Monday, September 15, 2008
THE READING ROOM
Have you ever had someone gift you anonymously? Isn't it a treat being thought about and shown concrete evidence? I have, at different points in my life, been fortunate enough to have circumstances such as this revealed to me. Never, until this last year, has it become a serialize event.
One day last year I emptied my government issue, rectangular, faux bronze mail box of the usual mix of canceled jumble. Our postal carrier has a knack for jamming circulars along with envelopes in our baby shoebox mail holders to the point where it pushes counter-pressure against the lock.
What to my wondering eye appeared but a magazine! My initial reaction was that it belonged to someone else and had been incorrectly delivered. When I checked the mailing label on the OKAY Magazine cover, it boldly asserted I was its rightful owner. At first it troubled me that I hadn’t ordered it. Then I thought the error would correct itself shortly. And, to tell you the truth, I probably never would have ordered it in this lifetime.
Nevertheless, for a year I gleefully accepted someone’s largess, reading about young celeBRATies and their “nearly there” wardrobes and social angst. It entertained me even though the only names recognizable to me were some of their last names which I associated more with the celeBRATy parents than the BRATS themselves. Okay, so here's me thinking to myself earlier this year:"Wish I had a GOOD magazine to read."
and the Universe, replete in all its abundance, responded in a rather loud roar:
"HERE YOU GO, SISTA’!"
The following week The Washington Post reported that postal service's workman's compensation claims increased, probably directly due to the new subscriptions being delivered to me.
As with most viral infections, it started small before morphing and beginning to increase exponentially, taking on a life of its own. A year went by and the annual subscription ran out. Again, I would never buy this thing to begin with, so I'm not going to renew it either. Immediately following me ignoring the Hollywood starlet rag’s repeated imploring to actually pay for another year of the numbness it brought me, a replacement title arrived to take over the job it had started.
ROLLING STONE arrived. Not just one copy, but last month’s and this month’s edition as well. “Well, this is more like it!” one of my internal voices announced! I am a moderately hip older chick. No Sarah Palin, mind you, but keep it in perspective, I can see a high-rise construction crane in DC if I stand on my roof.
I filled my glass with more tepid “Cristal” Lite and beat a rock’n’roll path to my patio for some enchanted reading. Oh Yes! I knew it! John Mellencamp doesn’t restrict his peppery language even when he is being directly quoted speaking with his kids. Delightful. Paul McCartney, a love of my life, is still alive even though the boundary between him and Angela Landsbury is blurring more each day. Socialites and rap singers mingle at the beach, a party, or a charity event. I love it.
I especially love it because I am, admittedly, too freakin’ cheap to part with nearly $5.00 an issue to read this stuff, let alone organized enough to deliberately coordinate going to the web site and ordering. Lord knows I only locate my checkbook on high holy days, so mailing anything is out. You need a stamp for that too, so double-out.
Living large on the moss-free gathering and reading I am totally taken by surprise when, ANOTHER magazine arrives. This time I am to be reminded of my more accurate lifestyle reality of REDBOOK. It is wonderful and has reinvented itself to be a poor man’s Martha Stewart of sorts. And, as with Rolling Stone, I rolled snake eyes. Two editions arrived.
A week later? Well, now we are talking GOOD HOUSEKEEPING. Ask Flor, the woman who is kind enough to periodically help me keep a lid on this home of mine: this magazine is fun, but really missed its intended market with me.
Stay tuned for further developments. Meanwhile, okay, here's me thinking I could sure use a few million dollars. Hey Universe, can you hear me? Can you hear me now?
Posted by Ruth Brannigan at Monday, September 15, 2008