Why babies everywhere are drawn to a 48-year-old rubber toy giraffe
Written by Brian Patrick Flynn with photography by Sarah Dorio
America’s Most Wanted — a rubber giraffe named Sophie? Yep! From Savannah to Seattle, hipster moms and dads are shelling out as much as $25 for this 48-year-old, all-natural toy wonder. Similar to Tickle-Me-Elmo come Christmas, many stores sell out of Sophie on a year-round weekly basis. Is Sophie Giraffe high-tech? No. Does she come with an interactive online counterpart? Nah. Can she teach your baby Spanish? Nope! Then what the $@#* does Sophie Giraffe do? She squeaks.
For childless city folk like me, it seemed preposterous for something this basic to be so high in demand. Obsessed with the squeaking obsession, I took a country-wide poll on Sophie Giraffe to see what cool moms and dads truly thought. The unimpressed found a .99 squeaky dog cheeseburger to be a better choice. For those unfamiliar, instant google-fests ensued to get in-the-know. Most parents polled truly swear by their baby’s rubberized It Girl. An afternoon between my photographer and her friend Micah, a baby, proved that Sophie’s choice.
In good taste
Micah, like most babies, loves to sink his teeth into Sophie Giraffe — here’s why. First up is Sophie’s slight flavor, a result of details created with food paint. Next is her soft body made from 100% natural rubber — the softness of her horns and legs renders Sophie the perfect fit for a teething toy story. Make it a family affair by checking out Sophie’s mushroom-like cousin, Chan Pie Gnon, from parent company, Vulli.
Scent of a woman
Little ones can actually SMELL Sophie coming. Babies are drawn to the scent of her rubber, straight from the medicinal Hevea tree. Some parents believe the association of toy to smell aids in developing a sense of identification. What the @$#% is a Hevea tree, I didn’t know about it either but it’s fun as hell to say.
Aged to perfection
For a 48-year-old piece of squeaking rubber, Sophie is HOT! While some parents love the idea of a tried-and-true classic, others find her more like yesterday’s news. The mid-century appeal of Sophie’s simple lines is a hit with mod moms and dads embracing all things retro. Hipster parents more interested in something more 2010 than 1962 will most likely dig the Speesees organic hop teething toy.
Eager to add Sophie Giraffe to your extended family? Adopt her with your credit card on amazon.com for $14.95.