Tuesday, February 13, 2007

A Lunch Box Story

In a moment of weakness, I had agreed to eat a mini candy bar if one of my students scored 100% on the last test. Student scored 98%, so it was a narrow escape for me. Truth is I would have been happy either way; I love it when my students ace tests. This led to a conversation on the subject of fitness and nutrition. Turns out that at least one of my students didn't realise that the "before" picture I have hanging by my desk was me. Another student asked what was in my lunch box. How could I resist? I said a silent thank you to the powers-that-be that I had decided to organize and fill all my rubbermaid containers over the weekend, so I wasn't pulling out bedraggled half bags of spinach... I noted that I don't have to bring protein with me because my desk drawer has a sizable stash of tuna cans and salmon pouches, which they know because that's also the drawer that always has apples and bananas they're welcome to take. I then went through the contents of the lunch box: two apples, one banana, ~4 cups of spinach, a cup of frozen edamame, a bowl with dry oatmeal and a cup of frozen berries which are meant to go on top of the oatmeal.

Good reading: Dynamist Blog writes about an aspect of the D0ve ads that's not often mentioned. Be sure to click through and read her Atlantic article while you're there, especially the last line. (Found via Instapundit.)


At 8:48 AM , Blogger M@rla said...

It's a good commentary on the Dove ads. Where was I reading a criticism of 0prah's new school in Africa, which includes a beauty spa so the girls can have "self-esteem"? I don't remember. Probably I Blame the Patriarchy.

Even so, I think the D0ve ads are a step in the right direction. Or at least, a step away from the burning brink of damnation that most advertising merits. You can have ads for beauty products that show an extremely limited and dull ideal of beauty, or you can have ads for beauty products that show more variety and a more liberal interpretation of beauty. The one point I would have to disagree with is that our idea of beauty is universal and either you have it or you don't. She mentions "we still thrill to the centuries-old bust of Nefertiti, the Venus de Milo, and the exquisite faces painted by Leonardo and Botticelli" as though those are universally accepted beauty standards. They're not - those faces are all extremely different, and people from different places, cultures and times would view them differently. I think the D0ve ads are at least broadening the definition of beauty. In a best-case scenario, they would be trying to break the idea that beauty is a woman's most important attribute, but this is a beauty product company and capitalism and marketing, so I don't think we should expect that from them in the first place.

I'm not trying to be a big champion of the ads, because I have a lot of the same criticisms, but I do think they are a vast improvement on the usual junk.


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