Make It Blue, Make It Pink: Manhattan’s Toys “R” Us And Gender-Based Marketing
All prices include auction house fees. 1. The Graff Pink Sale price: $45.6 million, 45.4 million Swiss francs. Description: A 24.78-carat round-cornered rectangular step-cut Fancy Intense pink diamond. Auction house: Sothebys, Geneva, Nov. 15, 2010. Notes: Bought and named by the London-based jeweler Laurence Graff . It is the most fabulous diamond Ive seen in my career, Graff said after the sale. 2. The Princie Diamond Description: A 34.65-carat Fancy Intense pink cushion-shaped diamond. Auction house: Christies International, New York , April 16, 2013. Notes: The gem was first recorded in the holdings of the Nizam, or monarch, of Hyderabad, India , according to Christies. 3. The Winston Legacy Sale price: $26.7 million, 25.9 million Swiss francs.
Blumm See more photos , news and a full bio She’s known for fearlessly performing high-wire acts during her concerts, but there’s one thing Pink is scared of. “I’m afraid of spiders,” the singer reveals in the October issue of Women’s Health. Actually, that’s not the only thing that terrifies the 33-year-old. “I am afraid of sharks,” she continues. “I’m afraid of the world running out of cheesecake, especially Cheesecake Factory. And then I would also have to be afraid of the world running out of key limes, because key lime cheesecake is the best kind of cheesecake there is.” The mom of one is preparing to bring her Truth About Love world tour back to the U.S. next month, and the show features Pink performing death-defying acrobatic feats high above the audience, without a safety net, all while singing her hits. Courtesy Women’s Health Some would say it was enough of an adrenaline rush to do that night after night, but when she’s not flying over her sell-out crowds, or working out five times a week, she’s tackling other daredevil feats. “One of the most daring things I’ve ever done is skydive, and that’s because [her husband, motocross champ] Carey [Hart] surprised me with it and I had no choice. But then I did it twice; the second time is much more enjoyable,” she says. “Another daring thing I did was marrying Carey Hart .” Hart is a motocross champ, which means he risks life and limb every time he gets on his bike. But Pink (who briefly separated from her husband in 2008) admits, “I’m used to him keeping me up at night.”
But does that mean the store is gender-neutral? Not if the toy manufacturers themselves have anything to say about it. Products are grouped together, but the color-coded segregation is pervasive. Toy cars labeled My First RC come in a fancy Ford blue and a retro pink. A childrens imitation iPad, Innotab 3s, is available in blue and in pink, with a Pixar row of blue car- and superhero-themed games and a row of pink Disney Princess and fairy-themed games to match. This is the common theme in the store: two differently colored versions of the exact product sit on the shelf together. The other seemingly universal trope in these manufacturers toy advertising is the use of both boys and girls to advertise blue or male products, as if gender-neutral, but to exclusively show girls playing with pink or female products. The same Little Tikes basketball hoop comes in blue and pink; the blue hoop shows a boy and a girl facing off, while two girls use the pink hoop. Similarly, Nerf guns still sell their classic blue-and-black design under the plain name Nerf, while their pink gun is marketed as the Nerf Rebelle. The male version gets no qualifier, but the female version has a special name boys are gender-neutral, girls are a special category. While the anecdotal evidence gathered in the trip to the flagship store would seem to fault the manufacturers alone for creating this blue-and-pink gender divide, a visit to the much smaller Toys R Us Express in Manhattan Mall clears up this misconception. One half of the store is overwhelmingly blue and the other pink, and the trend of male preference masquerading as gender-neutrality continues. Action figures are on the other end of the store from baby dolls, and neither female-marketed action figures nor male-marketed dolls are available. On the blue half of the store, sports products are stocked: a TotSports T-Ball Set sits atop something in faded pink called a TotSports Girls T-Ball Set. On the pink half of the store, domestic products from dollhouses to play furniture are stocked: the Minnie Patio Set is a pink table advertised by a pink clad girl, while the Construction Table next to it is a similar table in primary colors not shown with a child at all. In the back middle, the boy half of the store and the girl half of the store merge at Legos: superheroes, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and the Lone Ranger in blue face off against the monolithic Lego Friends in pink (advertised with girls, needless to say).