Vibrams and Moosejaw Marketing

I just got a pair of Vibram Five Finger Shoes in which I hope to run. If you’ve never seen them they are sort of a tough, second skin that goes over your foot. They are very popular among barefoot runners because they protect your feet from things like broken glass and bum puke, but they still give you (and the muscles in your feet) the sensation of running barefoot, which is better for your running form.

I found a deal online through Moosejaw.com, a website that sells the sorts of things that mountain men would need before setting off, but also has sidelines in garb that makes you look like a tree frog. Anyway, the company name is written on the box so that the w extends into big, serrated moose antlers that evoke the idea of heft, fortitude, and dependability. All in keeping, right?

Welll, not to much. Underneath the company name are some of their products’ categories: Backpacking, Climbing, Trail Running, Mountaineering, and–right in the middle, French Kissing. I’m all for canoodling (especially when done in a tent on a mountaintop, as opposed to say, the corner table at a busy brunch spot), but do you really need gear to French Kiss? It’s almost as if to say preparation and protection that doctors recommend before having sex should also be applied to sticking your tongue in someone else’s face. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for prudence, but wouldn’t that seem to argue against practices like strapping little bits of rubber on your feet before you go traipsing off into the mountains?

Oh, yeah–the box was sealed with a sticker reading “SEALED WITH A KISS” in firehouse red ink with a big ole smooch mark of the sort that Bugs Bunny had after a Loony Toons style debauchement in the bushes.

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