This is the kind of news that can rock your world. You read it and you say, “No, no, say it ain’t so.” In case you missed it, I’ll have to be the one to break it to you. Ready? Sitting down? OK: there’s an overpriced line of yoga clothes that claims to have seaweed in the fabric – and it doesn’t!
Or at least, not so you’d notice, according to the New York Times, naturally the source of the story about Lululemon yoga togs in its role as paper of record for the alternate reality some North Americans apparently are living in (yes, Lululemon’s a Canadian company; I don’t know what to say about Mexico so we’ll let it slide).
I know, learning there’s no seaweed in your yoga clothes is as devastating as finding out there are no acorn shells in your sheets. Or something. Some of you, perhaps Kohl’s or even Wal-Mart shoppers, might wonder why you would want to put seaweed in your exercise wear. Personally I associate seaweed with being wet and slimy, and maybe rotting on the beach, not something you really want to have with exercise clothes. But, according to the company’s website, the part-seaweed fabric “is antibacterial, moisturizing & de-stressing for the skin.” And thinking again, I bet that’s true. Because sushi rolls are wrapped in seaweed, and they look pretty healthy – for dead, raw fish that is – and moist, and not at all stressed. Well, sometimes the hand rolls kind of look like they might fall apart, and that’s maybe a little stressful, but I mean, usually they look good.
So maybe there isn’t any seaweed in the clothes. Does it really matter? You can always pick up your own frond and drape it around your neck when you’re doing your sun salutations at the beach. And there’s still oh-so-natural stuff like bamboo, or organic cotton or beech wood in other fabrics. Plus, you can take comfort from the company’s “manifesto,” generously shared, such as, “Friends are more important than money,” but also, “Don’t trust that an old age pension will be sufficient.” You get the idea: pick friends or money, but whatever you do, buy the clothes.
As a former resident of an area where yoga clothes are practically formal wear, I think I’ve learned the real reason people drop 90 bucks on a pair of yoga pants – how it makes your butt look. If that’s a go, the clothes could be made out of recycled rat droppings and no one would care.
But let’s cut to the chase. As the Times article notes, in what must have been a real Deep Throat kind of scenario, test results questioning the presence of seaweed in the fabric were passed to the newspaper by an investor who wants to make money off the company’s stock price falling. Maybe he or she did.
So this whole shocking expose was provoked by someone hoping to make money off it – possibly not someone really appalled by the potential consumer deception. People also go into business to make money. (Feel free to put that in your manifesto.) The whole natural, breathe-deeply schtick is a successful marketing position for some companies. I wouldn’t presume to speculate on how sincere this particular manifesto-sharing company is about the philosophy around their product. But if you’ve found customers willing to pay extra to have seaweed in their shirts, who needs philosophy?