Sunday, March 25, 2007

The Magazines That Define Us


I read a lot of magazines...I've always read a lot of magazines. When I was in my teens there was Sixteen and Seventeen. I remember how my sister would wait for her Seventeen magazine each month...especially the August edition. I, being her little sister, got to read it after the pages were worn through and through. The magazine defined who we were...or more importantly...who we aspired to be. The stories about the celebrities, the clothes, the accessories. Once my sister made my mother take her to Sterns in NYC because she had to...yes had to... have the special dress that was pictured on the model in Seventeen magazine. It was then that I realized that the clothes in the magazine were never as nice as they appeared in the picture.

Then in my 20s I progressed to Glamour and Madamoiselle. They were the more sophisticated publications. I remember when Glamour named its women of the year...I always wanted to know who they were and what they had accomplished. Again, my dream was to be featured in Glamour magazine, like some of the interesting women they found to write about. Madamoiselle was a more stylish pub ...I followed it for my fashion tips...I was disappointed when I heard it had folded several years ago...where did all the Madamoiselle ladies go?

Glamour and Madamoiselle were followed by Cosmopolitan....weren't we all Cosmo girls at one time in our life...that was before I was married...I used to do the indepth reading of the Cosmo Astrology Guide that came in the magazine each January...I'd pull it out and fold it into a tiny book and keep it as a reference...was I really like the Capricorn they described?

When I got older and I married, I read more of the women's service publications like Good Housekeeping, Woman's Day, Family Circle. Before I had kids I used to read Bon Appetit and Gourmet too...those were the days when I cooked and my husband and I had great romantic meals on the weekends. My parenting years were filled with parenting magazines...Parents and Parenting magazines were all the rage...yet once I had kids I had very little time to read...I was more busy doing the parenting than reading about how to do it.

I was talking to one of my twentysomething colleagues the other day who mentioned something she had read in Self magazine. I remember that magazine...I remember when it launched that was the year that fitness and healthy lifestyle magazines became popular...I read it for a few years when I was into jogging...I don't read it anymore...perhaps because I don't jog anymore....now I need a magazine that caters to walkers.

I do still love my fashion magazines and I prefer them in a traditional hard copy form, no web-based magazine for me...I like to get my thick magazines in the mail each month...and they are getting even thicker...my husband always complains that our mailbox is going to break one day because of the weight of all my magazines...there's Vogue (all 650 pages this month...the new spring collections...not much I liked in those pages...not one thing I really, really wanted). There's InStyle (just love reading about all the celebs and the clothes and accessories of the season)...and I'm glad that they always include something about makeup for those over 40. I usually pull out the pages and save them.

I don't get Oprah or More magazine...I think they target a more mature female audience...sometimes women leave them at our gym after exercising (in fact, just today I enjoyed reading Oprah's April issue...although my 30 minutes were up on the treadmill and I so wanted to take the magazine with me...but it wasn't my magazine to take...maybe I will buy it at the airport for my trip to Rome...I have to finish that one article!)

I read a lot of business magazines too to stay up on the latest trends: Fast Company (so I can stay up on hip trends in business)...BusinessWeek (just subscribed to two more years for only $35...what a bargain - 120+ issues in my mailbox during the next two years)...Harvard Business Review (it's a heavy duty business pub - when I read this pub I feel like I've taken an MBA course with each article...not that I have time to read each article...but I'd like to...that's why I pile them up in a basket and never throw them out...I'm adding to my retirement reading list...boy, will I be smart when I retire).

Any other magazines that define me? Yes, one more, that thin magazine that comes in the mail...the one that starts with the...give me an A...give me another A...give me an R....give me a P...what does it spell AARP...what does it spell...AARP. It is actually not MY AARP magazine, it has my husband's name on it. I won't get MY copy until I turn 50 and am an official member. But, my husband refused to join AARP five years ago when he turned 50...so I joined for him. Why did I join for him? I wanted the magazine...of course...why else would I join AARP when I was only in my 40s. I actually do think it is a very good magazine and a great way to get a heads up on everything I need to know about being 50+...it's a sneak peek at what lies ahead.

But, when my twentysomething colleague came to talk with me about her Self discovery...I wanted to tell her that I too have lots of self discoveries...only there are different magazines that define me now...and they are just as interesting.

Judi

P.S. - Forgot about my Entertainment Weekly...how could I forget about my weekly entertainment magazine...I have to keep up with what is going on in the movies, music, TV, and book world...where would I be with out my Entertainment Weekly...how would I know what new books to read...new movies to see...new TV shows to watch and new music to download?

1 comment:

Laaura said...

wait a minute...you get a magazine called Entertainment Weekly and you never have time to read your magazines because you have to watch TV? The you I never knew.