The new mantra over at the just-redesigned Redbook magazine is "Love Your Life" or alternately, "I love my _____ life," which is such an obvious invitation for us to use the word "fucking" we figured editor Stacy Morrison was slyly suggesting we pick up the July issue of the magazine. But after reading about a woman whose husband hid $1 million in company debt from her, a woman who got a tattoo to commemorate her dead daughter's sixth birthday, and a bunch of women who couldn't afford insurance anymore after getting cancer, we have to agree (no slyness about it!) I Love My Goddamn Insolent, Indulgent, Sedentary Irresponsible Life. This magazine is so depressing you'd think they'd dropped "aspirational" from all their advertising materials. It actually reminds me of the time we were brainstorming over names to call this site, and Lock suggested "Dreamhater" as a joke, and I thought it was perfect, but I didn't know what the fuck I was talking about because I have never read a glossy magazine so utterly grounded in the very cruel radiance of what is.
- You know they're not fucking with you the "Red-Hot Read", page 81 concerns a woman whose husband is such a relenetless cheater he actually sends her away on vacation to cheat on him. AND SHE CAN'T DO IT. That's right! No "hot"-ness this month. Sigh.
- Then there's a story about how four women learned how to "Love Yourself Thin," but not only are none of them remotely thin (Crystal, for instance, went from 266 to 250 pounds), the biggest font in the profiles is reserved for examples of "Your typical negative self-talk about your body." Examples: How did you let this happen? I never thought I would let myself get this big!"and What's the matter with you? Why can't you stop eating and start exercising? Why are you so lazy? Yikes.
- Which doesn't make it any easier that fucking Faith Hill (on page 125, not in that stupid shirt) is, like, Holy Shit hot. Seriously, she looks like Ashlee Simpson, post-surgery, only she's hever had surgery and she's old enough to be Ashlee's mom. Fuck her.
- In "The Secrets Couples Keep", page 143 a woman relates how her husband didn't tell her about the million dollars of debt on his company's balance sheet until he announced they were going to lose the house and that, oh yeah, he'd have to take a second job.
- Page 120: "My Mother Abandoned Me At Birth." This is for a new section called "Your Stories" that is sort of like a similar section in Jane, only in Jane the stories are more like "I gave my second cousin a blowjob during a family reunion but everyone was on mushrooms and we're hippies so it's okay."
- And the macro, colossal sad story to end all sad stories: "How Bad Does the Health-Care Crisis Have To Get?" on Page 166 is a serious, thoughful explanation of the problems plaguing the American health care system accompanied by profiles of sympathetic working women who struggle to keep their health insurance.
- The woman with the dead daughter, Ann Hood, wrote a book called The Knitting Circle. This is the back page essay, page 214, and she died from strep throat. So it turns out you can die from strep throat. Wow.
In conclusion, thank you, Stacy, for thoroughly reminding us of the important things in life, and how lucky we are to be here. Not sure you're really lowering the age of your readers, but our eyes didn't roll back into our brains as we were reading your magazine, so that's, you know, something.