I was reading American Vogue on the train back home on Friday. It's a guilty habit. It started with Mr. Steingarten's food column (which by the way does not appear in every issue, in case you thought of subscribing). And in the last year or so, I started to enjoy looking at the pictures. The fashion editors really do not do such a bad job, considering they are as ancient as the hills.
It's not that I think you can't be older and stylish (thank god for Lynn Yaeger, the Village Voice's very own Isabella Blow, who's also one of my favourite writers). But how can you take someone with a name like 'Grace Coddington' seriously, especially when she appears in the magazine looking like death warmed up and clutching fluffy orange feline relics?

Of course, every single issue also sports at least one story that makes you want to become the unibomber of Saks (e.g. their younger editors talking about 'investment' handbags at $3000 in a story about thrifty shopping, and photographed in improbable Manhattan abodes. At least Lynn Yaeger favours Orchard St knock-offs).

But what really made me sick, in an issue that was grudgingly fluttering a tinted eyelash at the downtrodden economy, was their ridiculous collection of 'budget friendly' shopping tips (i.e. under $500), which included Pilates sessions for $160 each because they're so worth it for your priceless body,
and this dieting tip:
"Thinking of your last meal has been proven to stave off hunger pangs."

Jesus christ.
One can't help but imagine Grace Coddington being gnawed at by orange cats as she eats her two-tablespoons of egg white for breakfast and dabs La Prairie fish caviar under her eyes.

Anyway, right now you can download Jeffrey Steingarten's guide to Beijing restaurants, which could be worth grabbing while it's still on the Vogue site. Just in case you find yourself pawning your investment hand bag for a trip to eat succulent duck fat in Beijing. You never know.


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