A BoBo rebellion is brewing. Yesterday, a tipster (I have a tipster!) pointed me towards un scandale extraordinaire involving Lululemon, a yoga wear retailer that has an enormous following among the sort of yuppies inclined to pay $100 for stretchy pants. Apparently the stroller mafia is in uproar because Lululemon’s founder, an avid Ayn Rand enthusiast, decided to print “who is JOHN GALT?” in huge block letters on the store’s shopping bags.
I may not be the greatest person to speak on the the nuances of this scandal, because I have never read an Ayn Rand novel. What I understand about Rand’s “individualist” philosophy, plus the weird, fanatical way she is spoken of by a certain type of man (i.e., the type I would never ever want to date), plus her books’ mammoth size has been enough to scare me off. But these articles on Gawker and NPR gave me enough background to understand what all the fuss is about. And BOY is it hilarious and stupid.
John Galt is a figure in Atlas Shrugged who is the ultimate embodiment of Ayn Rand’s whole philosophy that self-interest is the greatest of human ideals. And according to Lululemon’s corporate blog, this idiot founder decided it would be a good idea to reference said fictional character on his shopping bags because of “the impact the book’s ideology had on his quest to elevate the world from mediocrity to greatness.” (Emphasis theirs. See what I mean about men who like Ayn Rand?) And while “elevating the world from mediocrity to greatness” could sort of be seen as a yoga-ish line of thinking, Ayn Rand’s assertion that this will happen through a single-minded focus on personal success and gratification is kind of at odds with all the touchy-feely oneness at the heart of yoga philosophy.
This Chip Wilson person is hilarious and moronic for not having enough common sense to put that together. However, this is even more hilarious and moronic:
At least at the moment, it does seem – the evidence suggests that Lululemon has severely alienated its core constituency. Certainly here in Toronto, the moms in the fantastic-looking Lululemon pants are discussing this in the school yards and the yoga studios and they’re not at all possible [sic? it seems like he should have said “pleased”]. (NPR)
Oh sweet mother of god. The moms are discussing it in the school yards. Of- fucking-course they are. The sort of moms who spend $100 on clothing items that exist solely to get smelly and sweaty and dirty are always getting up-in-arms about something in the fucking school yards. And the stupid John Galt reference on the stupid shopping bag that you probably throw out the second you put your overpriced sports bra in the dresser is exactly the kind of thing worth getting up-in-arms about if you’re a mom in a school yard, isn’t it?
This is the type of pretentious, self-serious nonsense that makes me think that I would rather home school my future offspring than risk interacting with other parents before 9am.
Full disclosure is that I love yoga and go to yoga classes on a regular basis. Yoga is great exercise and it gives you a fabulous endorphin rush and it’s incredible for your body in pretty much every respect. I’m not into yoga philosophy and meditation. I don’t have any problem with people who practice yoga because they want to be one with the universe or whatever, I’m just not one of them.
However, because I go to a somewhat bougie yoga studio in a somewhat bougie part of L.A. I am familiar with the kind of people who are in a huff about this Lululemon thing. People who are passionate about yoga philosophy. Or rather, people who get really earnest and self-congratulatory about the granola-munching spirituality of it all, but are compelled to hand absurd sums of money over to a corporation in order to look fabulous as they get all red and sweaty from posing with their heads upside-down.
Do you see what I’m getting at here? I hope so, because it’s Friday and I’m eating as I write this and I’m not in the mood to think too hard about the best way to verbalize it. Sorry. But I wanted to post about this whole thing because I love my tipster and it’s a great example of something about our society I find endlessly ridiculous.
That’s all for today folks. I hope you have a great weekend.