During my research for an upcoming post on snowboarding outerwear, I picked up two issues published by Snowboard Magazine:
1. Snowboard Magazine Women’s Annual
2. 2009-2010 Snowboard Magazine Premium Brand Buyer’s Guide
While perusing the pages of the Women’s Annual, I came across an article titled “Buying a Board.” Intrigued, I read on, but I was sorely disappointed. Reading the intro paragraph, I was thinking, ok, senior editor Nate Deschenes wants to crack a few jokes. Whatever, no biggie; let’s see what he really has to say, jokes aside. Ladies, I’m telling you, the whole article is utterly useless; not only did I learn nothing about buying a snowboard, but it’s really patronizing to chicks! Here are excerpts from the article to prove my point:
(Intro) “To any of you ladies out there who are serious about buying a snowboard, this will not help. See, I haven’t bought a snowboard in over 10 years, I am not a girl, and I tend to lie.”
INTUITION: “Buy the very first one you see—that is, if it has pretty colors…Technically, your snowboard purchasing experience should end here, but if you insist on getting scientific, read on…”
SIZE: “Does size matter? See, here is where I am confused and often times intimidated. I have heard girls say “yes” and I have heard them say “no.”
CAMBER: “See, I always thought camber was a rock from prehistoric times that trapped ants and rodents in time for cloning purposes…”
“Buying a new snowboard may seem overwhelming and I don’t expect you to digest this all at once, but with some careful consideration and totaly disregard for this article you should be fine. Good luck!”
Are you fucking serious?? Ok, so dude did fess up in the last paragraph to disregard this article. But I just wasted a few minutes of my precious time and $5.99 buying that magazine. In this day and age, when magazines are getting dangerously thin or folding, how can you have the luxury of printing a whole page of useless, male chauvinist-tinged crap?!!
But wait, then I look through the Premium Brand Buyer’s Guide and find a technical spread about “Camber or Reverse Camber” (a rock from prehistoric times, ahem…) followed by 11 pages of snowboards they recommend. All I get is a cutesy little illustration in the women’s issue, but there’s full diagrams and explanations in the buyer’s guide??
Ok, so let’s play devil’s advocate for a moment. Yes, since it is the Premium Brand Buyer’s Guide, we should expect more pages of technical info. And to his credit, the writer, Mike Basher, did a great write-up. However, even if you’re lazy and don’t want to assign another tech article for the Women’s Annual, you could just reprint excerpts from Basher’s article.
Back to the Women’s Annual, associate editor Tawnya Schultz did devote one page to her board picks in the Gear Guide section of the issue, but it didn’t completely erase the bad taste I got from Nate Deschenes’ womens-specific article.
Look, it’s not usually my style to call people out, but when I think something’s whack, I’m going to sound off. I have no issue with having men editors on a women’s interest magazine, but be aware of your demographic!
The fact is, we are not merely “snow bunnies.” There are some amazing women, such as Torah Bright, demonstrating some sick skills in the halfpipe and getting recognition in the snowboarding community. So please give us better articles that are actually informative; we can totally handle it, ok??
P.S. Apparently, I’m not the only chick who feels this way. Check out what Tundra Wookie had to say about that article. She even goes on to comment on a fashion editorial in the same issue, of half-naked models modeling base layers, Maxim-style. I agree with Tundra Wookie; I have no problems with girls scantily posed as long as there is some equality involved; when can I see some half-naked guys wearing nothing but goggles and snowboard pants? Bring it on!
FOLLOW-UP: A response from Snowboard Magazine.