kutsuwamushi: (feminism)
Via Sociological Images, New Beetle Gets a Sex Change:
New Beetle is about to get a testosterone injection. A mean-looking chopped top, 200 H.P. motor, widened stance, and a larger interior will transform the quintessential chick car into a rock-hard rock star.
...

Okay, I'm not a particular fan of the New Beetle, but this irks me, because it's a prime example of how companies panic when they find out that their product has become "girly." It happens to television shows and now, to cars.

And I suspect it will backfire.

The thing is, people really are truly gosh-darn sexist, and it's not easy to get rid of the stigma of being "girly." If you're a guy who cares about such things, you don't want to be the one at the party who says, "Mine's the blue Beetle--but it's the new one, not the old girly one, stop looking at me like that oh god I can see my penis shriveling before your eyes."

The people who might have bought the Beetle because it's cute, nostalgic, and different, no longer have the same reason to, because they've gone and made it look like a not particularly handsome hatchback. They've brought it straight into "Why don't I just buy a Mini Cooper?" territory. Or, even worse, "Why don't I buy a Golf?"

Upgrading the engine is a good idea, though. Buy a Mini Cooper is precisely what my mom did. She loves the looks of the "girly" New Beetle, but she likes fast things. Shove that up your stereotypes.

Via [personal profile] telophase, The Great Escape From Slavery: an article about a married couple who escaped from slavery by the wife posing as a white man, and her husband posing as her slave.

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