James Fell thinks the ad campaign for anti-stink product Poo-Pourri is sexist, and not just because they’re marketing poo shame to women.
But ask your average family who has the stinkiest poops, and most fingers point to Daddy.
I am the daddy, and I am guilty of befouling our house’s bathrooms with vile concoctions brewed in my lower colon. You know the movie The Exorcist? Remember when Linda Blair blew her groceries with that foul, green, demon-spawned hell puke? Well, imagine she dropped a deuce instead. That’s what I do. Sometimes.
But now there is Poo-Pourri, which you may have learned about from a viral video campaign. When I saw the video I thought it was satire, like that SNL skit of Turlington’s Lower Back Tattoo Remover. It actually took a while for the video to come out and say that this is a real product that real people buy for real.
I should get some.
But I have a hard time rewarding a company with my moderate-effort-earned dollars for engaging in body shaming. Well, I guess once the poop comes out it’s no longer part of your body, but you know what I mean. The whole marketing campaign, which I admit is both funny and brilliant, has a dark underbelly to it.
Was that a pun? It wasn’t meant to be.
Anyway, the video plays on women’s insecurities about stinking up the bathroom, like it’s not a feminine thing to do. News flash: stinking up the bathroom is a human thing to do, and trying to pretend that someone – male or female – is not going to smell when they make fudge is silly. And targeting women with the product because they should feel more ashamed of their bodily functions – and pretending that they don’t poop at all – is sexist.
I think embracing our stinky poops – figuratively, of course – is the first step in dealing with them so as not to offend others so much. Sure, you can adopt the “My poop smells, deal with it,” mentality. Or you could try and be a kinder, gentler pooper.
Most mornings I get up before my wife, and the nuclear reactor that are my bowels have attained critical mass. I enter into our en suite bathroom and go Chernobyl. The villagers flee in panic, the local fauna start to mutate.
And my poor wife has to brush her teeth and shower in there afterwards.
Later on, after a cup of coffee, there may be a blowout in the downstairs bathroom, and the trade winds carry the toxic substance out the door and towards the kitchen, where my poor kids are eating breakfast.
I’m not ashamed of my poops, but maybe I could try and be more considerate of others with them by using this product. It’s like holding in a fart until you can step outside, or brushing your teeth after eating a Greek salad, or taking a shower after a hard workout. It’s not that there is anything inherently wrong with smelling bad, but it kind of kills the romance in a long-term relationship when you make your significant other gag on a regular basis.
I guess when it comes down to it, I think the makers of Poo-Pourri are missing out on the male market. If you’re going to target women, you should also target guys who, instead of spicing up their relationship by buying flowers, can combat the spicy food by making their poop smell like flowers.
Male or female, if you share a bathroom with someone you love, instead of your evacuations causing them to flee in terror, you could earn brownie points (okay, that pun was on purpose) by taking steps to minimize the foulness of your internal fragrance.
Who says romance is dead?