by FELICITY WARD
I have never written a letter of complaint before. Don’t worry, it’s very sarcastic. There is a company (called Who Exclusive) whose tagline is: Spend ‘his’ Money Wisely.
My friend posted a picture of it on Facebook. I grew Hulk-like and decided to pen the shit out of a complaint letter. Well, here it is…what can I say – sexism gonna made me do crankiness.
To Whom It May Concern,
I’m writing in regards to your billboard advertisement campaign with the tag line: Spend ‘His’ Money Wisely.
Firstly, are you kidding me?
Secondly, no really are you kidding me?
I’ve earned my own money and had a job since I was twelve. It’s one of the many luxuries feminism has afforded me, as there was a very long period of time where women weren’t allowed to work as their job was to be a vagina that produced children.
So a massive high five to you guys for discovering time travel and taking me swiftly back to 1950. I’ll alert scientists immediately.
I really love clothes. I love shopping. I love buying clothes and I love fashion. I am mad up for it, and browse online sites to see what they’ve got to show me. I’m loyal. I’m sartorially adventurous and I have a dispensible income. So it seems like we’re on the same page up until this point yeah? Sweet. Then, uh-oh, you got someone Don Draper’s advertising firm to write you an ad.
The fact that you are playing on the stereotype that women should/can spend “Her man’s money” is gross, and if we’re being pedantic a little homophobic. I have a job. I make my own money. I don’t want to be financially co-dependent and you perpetuating this ideal frankly makes me sick in my bathing suit area. You tell us with your ad that money comes from men. That women are hopeless or at least deceitful and/or manipulative.
Quick question: do you have any women working at your company? I don’t know you very well but my guess is: buttloads. Well that is what you are telling your employees, not to mention all the teenagers figuring out who they are in the world, all the little girls asking their parents what your sign means, and all the women who have low self-esteem just getting it crapped on that little bit more.
I just wanted to have a look at your mission statement I copied from your website. Shall we break it down?
“We believe that women are not defined by their dress size or height, but by their ability to choose the clothes that make them whole.”
Where it says “the clothes that make them whole” do you mean to write “a husband”?
“We believe that everyone has the power to influence the way that fashion moves.”
I completely agree with you. And fashion has the power to influence what we believe. So please take a little responsibility when writing things in public, yes?
“That is why at Whoexclusive.com we want to bring the barriers down-”
You mean fashion barriers right? We’ll keep that glass ceiling just where it is, and do remember to leave the kitchen door open. Hubby might get hungry later on and I want to have express access to all sandwich making facilities.
“-and let you, our customers become part of a driving force of the fashion industry”.
Cool. Let me in. I want to drive the force away from boring sexual stereotypes and gender limitations.
I apologise for the extraordinary sarcasm that is plastered through this email, but quite frankly I felt driven by the horrific sexism displayed by your ad. I’m 32. I shouldn’t be writing letters of complaint yet. I’m in the prime of my life.
However, I thought you would be more likely to read something like this, even if it is because you are offended. I wanted you to read it at all; I was worried if I wrote the usual “I find this upsetting. Have you considered option a) or option b)” you may have replied with a “Thank you for your feedback. Your opinion is important to us. This email has just been deleted but rest assured we’re genuinely taking your message to heart.”
You probably won’t respond to this one…but that’s okay. Your ad isn’t.
Please change it. It’s gross. It’s an embarrassment to women.
This was originally published on Felicity’s website here and has been republished with full permission.
Felicity Ward is a multi-award winning, 31 year old stand-up comedian, performer, writer and actor. She is most well-known for her work in the recent film Any Questions For Ben and her TV work on The Ronnie Johns Half Hour, Spicks and Specks and Thank God You’re Here. Find her website here.