Perhaps a cat has dragged a homeless doll to Royal Doll Town. It happens every now and then, as plenty of local cats are in contact with RDT. You never know what your cat gets up to while you’re away do you? I mean, if you reside somewhere along the coast of Kent this could be your cat. You know what they say - when the mouse is away the cat will play dress up and cart an anxious abandoned doll to a safe place, where after a rigorous screening, said doll may be granted permanent residency and issued with an official Properlisting Card by the Queen Bees Bulbinella and Bulbarella. These coveted cards appropriately vary in size according to the scale of the resident as you could not possibly expect a teeny tiny penny doll to carry around an official document ten times bigger than herself could you? The cards are quite charming made of beeswax coated wasp-paper veneered to paper-bark with butterfly glue and have the Queen Bees’ properlis seals of approval at the top. The backsides of the cards are finely etched with: "The Terms, Mights and Mightn’ts" of being a resident and is officially bitten by the Termite Queen Antwoinine, not so much as a sign of indenturement but more as a mark of her dental record of authenticity. The Properlisting Card is like a title deed specifying the exact boudoir, apartment, nook or cranny which serves as a particular doll’s official abode and what their official role is. Every dwelling space and social position is meticulously documented, detailed and proportioned within certain gauges like an ideal Quetelet Index by the Bee Queens and their secretaries and sects committees. Their intrinsic knowledge of hive organisation makes them extremely good at the job.
Bears often try their luck at the secret back door, but as Royal Doll Town is predominantly a Dollony, they are cordially advised to seek out the Hundred Acre Wood and speak to Winnie or Piglet. Queen Marcheline flusters about an ursine over flow as there seriously is a stupendous amount of old bear souls bumbling around out there. It’s not to say the odd lone Cudbud hasn’t made its adorably tattered way into the populace of Royal Doll Town, because there are a few happily ensconced, especially if they arrived as the inseparable lifelong bestie of a doll from a disbanded Victorian nursery. It is paramount that the town be kept in balance and overpopulation never allowed. The bear facts I'm afraid. It's briskly off to Pooh corner for them. "Go on! Spit spot!" as the floaty Miss Poppins would say on a hurriedly windy day.
Queen Marcheline’s Queendom is extremely organised, partly because dolls can devote more energy to it as they don’t have to continually put food on the table, water the veggie patch and chase after the chicken who insists on making salads out of your edible prize antique Flemish poppies. Also her Queendom is super duper efficient as there are four noteworthy queens in total and they have their feminine wiles and wits about them. Originally the town planning of Royal Doll Town was conducted by Count Mandrake as he had had major experience engineering his subterranean labyrinth, although he was strictly guided by Queen Marcheline’s back seat driving aesthetic directive with bits and pieces thrown in by the King, while Libertine pretty much played architect and engineer because of her innate papier-mâché sensibility. You see, the Parisian artist who fashioned her in his dishevelled and crammed attic atelier recycled papers from comprehensive old architectural and design tomes as well as botanical books and other intriguingly mysterious pages which provided her psyche with a wealth of information for psychic extrapolation and physical application. Then as soon as the inception and creation of the tower town commenced, the King was encouraged by his wife to meet with the creatures of the woods and begin setting up guilds and associations. Queen Marcheline strategically realized the need to engage the superlative industry of bird and insect and so trade relations began. By the time Libertine, on account of her large size, had most capably constructed the main infrastructures of the tower interiors, she was ably assisted by The Weaver Bird Company; The Woodpeckers, Bee and Termite Carpentry Guild; The Swallows and Termite Mud Builders Association and The Mason and Potter Wasp Society amongst others, to proceed with intricate detailing and crafting work according to the new royal subjects’ specifications as they moved in.
