lunedì 15 ottobre 2012

Dear Ms Nike

I am not your biggest fan, but a decent consumer of your products for running. I like some of the fabrics you use for making t-shirts and singlets. I have some of your socks, and a pair of running shorts. Gloves, that I clearly cannot use in Singapore. Nothing to complain with your products, the ones I have are excellent.

But right now I am very very disappointed of you.

I registered for the Nike We Run SG. As you know, it is a 10k run. There are equivalent races in many other countries. In Italy you use Deejay Ten. In Malaysia it is Nike We Run KL.

I am glad that you organize such events. They bring people to running, and that is good.

Ms Nike, I want you to know that I am very happy about this race. I will probably arrive in a decent shape, and finally break the wall of 10k in 40 minutes. But the thing that makes me really happy is that four other friends who live in Singapore are running with me. They have never run a race.

Ms Nike, I am so deeply disappointed. Last Saturday I picked my pack at the collection point. Inside the pack there was the race t-shirt. It was all black, with tiny fluo yellow strips in the borders. And I read for the first time that all the participants MUST wear that t-shirt. It was also on the rules of the race. Rule 12 of the Rules and Regulation, I hadn't noticed it before.

Ms Nike, this is going to be my fifth race in Singapore, since May 2012, when I moved here. So far, I have proudly worn the singlet of Fondazione De Marchi. Fondazione De Marchi is an Italian charity, linked to the pediatric clinic of the same name. They help families with kids who have to go through heavy medical treatments (e.g. for leukemia). They make the life of kids in hospital much much much more pleasant. You should see how they transformed the clinic, Ms Nike. To run and fundraise for Fondazione De Marchi is a pleasure and a honour.

I will not run Nike We Run SG wearing the singlet of Fondazione De Marchi. Because of your Rule 12, Ms Nike.

But the real problem is another one. Why runners are not allowed to wear their favourite colors? Many of them would have worn your black t-shirt anyway. Many would have worn your red, yellow, orange, blue, pink products, Ms Nike. But 20 thousand people will wear the same color, black.

Anonymous runners. No colors, no diversity, no happiness. Only black t-shirts. Is that what you want, Ms Nike?

Ms Nike, my friends and I, we will be happy anyway. We will be different. Our shining smiles will overcome your anonymous t-shirt. And I am sorry that your little helpers in Singapore do not understand this. Diversity makes us richer.

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