Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Bees, If You Please! ::UPDATE::

Walking to get my lunch today on East 16th street, I passed by my local Anthropologie store (a place that causes my heart to yell, "Yes! Go buy something pretty!" and my wallet to respond, "WHAT?! No, no, no, no...crazy lady..."), and I noticed that their newly crafted window displays were all about bees! And not just pictures of bees, but informative messages letting me know on average how many honey bees were in a colony during the spring (roughly 200,000), and that honey bee hives were dying out at a rate of 20% a year in America (wow). The windows were as gorgeous and artistically crafted as always (and perhaps this is what draws me in the most), but I was very intrigued by the idea that now Anthropologie was trying to inform me of something, not just sell me a product. (Yes, I do see that it could be argued that by informing, they are trying to win over my trust and therefore get me to buy something (like GAP does with RED), but the direct messages, staring me in the face that had nothing to do with the usual "buy a product and therefore donate" sentiment, seemed to out weigh that point). I was intrigued that they were not backing a "popular" cause, too, but rather an environmentally specific message centered around these tiny winged creatures that are so readily associated with childhood storybooks and warm spring days.

Well, Anthro's ad campaign did one thing right: it got my thinking about the plight of the yellow and black fuzzy things that sweeten my yogurt in the morning, and when I returned to my desk later (sandwich in hand), I noticed an email from Anthropologie, titled, "Bees, If You Please!" (almost as if they KNEW what I was doing...) with the following statement enclosed:
"The Honey Bee is responsible for pollinating millions of bushels of fruits, nuts, and vegetables. Sadly, these hard working insects are disappearing at an alarming rate. This Earth Day we turn our attention to their plight in hopes of raising awareness, advancing research and ensuring a sweet future for our children."
Also enclosed was a link to all of the "delicious foods linked to bees," all in an attempted effort to raise awareness and get people thinking. Awesome! I fully support this initiative and effort (and love that they're getting the word out), but a moment later, I noticed one large flaw in their message: they never told us viewers and readers (walkers on the street) how to actively HELP the honey bee! Not once in any of the pages of their website, or their window advertisements did they directly tell me how I could stop the honey bee from going the way of the dodo. LAME, Anthropologie.

SO, I did some of my own research and found some links to help others like me out:
* Haagen- Dazs "Save The Honey Bee" initiative
Anthro should take some notes...
* Carl Hayden Bee Research Center
This was the closest to Anthro linking to a direct site, since their "delicious foods" is housed on a subpage here.
* Wikipedia page on Honey Bees
Fact, fact and more facts!

Anything else? Go help the honey bee! Because if not, spring will never be the same.


Check out Anthro's Flickr account to see the ads that inspired this post! Apparently, all of the new displays for Anthropologie are made from recycled items! Sweet. :)

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