Helen Gurley Brown at Work

FASHION/FEMINISM - Helen Gurley Brown became the editor of Cosmopolitan magazine in 1965 and quickly changed the magazine into one that was just for women (from 1886 to 1864 it had been a more family oriented magazine).

But that is not all she did. As a sexually liberated single woman Helen Gurley Brown also brought to the magazine her own manifesto of what she thought women should behave like. In a word, golddiggers.

In her best-selling book "Sex and the Single Girl" and 8 other books that followed Helen Gurley Brown perpetuated her belief that women could have it all, namely "love, sex, and money" by simply playing the role of a woman who attracts and snares men, and then controls them using sex in an effort to gain money and power.

And when you're done with them, men are disposable and easily replaced.

This obviously comes from a woman who wasn't worried about losing her good looks.

It should be noted that many notable feminists of the time, including Betty Friedan and Germaine Greer, did not support Gurley Brown's manifesto of controlling men through sex. Gurley Brown's concepts which focused on fashion, beauty, fame and using men for sex/money were arguably a step backwards in the women's liberation movement because it promoted the idea that women should behave like tramps and sluts, but only if they're getting a lot of money.

Helen Gurley Brown continued on as editor-in-chief until 1997. She is still alive currently.

But during her 32 years in control of one of the most influential women's magazines in the United States Helen Gurley Brown managed to sway quite a few young women (the Cosmo Girl / Sex and the City generation) to her cause.

While she did claim love was a factor in her philosophy (she married movie producer David Brown in 1959) they never had any children, instead enjoying the wealthy life with no kids to worry about... but lets just test Google and see how many hits for the word love comes up on 11,400

12,800 hits for the word "sex".

11,800 hits for the word "guy".

2,980 hits for the word "boyfriend".

681 hits for the word "husband".

So apparently husbands aren't high on the list of priorities. Guys are okay, but guys are disposable. And love is slightly less popular than sex. (The actual "love articles" are really more about "making love" than actual romantic love.

3,420 hits for the word "romance".

Heck, lets have some more fun with this...

6,860 hits for the word "hair".

6,570 hits for the word "fashion".

3,860 hits for the words "kama sutra".

501 hits for the word "cheating" (the top articles that came up were "How to Tell if a Guy Is Cheating", "Stop Him From Cheating" and "Is Cheating Always Wrong?").

478 hits for the words "paris hilton".

413 hits for the word "marriage".

So apparently Paris Hilton is moderately less important than husbands, and approx. 15% more popular than marriage. Yeah, I think we get the picture here.

Cosmopolitan... the magazine for slutty golddiggers who don't like marriage but are just marginally better than prostitutes because they pick and choose which rich guys they want to seduce. Its completely unrealistic too (men with good looks and wealth are hard to come by and if you do they are either a: already taken or b: likely to cheat). And women wonder why men get upset about such women and call them b*tches or worse.

You see men are sensitive creatures. We may not like to admit it, but we're very self-conscious about it. We want to be loved like any other human being... but when someone is used and abused by someone they thought (or hoped) might love them, the shock and pain of such betrayal is to be expected.

Yes, the modern Cosmo magazine has helped women feel more sexually liberated, we will give Helen Gurley Brown some of the credit for that. But at what cost? This concept of hunting rich men and then using them for their money is just plain ethically wrong.

If you want money go out and earn it like a regular person. Feminists didn't fight for equality so women could sponge off rich men. They wanted to stand on their own two feet. Gurley Brown's philosophy is a throw back to Parisian courtesans, which some people may romanticize, but in reality were closer to upper-class prostitutes.

Where is the love in using someone like that? Love in such a scenario becomes a tool, a weakness which the woman can exploit and use to her advantage.

If a man did such a thing women would be up in arms and asking for his head on a platter, but women who do it are being praised by Cosmopolitan... despite the fact that these scenarios usually end badly.

Remember Monica Lewinsky and Bill Clinton? Her affair with the president was more about his power than anything else. She wanted POWER over him and it blew up in her face (pun intended).

That is the Cosmo Girl in action. Such actions will always come back to haunt people.

Skinny Dipping and Nudity at Work

ENTERTAINMENT/HEALTH - I must say everytime I do a post with the words "at Work" at the end I have to wonder what people are thinking... Obviously I am not talking about skinny dipping and nudity at work work... I am amazed everyone reading the blog has managed to figure this out on their own. You'd think there'd be one dumbass out there who doesn't make the connection.

Anywho, back to the main dish: Skinny Dipping.

For people who love to swim, skinny dipping is often the ultimate experience of freedom in the water... as long as its not infested with piranhas or crocodiles. Whether you consider swimming a form of exercise or a competitive sport, skinny dipping itself is really more of a recreational activity.

Last week Vancouver tried to set a Guinness World Record by having the largest group of people skinny dipping together... they failed, but the participants enjoyed it.

