If anyone is grateful for the avalanche of wild Rob Ford news this week, it's probably Lululemon founder Chip Wilson. Because if they were good for nothing else, the Toronto Mayor's crack admission and crazy "first-degree murder" rant were at least helpful in distracting newswatchers from Wilson's thoughtless faux pas.
In an interview with Bloomberg TV's Trish Regan on Tuesday, Wilson explained that when Lululemon pants become see-through or start to pill, the problem may have more to do with the shape and size of the woman wearing the garment than the garment itself. "Some women's bodies just actually don't work for [the pants]," Wilson said. "...it's really about the rubbing through the thighs, how much pressure is there over a period of time and how much they use it." In other words, don't blame the "In the Flow" crops or the "Skinny Groove" pants. They can't help it if your legs are just too flabby for proper athletic-wear functioning.
It should be noted that as much of a drubbing as Wilson is taking from commentators over his remarks, that criticism probably pales in comparison to the verbal thrashing he's received at home -- at least if the daggers Wilson's wife Shannon was staring at him during the interview are any indication.
So are consumers upset enough about Wilson's comments to launch a moral boycott of Lululemon that will significantly impact the company's bottom line? Probably not. But Wilson's very public admission that Lululemon pants just don't work very well for women whose thighs touch -- a category which happens to include the vast majority of women in the Western world -- probably isn't going to be good for business either.
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