An intrepid British reporter went undercover as an in-store model at the new London branch of Abercrombie & Fitch, a brand that, in Izzy’s mind, is popular with obnoxious, spoiled frat boys despite—or because of?—the explicit homoeroticism in its advertising and store displays. (The flagship store on New York’s Fifth Avenue features a giant mural of barely-clothed men climbing ropes in gym class. At many stores, the women’s department likewise features smutty photos of nymphets. Not for nothing has the brand been called Abercrombie & Filth.)
While interviewing for the job, the writer, presumably as ripped as the in-store living mannequins above (complete with matching widow’s peaks, areolae, and angular lower abdominals that come to a rude vertex), discovered that
that the company had a “tagline” which we would have to use when greeting customers. [The interviewer] explained, very seriously, that it was, “Hello, how are you?” “How did you come up with that?” I asked. She said a company of marketing consultants had worked intensively at developing it.
They wanted to audition me to see if I could deliver the line – this was make or break. “Hello, how are you?!” I said clearly. “Very good” she reassured me.
I had cleared my first hurdle and said four words in the right order, a test that floored some of my fellow-would-be-models – honestly.
It seems likely that those would-be models received their education at the Derek Zoolander Center for Children Who Can’t Read Good.