1. Please tell me I’m not the only one who sees how awful this article is — I haven’t read something this surprisingly sexist in a long time. Maybe I’m reading a little bit too much into it, but then again maybe not. A few choice quotes:

    The recent hair trend has resulted in the confluence of two groups that couldn’t be less likely to cross paths: women tuned in to the hottest hair craze dictated by celebrity fashion icons, and men, often gray-haired, engaging in the lamplight pursuit of turning thread and feather into a mirror of nature.

    Note the liberal usage of the word “craze” — I counted four instances, once in the headline and three in the text. “Craze” as a noun is a synonym for “fad” — a flash in the pan, something everybody is into for a while before it fizzles out.

    What other words are synonymous with craze? Mania. Passion. Rage. Obsession. These women — the article is very clear that only women are indulging in this trend, despite the fact that Steven Tyler *cough WHO IS A MAN cough* originated it — are at the whim of fashion dictators, their will is not their own, they are CRAZY. Because the only rational, SANE use for these feathers is to meticulously wind them around hooks to catch fish, OBVIOUSLY guys, GAWD.

    "But Karin," I hear you say, "aren’t there female fly fishers? Isn’t that a sport (ahahaha) that women participate in as well?" That’s exactly what I thought! We’re so in sync. But alas, no. Quoth the article:

    Aside from occasional female fly tiers, Alwin and other fly-fishing store owners interviewed were only accustomed to seeing women perusing the supply aisle if they were looking to boost their arts and craft arsenal. A few store owners tell of strippers over the years looking to feather their wardrobes.

    Well, OCCASIONALLY a person of the female persuasion will buy feathers for the one and only reason a person SHOULD buy feathers — fly-tying, remember? — but the rest are either just artsy-fartsy or they’re STRIPPERS.

    I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again — strippers are always so ahead of the curve, fashion-wise. (And I guess strippers never go fly fishing? That’s the saddest thing ever! I’d think those thigh-high platform boots would make great waders with a little tweaking.)

    There’s also the age-old implication that women don’t spend money responsibly:

    A section of the bird’s skin with 200 to 300 feathers used to cost $30 to $35, according to The Fly Angler/Thorne Bros. in Blaine. Local salons charge about $25 to $30 for a bundle of four to six feathers. That’s about 42 times more expensive than the fly shop. The salon price includes attaching the feathers.

    Hide your credit cards, amirite fellas?

    What it sounds like to me is that salons have found a great way to make money during what’s beginning to seem like an ENDLESS recession. Good for them! And apparently these feather extensions can be washed and heat-styled, which is something I can’t even say about my REAL HAIR (so much frizz, all the time, forever). And you can take them out when you’re tired of them! They sound pretty awesome, actually.

    Just out of curiosity, how long does a fly last?

    In the field, a fly might not last a fight with a fish - or an errant cast into a low-hanging branch.

    Uh huh.

    Listen, I sympathize with these bait shop owners — it has to suck to have all of your stock suddenly being eaten up, and not by fish. But really? Do we really need to turn this into another proxy war in the battle between the sexes? As far as I can tell, this is just an expression of the free market, which. Capitalizm, yo.