originally posted August 30, 2010
The new People is here! The new People is here! Actually the even newer people is here but I’m late in posting!
Every Tuesday I can count on one piece of mail that will lift my spirits and, at the same time, make me feel like a colossal boob. I pull the People Magazine out of my mailbox face down, fold it in half, and stuff it under my arm to conceal my habit from any passersby. When caught with my hand in the goldfish bowl I immediately plunge into a discourse on the tragedy of having to subject myself to such utter nonsense just for the opportunity to peruse the literary and musical reviews. It’s really just a beautifully wrapped glob of horse dung. I mean, I DO go to the book and movie reviews first, but I can’t resist peeking to see what Bradley Cooper wore to the mall or which stars were caught wearing the same style of sunglasses. Now THAT’s a tragedy right there.
But who can blame me? This week’s people was infinitely comical, pathetic and inspiring.
Take, for instance, the cover story. Michelle and Jim Bob Duggars say “We’re ready for more.” They already have 19 children from the ages of 8 months to 23 years AND a grandchild. They’re following their convictions. No matter how challenging it will be to remember all their names, birthdays or shoe sizes. The guy’s name is Jim Bob. That should have been Michelle’s first clue to jump ship.
But then page 10 starts the Star Tracks! Katie Perry does a split, Betty White does the bump, David Beckham . . . . .well, he doesn’t have to do anything but look pretty. Michelle and Sasha Obama enjoy a $4,500,000 all-expenses-paid-vacation in Spain, Madonna (dressed like a Soho bag lady) kisses her newest daughter on the nose and Snooki rides a mechanical bull that unfortunately malfunctioned when it DIDN’T throw her into the Atlantic Ocean. Most of this stuff makes me laugh. Except the part about Snooki.
Page 21. Bristol gives Levi the boot. But Bumbles bounce so he ain’t close to bein out yet. He even has “people” now. His “team” is selling a reality show where Johnston tries to get elected the next mayor of Wasilla. First . . . . who is desperate enough to submit a resume to be a part of Levi Johnston’s team? Second . . . I hear Snooki may run for the same office and that will split the sympathy vote. If the job actually paid, I’d throw my own name in the race. I figure I can run a city down the tubes as quickly as the next dimwit. I can’t wait to see him on Oprah’s return from retirement in a few years. How painful to have to look back on a chapter of your life and realize you made a complete ass of yourself in front of a nation of 300,000,000 people. This makes me laugh hard.
Page 22. Naomi Campbell takes dirty diamonds from a bad guy in 1997 but assumes he’s giving her a gift because . . . well . . .she is Naomi Campbell and she does spread cheer everyewhere she goes. “Reese to Remarry?” Who cares? “Would you read Justin Bieber’s book?” Now this is rich. Justin Bieber has written his first book at 16, “Justin Bieber: First Step 2 Forever: My Story.” And 18% of people say they will actually read it?!?!?! The only thing I want to know from JB is how he gets his hair to always look like he’s been sleeping in a skull cap?!!?!
Page 24. Lindsay’s in Treatment. Thank God for Lindsay Lohann or People wouldn’t have enough “filler” stories. They run this same blurb every time they have an empty space. And fortunately Lindsay keeps pulling the same antics every couple of weeks so libel is never called into question.
Page 26. Bachelorette and her new fiance are “Free to Flaunt Their Love” for as long as it brings them both fame. I’m bored with them. My absolute favorite story this week is “Macho, Macho Men . . . Or Are They?” The 6 tired, drooping, arthritic stars of “The Expendables” dish on how sensitive they really are. Steve Austin claims to have “shed a tear during ‘The Notebook.’” and Sylvester Stallone paints, sculpts and writes. But my favorite is Terry Crews who says . . . out loud, mind you . . . “I have mastered the jazz flute. I love it.” So did Ron Burgundy. That is SO not cool.
Page 39. MUSIC! This section is always hit or miss. Too many wannabe rock stars touting the brilliance of the newest counter-culture band . . . . usually some lame journalist hoping to appear musically superior. One yahoo convinced me that Sting’s “If on a Winter’s NIght . . “ was his most celebrated work to date. Eight songs into the CD I was looking for chopsticks to stab my OWN eyes out. Proceed with caution.
Page 42. “What’s Your Strangest Autograph Experience?” Ashanti shocks us all. She was in the bathroom and when she came out of the stall, someone gave her a pen and napkin to sign. So she did!! Apparently Ashanti’s autograph is not in great demand.
Page 45. Book reviews! This is actually the chocolate covered diamond. The book reviews are genuinely well done and I have yet to be disappointed. I’ve learned my lesson though and now I understand verbage intended to fool me. For instance, “emotional wreckage and rebirth”, “the perils of self-involvement,” “coming of age.” These phrases point straight toward the complex tale of a woman coming to terms with who she is, finding her inner strength, or learning acceptance and forgiveness. And “Summer read” or “beach read” is code for simplistic chick flick. That’s cool if it’s what you enjoy but if you like “The Andromeda Strain” or “The Dark Tower Series” you’re going to be a tad disappointed when you unwrap “Confesions of a Shopaholic.”
Page 52. Geez. There are those crazy Duggars again. Enough already!
Page 62. My nemesis. Jennifer Anniston. Or Rachel. Or Jennifer. Whatever. Look, I understand our country’s fascination with her. I just disagree. She’s the average girl. She’s marginally attractive . . . enough so that even that guy from the high school chess team thinks he could hit that and not enough that any woman would be intimidated. She’s a mediocre actress who’s made a career out of perfecting one single character that she replays every time she’s onscreen. She doesn’t rock the boat in any way so she never offends . . . . . but she expresses no real passion either so she never provokes. She hasn’t gained weight, lost weight cut her hair, colored her hair, worn a wig, changed her style of dress or attempted an accent in her entire career. I am certain she’s a perfectly nice girl. But I know this. If I offer one single interior design solution for all of the projects I take on, my lack of creativity would not be celebrated. I don’t know . . . . maybe it’s refreshing that somoene who’s simply a nice person can be rewarded for it. Naaah! I still say we need to raise the bar!
Page 69. People’s token humanitarian story. Anh Reiss, in need of a bone marrow donor herself, sets out to encourage other Vietnamese Americans to swab cheeks in search of DNA. While she has yet to find a match for herself, she has helped a number of others find their own life-saving matches. This is a great story about a real life hero. The first real “person” in this issue of People Magazine.
See you next week . . . . .