Why you need a copy editor

/via The Awl, "What It's Really Like To Be A Copy Editor"
"...I can’t help it if I think unnecessary quotes are funny, as if signs are trying to be ironic. ...I’m turned off by guys who spell it 'definately.'"


Forever 21, Forever Poor

Women's clothing store launches maternity clothing!

Says Salon, " [Forever 21's] maternity line [Love 21 Maternity] is premiering in five states, three of which carry the highest teen pregnancy rates in the country." The post goes on to suggest that the new XXII line glamorizes teen pregnancy:
"Of course they're not explicitly endorsing teen pregnancy, but by nudging teens and saying 'If you do find yourself pregnant, looking fashionable is one less thing you'll have to worry about!' the chain is going the Bristol route of unwittingly glamorizing teen pregnancy."
Can we be sure that these clothes are meant for teens? Not really. Forever 21's business has exploded in recent years because the store offers tons of fashions that look good on the rack (don't wash them if you want to wear them again!) for less than $20. H&M is great (read: where I get 90% of my clothes) but the price point is markedly higher.

That means, if I ever wanted a shiny leopard-print ruffle dress (highly unlikley) that won't break the bank, I'm going to Forever 21, even though I'm not 21 anymore. And if a woman is 26, she still hasn't got her first real job (highly likely) and she's pregnant with her first baby, she's probably going to get her maternity wares at Forever 21, too. Clearly the store reaching new demographics, tapping in the reality that twenty-somethings are living like teens -- we're dependent on our parents, emotionally needy and careless with what little money we have.

Kudos Forever 21, on your savvy move. Salon, you've missed the point: 1) Teen pregnancy isn't motivated by fashion. I was a teen girl once. If Forever 21 Maternity existed then, I don't think it would have given me any comfort to know that I could dress in sexy spring fashion trends. And 2) Cheap fashion appeals to consumers of all ages, including Justin Bieber and his mom. Don't be surprised when Forever 21 launches ForeverYoung: The Milf Denim line.

The Seinfeld Movie



Quoted: Women's Magazines

Back in the old MPub days (so long ago...), we had a conversation about women's vs. men's magazines (which, incidentally, led to an obsession with James Franco—another story for another time). We tried for a long time to get down to what it was about women's magazine editorial that makes them different and frankly, less intelligent than men's editorial (in general). This quote from Margaret Webb explains part of what I've been trying to get at:

The thing that's always bugged me about women's magazines—not all, but 80 percent -- is their prevailing editorial attitude toward readers, women, is that they're imperfect specimens in need of fixing or are so emotionally fragile they require constant celebration. Advertisers, then, are the white knights riding in with the fix or pat on the head -- hair product, lipstick, weight-loss plan, speedy supper remedies -- and editorial generally panders to them with an excess of service stuff as well as editorial that's as vanilla as it is earnest (no irony or risky humour, please, women are too stupid to get it). For example, a while back, Chatelaine did a service piece on how to cope with fatigue, offering tips such as power napping, what to eat to avoid afternoon slumps etc. Heck, shouldn't the story be about why women are so fatigued and offer strategies on how to kick the fat butts of partners and kids who are shirking their share of the domestic load?

On the other hand, men's magazines like Esquire respect their readers no matter how imperfect, flatulent or drunk. It's the world that needs fixing, not their readers. Their nudge-wink pact with the reader is that every man coulda been James Bond if only James Bond hadn't gotten there first, the lucky bastard.

/via Canadian Magazines

Related: Cover Lies, Jezebel


Double Rainbow Love

Sometimes I feel sad. And then I watch this video.
(You've seen it but you know you want to watch it again)


Hot and Bothered

Hi there,

The hot weather here has made it difficult to think. I have been keeping my computer off so that it doesn't add more heat to the insufferable amount that just hangs in my apartment. The other night, Tracy and I phoned our favourite podcasters, Jonathan and Seth from "Uhh Yeah Dude," in a fit of heat-induced insanity, and let them know that we were possibly going to perish. Seth called us back the next day to check that we were OK.

And we are.

It's finally cooled down a little bit in Montreal. Yesterday's incredible thunderstorms drove some of the heat out of the city and it's now possible to sit in my place without sweating pouring down from all parts of your body. It's gross, I know.

I am just a week away from going to Toronto for a while and I have to make a decision about where I'll be in September. It's been wonderful here, though I miss you all very much. I like eating fancy cheese three times a day, riding bikes on the way home from the bar and unknowingly walking into concerts any day of the week.

Also, I've noticed that a lot of restaurants here serve water in wine bottles, to be poured into little glasses meant to hold scotch. Little pleasures, right?

It's also been lovely to have months off to do anything I want when I come home. My supervisors at Reader's Digest have discouraged me from putting in extra hours; overtime is a compulsion when you work in publishing. Now I come home and have to find other things to do with my life, which has been confusing.

Pie fans: I concocted a blueberry nectarine lattice pie last night - to die for.

I've also taken to listening to more music, taking time to catch up on Pitchfork favourites so I can talk the talk in this city of hipsters (Hey, guy, aren't you hot in those tight pants?). Also, my work with the web department led me into reviewing books so now I am reading some great stuff from Random House (thanks, RH), like The Golden Mean by Annabelle Lyon. I can't wait for more from Lyon.

I'm also reading:
Some food notes for those planning to visit (me in) Montreal:
  • Ripples on St. Laurent has some tasty, tasty ice cream. Surprising flavours, and dipped cones too.
  • McKiernan is a delight.

  • The best Chinese BBQ pork is not at the well known Toronto joint Kom Jug Yuen but Andy and Dobe on the border of Montreal's Chinatown. The pork is thinly sliced, tender and perfectly sweet. Takeout comes with a few pieces of bok choy, green onion-ginger sauce and a generous portion of delicious rice cooked in chicken stock and fat.
  • Picnics on Mont Royal with Cookies of Course, a round of crib and a large bottle of wine are a must.

Anyway, that's my dispatch. What are you up to these days?

Talk to you soon.


(P.S.: Sad Mag is launching issue #4 at the Colbalt on August 4 - it's going to be HOT. The party will be hosted by the fabulous Terminal City Roller Girls!)