Shallow Versus

Lesbian Ass vs. the Commuter Class

This past weekend, Manhattan’s customarily quiet and genteel neighborhood of Chelsea was overtaken by lesbian rage, as 22nd Street became the site of the LTTR Block Party, in honor of the release of the fourth issue of this largely-unknown feminist art/literature/music journal. (That’s one more issue than n+1, in case you’re wondering. Collect them now!)
So, what sort of clash ensues when the upper-income brackets of Chelsea’s brownstone-residing queers play host to a bunch of art-world dykes? Hmm…phrased like that, the whole situation becomes confusing. Let’s sort it out by pitting LTTR versus that beacon of aspirational capitalism, BusinessWeek.

BusinessWeek LTTR
lesbian_cover_businessweek.gif lesbian_cover_LTTR1.jpg
The publication’s title pretty
much says it all…you’re getting the news of "this week in business".
Concise, but boring. Kind of like your typical V.P. of Development. Not very
gay in the least.
The publication’s title
serves a dual function; first, it’s an artful abbreviation of LETTER,
get it? Because the printed word is comprised of letters. Secondly,
it’s an acronym of sorts, wherein issue number 1 went by the longhand
variant of LESBIANS TO THE RESCUE, issue number 2 spelled out LISTEN
TRANSLATE TRANSLATE RECORD, and then there’s some additional wordplay
with the idea of LESBIANS TEND TO READ. Semi-clever, mostly creative.
And, therefore, very gay.
Inserts: Each issue includes subscription
invitation cards that frequently fall out on the floor of the Metro North
train on which its readership rides.
Inserts: Past issues have included
insert CDs with rare and exclusive tracks by artists such as Le Tigre.
Apparently the group’s frontwoman Kathleen
has some sort of penchant
for lesbianism?
Current Cover Story: When
Rita Came Calling
, examining how "after Katrina, Gulf Coast outfits like
SBC, Coke, and Texas Instruments prepared extensively for this hurricane."
Informative and matter-of-fact. And, again, boring as all fuck.
Potential Cover Story: When
Rita Came Calling
, examining what happens when an ex-lover
comes by your studio apartment in Williamsburg while you’re racing to
hide your new girlfriend’s undergarments. Assuming she wears undergarments.
Poetic and beautiful.
Packaging: Bound like ninety percent of all other magazines. Three staples straight down the side, gloss on the front, and poker in the rear. (Sorry, we’re getting ahead of ourselves. Account Executives are just so goddamned aggressive after happy hour!) Packaging: The latest issue comes wrapped in textured paper, bound by a frilly ribbon. Very feminine, but not very durable –– and certainly not built to last in perpetuity. Where are those all-important subscription cards?

This, then, is why the breeders will always win.

Shallow Versus

Ronald McDonald’s Happy Steal

From L-R, McDonald’s new female Ronald McDonald, as seen in a current Japanese TV campaign, and Milla Jovovich as Leeloo in Luc Besson’s The Fifth Element (1997)
Talk about Hamburglars! (Ba-dum.)

Shallow Versus

Mamma Mia!

Yeah, we know it’s a little late, but it’s not every day you discover someone copping Abba’s style.
Big ups to James R.!

Shallow Versus

The indiscreet charms of the bourgeoisie

WHICH set of former has-beens-that-never-were returned to the glare of the spotlight earlier this month? WHO reissued their most prominent document of fame and fortune yet, in what is either the ultimate comeback or merely another attempt to cash in on the zeitgeist of bourgeoisie socialism? WHAT makes this sort of bougie urban politicism that far removed from an overriding cultural interest in Jessica Simpson’s techniques for obtaining a bikini-worthy body?
Unrelatedly, Maer Roshan’s Radar project is out anew this month.
And, hey, you know what? Our tried-and-true “This looks like this, which is like that, which is like this” routine never ends! We’ll be here all week.
(with thanks to Adit Nathan)

Shallow Versus

If Buchanan Wasn’t Against the War Before, He Sure Is Now

Separated at Bulge: Saddam Hussein on the cover of The Sun (via Drudge); Pat Buchanan on the cover of SPY, May 1992.

Shallow Versus

Even College Dropouts Find the Work of Tony Kushner Inspirational

Kanye West at the Grammy’s and Emma Thompson in Angels in America

Shallow Soundproof Versus

How to design a record sleeve for your favorite hipster band

L-R, Tegan and Sara, So Jealous; Bright Eyes, Digital Ash in a Digital Urn
Hmmm…and you’re still wondering what the next Bloc Party or Dears LP will look like?

Shallow Versus

Balloon Man

Rhys Ifans in Enduring Love and its prequel Danny Deckchair
Rhys Ifans’ new film, Enduring Love, is a charming sequel to his even charminger Danny Deckchair, in which Mr. Ifans’ relationship with ballooning is further explored. Up next for Mr. Ifans? Maria Full of Grace 2.

Shallow Versus

Three years and zero washes later…

Where do you live, Jimmy Fallon? From left to right, the SNL wunderkind on the cover of Paper‘s November 2001 issue; and the star of Taxi featured as “Man of the Week” in the October 18, 2004 issue of Us

Shallow Versus

The definitive hot new cover pose for September 2004 magazines