i pretty much hate the waikato times just at the moment. what has let to this depth of feeling is monday's issue, which i only managed to look at this afternoon. it has back to front coverage of the v8s, which is annoying in and of itself when there is so much happening in the world right now. but it is the nature of the v8 coverage that is particularly puke inducing.
two thirds of the front page is covered by an article, which features 2 photographs. there is a small one of the crowd at the pit area, and a much larger one of the winner & some other dude. this is the main business of the v8s, the serious stuff as it were. there were 8 people quoted in the article, one of whom was a female police officer quoted right at the end on good crowd behaviour. the rest were blokes, a couple of whom were joking about the fact that "they had left their wives at home for the second year in a row and were having a 'fantastic time'". habloodyha.
page 3 then has big picture of miss v8 and a couple of contestants behind her, accompanied by a small piece about how she's a mum, and basically all about being sexy. note that the three women are white, young and slim. there are 3 other articles around this piece: one about annoyed frankton business owners where we have two female business owners quoted; another about the crowds at the city pubs, where the only women involved in the story are this quote from a bar owner "usually it's very male-oriented but this year we had a good mix"; and the third one about the annoyance caused by someone with a laser light, where we get the same female police officer quoted in the last paragraph.
page 4 is half advertisement. the other half has a big photo of a male driver who one the second race with article about him. next to that a similar sized photo of a "grid girl" in her sexy attire (white, young & slim of course), and a small piece about grid girls.
page 5 is again half ad. we also have an op-ed by a male writer about what a let-down the kiwi drivers were. below that is an article about melanoma awareness stand at the v8, and yippee, we actually get to see a woman in the driver's seat not being supersexy (though still white, young and slim, of course) in the photo accompanying the story. she has no mention in the story though. and next to that is a story about a couple who won $20,000 at the v8s. the accompanying photograph has the couple surrounded by 6 "jim beam girls" in their super sexy clothing, and you'll never guess. they're all white, young and slim.
but this is not all. wait, there's more. on the business page (yup, the business page) we have a big article about the success of a talent agency. and can you guess what the two photos accompanying the article show? i won't leave you in suspense. at the top is a large one of 4 "hood street hotties", all looking super sexy, and sitting or leaning on a red, red holden. the second is a smaller shot of two "in demand" women, also with the sexy poses. and are they all white, young and slim? you betcha!
what the F**K??? i mean, really, this is what v8s are about? a couple of whiny businesswomen (because that's how the article makes them sound) who don't even get their photo in the paper, and the rest of the coverage of women is as eye-candy, fitting narrow stereotypes of beauty. their achievements are pretty much limited to their physical appearance - except that miss v8 was apparently also judged on her personality (along with her "stage presence", her walk, and how she "looked in the little blue dress").
to be fair, page 7 has an almost full page piece about the outgoing chief executive of gracelands trust, with accompanying photograph of her and a maori woman - two average yet lovely women, though not fitting into any definition of hot. and the back page of the first section has a big article on geena davis urging strong roles for women in film (ironic, much?).
but really, i'm sick of the v8 coverage around women and the very limited public role they are allowed to have.