“Plenty of female shoppers will know that feeling of leaving a gadget store undermined, a little humiliated and unsure if the right device was bought,” so wrote Lo Yee in The Straits Times yesterday.
And that was motive enough for ex journalist Donna Tang to open a couple of “female-friendly” gadget stores named TinyFry’s.
These stores are modeled after fast-food outlets and bakeries because according to Tang, “studies have shown that the human brain tends to mistake hunger as the urge to buy.”
Her all-female staff are trained to be extra welcoming. “They are not hard-selling staff, unlike the typical salesman.”
In one fell swoop, Donna Tang has insulted just about everybody.
None of my female friends I’ve asked will shop at TinyFry’s. “Over my dead body,” retorted PN, “I may be a woman, but I’m not brainless.”
My wife, who is a dental surgeon and who repairs all the mechanical, electrical and electronic fixtures at home thinks the very name “TinyFry’s” is insulting enough. “Not even ‘small fry’ but ‘tiny fry’ you know,” she smirked.
“If I need anything I go to Funan or Sim Lim, you think I’m so clueless or what?” quipped BC.
“Hey,” exclaimed my daughter, “I rip open computers one, you know, and I tear gadgets apart and put them back. I probably know more than anyone working in Funan or Sim Lim. TinyFry’s not only sounds weird but is a dumb idea. Some of the biggest tech consumers among the people I know are women. My friends are the ones buying gadgets for their husbands!”
“What do they mean by ‘extra welcoming’?” TM wanted to know. “Trying to lure me into what I think is a bakery only to peddle me gadgets? The whole concept is deceptive actually,” she snorted.
I asked AG if she will shop at TinyFry’s and her riposte was “Goodness! No! What a stupid name!”
PM fumed, “You think we women can’t resist fast-food or what? This is ridiculous, selling gadgets in stores disguised like fast-food outlets and bakeries. Isn’t this humiliating as well? The idiots behind this absurd joke obviously know nothing about retailing or F&B or how women shop.”
And what is a “typical salesman”? I admit many in sales need to be more professional but me thinks to paint all salesmen – the keyword here is “men” – in a negative light and imply that they all bully women into buying what women don’t need is a tad too much and rather unreasonable, really.
“I am capable of thinking you know,” retorted IW, “you think I’ll let any salesperson con me ah? Those women who think they’ve been undermined or humiliated or got swindled probably deserve it anyway.”
“TinyFry’s? What do they sell? Vibrators for female midgets?” AK wanted to know.
MM twitched her nose. She remarked “Doesn’t say much about women in Singapore, does it?”
“This is so ridiculous,” opined SC. “Is that Donna Tang trying to give women in Singapore a bad name or what?”
“We women are a discerning lot, and we possess ‘women’s intuition’,” proclaimed AL. “Don’t those jokers behind TinyFry’s know that?”
SC asked me “You sure these stores were started by a woman?”
“Let’s see how long this TinyFry’s thingie lasts,” commented VW.