23 June 2005

Tempo's 50 best mags & my $0.02

Another reason why I miss Chicago (or wannabe-Chicago-because-I-really-live-in-the-suburbs) living...The Chicago Tribune's Tempo section! For the third year, the Tempo writers have come up with a list of what they consider the 50 best magazines (note it's a pdf). The selections reflect a wide variety of genres from the grandfather of all celebrity mags People (#7) to the niche-market publication Birds & Blooms (#37) to the no-frills classic National Geographic (#15). Here some selections they chose which I enjoy:
  • #3 Vanity Fair - a good read while waiting at the doc's.
  • #6 New York - LOVE this one, though I've never picked up the hardcopy. Their website (www.nymetro.com) is excellent and practically the entire mag.
  • #33 Chronicle of Higher Education - great resource for keeping abreast of hot topics and trends in higher ed
  • #34 UsWeekly - Ok, so it the prime example of this society's obsession with celebrities, but it can be pretty funny too. And at least it's not InTouch.

Some magazines that I enjoy reading but not deemed worthy of the list:

  • Self - I think that this women's magazine does a pretty good job of promoting healthy living and self-image, although it is still a CondeNast publication and therefore reeks of mass-consumerism. I personally think the advertisements contribute most to Self's mixed messages.
  • Jane - this irreverent, semi-feminist mag appeals to my non-conformist, tongue-in-cheek side.
  • Budget Living - if you know me, you understand why I like this one. However, I do find that some of their "budget" item suggestions a little much (e.g. a $25 glass-cutting board?) and that it has a more sub-than-urban feel to it.
  • Glamour - One of my guilty pleasures. More pop-culture-friendly than Self, less blatantly salacious than Cosmopolitan.
  • Martha Stewart Living - another guilty pleasure. Great recipes, quick crafts, and information on random "good things" (like how to pick out good produce). This is obviously a product of my brainwashing as a child to want to be a domestic goddess. Oh wait, that's just b/c I have Asian parents! j/k!


Elaine said...

See, what I love about the Trib (and I say this somewhat tongue in cheek) is that their culture section, Tempo, isn't intimidating. NY Times' section intimdiates. Take their magazine choices: I don't know about you, but I'm guessing NYT would not have chosen People (nor would I have), but the Tribune chose it? I'm more cultured than them (well...) thus less threatened. I actually like Glamour pretty well and have a subscription, though I think it's ads, content, and models send a lot of mixed messages too characteristic of young women magazines of today...well except for Cosmo which so ridiculously promotes sexual subservience to men under the guise of sexual liberation (if you ask me). I don't know if the New Yorker was on there, but I would add that. I know, I know, but the magazine has improved from its Tina Brown days from what I've heard and has had some great political reporting in recent years thanks to Seymour Hirsch (sp?).

Diana said...

No Rolling Stone? Or did I just miss it? I have to admit that my subscriptions over the years have been limited to People, Vanity Fair, and Entertainment Weekly. And to think I was once mocked for my fluffy taste in journalism :)

BlandGrey said...

I'm going to suggest a magazine I like, and hopefully not step on any gender roles, but I really like Real Simple. Great magazine with simple tips about keeping house (or apartment in my case), and how to be productive. I'm always to embarassed to mention that I like this magazine, since it is primarily targeted at a female audience. And I don't say this because it's about keeping house, but more because the articles about "the best white pants" or "the best cosmetic bags."

And just to rant a bit, I pretty much despise any magazine with a celebrity focus. The bane of our society, IMHO...