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The Wonder of It All

I’ve been mildly annoyed by REI’s #ForceOfNature social media campaign, if only because they seem to be trying really, really hard to convince me that…come to think of it, I’m not sure what it is they’re trying to say, other than that is has something to do with sexism. Am I sexist for being a male and enjoying the outdoors? Or is it the outdoors itself that’s sexist? Whatever it is, it’s definitely a Bad Thing.

So they post pictures to Instagram with lines like “They might say, ‘you should be quiet.’ But out here, we’re not going to listen to the stereotypes.” Deep, huh? (Just two days before that, it was “Somewhere they might be saying, ‘you should be more feminine.’ But up here, we can’t hear the stereotypes.” They’ve already run out of ideas.)

Apart from the cheesiness of it all, it just seemed so improbable. I mean, are there really insufferable a**holes out there who say such things to women? And if so, is it a quantity sufficient enough to warrant a lame social media campaign? I follow REI on Instagram to look at cool gear and gorgeous photography, not be lectured about the purported inequality of the sexes – especially with obviously staged photos and woefully forced copy.

Then Skooch sent me this story.

It made me realize that, if people like D. Marble exist, then yes, the aforementioned insufferable a**holes surely must exist as well. Just when you think you’ve got the world figured out, it throws you a curve ball.



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