At the shelter we get subscriptions to magazines. Gift subscriptions from people with a donator's impulse to make the world a better place and by better I mean prettier, more cheerful. The same people might drive off leaving at our curb heavy furniture they don't feel like taking with(more) them when they move, or dirty clothes. We housekeepers bundle most of it into the Dumpster because it has no place.
Gift subscriptions to magazines about make-up, fashion, beauty. 'Lifestyle' magazines. Just in case the women are in a shelter because they don't know what they should be doing.
It is demented to see the women reading this stuff. Better Homes & Gardens in the hands of people with no home nevermind garden, Cosmopolitan with its "Sex Secrets" in the hands of pincushioned & bruised prostitutes. Doting, vacuous stanzas accompanying the glossies of gleam-toothed celebrity-women, the simple words hard to fathom from behind two black eyes.
Some of these magazines end up in the staff lunch room. Articles about online dating, spray-on tans end up informing vacuous semi-demented conversations that make up "small talk". I use them as placemats.
Celebrity fetishising is as foreign and amusing to me as going to church for a different kind of worship. He said this, she looked like this, and it all meant that. So sayeth the lord, or Anna Wintour, or Karl Lagerfield, or some other deathless socket-cheeked vampire.
And the perfume samples in magazines all smell like the locker of a highschool girl or worse. This season men crave the smell of grapefruit. Or pumpkin pie, one article claims. The magazines all use the word "sexpot." Someone has given out the shelter phone number; johns call night and day and ask anyone who answers if they are up for having a good time.(less)