Two old prim dolls, one lady, one gentleman, who'd cohabited many a year with a certain shopkeepers’ daughters and were well versed in the agile art of wheeling and dealing were regalised with the names of Buyzantine and Sellbert and made head of Royal Marketing. They were very good at their new jobs and began creating most excellent trade relations with willing creatures in the neighbouring countryside. The Queen’s philosophy is: “Nobody is equal. You are unequally unique individuals. Remember your qualities forget your inequalities and embrace your positions in our society whole heartedly. You do not have to be queen to be regally seen.” By residing and abiding by the ethos of Royal Doll Town one is considered a sterling subject, but not in the sense of subjugation, more along the lines that you are actually a subject in the making and you need to create your own content and curriculum in accordance with your contentment. In other words, it is considered your royal prerogative to uphold Fair Beauty and Fait Main. “Life is beautiful. Life is what you make”, followed by: “Beautiful is elastic - make it your fantastic!” are probably the most ubiquitous Queen Marcheline by-lines. She tends to reiterate her by-lines a lot in order to urge her citizens to be creative par excellence pursuing their heart’s love and joy freely but their pursuits are not for free either. There is a complex monetary remuneration and bartering system involved, which is kept beautiful of course. One may be paid handsomely with pretty pennies forged by Nickeline and Aubert of the Royal Mint, or one may partake in fair trades of sweet treats (as gastronomy is an economy), even light hearted dealings in funny money and pinky-promise promissory notes.
When Queen Marcheline noted how exuberant I was about being her Official Cybiograher it set her off down another dreamy path and she waxed lyrical about how she thought it befitting for me to have an Official Beaucratic name. After much mental meandering and mulling over my details she regalised me thus: Within the realms of the Royal Doll Town Queendom there are four noteworthy official queens. Queen Marcheline is THE Queen of Queens of course, but there are also the two queen bees, Queen Bulbinella of Northern Hive House and her twin sister Queen Bulbarella of Southern Hive House. They are pretty much identical except for the way they wear their monogrammed medals and broaches. Queen Bulbinella always uses upper case 'B' and Queen Bulbarella always selects lower case 'b'. Otherwise it is pretty difficult to tell them apart. They are most unusual bees, being corally pink and fluffular but I'll relate their back story in another post, so make sure to buzz by again.
You'll also hear more of the termite queen, Queen Antwoinine, who is ensconced in Propylaeum Palace inside the roof cavity of the tower entrance portico. So those are the four noteworthy queens. As I mentioned previously, Queen Marcheline felt it prudent that I have a more royally suitable name and decided that I should be an honorary queen in name-without-claim, so much simpler than making me a dame with claim as I had yet to prove myself and I could not be granted residency at the tower as I am such a consumptive big nuisance to the system, what with having to eat, sleep, ablute and occupy so much space. You see, the dolls don’t eat, don’t have to contend with digestive repercussions and don’t have to sleep. Bypassing Maslow’s first rung of the hierarchical ladder of survival allows them to be so much more progressive and they kind of frown down on us needy-greedy-feedy folk. As you know, the King and the Avian Reconnaissance Monitoring Earth Network (A.R.M.E.N) disparagingly call us "Consumans". When I first sojourned at the tower I irritated the living daylights out of some of the citizens with my big cumbersome presence. The worst was when I accidentally trod on what felt like a matchbox but turned out to be the antique travel case of an eighteenth century doll containing all her prized possessions. Her stentorian lamentations were gut-wrenching and I don’t think I was ever really forgiven. So even though I turned out to be a godzillian nuisance to most, Queen Marcheline positioned me as the not so noteworthy but hopefully more trustworthy token fifth queen of nothing, with artistic license to make up everything and have the beautanical title of Re:gina c'est la V. She contrived this by taking my usual signature gina V and giving it a Marchelinese twist ‘regina’ of course means ‘queen’ and ‘V’ could be either the Roman numeral ‘5’ or the first letter of my surname. So there you have it, by Her Majesty’s decree. I haven’t had any occasion whatsoever to make use of it and probably never will, it's just that she's a stickler for detail, and truth be told, she can ramble on. These introductory Biologs can be somewhat of a marathon read and laborious to say the least, but that is what I was appointed to do and I'm only trying to do my job as best I can for in these days of uncertainty you certainly hang onto a good job when it comes along...
