The downside of going to the allergist's every Saturday is that I get stabbed with needles. Thrice. The upside is that I get to look at magazines I wouldn't otherwise get the chance to peruse.
This week, it was Vogue. Lots of very expensive clothes that are impressive on the catwalk and on the street, not so much. Pictures of beautiful and elegant people dressed beautifully and elegantly, attending parties which are no doubt beautiful and elegant.
But what I notice most are the ads. Or rather, the women in them. In various stages of dress and undress, they stride, or lounge, or perch, but they all have one thing in common - they never smile.
They glare, they glower, they scowl. I suppose they're intended to look assertive and defiant, but they just look like their shoes pinch.
What, exactly, is the message here?
"I'm young, I'm beautiful, I'm wearing a bra that costs more than your house, and I'm not at all happy about it."
"You, too, can be sullen, if you just buy the right accessories."
Perhaps we're supposed to feel better about not being able to afford haute couture. Why would we want it, if it only makes us grumpy?
I put down the Vogue and open a Woman's Day. I flip to the first ad - a thirtysomething woman with a sensible haircut, dressed in khaki pants and a bright tee, face lit up by a huge smile. Apparently she's just discovered how wonderful her laundry smells when she uses a certain fabric softener, and it's made her day.
Those poor rich folks. Maybe if they did their own laundry, they wouldn't look so testy.