Friday, September 28, 2012

An Open Letter To Target: Stop Selling Wines With Insulting and Patronizing Names Or We Won't Let You Come To Our Book Club, by Allison

Dear Target:
I am officially mad at you, and I hate to fight with you.

I am on your team, remember?

Always seem to need something that turns into giant cart of stuff and then I have to go back again for the party supplies, sometimes I have three girls who turn into savage feral cat vampire vulture children throwing everything they can find in the cart?


I normally totally approve of your choices in marketing, stocking the store, keeping things with the vague notion of aspirational items and things I probably need and things that are shiny and stuff for the house that is boring and all.

I always give you gold star for keeping the stores and carts non-gross,
turning stuff over fast so it does not looked picked through like bargain basement store,
getting designers to do capsule collections,
having ballet flats and flip flops in stock when I need them,
having cute holiday things that trick me into thinking I need them and that I don't already have this cute little tree thing for the mantel so better get it,
PLUS now milk and wine??

I realize you are working me over.

 I get that, and I respect the very good job you do with that.

I am aware that by making things a teensy bit nicer, you are wooing me, luring me into lifelong super shopper status.

I know that, am cool with it, is very very clever.

I know I am your demographic, as woman in house who buys stuff for everybody, we are your people.

We love getting all the socks and detergent and makeup wipes and Tide to Go along with digital camera thingys we lost and baby gifts and impulse purchases you have placed well for just that reason at Target, because there is a certain level of respect, or at least acknowledgement that you like us, you know what we need and stock it, the store won't be gross, surely you can grab a teacher gift while there too, so we load up our giant S.U.V's on a weekly basis and drive off to clog the air with inefficent giant kid-mobiles to get our Starbucks.

I am very on board with your strategy and have always admired it for its cleverness and effectiveness. Gold star, totally.

Except now.

You need to call the marketing people, wrangle yourself up some new focus groups. You can call me if you want some suggestions.

Because here is where you have made me grumpy, Target.

You are being offensive in your wine selection. 

Not the quality, not the variety, but the NAMES.

They are awful and insulting and I am now worked up into indignant froth.

I am very, very sad about this, as I am a fan of Target, wine, and wine sold at Target, for above mentioned convenience when I am hunting and gathering for me/Matt/girls/good and bad dog.

But today, as I am doing my rounds, I go in the very lovely Diet Coke and Wine Aisle, and what do I see?

There are some normal wines, some good ones, decent ones, some cheap ones, but a bunch of different kinds, and you know what the majority of them have in common?


Insulting names like Sweet and Sassy, Junebug, Relax, Glamour Girl, Middle Sister, Wine Sisterhood, Be (what???), Cupcake, Peapod, Flirt.

Or, in case you are the Racy One At Book Club, Naked Grape, Totally Naked, and Menage a Trois.

Target, really?

We are not all in one Giant Sisterhood of the Traveling Knitting Club Where We Read Books With Shoes On The Cover And Whimsically Paint Pottery While Drinking Crap Wine With Stupid Names You Think We Think Are Cute Or Funny Or Slightly Risque.


You got this so wrong, Target.

Your radar way off on this, how did that happen?

You do realize there is no Flirt vineyard, right? No Wine Sisterhood, No Be, No Totally Naked, those are MADE UP.
By very very ignorant people who think they are cleverly marketing to the lady at Target buying stuff, surely she will find these names charming and buy ten bottles for her next party.

And Target, you are the master at branding things and organizing them in a palatable, "oops I need that too, and also this" way.

What went wrong?

Are you watching too many romantic comedy movies starring Kate Hudson?
Those are sneaky.
Don't fall for it when you are on the plane.
Nobody clutching puppies on the movie poster, or kicking up their heels, or winding up with Channing Tatum.
Those movies are misleading you into thinking women want insulting, trite, silly, faux charmingly named wines with cute labels on bottles that are overpriced and contain bad to subpar wine.

And that does not even touch on the dreadful Skinnygirl.
(Note: do not get me started on Skinnygirl stuff. I will not drink it because I am staging a one person protest. Am glad there are margaritas that are not 80000 calories out there, but to label them Skinnygirl is awful and mean and hateful and plays on that whole terrible thing we do to ourselves, where if you buy a different thing, are you not trying hard enough to be a skinnygirl? Trademarked stupid mean girl bullying name. Bleh)

So this lead to me having a fit in the wine aisle, standing there for twenty minutes reading all of this nonsense, realizing I am totally mad and feeling like a rant is coming on, go to get pen and paper and write these horrible names down and realize my children are vultures and have taken all pens and paper from my purse yet again so I am forced to take PHOTOS of the bad wine names as my brain refuses to retain them as my brain does that when my brain is very very offended, or bored, or so bored I am offended, or so offended that I am bored.

I am taking PHOTOS in the WINE AISLE at TARGET.

That is very embarrassing and can and probably was totally misconstrued by witnesses. 

And explaining myself to people around me by saying, "I'm not a freak or anything, but these wine names are very insulting, don't you think? I mean, Be?? Sisterhood? Sassy??? Do not call me sassy!!!" does not make sense out of context and I look like raving madwoman on the loose at Target, which I am sure happens, and I probably qualify, but not in this instance.

In this instance, I am right.

I know lots of people in your demographic, Target.
Moms at school, friends from volunteer stuff, the gym, childhood, school, work, neighbors, and they are all very different.
But I am willing to bet their ideal wine selection while at Target while multitasking and whatall, is not overpriced bad wine with stupid name that is derivative and/or maddeningly patronizing pat you on the head little lady.

I am totally sure whoever named Peapod thought we'd all buy it for baby showers.

Totally Naked ones for bachlorette parties, maybe? Saucy Book Club night?

This is a case of the marketing people marketing to each other in a black hole and thinking "sassy" or "relax" will trigger wine purchasing instead of indignant fury.

Do NOT tell me to relax, or buy your stupid wine named Relax so I will relax.
I will not do what you say, marketing people.
You are not the boss of me.

In fact, in protest of all this crap wine, I bought one bottle of good champagne instead, which, now that I think of it, I am not sure what the point was for that other than I wanted champagne and am using this as an excuse, but that is not (the only) reason, it is that I want the record to show that your Loyal Shopper Allison bought an actual wine that she likes that is good and is happy you stocked it, and wants you to throw all the insipid, nonsense, badly named and made wines away.

We can work this out, Target.

While you are putting out the cute Halloween decorations (However, Note: Is sneaky to put Thanksgiving decorations in with the Halloween ones, because I somehow bought a bunch of orange glitter turkeys to hang as garland for V's Halloween Party she's co-hosting, and they laughed and laughed at me, and are going to hang it as evidence that I am ridiculous) just take the empty rolly loader thing to the wine aisle, and remove all stupidly named wines. 
We'll be cool after that.

I won't even make you comp me seventy pairs of girls socks and rug cleaner for the bad dog and twinkly lights and whatever else I am buying. 
I'll even bring the girls with me, they'll put half the store in the cart and it will make the cashier laugh at me like she likes to do. It'll be fun!

Your Friend and Frequent Shopper So Be Nice,