When I arrived on the scene of Royal Doll Town, it threw a spanner in the works and Queen Marcheline had to quickly resolve my official position in the proceedings of things. I absolutely begged and pleaded and pitched and pitched for a purpose and place at court. Eventually, I ingeniously mapped out the cyber route for her. The idea of extending her Queendom to the limitless corridors, paths and nebulous nephological pockets of cyberspace greatly appealed to her especially if it meant she could reach out and embrace a whole new encrypted populace of satellite partisans swearing allegiance to beautify things. She was clueless about the internet and modern technology and the closest analogy she could fathom with regards cyberspace was derived from a splendid pictorial book in Libertine’s Library presenting multi-coloured photographs depicting breath-taking stellar nebulae. I think she somehow pictured cyberspace to be some sort of fandangled, spangled, candy coloured nebular with her new cyberspace cadet fans spectrally wafting calmly about on cotton candy clouds, stroking hirsute kittens, sampling heavenly pastel frosted cakes and sipping misty Crème de menthe cocktails, while being ethereally beautiful and doing ethereally beautiful things. This vignette evidently inspired her to conceptualize the expansion of her Dollony into a new dimension. She stood staring dreamily into space for hours, literally, as dolls can do that. She was musing and mapping out her great ambitions while I lay napping on Libertine’s chaise longue. Wait! What am I saying? There was no time for napping I was furiously taking notes and making sketches. The wheedling had paid off. I was just about to be gainfully employed as her Cybiographer. At last a real job! I had to look busy. The King swooped by and startled his dear wife’s reverie. “Oh my Love!” She enthused. “Imagine this,” and alluded to the stellar canopy, as it was quite night by now. “A grand and bubbly extension of my Queendom out there. A frothy milkshaky, municipalacey burgeoning majestically on the fringes of the Milky Way. A Xanadu with your beautiful thought bubbles.” She indicated moi. “You see, we truly do require a bubbly network of beautiful minds because the negative mental health of humans is affecting the well-being of the planet not to mention my Queendom! I need you people to cyber route your imaginations into one big great massive Nebubbular of Beautannia! And the Nebubbular of Beautannia could be part of the Common Health of Royal Doll Town!” She gleefully squealed and stared wide eyed at the King and I. The King, with an air of grace and intense philosophical stoicism which he perennially displays, dryly remarked: “My Darling, sorry to uh burst your bubble, as it were, but do we really need to include the Consumans into our schemata? Mightn’t they prove to be our downfall?” The Queen vexed and I perplexed: “I beg your pardon Your Majesty? The who are you talking about?” And His Highness tactfully explained to me that on account of the unbridled consumerism of humans, we were alluded to as 'Consumans' by the Avian Reconnaissance Monitoring Earth Network. You see, the King has flown the skies for centuries and from his perspective, humans have gradually spread across the planet like an ugly cancerous growth decimating and disfiguring the once beautiful face of the planet. I was highly embarrassed and uncomfortable, as truth be told, I fitted the bill. Why oh why did I always want more stuff? Why is enough never enough? Why do the dearly departed get me to dash off and buy their old knick knacks? I jotted down an immediate mental note to self: transitioning Consuman. I was going to change my ways just as soon as I bought a new stepper machine and better vegetable juicer. The King regarded me straight in the eyes and asked: "Are you ever going to take stock?" I squirmed not knowing where to look. I remorsefully apologised and promised to improve my bad habits, all the time wondering if it was actually possible at all. Libertine had by now appeared upstairs like an angelic apparition in her lacy white garb silhouetted against the porcelain full moon. She had overheard my awkward apology. Being the compassionate, laissez-faire mannequin she is, she gave me a great shove against the shoulder and playfully scolded "YOU, are going to need a whole lot of buffing before you twinkle!" "I know. My Nebubbular!" The Queen looked anxious and equally doubtful.
I don’t think the King was entirely blown away by his wife’s new venture, but he let her get her way and she finally made me her official Cybiographer in order to get the Nebubbular machine up and blowing into the cyber world as it were. Initially she was perfectly sceptical of my writing abilities and artistic merits and inquired whether I was actually a professional artist or writer. I couldn’t very well fib, so I flouted the unremarkableness of an endless and aimlessly long professional painting or penning career amounting to nothing spectacular in favour of a fledgling novice one filled with hope and possibility because it was fuelled by passion and a heart pumping zest to create something special for her. Besides, who else was there? Her confounded glare gave way and she stringently remarked: “Very well, that will do, but I’m in charge.” “Naturally Your Majesty.” I replied and danced the mental funky chicken dance. Cluck cluck what LUCK! Finally I nailed that job! Although daunted by the King's severity and the nebulous description of my task at hand, it was going to be great. I could feel it. Rule Beautannia, Beautannia rule the world - well the Milkshakey Way at least! I can just catch a glimpse of it over Libertine's shoulder, way out there - Queen Marcheline's Nebubbular - a bedazzling bubbly fest of beautiful twinkling thoughts. Come and think for yourself - the view from here is Spectacular Stellarcular!
