Sunday, October 19, 2008

Truth to power

-Rita gets it right about the HP.

-Vindication! Someone arrived at this very blog by Googling (no-quotes): "cinematography in rachel's wedding nauseated me."

-The NYT Style "T Magazine" made the courageous choice to focus its latest issue on Paris, a city apparently known for its fashion. Highlights include a piece about how hard it is to find a good pedicurist (and hairstylist, and boutique, and chiropractor, and acupuncturist, and masseuse, and personal wiper--OK, not that last one) in the French capital. Before someone says, "First World Problem du Jour," let me just say that I have a theory about articles like this. They are designed to make even the wealthiest, most pampered readers feel like Joe Six-Pack the Plumber. If you've ever had a problem more dire than 'accidentally' paying $600 for a haircut, or if you don't require "a team of people" including "an acupuncturist, a masseuse, a trainer, a shrink, [and] a facialist" to get through the day, then you're down-to-earth. Relative, at least, to (the journalistic persona of) Janine Di Giovanni, the woman who wrote this article.

2 comments:

Petey said...

"Vindication! Someone arrived at this very blog by Googling (no-quotes): "cinematography in rachel's wedding nauseated me"

Vindicated? I'd say it's vindication of my comment that your true problem was with your movie choice, not with the bare ass flashing inherent in the theater-going experience.

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"They are designed to make even the wealthiest, most pampered readers feel like Joe Six-Pack the Plumber."

Well, indirectly.

Decisions made in putting together T Magazine are mostly taken to please advertisers who care primarily about selling to megarich folks. The lifestyle insecurity this engenders is just collateral damage.

Phoebe said...

See, I think you're wrong about the articles. Fine, they are about advertising, but one could advertise in such a way that more accurately approximated how the superrich spend, that is, spending a lot on some things but hitting Old Navy and Duane Reade as well. Stories like this make even the most decadent look at themselves as relatively restrained. This, in turn, probably does motivate more shopping on the part of the reader (wealthy, or in shoe-related debt), but the psychology is, I think, central.