the writing and photography of Neil Kramer

Celebrity Strollers


Elisabeth Hasselbeck with her Maclaren Stroller 
(thanks to the lovely Cheaty Monkey.  More strollers on her blog)

I hope I didn’t insult any women in the last post by questioning our special male/female friendship. 

I really do enjoy reading the blogs of women.  I learn a lot about your gender.  I’m supposed to be a writer, so it is important to get insights into the minds of women.  One day, I hope to have the ability to write a real, three-dimensional female character who doesn’t just have sex with strangers in alleyways and shoot people with the revolver she has hidden in her garter belt.

In my last post I made a joke about mommybloggers who write about celebrity strollers.  Rather than making fun of this, I might as well learn more, in case I ever have to write about this subject.  It is good to be well-rounded. 

So, tell me.  If you’re a mommy strolling down Rodeo Dr. or Fifth Avenue or Main Street with your baby in a stroller, and you meet another mother, do you actually take note of the BRAND of the stroller?!  Is it a status symbol, akin to a guy driving a Ferrari or a Hummer?  Is there that much difference in the quality of a stroller?  Would you be afraid to be seen using a stroller from Walmart?  Does one stroller fold more easier than the other?   Have any of your babies had more than one stroller, and actually preferred one over the other?


Naomi Watts and her Bugaboo stroller.

Let’s get down to my writing.

Imagine I’m trying to write an episode of some new TV show about mothers who live in, say, Pittsburgh.  The show is called Pittsburgh Mommies.

Producer:  “We need a re-write!  Bring in that Neilochka!  He KNOWS how to write women!”

My assignment:  There is a crucial scene between two mothers who meet in the park, the roles played by Jennifer Garner and Teri Hatcher (who left Desperate Housewives to star in this show).  Would something like the following sound believeable to a real mother? —

Jennifer:  Teri, how are you?  I see little Tyler is feeling better.

Teri:  Oh yes, the little munchkin is perfect.

Jennifer:  Hmmm…

Teri:  What, Jennifer?

Jennifer eyes Teri’s new stroller with jealousy in her eyes.

Teri:  Oh, I see you’ve noticed this little thing…

Teri laughs nervously.

Jennifer:  How did you get the new Bugaboo?  It hasn’t even been released to the general public yet?

Teri:  Oh, one of Michael’s clients works for the Bugaboo company.  We paid for it, of course.  Isn’t he a darling husband?  He’s always bringing me little presents.

Jennifer:  This isn’t just a little present.  This is a brand new Bugaboo.  Do you know how much this costs?

Teri:  Oh , Michael wouldn’t tell me.  He just said, as long as the baby is living in comfort — that’s all that’s important.  I mean it’s not essential to have a Bugaboo.  Your Maclaren stroller is perfectly good enough for your Sarah.

Jennifer:  What do you mean by that?

Teri:  I mean, I know Eddie has been laid off lately.  A Bugaboo is a little out of your price range.

Jennifer:  So are you saying that Tyler deserves better than Sarah?

Teri:  Of course not.  The Maclaren is an excellent stroller.  As is the Siver Cross Pram, the same one Maggie Gyllenhaal uses!  And the… It’s just that Michael…

Jennifer:  Michael!  Michael!  I’m sick and tired of hearing about your stupid husband Michael!  Maybe if you moved your eyes once in a while away from your stroller you would notice that he’s shtupping Ashley Friedman at the Hyatt Hotel every Thursday Night during your vibrator and dildo selling  party!

Teri: — You bitch.

Jennifer turns over Teri’s stroller, with the baby still inside.

Jennifer:  — I hate you!  I hate you… and your Bugaboo!

CUT TO:

INT.  PITTSBURGH HYATT – NIGHT

Lovemaking scene between Teri’s husband, Michael, and Ashley Friedman.

OK —

Mommybloggers, did this baby stroller scene ring true?   I know it did.  Thank you for letting me learn about your secret lives.

37 Comments

  1. Mocha

    I can only answer one question for you and you didn’t even ask it, but YES, I WOULD RUN OVER ELIZABETH HASSELBECK IN A STROLLER OR ANYTHING ON WHEELS.

    In case that was a burning question rolling around your brain.

    Now you know.

  2. MammaLoves

    Yes we did have more than one stroller. Yes there is a hierarchy to them and some buy them as a status symbol.

