Ruffling the fur on Hello Kitty

dizeThere has been much ‘to do’ this week which is enough to ruffle your fur. In case you haven’t caught up with the latest, it appears that the  “Hello Kitty” cartoon depiction we are all used to seeing, is not of a cat – but a girl, and to be quite honest, there’s been a lot of hoo-ha about this revelation. Many comments have focused on Kitty’s appearance, i.e if she is a girl, why does she have whiskers and pointy ears. Surely these are not characteristic of ‘a girl’. I have to agree. If it looks like a kitty, it must be a kitty.

All of this reminded me that some years ago I captured this depiction of “Hello Kitty” by Dize. It’s location is now long gone, with a new building construction having taken over a previously good street art lane-way venue.

I must admit I’ve had a soft spot for “Hello Kitty” ever since I first came across her. So yes, I will admit that at one stage, I owned a “Hello Kitty” vinyl coin purse; which was apparently part of the original merchandise which originated in Japan in 1974 and later brought to the US in 1976.  In fact, I last added to my “Hello Kitty” collection via  a “Seven/Eleven” campaign in Hong Kong –  which was dependent on how much money you spent in-store which related to to your opportunity to receive a free phone or pencil case plastic “Hello Kitty” tag identifier.

The Sanrio owned “Hello Kitty” character was created by Yuko Shimizu. According to Sanrio’s recent declaration, “Kitty” is a little girl. She is a friend but she is not a cat. The reasoning for this is based on Sanrio’s insistence that a cat is usually depicted on all fours. “Kitty” walks and sits like a two-legged creature, therefore she is human. According to her originator:

  • Hello Kitty was born into one of London’s boroughs on November 1, of an unknown year.
  • Her height is described as being “five apples high” and her weight as “three apples deep”.
  • She is good at baking cookies and loves Mama’s homemade apple pie.
  • She likes to collect cute things and her favorite subjects in school are English, music and art.
  • She is portrayed as a bright and kind-hearted girl, very close to her twin sister Mimmy.
  • Mimmy is described as “shy and very girly,” interested in sewing and dreaming of marriage.
  • While Kitty wears a red bow on her left ear, Mimmy wears a yellow one on the right.

I guess if Hello Kitty had married and lived happily ever-after, she would probably have had offspring … and if she was a cat, she would more than likely have had more than one, therefore you could say it was a kitty litter!

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