Not for me, volume 7: Padel

I’ve never been into trendy things that are trendy because they’re trendy.

Trendy things that are trendy because they are good or useful – sure. Solar power would be a great example of that, right now.
But if you are just doing something trendy solely to be trendy – well, that’s not for me.

Step forward padel: the latest trendy thing to hit the monied white people of South Africa.
In Cape Town, you may have seen Mountain Biking fill this niche. And then there were E-Bikes.
Remember the Tim Noakes Cookbook?
How about Hot Yoga?
EMS BodyTec fitness.
Crapft Beer (or Gin).
There are many, many examples.

Padel is a cross between beach bats, tennis, pickleball and squash, and it is EVER so trendy right now. And it’s almost exclusively in that demographic that I have mentioned above.

I have friends who play padel. But it’s not for me. And I feel that that decision was vindicated when I saw the (hastily built, always full) local courts being used by at least two gentlemen wearing fedoras.
Case rested. That’s not sporting gear, that’s trendy for the sake of being trendy gear.

They’d probably ridden there on their E-Bikes.

And then I was served this ball-achingly awful ad on Facebook for Padel bats padels, which just sums up the whole thing:

So many issues here.

seventy-Four different Examples of Capitalisation. Never a good Start.

Released on 23 February, but “designed to celebrate the holiday season”? Which holiday season, exactly? Shrove Tuesday?
And “a little pre-taste of the summer collection”? Mate – this is the Southern Hemisphere. On the 23rd February, summer is less than a week from being over.
How pre-taste do you want this? 9 months?

Variate is a noun, not a verb.

“wintery Smoke Pine Greens” – absolutely ideal for a little pre-taste of the summer collection.

As an aside: never smoke a pine, by the way:

“When considering total emissions, particulate matter from smoldering pine wood and needles was by far the most mutagenic of the samples assessed, and thus potentially more carcinogenic.”

Mutagenicity and Lung Toxicity of Smoldering vs. Flaming Emissions from Various Biomass Fuels: Implications for Health Effects from Wildland Fires

And then the weird elevation of “a papaya smoothie” as some sort of aspirational goal for the hue of sporting equipment.

But after that, well, they’re just taking the piss, aren’t they?

Our Collection continues to draw its inspiration from Sci-Fi movies translating the current world we’re living in, where people spend their time between the physical world and the virtual metaverse.

I don’t even know what that means.

I love a good Sci-Fi movie translating the current world (we’re living in).

But no, the people you are trying to appeal to are spending their time between the padel court and the next occasion they go to the padel court. This intermediate time is spent in the physical world, describing their last padel game and arranging their next one.

No-one is spending any time in the virtual metaverse, because:

the “metaverse” is a hypothetical iteration of the Internet as a single, universal, and immersive virtual world that is facilitated by the use of virtual reality and augmented reality headsets.

And no, I don’t know if you can play padel there.

As with many of these fads, padel will last for a while (durations of these things vary) while shrewd individuals and companies pivot and invest to make a quick (and big) buck (e.g. Osaka’s [above] domain is actually osakahockey dot co dot za, but that old curved wooden stick staple is nowhere near as trendy and money-spinning as padel) and will then die out.

But with the equipment (padel, racquet, ugh… whatever) starting at a few thousand Rands for a bit of moulded plastic:

…it’s clearly for the few, not the many.

Thankfully, it won’t be around for long.

Please remember to recycle your bat on the way out.