Why do I read magazines? Or maybe the more specific question is, why do I read magazines as a way to “relax”?
I won’t mention what magazines I subscribe to, but believe me, my subscriptions can’t run out fast enough. I used to read my magazines cover to cover the minute they arrived in my mail box. But these days, I have a better sense of myself, what makes me happy and content, but damn it if magazines don’t make me feel less of a woman, a failure almost. I can’t afford $1000 dresses or $500 cardigans, the recipes they publish expect me to use spices or foods I’ve never heard of, let alone could find anywhere close to where I live, and the vacations or “get-aways” they suggest are actually pompous escapes for people with too much stress AND time on their hands.
My idea of a get-away is exactly what I’m doing this weekend: a rock concert in Scranton with three friends I met via Weight Watchers online. We’re going to see Journey, Heart and Cheap Trick. Total cost? About 200 bucks, the price of a half-hour massage at a ritzy resort. I’m packing a cooler of my “comfort” foods and hitting the road with Chris in her totally pimped out, daisy-wheel compact car that I can’t remember the name of at the moment. But it’s not a show-off car by any means. We’ll swim in our hotel pool and talk smart and drink a little and rock out like we’re in our 20s. My outfit will consist of shorts, a t-shirt and sandals.
Ugh….I’m still reeling from the magazine I just read. Are we all supposed to be picture perfect with lots of under-eye concealer and a butt-load of money? I’m not, don’t want to be, but still, there’s a nagging voice inside that says, “You really need to have that $400 ‘party’ dress that some male designer says every woman over 40 needs to have.” Has he BEEN to Clarion? Does he realize that “dressed up” here is jeans and a shirt without words on it?
I’m making a vow right now. I’m done with “health” magazines and “women’s” magazines, at least the snotty ones I subscribe to. What was I thinking? Can you suggest something less pretentious? Less airbrushed? I really do love a good magazine (I’m still a faithful reader of Newsweek and I peruse The Atlantic online), so please, help me out here. What can I read that won’t make me feel like I have to be pencil thin, exercise in contortionist style, and cook like I have a trust fund?
Thanks for letting me vent. I’m beginning to feel normal and real again. Remind me to throw away the next issues when they arrive in the mail. I believe both subscriptions run out at the same time. Thank god.