(Hat tip to dreamwaffles.)
Autostraddle and Ms. Blog have the news about an interesting new advertising sins and the latest mutation of femmephobia. I mean, kind of news. It’s from, erm, two months ago. Ozy is known for many things, but zir punctuality is evidently not one of them.
If you click the friendly Ms. Blog link up there, you’ll find picture after picture of desperately masculine femme things. This version, although lacking in pictures, contains Ozy’s commentary and slow, italicized breakdown:
- Nail polish named “Alphanail” that says it is made by warriors and will get you laid more. Alphanail? You have to be joking. I guess Mystery does wear nail polish, though, so maybe they’re going for the burgeoning PUA market…
- Candles that allegedly bring out the dog in you, advertise their added danger, have James-Bond-esque packaging, and smell like success and motor oil. A dangerous candle that smells like motor oil is, strictly speaking, a worse candle.
- Paint named “names he’ll agree to,” including sucker punch, beer foam, and razor burn. Okay, that is just condescending.
- Irons that are robust power tools and have more power and performance. IT IS A MOTHERFUCKING IRON. How much power do you need? Are your clothes going to be unwrinkled on a molecular level? Is Tony Stark actually the Ironing Man?
- Bacon-flavored tea (three flavors!) in a testicle-shaped tea bag. I would comment on the weird bacon thing again, but I am too busy attempting to figure out why someone would make a testicle tea bag. Seriously. YOU CAN BUY A TESTICLE TEA BAG. WHYYYYYYYYYYYYY
- Muesli packaged like a construction zone. That is it. I am broken. You people have broken me. I am going to run off to Australia and start a peacock farm and NEVER THINK ABOUT GENDER AGAIN.
But before I book the flight to Australia, I would like to point out that this list provides us a unique insight into American culture and enables us to create a list of things that are Manly and Not Manly.
- Debunked ideas of how wolves work
- Actually, violence in general
- Or really dangerous things in general
- James Bond
- Power tools
- FUCKING TERRIBLE PUNS
- Beauty items
- Interior design
- Household chores
- Breakfast food that is not bacon (maybe that’s why stereotypical men like bacon so much! If they didn’t eat it they’d be starving until lunch)
Lists aside, I think this is fascinating simply because of how transparent it is. Marketers have realized that occasionally marking some stuff to women and some stuff to men means they sell twice as much stuff (e.g. shampoo), but much of the time it leads to them selling less stuff because the men don’t wear nail polish. So now they are trying desperately to present nail polish as a Dude Thing That Is Totally Dudely And Will Not Make Your Penis Fall Off, We Promise, In Fact It Will Make It Grow Six Inches.