If you have known me for a while, you probably know that I have been a Hello Kitty fan for a number of years. Alright, decades. I’m not one of those fanatics such as this man’s wife, but I do have some household Hello Kitty items, a few Hello Kitty T-Shirts, and yes just a little bit of Hello Kitty jewelry. There’s a little Hello Kitty hanging from my rear view mirror, along with a Starfleet Academy dogtag. Ok, and yes, I have a Hello Kitty/Chococat tattoo. So something I enjoy doing when I happen to get to the mall is wander up to the Sanrio store. In fact, I was there yesterday afternoon.
Sanrio used to make its money selling cheap stuff like coin purses and pencils to schoolgirls. No more! The target demographic has grown up, and now you can purchase everything from baby towel sets to garnet pendants. I kid you not. I guess you don’t have to sell very many $3500 watches to be wildly profitable.
But has this backfired? The cute little handbag that I might have whim purchased for $20 was $80, a price at which it better be leather and not have a cartoon cat on it. As it turns out, that was a bargain; it would run me $120 plus shipping online. It’s just as well I didn’t even see the $500 Hanamo limited edition 35th anniversary commemorative handbag. Sorry, these are prices at which I’m just not buying. Have they priced themselves out of their core audience, or are they taking advantage of the fact that there are many women my age who are willing to shell out this kind of money?
I guess the economy can’t possibly be as bad as it seems if these products are actually selling. So then the question remains: at 35, is Hello Kitty having a midlife crisis, has she jumped the shark, or is she crazy like a fox?
In closing: American maternal mortality rates are appalling; imagine there’s no government; nearing retirement, and unemployed or underemployed; loan modifications delaying the inevitable; food stamps and obesity; Howard Dean and Karl Rove set to debate, live!; why don’t we use some stimulus funds to, you know, renovate crumbling infrastructure?; should police really be arresting people they think might be planning a crime, particularly without anything like a warrant?; Why “liberal” ideas die in Washington (ha, not many real liberals up there anyway, just a lot of “moderates” whose opponents paint them as liberal); Cheers and Jeers; the “Screw the Constitution and the Geneva Conventions at the Same Time Act of 2010“; and PC World officially doesn’t get the iPad. It doesn’t need any of that crap for business, because it’s not meant for business at all! Saying it needs alternative browsers to Safari is like saying the iPhone really ought to run Windows Mobile.