December 1, 2008

Ceci N'est Pas Un Aibo Onesie


Two Blue Cars is a Brooklyn outfit that makes awesome t-shirts for boys, like this Onesie-style [1] bodysuit with an Aibo-style [2] robot dog on it. Too bad there's nothing for girls, but gender coding runs deep, even in the center of the city's progressive silkscreening district.

Robot Dog onesie [sic], $20, by Two Blue Cars []

[1] As early readers of Daddy Types well know, Onesie is a registered trademark of Gerber Childrenswear, Inc., whose lawyers sent DT our first cease & desist order way back in 2004 for quoting someone referring to an infant bodysuit as a "onesie."

[2] Aibo, meanwhile, is the registered trademark of Sony Electronics Corp, and when I was being stonewalled by Sony after my 1st gen, limited edition Aibo was stolen by the FedEx guy, I told the CSR, "Am I going to have to make a website called and publicize the Aibo theft ring that you're not acknowledging as the reason my Aibo went missing?" Sony promptly snapped up the domain and all its variations. So I registered and published instead, and promptly got a call from the President of Sony Robotics, promising my Aibo was on the way. Which was good, because I'd already flipped it to some gadget junkie in Hong Kong for $7,000, and he was waiting for delivery.


Uhhh . . . and why isn't this "bodysuit with an Aibo-style robot dog" for girls?

Hey, man, it's 2008. It doesn't seem to be the silkscreener who's doing the gender-coding, but the beholder.

From their email pitch: "We design shirts for boys- no fuss construction vehicles, garbage trucks, robots etc."
From the front page: "Awesome longsleeve shirts for boys"
Granted, they save their butts in the fine print: "Two Blue Cars: Urban handcraft for boys (and the cool girls)."

Of course, I have no problem with girls in digger shirts, and I'm sure 2BC doesn't either.

I met the 2bluecars family at the Brooklyn Flea and asked about the shirts for boys thing. They said they're marketing to boys because there are so few boy only shops online compared to girls shops. We had a nice discussion about their plan and they were good humored about the whole thing. My younger daughter got a record player shirt and loves it although truefully most of truck shirts on the site she would never thing of wearing . My real problem with the site is that they don't have adult shirts. I want their polaroid shirt for myself!

Here's the bigger question. What do you do when you, a progressive parent who hates strict stereotyping, finds your child following all the stereotypes to the max. My older daughter's wardrobe is predominantly pink. She keeps trying to wear makeup and LOVES Hannah Montana. This drives me up the wall!

if only there was a place where girls could indulge their fun, little, Hannah Montana makeover dreams in a safe, supportive, supervised environment. They would make a FORTUNE.

I think it's called "home" -- now where's my check?

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