Saturday, April 01, 2006

Damn the Dodots!

Damn the Dodots!: Eurostyle, Good. Eurodiapers, Bad.

With all the sightseeing and gullet-stuffing, I hardly had time for shopping, but you can bet that anywhere I go, two things get bought. Baby gear and diapers.

In Barcelona, a cosmopolitan city which takes pride in offering the best of everything, I found two kinds of disposable diapers. Dodots (crappy and crunchy) and Suavinex ("new!" crappy and slightly less crunchy). This is a great case for why people all over the world marvel at American supermarkets. Brand competition ain't all bad, and friends, if I were a spanish--sorry, catalan--woman there is no way in hell I would use disposable diapers on my little button's tushie. Not only are they pinchy, tape-y/sticky, and crunchy, they are no match for my Noodle in a poop fight. She routed them over and over, once right nicely on the herring-packed train back to Barcelona from Montserrat (about an hour) which left me sitting in a steaming puddle of baby crap and fumigating all the neighboring grumpy commuters. Nice. Especially lovely for the clammy, smelly, humiliatingly stained walk home from the station.

I have been up to now a sideline fan of the alternative diaper scene, and I bought my g-diapers but I'm not using cloth--and there is exactly one reason I have not yet fully embraced the diaper revolution: Pampers New Baby Swaddlers. They are the most seductive of diaper devils. They're soft, smooth, stretchy, silent, have a lean profile, and are almost entirely leakproof. They are also still choking landfills, no matter how small a ball I roll them into for disposal.

I think the Eurodiaper Experience gave me some diaper perspective. It seems disposable engineering is not at such a premium in other parts of the world. So now I'm home, and after a happy reunion with American disposable diaper perfection, I sheepishly admit that I have been a spoiled-brat-environment-destroying-natural-resource-squandering-big-loud-American diaper consumer. I want ideal performance, and then I want to throw it in the trash and forget about where it goes after that. As a result of some light self-flagellation on that point, I'm now a part-time g-diaper user. ( We are using them at home, and so far I'm pretty happy with them, though the routine and technique take a little getting used to.

Of course, Barcelona is not known so much for its high-performing disposable diapers as for its cool modernist style, and there they live up to their billing. For as bad as the Barcelona disposable diaper scene was, I ran across one of the cutest baby/mommy stores I've yet encountered (dig the hat!). Check out, and to see some truly funky needlecraft.


Amy said...

tiz funny how one can become so fixated on one's behind, yes? I remember using those "tushies" from Whole foods.UGHHH~ TOTAL CRAP. It would have been more effective to put the twins in a roll of newspaper.Back then I gave up and went right to swaddlers. NOW I use 100% cloth baby. Yes i do laundry 2 times a day. BUT I absolutely love it. ( I know I'm lame) There is something "nice" about a microfleece wrap over my lil' man's frank and beans. I also used Gdiapers for a while there. I love them. They are a product that is well made, and convienient to use. I plan on using them on vacations etc... so I can relax... and not chant " time to wash the diapers... time to wash the diapers..." I have a lot to learn about cloth diapering since i am new on the scene... but as always I am always looking for something new and hip to buy for my kids... as well as the oppertinuty to join some weird underworld cult so my kids don't look like "everykid." Poor Parker.. works all day to fulfil my cloth diapering/style addiction. :)

LA BABA said...

Well, this Catalan used something you won't remember:cloth diapers and plastic "panties" which kept everything EXCEPT the baby nice and dry. Of course this promoted hideous rashes but, hey, Mom and the furniture were fine. I realize disposable diapers will not be our doom but with experts telling us we only have 10 years to reverse the damage to the environment perhaps someone sould do a study of how babies' sweet bottoms survived for millions of years till the 1960s. A trip to Africa or the Amazon would certainly give us the answer.

Mia said...

I went to Barcelona with a friend for 3 nights and 4 days at the end of May 2004. This was a nice time of year to visit as the weather was hot and sunny, but not overbearing.
We stayed in a 2 bedroom flat in the Raval area, about 10 minutes walk from the Ramblas.I fell in love with Barcelona and it's beautiful architecture, there is so much to see and could have stayed for longer, however, you can get to see a lot in a day as it is not that big and is easy to get around.