Modus Operandi: ‘Beaucracy’. ‘Beau’ in French means ‘beautiful’ and as you may already know: ‘Life is Beautiful’. Queen Marcheline is an Aesthete through and through and an incurable romantic. The machinations of Marcheline abound and dictate the order of the day in Royal Doll Town. For instance, she declared with much fervour during the early days of the town’s inception: “I’m leaving out the ‘ur’ in ‘bureaucracy’. It’s so urrrrgh! Life is beautiful. By our lives we are beautiful so therefore we are a ‘beaucracy’! We simply must live beautifully!” She then proceeded to assign official ‘beaucratic’ names to the Royal Founders which constituted their full ‘beautanical’ names to be used for official purposes to impart a sense of delectable decorum. She titled herself: ‘Queen Marcheline Joi de Vivre Chrysanthemum’ because she is so full of the joys of being alive and chrysanths are the official flowers of Royal Doll Town.
Let's face it chrysanthemums are the candy flowers of the natural Kingdom as they come in so many delicious colours and shapes and sizes. They are sublime - chrysantheYUM - yummy! Now, at Royal Doll Town, where they possess the secret revolutionary technology of petal preservation, the vast variety of chrysanths can be made into any texture and colour way of fancy plush fabric imaginable. Queen Marcheline almost exclusively wears chrysanthemum fabric floppy mantles, fluffular petallic hats or pom-pommy wigs and chopines on her feet. For elegant official occasions she selects feathery Duke of Kent chrysanthemum fabrics which tend to be shades of white with a hint of the palest pink or a tinge of cream. She selects this mode of attire in order to match and complement the King’s albino white feathers and she feels that the Duke of Kent chrysanthemum petals mimic his feathers superbly well. Setting aside the irresistible candy allure of yum mums and getting back to beautanical names; the Queen gave her darling everlasting husband the title: ‘King Fisher Filigrane Philosophique’ because he is so philosophical and officially endorses his stately paper works with water marks made from his soul searching metaphysical tears - ‘filigrane’ means ‘water mark’ in French. You see, when the King is so greatly and stately moved to tears he can metaphysically conjure forth an alchemical trade mark tear from his otherwise dry lachrymal glands. It is the current dire state of the planet earth that prompts these tears to flow so much more easily these days. It took a lot more effort in the older days prior to human overpopulation and suffocating pollution. Next the graceful mannequin received the title: ‘Libertine Laisser-Faire Lingerie Luminaire’ because she is so free spirited and enlightened and mostly sports filmy, boudoir ensembles which are an eclectic Bohème-Japonisme-Chinoiserie come Mary Quantish blend. The mandrake root manikin simply retained his name ‘Count Melancole Mandrake’ as it suited his solemn sombre air and the mysterious demeanour of his discreet engagement in his personal underground mission. Being verbose, these titles are reserved for formal proceedings and ceremonies where fanciful wording is called for. In general, Queen Marcheline considers herself more a queen of hearts and the wondrous arts, so she isn't overly ostentatious - bling ain't her thing. In fact, she finds regalia and royal pomp quite stressful but a necessary duty she can’t neglect and a tempting charm she simply can’t resist. Within the privacy of her own palace she can let down her guard, throw off her great big wigs, postiches and busbyish hats and go bare hair, her original painted black curlicue hairdo, but publicly she graciously guards the royal relish of her town. But if her royal wig unforeseeably were to blow off on a blustering gale day, while out chicken riding for instance, or she forgot to dress her head that day she wouldn't be overly perturbed. Capricious is delicious too.
The Cybiography of Queen Marcheline CLICK HERE:
AND HE SAID:
"Truly I tell you,
You're NEVER too old to be young at heart
P l a g i a r i s m is
a plague D O N ' T
S P R E A D I T ! ! !
R e s p e c t