Have you heard of the Office Kid? I wrote about that here a few years ago. The kid is actually a kit, with a picture you can put on your desk, along with some adorable kiddy art work, to have your own built-in excuse for leaving the workplace early when all of your coworkers who really are parents are doing the same.

In the past couple of days, people have been sending me links to a much more ambitious and artistic version of the fake family. [Thanks, Sara Hodges and fellow PT blogger Sophia Dembling.] Suzanne Heintz got tired of the why-aren’t-you-married question: “Women’s lib was in the 70s. It’s the 21st century and I’m still not right without a ring on my finger? What’s up with that?” So she editorialized with a family of mannequins that she took with her on her travels for more than a decade. You can check out some of the photos here and here.

The project was a real conversation starter as the artist posed with her mannequins around the world. It is also generating a variety of reactions now that it is posted online, as you can see from the comments. What’s your take on what she is doing?

I think this next one, sent to me by our friend Psyngle [thanks], also invites reactions. It is an ad from the Humane Society, featuring a picture of the cat Maru, who is saying, “At first I was embarrassed. Me, a cat, living with a single guy. But when I watch him pick something up with his hands and eat it, I can’t help but love him.” Psyngle’s question about the ad is this: “Does it play in a fun way with silly stereotypes, or perpetuate them?”

What do you think?

Suzanne Heintz mannequin family project

[Note: Elsewhere, the post, “The real juggling act: Living alone, working full time, and waiting for repair and service people to show up” has generated lots of useful comments about how to deal with that issue. You might also enjoy this article about a single woman, her solitude, and her travels.]

Here are a few other posts about singles and their pets:

What’s with the cat, and other questions about singles and their pets

Who’s really nuts, 20/20 or the ‘crazy cat ladies’?

Single man with cats is in the news—cue the innuendo!

Susan Boyle: The new face—and voice!—of the ‘spinster cat lady’

Humane Society ad

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