    And you totally crack me up for even picking up on it.

    Oh, and I don’t understand why anyone cares what celebrities do. I guess it sells ads.

  3. Mr Lady

    Even us tree-huggin’, baby wearin’ mommas notice the brands. And yes, there is a BIG difference in the quality.

    Of course, I have never personally paid more than $100 per kid per stroller, but I have pushed a few friends Bugaboos, and hot damn. They’re NICE.

  4. Mr Lady

    I should mention that I was only a baby wearin’ momma because I was too cheap to lay down the bucks for a decent stroller. That’s all. I’m not a baby wearin’ zealot or anything. And I totally agree with Mammaloves about the celebs. Couldn’t. Care. Less. And who the heck is Elisabeth Hasselbeck, anyway?

  5. witchypoo

    I don’t get the whole my stroller is better than your stroller thing. It’s a freaking stroller! If it does what you need it to do in an efficient manner, it’s all good.

  6. HeyJoe

    I seem to recall buying one of our strollers at a garage sale. I mean, it was a Beverly Hills address, of course, but still.

  7. Iron Fist

    I think any scene about strollers that ends with the camera cutting to sex is a winning scene.

  8. Heather

    Oh, from what I’ve witnessed of my breeder friends, strollers are totally a status symbol and they actively compare brands and scoff at the lesser ones.

    As long as it doesn’t look like the kind of flimsy stroller I used to push my Cabbage Patch doll around in when I was 8, who gives a shit?

  9. Backpacking Dad

    Ok. When my daughter was only a few weeks old, and thus still too young for the backpack that has become her second home, we took her to the museum in Golden Gate Park. On the way up the wheelchair ramp outside we passed another couple with a newborn, and dad was, like myself, pushing the stroller and making faces at the squirmy-yet-slothful grub in the chair.

    As we passed each other we each gave a quick look down, confirmed that we had identical strollers, and then gave each other the “Graco ‘sup” nod, and went about our business.

  10. Los Angelista

    Oh yes, they’re status symbols but to me, unless that stroller is gonna change the diapers and burp the baby, I’ll stick with a less expensive model.

    And that little scene would sell, but only because you included the vibrator party in there.

  11. Karl

    We always had to pay more for a stroller because it had to be a DOUBLE stroller for the twins. I think quality and make CAN be important, especially when you’re carting around twice as much baby. But I don’t think we ever cared about the brand, so long as it was good quality.

  12. better safe than sorry

    i’m well past those stroller days but even back in my day, there was a difference between a more costly stroller and one from walmart (actually, walmart wasn’t even in canada when my kids were in strollers). there is a stroller status, i still glance at what a mother is pushing when i walk past one, i wonder if they make knock off strollers like the purses, cuz i always check those too.

  13. Chicky Chicky Baby

    Mom’s absolutely check out other parent’s strollers. I have a sticker on the back of my Maclaren that says “My other stroller is a Porsche”.

  14. DaveX

    I always looked for whatever looked comfy to be in, and had good wheels. Had to be within my limited price range of course– I think I ended up with Graco both times. Kids are just going to end up getting half-eaten graham cracker slime on them anyway… I’ve always got a big laugh out of the morons falling for the expensive goofiness. The baby industry is full of it!

  15. Miguelina

    Uh…

    Does this mean I have to write a brilliant screenplay to be well-rounded?

    (Excellent mommyblogging, btw – I’m sure you’ll be rocking the BlogHer ads soon!)

    (oh, and we “drive” a baby jogger double and a mountain buggy. Because we’re the rugged, athletic types. In our minds.)

  16. Jocelyn

    Who is Elisabeth Hasselbeck? And who cares what stroller she uses?

    I hate those SUV strollers and their drivers! Back in the olden days of the 70’s & 80’s we didn’t take over the sidewalks so others had to dodge around us in order to walk. Bah. Humbug.

  17. Finn

    What’s a stroller?

  18. -RM

    I’m too lazy to look on IMDB, but who the hell is Elisabeth Hasselbeck? I tend to not give celebrities their oh so well deserved fame. Oh well, your story was funny.

  19. ali

    any mom that says she doesn’t compare strollers is a LIAR!

