Sunday, November 16, 2008

lifestyle editors need a lifestyle adjustment

"to be hip or not to be hip," that is the question. actually, the question is more, "should one be hip in a time of worldwide economic crisis and if so, how?" but that doesn't roll off the tongue in the same way.

it seems to me as i page through my sunday newspapers that the people writing the lifestyle magazines that come with those every sunday are lagging a bit behind. perhaps this is because they plan those magazines months ahead and although they are meant to be the trend-spotters, they were apparently WAY off and didn't see the crisis coming. or maybe they're kept in some isolated room, far from the rest of the editorial staff and they have no access to the actual news of the day.

case in point:

a photo and description of a louis vuitton caviar case. yes, you read that correctly, a little square designer, hand-sewn bag in which to carry your caviar and all its accoutrements (this could easily have been a WTF wednesday posting) (oddly, i cannot find the case in question on the LV website, so no link, just this shot of my newspaper). that seems a little lavish in these tough economic times, doesn't it? and it reminds me of when i once saw a chanel water bottle holder to take the gym in neiman marcus in phoenix. but that was in the mid-90s, when times were good. and yes, i restrained from buying it, mostly because i thought the gold signature chanel chain would get too hot around my neck to carry it out rollerblading in the arizona heat. but, i digress...

there is also a big feature on high end designer lamps. we're talking a 6-page feature article on lamps that start at $1,200. i really do wonder if these lifestyle people have access to the rest of the newspaper at all? do they realize that people's home values are plummeting and they can scarcely afford to buy food for their families, let alone spend their entire grocery budget and then some on a lamp that doesn't even really light up the room, but just looks pretty.  i wonder who they think their audience is?

in the influence section, right next to the LV caviar case, they redeem themselves a bit with a little blurb about some hip young danish students who have a fashion blog, where they talk about dressing like you just stepped off the runway even tho' you're on a student budget. that seems pretty hip to the times.

to be fair, there is also a very cool article on street art, which seems a bit more like it. what better activity for the economically-challenged than to wander around with a camera, looking for interesting bits of art here and there on the streets and then being enterprising enough to make it into a calendar? (i wish they had links up on berlingske's website, but it seems the people who post that stuff aren't working on a sunday. grr. so again, we must make do with a shot of my newspaper.)

i don't know about you, but i'd like to see a lifestyle section in the newspaper that reflected the reality of people's lives today. perhaps they're attempting to offer an escapism to make us all forget about falling currency values (in europe anyway, the dollar is mysteriously rising), the loss of our friværdi in our homes (that's the difference between what you owe and what it's worth--when it's positive--equity, that's the word i was looking for) and the fact that countries and companies the size of countries are going bankrupt if they don't get bailed out. frankly, that's not what i want. i'd like to read more articles about how recycling is chic and how to repurpose last year's little black dress so that it's cool this year too. i'd like to know posh ways to use obscure and cheaper cuts of meat. handicrafts are hot, why aren't there more articles about that kind of thing? i think these lifestyle editors need to stop eating posh, designer hotdogs with porcini relish (that was mentioned today too) and get out into the real world and see what's happening.

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p.s. i understand new york magazine has tips for people like me who are suffering from election withdrawal.

p.p.s. there's a very fun list of 37 things president bush should regret, since he recently said that he only had two regrets from his presidency. i think i could come up with about 100 more...


enchantedartist said...

:):)...Thank you for bringing a smile to my face today...I totally agree that the caviar bag could most definitely be a wtf Wednesday post...Who, I ask, who needs something like that. I'm also thinking that there are a hell of a lot more people that would be interested more down-to-earth ideas...Personally, our economy here in Alberta is still going strong, but I could be a millionaire, and I wouldn't be out shopping for a $1200 lamp...

Thanks for sharing this!

Amanda said...

I so feel that way when I read "design" magazines. Don't get me wrong, I spend my money on them and read them, but the stuff is so expensive, and even in good times, is it a good deision to spend that kind of money on things we mosty look at and don't even use?