It’s not horribly often I’m spurred to write open letters, but about a month ago, I felt the urge. This isn’t isn’t writing related, other than the fact that it’s written. Have fun.
Dear Mr. Jeffries,
Bravo. Bravo. Bravo. I can’t tell you how happy I was to read about your company’s decision to only target pretty and popular kids. I’m writing to you because I want more details about this strategic program and to promise that, as a mother, I will do everything to make sure you succeed.
To that end, I have questions and recommendations. For example, how will you operationalize and implement this strategy? If your leadership team has not yet created specific policies and procedures for cool kids, let me offer suggestions. First, provide a specific rubric for coolness and attractiveness. This should include aesthetics such as preferable facial and body characteristics. Even better, assign a prescriptive rating scale of more or less desirable traits. The great thing is that it won’t be a heavy lift. Great policies are already in existence. Although they were developed in the late 1930s and implemented in the early 1940s, it doesn’t mean they can’t be modernized for the 21st century. Once those specifics are laid out, you should go a step further. Those individuals who don’t achieve at least a passing rating of coolness or attractiveness should not be allowed to make purchases in your store. After all, you don’t want ugly or uncool kid branding your merchandise. It simply won’t do. So you need to train your staff to refuse service to anyone who does rank on the rating scale. Again, your leadership team doesn’t have to go far when developing exclusionary strategies. If they Google “the history of the Civil Rights Movement,” there will be a plethora of ideas. By the way, while you’re at it, I suggest reaching out to the folks at Victoria Secret. I hear they are doing excellent work in the field of sexualizing young girls. You guys should join forces.
By now you must be asking yourself how I plan to do my part by ensuring that my six-year-old daughter is in her best prime when you publish pre-requisites for shopping in your store. At this point, I must confess that she may currently be involved in some activities that are not cool. She takes art, swimming and language lessons. In addition, and this is where I am most ashamed, she is enrolled in religious school. It pains me to say that there, she is taught about modesty, respect, values, charity and the characteristics of a good person. Everything you and I are against. But don’t worry, I have a secret plan. You know how they say, keep your friends close, but your enemies closer? Well, I want to make sure that when you come out with your guidelines, I will be armed and ready to dismiss and dispel all those values she currently learning. I will take her out of piano classes, art and swimming. And I will definitely dissuade her from pursuing chess because that doesn’t seem like a cool pursuit.
All in all, I applaud you for your honesty and bravery. I promise to do my part in helping you pursue this goal. My only concern is that I hope you are sincerely dedicated to this mission and that it’s not a silly ploy for attention. If you and I join forces, we can browbeat all those chest thumping parents who have been giving you flack and we can find a solution for coolness. A final solution.
A most devoted Abercrombie and Fitch mom