July 23rd, 2014

pigtails

Pink is the new.. oh wait, no it isn't.

A couple of weeks ago, that thing about the Bic Cristal For Her pens went around again. It sparked the usual hilarity regarding only writing under the supervision of our husbands, how nice that we can now lift the pens easily, etc.

In me, it also sparked curiosity about ladies' fishing rods. Because I can't for the life of me work out what you'd make different in a fishing rod to make it gender-specific. I thought for a while about length for casting (against the fact that women are generally shorter than men) but reality is that casting is mostly about technique, and the only place where height makes a difference is in surfcasting. I've yet to find a 'ladies' surfcaster. So anyway, because there are assumptions and then there is research, I went and had a look at the available fishing gear that claims to be 'for women'.

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I can see an argument that *some* women might like to have a special rod that's their very own, and because of the way our society has gendered pink as a women's colour, *some* women might be encouraged to see that as more theirs than the regular ones. And for a small number of women, that may encourage them to take up fishing.

For me, I find it both patronising and insulting that these manufacturers are making claims about the design of this gear being tailored to women's needs when all they are really doing is providing a normal spec rod and reel - in pink. They are shouting, loud and clear, that what women need is pink. And as a subtext, they are also suggesting that a) women don't know enough about fishing to notice that there's really no difference, and b) every other rod in their range is for men, because women and pink. And no other reason, because there isn't one, but look - PINK STUFF LADIES!

*ahem*

I'll keep sourcing my fishing gear from the men's regular section thanks. And I think Penn and Daiwa will be getting my money from now on.

I'll keep you posted if Ugly Stik, Shimano or Okuma ever get back to me about their ladies' gear.