Alf has just one problem with the Tui girls.
Whenever he drives through Mangatainoka, he has never spotted them.
Nor has he spotted them in nearby Pahiatua, just up the road from where Alf resides in Eketahuna.
But today we learn that the Tui girls – or rather, the brewery for whom they work – have upset an Auckland group calling itself Feminist Action.
You would think there is enough going on in New Zealand’s biggest city to keep the womenfolk busy or amused.
But not enough to stop some of them getting together to launch a campaign to get Tui to withdraw sexist beer ads featuring its all-female brewery.
“These ads are retro-sexist”, says Feminist Action spokeswoman Leonie Morris.
“They mimic tired old sexist attitudes in an ironic way. They are funny only to people who are happy to laugh at put-downs of women.”
Alf has a few problems with this garbage.
First, his social setting does not use words like retro-sexist and he had to look it up to find out what these feminists are fulminating against. His research uncovered the ad at the top of this post.
Second, he can’t work out what is wrong with laughing at put-downs of women when – if you are a well balanced person like Alf and have a good sense of humour – you laugh at put-downs of anything and anyone, including red-necked politicians.
The Tui brewery ads, of course, feature women in skimpy clothes and (according to the feminists, who presumably live sheltered lives) sexualised poses.
Retro-sexist beer ads – Ms Morris says – promote a form of mateship that dismisses women’s concerns and trivialises relationships with women.
“Demeaning women in these ads is harmful whether the ads are funny or not. Valuing women only for how they look has a corrosive effect on women’s sense of self-worth. Men who demean women like this are more likely to be violent to them, and we have a huge problem with violence against women in New Zealand.”
“Women have been protesting against these kinds of ads for decades, and a lot of women feel silenced because they’re now so common,” she says. Young members of Feminist Action particularly wanted to campaign against them. “It’s not okay to make sexist, racist or homophobic jokes.”
The campaign will use Facebook, an online petition and other social media to gain support and put pressure on DB Breweries to drop the Tui ads.
Auckland Feminist Action – it transpires – is a new group “acting on persistent inequalities between women and men in New Zealand”.
Alf suspects it has taken heart from the Bristol Feminist Network, which recently reported it is “really pleased” that the city’s branch of the US restaurant chain Hooters has shut down.
The restaurant, which featured scantily-clad waitresses, opened in Millennium Square in 2010 and closed on Monday.
Never mind that almost 40 people lost their jobs.
Gallus Management Company Ltd, which ran it, is going into liquidation and has ceased trading.
It said thirty-nine full and part-time staff had been made redundant.
The feminists, let’s be clear, can’t claim credit for the closure.
The blokes who ran the outfit seem to have managed to do that all by themselves.
A Gallas Management Company spokesman said: “The business had never achieved its turnover targets, and in addition had lost a considerable sum following a dispute with contractors engaged to refurbish adjacent premises.
“Those contractors subsequently entered administration.”
But Sian Norris, of the Bristol Feminist Network, said:
“I think it’s a positive step because Hooters is all part of the normalisation of the sexual objectification of women.
“We are really pleased to see that it’s been closed down and that there wasn’t a market for this kind of sexist business in our city.”
There’s just a touch of irony in Hooters not being able to make the grade in Bristol, when you think about what Bristols means in Cockney rhyming slang.