. At the show, he came up to me and said “don’t be upset, we can’t do our anniversary this weekend, its not available until the following weekend” waiting for my disappointment, I giggled out loud asking ” What else is possible?” and told him I really wanted to attend the access weekend. Which I did and let me tell you… I will NEVER go back to working so hard at existing. My life is better spent being and receiving ALL of LIFE, Easily and with Joy and Glory! The next weekend for my anniversary arrived and because we got bumped from the originally planned weekend, me and my husband ended up in a SUITE with butler service at a luxury resort and spa, with a whirlpool bath, an ocean view, an on and on… and you know what I said every time I was in supreme joy… as I giggled, “How does it get any better than this?” Because if it’s this good and it could get better, you know I wanted to know!
      Ask yourself! How does it get better than this?
      How does it get better? AQUAMANTRA just joined a site called$s=564$e=001a1COK96FoWodmjN54Cfr70QX4sHEDnMHit4RHSluKk04QhOFURZXgLAr55JSBrZ-KezXu3ntbNKIdUD54ACV5S1tOgDNteFyTimrHm3axTypJfQ4Stxu4A==which is a pretty sweet little site for everything cool in our world, organic shops, juice shops, yoga, spirituality…. Well, everything in the good life in Los Angeles. Check it out and if you love us login and write a review for AQUAMANTRA … every little bit helps, we are grateful!
      Don’t let this time in our shift shake you! We are all observing some pretty life altering experiences around us with friends, family, neighbors, companies and communities. Use this amazing space in time to thrive! To excel in abundance and joy, by asking the questions and accessing consciousness, which will open up the flow of pure source energy. When we look back we’ll know we were part of the change, we didn’t give up, we didn’t let go and we fought for our lives with our joy, with our happiness and our consciousness- how does it get any better than this? Peace and Blessings to you all, may all of life come to you with ease and joy and glory! Love X infinity, Master Alexandra
      Want to listen to our phone call??? This is me and Rikka talking about ACCESS – Click on this link!
      You’ll love it! And start to understand the power of ACCESS.
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    • By WebOsPublisher

      Conferences | Icon Engineering
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      ICON Presents at CASFM 2008 Annual Conference.
      Posted on October 13, 2011 by Zach
      Crested Butte, Colorado – At the 19th Annual Colorado Association of Stormwater and Floodplain Managers conference held in Crested Butte, Colorado, September 10-12, 2008, ICON Engineering, Inc. made an entertaining presentation which incorporated a crowd pleasing video starring an animated robot and one of ICON’s own engineers. The presentation was authored by ICON’s own Craig Jacobson, PE, CFM and Steve Brown, PE, CFM. Entitled “When Good Pipes Turn Bad – Evaluation and Inspection of a Major Pipe Outfall System in Aurora, CO,” the presentation focused on the results of ICON ’s initial investigation and evaluation of a very large corrugated metal pipe (CMP) outfall system. The purpose of this project was to evaluate the existing hydraulic capacity and structural integrity of the existing storm sewer system. The study also recommended immediate and future mitigation or replacement needs. In order to accomplish the project tasks and goals, new and innovative methods were utilized throughout the project during analysis of the hydrology and pipe inspection, where a full line of robotics testing was utilized to thoroughly document the internal condition of the pipe system along with other forms of “non-destructive” testing focusing on the various areas of concern.
      The City Center outfall system was constructed in 1974 and ranges in size from 84-inches to 120-inches. The overall length of the system is approximately 4,350 feet. The majority of the pipe is CMP with a paved concrete invert. This pipe system serves as the outfall for a large drainage basin within a very prominent area of the City of Aurora. In fact, the pipe system collects runoff from both the Aurora Mall and the Aurora Municipal Center located adjacent to Alameda Avenue. Using SWMM to model the hydrology, it was quickly identified that discharges had the potential to exceed the system capacity. The pipe’s conveyance capacity was further complicated by the complex interaction with the adjacent City Center Detention Facility and at Alameda Avenue where the flows split between the detention pond and outfall system are highly dependent on the tailwater conditions. At the detention pond, the outfall system had the potential to both convey water out of the pond, or “bubble-up” back into the pond. Evaluation of these complex interactions surrounding the outfall system required the development of a dynamic hydrology and storm sewer model utilizing the EPA SWMM 5 program.
      Three phases of testing were also completed on the outfall pipe system to evaluate the current conditions and future integrity of the pipes. First, a full line of testing utilizing a Responder Robotic platform was completed to provide: Digital Fiber-Optic Closed Circuit TV Reports (CCTV); Laser Scans for precision measurements of the internal pipe shapes diameters, deformities, and deflections; and Gas Measurements within the pipe. The second phase included comprehensive field inspection and various “non-destructive” testing methods.  This testing focused on discolored and rusted areas that had the potential to be detrimental to the structural integrity of the pipe. Testing under this phase included: Visual inspection; Magnetic Particle and Liquid Penetrant testing; Ultrasonic Measurements to determine wall thicknesses; and Hardness measurements.  Finally, the third phase of testing included the removal and inspection of small samples of CMP material, or “coupons”, in an effort to determine the condition of the CMP material below the concrete invert.  Design of a slip-lining is currently underway.
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      2011 CASFM Tunnelling Presentation
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    • George, shame on you .. your are a racist.. I am sorry to say… You must be a bobble headed person…

    • -1′

    • The subtle point here is that Ms. Barbie is too white for our future. Wake up folks, people who look like Barbie will one day be only legends like Hobbits and Unicorns. Even if you don’t believe in Darwin, the writing is on the wall. We have neither the desire or will to even attempt to change it. Damn, white people are stupid.

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