Monday, April 13, 2009

Hey, average Canadian, careful not to trip over the homeless guy on your way into the vase shop.

Easter passed like a kidney stone. Jack was away stopping pucks, and a Kool Aid allergy keeps me away from organized religions. Cold drizzle meant watching paint dry at the Masters, doing my taxes, going to the gym, or curling up with a stack of magazines. Guess what won.    

My taste in periodicals runs from Esquire to Tennis to Architectural Digest. Depending on my mood, and my budget, I pick up Communication Arts or Travel + Leisure. I sometimes buy GQ (for the articles). And being an interior design junkie, I always have my fix of home decor mags. 

After chatting with Michele, the owner of Atlantic News, I was happy to hear their newsstand is holding its own in this crappy economy. I buy all my magazines there because they are nice, and there's always an illegal parking spot right out front. Michelle attributes the steady traffic to consumers granting themselves more $5 indulgences, instead of splurging on major purchases. 

People can always dream, and what better way to escape than in a magazine. (Oh, I could say something really rude here but it's only Monday.)   

Back at the ranch, I didn't get far into one Canadian publication before I was dumbfounded by the content. Page 28 had a cute little painted dresser for $3200. Page 32 had a $326 garbage can. Page 34, a $12,150 vase, or, for those on a budget, a cheaper alternative for $1360.    

It seems someone has neglected to tell the new Editor what "recession" means. 

I actually flipped back to read over the Editor's message. Maybe I missed the part about the April issue being a tribute to Zsa Zsa Gabor. Her first line went like this: "When I think about spring, I get excited about simple things". Like $12,000 vases, Dahling?   

Hats off to households who can afford such luxuries. And perhaps I have the magazine's readership demographic all wrong, but I suddenly related to starving French peasants watching Marie Antoinette wash down cake with champagne. I wasn't exactly drooling – the vases weren't my taste – but I was shaking my head at the publication's lack of common sense and compassion.    

Please, don't get me wrong – people need an escape. I'm not saying I want to see glossy layouts of trailer park makeovers. Or money-saving DIY projects like fashioning homemade tampons out of last year's throw cushions. Or turning those beer cans into a festive holiday wreath. But come on.

To borrow a line from Sex in the City, methinks the 'idiot-stick-figure-with-no soul' Editor needs to give her platinum head a shake. 

I can't wait for the next issue, where they feature a newly-bankrupt women's shelter, picked up for a song, and fashioned into simply, fabulous high-end condos.  

Where's my $326 garbage can, I have something I want it to read. 

Atlantic News is on the corner of Morris and Queen. If they don't have it, they'll do their best to find it for you.