Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Here I Was Thinking A Chip Is A Chip

Apparently, men and women eat chips differently. Very differently, if a recent interview of PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi is to be believed. I'm still trying to digest (ha!) the flavor of what she was trying to say with this, but apparently dudes really get into eating their Doritos. They lick their fingers with 'great glee' and 'when they reach the bottom of the bag, they pour the little broken pieces into their mouth.' Women would love to do the same thing, but don't, I guess. The ladies hate the loud crunching (especially in public) and 'they don't like their fingers generously.' Oh and the whole, pouring the little broken pieces into your mouth? The ladies don't do that either.

And here I was thinking a chip is a chip.

The internet, predictably found out about this revelation and heads exploded and much mockery was had of the idea of 'Lady Doritos', but I think to be fair to PepsiCo, they don't seem to have plans to put bags on shelves anytime soon. (Though Nooyi did mention that they are 'looking at it' and were 'getting ready to launch a bunch of them soon.') I'm guessing, given the reaction, that any plans they had for putting their 'Lady Doritos' on shelves have probably been shoved into the nearest paper shredder pretty damn quickly.

Do you ever think that people who come up with this shit live in an entirely different universe from the rest of us? I mean- why do you we have to 'gender' snack food for crying out loud? What if ladies love the crunch and the fingers coated with flavor goodness and adjusting the bag to the right angle so you can get every morsel of goodness at the bottom of the bag in one go? And never mind that: what if dude secretly hate the flavor fingers and the broken pieces and the loud crunching, huh? Maybe I want a stealth Dorito to gobble up on the sly? Did you ever think of that PepsiCo?

The whole affair underlines two major problems. First, marketing aimed at women is incredibly backwards a lot of the time and strikes me as being a hop, skip and a jump away from being somewhat demeaning. We're supposed to be in a world where women are empowered and breaking through the barriers of gender stereotypes and yet there's pretty pink princess shit all over the store shelves. Tampon commercials are even worse and while I'm aware that I'm treading on thin and potentially problematic ice by saying this being a cisgendered dude, I find them to be incredibly annoying. No woman I've ever met thinks, 'ah, a tampon that absorbs better than my last brand. Now I can play tennis in my lily white romper!' 

I can't even imagine the pitch meeting for Lady Doritos. I mean, how do you say this out loud and not come across as incredibly tone deaf or worse, offensive? Thankfully, Doritos has gone through whatever concussion protocol they have in place to fix their bad ideas and had the good sense to tweet this:
(Honorable mention to this dude for a truly excellent notion. Maybe do this, instead, Doritos?)

Second of all, why you gotta mess with Doritos? I have a long and checkered history with Doritos and have an unfortunate tendency to eat them by the bag if left to my own devices. (There were a couple of glorious semesters in my undergraduate days when I subsisted off of Chinese delivery from Easy Place Chinese Place and Red Salsa Doritos- the former burnt down and the latter is no longer on the shelves.) Every time I see a new flavor, there's a part of me that thinks "Ooooh, I'm going to have to try that one." They're addictive. I love the crunch. I love the flavory goodness all over my fingers and tipping the bag up to get every last little broken piece. That experience is all part of the essential Doritos experience.

It doesn't matter what gender you are, the broken pieces and the flavory fingers and the crunch are why you eat Doritos to begin with. You'd be fools to mess with that.

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