Tom Scocca: OK, so my September copy of Glamour arrived the other day.
Choire Sicha: You know what I’m going to ask you, right?
Tom Scocca: Are you going to ask me why I get Glamour magazine?
Choire Sicha: Okay yes that!
Tom Scocca: According to the sheet of paper enclosed with a previous copy, I am getting Glamour magazine to make up for the cancellation of my Domino subscription. This is a fine explanation except for the fact that I never had a subscription to Domino.
Choire Sicha: What’s that, you ask? What is Domino editor Deborah Needleman up to? “HomeGoods is making it easy and fun to discover your home design personality with the newly launched HomeGoods StyleScope. Created by founding editor-in-chief of Domino Magazine, Deborah Needleman, this unique personalized look into individual style provides users with a home decor style type and helpful, easy to follow design tips.”
Tom Scocca: Tip No. 1: eliminate clutter. Such as inexplicable stray magazines.
Choire Sicha: That is some good advice. So. Your substitute subscription comes, a substitute for a magazine you never subscribed to.
Tom Scocca: And at an address that not even my college alumni magazine has found yet. I was wondering if someone had gotten me a prank subscription to Domino, but that’s not the Conde title someone would get me as a prank.
Choire Sicha: Cookie would be, of course. (I’ve considered it!)
Tom Scocca: I know you have, you swine. That’s not funny. So, gosh, this thing REEKS.
Choire Sicha: Of lady-cologne?
Tom Scocca: Quite. Oh, wait, isn’t September the issue that’s supposed to be ostentatiously huge?
Choire Sicha: It is! For instance, my September Vanity Fair came yesterday, and it was not that small actually.
Tom Scocca: I did not realize this was the September issue till I looked at the spine. It is 296 pages. And it is very confusing. I brought this up in the first place because I wanted to talk about an article in it. But the article is not in the table of contents! Not on the first table of pre-contents, the “Cover Reads,” in which the cover lines get page numbers appended to them (“5 DINNERS ABSOLUTELY ANYONE CAN COOK page 279”; “25 NAKED TRUTHS ABOUT GUYS’ BODIES page 264 [don’t miss the body map on page 267!]”).
Tom Scocca: Not on the first page of the actual contents pages: “268 Finally! Money advice just for young women.” Not on the second page of contents: “258 DIANE KRUGER SHOWS OFF FALL’S CHICEST CONFIDENCE CLOTHES.”
Choire Sicha: Oooh, “Confidence Clothes”! They invented something
Tom Scocca: I always get Diane and Barbara Kruger mixed up.
Choire Sicha: Diane Kruger is the poor man’s Heidi Klum.
Tom Scocca: Who is the rich man’s Heidi Klum?
Choire Sicha: Well it used to be Milla Jovovich but not for some time.
Tom Scocca: Anyway, finally, on the second page of the Editor’s Note (which is actually an Editor’s Listicle and is printed eye-ache-inducingly out of register), down at the very bottom inside corner, inside sideways red brackets, there is a little set of contributors’ pictures, including the one I was looking for!
Tom Scocca: “BEN AFFLECK The star interviewed Nicholas Kristof and wife Sheryl WuDunn about their new book on women’s rights worldwide (page 211). Says Affleck, ‘I really wanted to be a part of this–it’s important.'”
Choire Sicha: WHAT.
Tom Scocca: We could have an all-day seminar on the use here of the phrase “wife Sheryl WuDunn.”
Choire Sicha: You mean as opposed to “Pulitzer Prize-winning Goldman Sachs advisor”?
Tom Scocca: Well, she did share the Pulitzer with husband Nicholas Kristof.
Choire Sicha: It all starts to sound better if you replace “wife” with “breadwinner.” Though you know, she was only a VP.
Tom Scocca: Still, that Christmas bonus would buy a lot of Cambodian child prostitutes out of bondage.
Choire Sicha: Well Cambodian child prostitutes are cheap.
Tom Scocca: [Leaves punchline lying on table, untouched, because thinking about serious women’s issues while contemplating Glamour’s handling of same makes that particular strain of parody and irony seem inadequate and distasteful.]
Choire Sicha: [Sits quietly for a while.]