Squirly logic on a poster for a new gym gets Holly Walsh thinking.
I walked past this poster for a new gym:
“MAKE BUILDERS WOLF WHISTLE YOU. THEN BEAT THEM UP”
Now this is an interesting statement, isn’t it? It’s saying, “You ladies want to be seen as a super-hot-piece-of-ass, but you also want to get offended if someone calls you a super-hot-piece-of-ass.”
Basically, a woman can be feminist, sure – but deep down she’s also needy.
The person I feel sorry for in all of this is the poor stupid builder. According to this slogan, he’s being made to wolf whistle you. He doesn’t even want to, but your ass is so toned from all those squats, he just can’t help himself. Your body forced him to do that. And now, to make matters worse, you’re getting all up in his grill because he whistled at you! Thank God he’s up some scaffolding or you’d knock his teeth out. “Jeez,” he thinks, “what do women with a BMI of 18-23 want?”
I’m sure Gymbox is just trying to be funny. It probably thinks it’s actually being a bit right-on. That wolf whistling is a bit of old-fashioned pervery, like Benny Hill and saucy postcards. And the thought of feminists using their new-found upper body strength to deck builders is empowering, right?
Maybe that’s the intention, but the logic of this campaign is worrying. I almost want to sign up to Gymbox for an induction session just to have this exchange:
Personal trainer: What are your exercise goals?
Me: I’d like to be hot enough to lure a rapist, but then fit enough to out-run* him.
Maybe I should propose this to Gymbox for their next ad campaign.
*or grapevine away into the distance; whichever burns more calories.
Holly Walsh is a standup comedian and writer, living in London. After eight years, her parents have just about come to terms with her career choice.