page 149

… I understand … things aren’t often planned …

I like to read magazines when I fly. They just seem to carry enough interesting information to keep me busy for a couple of hours at a time, without really getting me caught up in a long-haul reading session. I always try to buy a mixture of mags so that I can cover my moods and learn new things in a range of different areas. OK, and so that I can swap out the New Scientist magazine for Rolling Stone when a nice looking girl sits next to me. (Tip: never read a “men’s” magazine on a plane, you look like a complete wanker!)

It’s easy to get hooked in to a good story. You’re reading along and the story is getting interesting. You’ve turned the page a couple of times as it progresses, checking out the pictures before you start reading each page. And this is where some magazines make me wish that the editor-in-chief is on the plane somewhere.

(continued on page 149)

When I see that, my blood boils faster than the creation of a Dennis Miller analogy. What?!?! You want me to turn to the back of the magazine now? What?!?! A new story starts a couple of pages later, after the obligatory swatch of bad advertisements. Why am I flipping past stories I haven’t read yet? To the back of the magazine, where I’m bound to run into the scum of the ads — penis enlargement, term papers online, kama sutra videos, corporate logo watches, ugly women posing as models giving phone sex. Why?!?!

Is there some problem with finishing the story in one block? Why do I have to jump around? Since when did reading a magazine become a “Choose Your Own Adventure” experience? Is there such a thing as a defragger for magazines?

I have to imagine that it’s got something to do with marketing dollars — that advertisers can be gouged for more money when their ads are placed in the front of the magazine — apart from the back cover, of course, which is reserved for a Dell or Absolut ad.

Let me read my damn story straight through. To quote Larry Sanders, “No flipping!”

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