  20. Neil

    Am I the only one who knows who Elisabeth Hasselbeck is? Haven’t you ever watched “The View?” Uh, not that I have ever watched that show for women…

  21. Neil

    And I’m just realizing — didn’t I say in my last post that I wanted to appeal more to men? Why am I writing about strollers and Elisabeth Hasselbeck>

    But isn’t Elisabeth Hasselbeck married to some big sports guy?

    Let’s imagine this post is about sports.

  22. Joe Crawford

    Don’t sell yourself short Neil, you also insulted men in your last post. 😉

  23. Neil

    Joe, I realize that. But between me and you, who really gives a shit? I like you a lot, Joe, but we both know it is you your wife, Leah, who can make or break my blogging career.

  24. Heather B.

    All I know is that I’ve pushed around a Maclaren and hot damn, I would invest in one of those. That said, I’m assuming that strollers will be even larger and more obnoxious in 10-15 years. Can’t wait.

    P.S. I hate Elisabeth Hasselbeck with a passion. That wasn’t the question but holy hell. She’s annoying.

  25. wendy

    Ick.

    I’m sure it happens..esp in LA…and all I can say..is

    Ick.

    This gives motherhood a bad name.

  26. Theresa

    Thank God I’m past the stroller phase. Now it’s my kids that are going, “So what tennis shoes is she wearing? Why can’t I have those?” Will it never end? 🙂

  27. nancypearlwannabe

    Neil, you have a real fascination with mommybloggers. It might be strange, except then you write a hilarious stroller script and all is well.

  28. bookfraud

    i can’t speak to the veracity of the interaction between teri and jennifer, but you got the dynamics of strollers just right. it’s using your baby as a prop or symbol of conspicuous consumption.

    i loathe the bugaboo.

    but i like vibrator and dildo selling parties.

    that made me laugh out loud.

  29. John

    Haha. Hey, I’d watch Pittsburgh Mommies.

  30. AnnieH

    We duct taped the honey haired girl into a red wagon and wheeled her around town. Is that wrong?

  31. Haley-O

    Omigosh, Neil! Women compare strollers like they compare engagement rings, in my neck of the woods! I have a bugaboo. And, I tell EVERYONE they MUST get the bugaboo or they will be snubbed (not by me, of course). It’s, like, sooo Stepford! Sad….

    The bugaboo is the Cadillac of strollers. But, I do think people would laugh if they saw anyone strolling around in Tori Spelling’s ridiculously fancy pram……

    Thank you for the “LOVELY”! Awwwww. 🙂

  32. Memarie Lane

    I could care less about the brand, but I do watch for certain features; one-handed steering, large baskets, good-sized cupholders, no bar across the back to bonk your shins on.

    But I had this “friend” in Florida who had a new stroller every freaking week. She would see a different one come out with a new feature and buy it. I was in the market for a stroller myself so I asked her if she’d be willing to sell me one, and she said she really didn’t have one she could spare. WTF??? She must have had 12 strollers!

  33. better safe than sorry

    i didn’t know who elizabeth hasselbeck was, i thought she was married to david hasselhoff and that you got the surname wrong. i’m hoping you do purses next!

  34. kirida

    In ten years, all the pricey strollers are going to look so white trash, as is the story with everything trendy. Which is why no one thinks my Sega Genesis (CD not cartridge) is cool anymore.

  35. hello haha narf

    i live in pittsburgh and don’t have kids. how about a show where the dog owners compare collars and leashes to see who has the newest steelers collar?

  36. natalie

    ok…so i had to google bugaboo. my youngest could have ridden around in bubaboo comfort since she was born in 1999, the year they were first introduced, but by that point i already owned two strollers. i wasn’t about to fork out $900 for my last child’s stroller riding comfort. to tell you the truth…those strollers look like some sort of traction device for kids.

  37. Sarah

    Your article is hilarious and I love the scene at the end! Some things are just too ridiculously priced to even be considered unless of course you are rich and have nothing better to spend your money on. There is a certain criteria though when buying a stroller/carriage/pram etc. I learned the hard way after having my first two way before my last. It’s all about comfort, durability and tires! I don’t look at the brands but that doesn’t mean I haven’t heard of them. I recently had to purchase a stroller and I really relied on personal reviews when perusing around online. Brand had nothing to do with it. In the end I got one here in town(versus online) that I had never heard of. I personally don’t care what celebs are using. After all, they can afford the ridiculously priced!

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