4th of July backpacking in Emigrant Wilderness. Photo by Blair Lockhart.
Sometime last year I was tossed on a list of women of color to follow on Instagram. This struck me as odd. Mostly because I don’t particularly identify with being Asian. I’m not Paulina the Asian outdoor blogger. I’m just Paulina, this person who also happens to be yellow. I grew up in the Bay Area, the suburbs of Cupertino to be more precise. I’m fortunate enough to live and play in a place where almost everyone goes outside, regardless of gender, background or skin color. Being a person of color wasn’t really a thing I was aware of. Diversity wasn’t a thing I thought about. It just was. Until recently.
The Mountain Hardwear Scrambler 30 isn’t anything new for 2016, but this trusty backpack has survived 2015 and 2016 without any real issues. It’s the bag that I reach for over and over again for hiking, climbing and commuting. It’s burly enough to withstand inclement weather and holds a ton of gear and snacks for a day at the crag. You can even strap a rope on top for the approach, or for biking to the gym for a post-work climbing sesh. After two years of abuse, it’s a little worn in some spots, but it’s nothing a little duct tape can’t fix. Now this workhorse of a bag can be yours.
The state of the world (or maybe just the country) currently has you horrified. You’ve been eating ramen for days and you can’t afford a shower or laundry. All your friends are tweeting links about places to donate, but you ain’t got a dime to your name. What can you do?
Photo by Marisa Jarae.
Dear Outdoor Brands,
Are you offended? Are you angry? Do you think you were unfairly called out or linked to? I’m glad I struck a note. You should do something about it, if you think I’m in the wrong. But by do something about it, I don’t mean aggressively emailing me to take my links down because it’s driving negative traffic to your site.
Instead of telling me that you’re a diverse, minority-owned company, and we’re fighting the same fight, and that I’m wrong, you should prove me wrong. I posted an opinion piece. In my opinion, what you’re presenting doesn’t seem that diverse. Is it my place to tell people whether or not something is diverse? Of course not, I am not the diversity police. I linked to you because I wanted people to be able to form their own opinion. So prove me wrong. Prove the traffic wrong. Give those link clickers a reason to say “Hey Company, what is wrong with this blogger? She’s clearly wrong.” Give me a reason to say I’m wrong.