I must admit that reading “A Real Doll” written by A.M Holmes made me feel uncomfortable and weird. I did not understand the message behind the story until we had discussions in class and I read A.M Holmes ‘interview about this story. While reading the story I came to an understanding that the boy was practicing his dating with Barbie, but I was confused on why he decided to have sex with both Barbie and Ken. This became clear once we had discussions in class that the protagonist was exploring his sexual orientation and sexuality in his adolescence. We are all curious and this curiosity extends to our sexuality during our formative years and this is explored through private acts that are typically taboo in public. In A.M. Holmes’ interview, she was inspired to write this story when she observed that people playing with Barbie Dolls more or less seem to have the instinct of stripping Barbie’s clothes off. This made her both confused and upset. She uses this story to uncover the absurdity and the obscurity of everyday life. The absurdity of how the boy’s sister, Jennifer brutally tortures a Barbie doll seems normal and yet also unnormal. As described in the book where “switching Barbie and Ken’s heads, chewing Barbie’s feet off, hanging Barbie from the ceiling fan,” “Barbie’s breasts had been sawed at with a knife,” and “she’d been dissolved by fire.” reminds me of my colleague saying how her daughter would rip her barbie dolls clothes off and tear the limbs off the body. My colleague told me that she was frightened when she saw her daughter finding delight at the sound that’s made when the plastic head and limbs are ripped off her Barbie doll. In addition, I found it disturbing when I read the part where the protagonist pops Barbie into his mouth and find the experience pleasurable. He ignores Barbie’s resistance, as described, “I closed my mouth around Barbie and could feel her breath in mine. I could hear her screams in my throat.” Then, I realized that the author was trying to reveal the social gender relationship in American Society with males being depicted as masculine and powerful. On the other hand, Barbie as described was someone who “had the whole world, the cosmos, drawn in makeup above and below her eyes,” to represent male fantasied standards of women. At the end, he finds Ken is more pleasurable to hang out with than Barbie, as stated, “It was a boy thing, we were boys together. I thought sometime I might play ball with him, I might take him out instead of Barbie.” I think this is relatable to the audience because it is hard to maintain a long-lasting relationship when we do not find any connection between both parties. The author demonstrates that curiosity, especially during adolescence and the “weirdness” phenomenon are all a part of human nature. For example, Jennifer likes to chew on Barbie’s legs when she was teething, and I find durian smells good, but some people find that it smells like rotten carcass.