If you decide to go skinny dipping, either alone or with a friend, there is some general rules of thumb you should follow:

#1. The 200 Meter Rule

If you have neighbours or people that might notice try to stay at a distance of 200 meters or more. They won't be able to see anything of importance at that distance unless they're using binoculars (in which case I don't think they mind).

#2. Avoid Mosquitoes

Skinny dipping during the height of mosquitoe season is very unwise. The best time of the year is August when most of the mosquitoes are gone.

#3. The Boat, Canoe or Dock Solution

One solution for people who are shy is to swim on the far side of a dock, boat or canoe so the neighbours can't see you. Other solutions are to wait for dusk, swim really early in the morning, behind a rock outcropping, etc.

#4. Know the Laws

The Canadian Criminal Code forbids being “so clad as to offend against public decency.” As long as you take steps not to offend people or are around consenting people, then its no big deal.

Meanwhile toplessness is completely legal in Canada, for both men and women. So if you can't find the courage to swim nude, you can always go topless instead.

See Also
The Top Topless Beaches

The Old Spice Guy at Work

FASHION - What woman (or man for that matter) doesn't like the Old Spice Guy in the following ads?

The last one is part of an Old Spice campaign on YouTube (there's hundreds of these small videos in response to twitter and Facebook comments) in an effort to create buzz. Frankly its working. Smart advertising = Good advertising.

Playboy and Profits at Work

SEX - Playboy Magazine, a hallmark of men's magazines since 1953 isn't just about busty young women with typical dimensions of 36-24-36, Patrick Nagel artwork or cartoons... its also about politically and socially motivated articles, thought provoking ones. When Hugh Hefner started the magazine in the 1950s he wanted to change the world, but he needed to lure men in so they would (hopefully) read the articles in addition to gazing wistfully at the photos within.

In 1971 Playboy went public, becoming a publicly trading company on the stock market. At the height of the magazine's popularity in 1972 they sold 7.2 million copies of one issue.

As Hugh Hefner got older (he is now 84) his control over the company dwindled and the editorial articles started to change their direction. In recent years this has begun to bother him and he now wants control of his company back.

Announced this week is a $123 million USD offer to buy back all A and B class shares at $5.50 each, a premium of 30% more than they're actually worth right now and values Playboy at $185 million USD total. (Hefner currently owns only 33% of the company.)

In recent years Playboy's profits have been down anyway, largely due to internet competition. After all why go through the embarrassment of buying a magazine and then telling people "I read it for the articles!" when you could get the same photographs and thought-provoking articles on the internet?

Thus Playboy Enterprises Inc. has been slashing jobs in recent years and combining units. Profits are so low the company has lost more than $200 million in the last 2 years and had to reduce the guaranteed number of copies they would sell (the rate base to advertisers) to 1.5 million from its previous 2.6 million.

From 1989 to 2009 it was Christie Hefner (daughter of the founder) who had been serving as the CEO. Last year she was replaced by Scott Flanders who wanted to turn the company more into a brand management company (selling the logos of Playboy Bunny and other icons to movies and other entertainment venues). While that would certainly help boost Playboy's popularity and their profit numbers, it is doubtful it would be enough.

During the first 3 months of 2010 sales dropped 48% and revenue dropped 30%. Scott Flanders was downsizing the company and the slashing of jobs meant cuts to the editorials too.

So will Playboy (which includes cable TV channels) be sold back to Hugh Hefner who will hopefully pump new life into the aging icon? Possibly. At this point the company is a sinking ship.

My advice to Hugh Hefner: Buy it back, bring back the thought-provoking articles that made Playboy "The New Yorker" of men's magazines, and make the website "free" and subsidized by advertising instead of the current rate of $7.95/month if you sign up for a year. As websites go has become incredibly underrated... you can read all the articles, movies reviews, celebrity interviews, etc for free... but there's no archive of old articles and they're competing with other internet companies on the basis of porn, but still trying to promote themselves as a general men's magazine with lots of articles.

My point is the website would be more popular and more profitable if it was completely free and supported by advertising instead (and frankly Hugh Hefner is rich enough already). If Hefner claims complete ownership the company will cease to be about the profits. He can go back to his roots, luring in men and hopefully getting them to read something that will provoke their brains.

I also think part of Playboy's problem is that the women shown within are so ridiculously unattainable that most men now dismiss the magazine because they know its unrealistic. The women in Playboy are so... sterile and perfect they're just not real any more. The Playboy ideal of beauty has become so unattainable that its become a turn off.

See Also
Playboy at Work

Common Lies at Work

SEX & RELATIONSHIPS - Ever been told a lie so often that you know its a lie?


"My grandmother died."

"My dog ate my homework."

"My best friend broke up with her boyfriend so I have to console her."

When you (or someone else) uses one of the above lies so they can get out of something (ie. their homework) what they do is dilute the statement. After all, your grandmothers can only die twice... if you keep using that lie eventually people are going to catch you. Especially these days when people can check Facebook and find out pretty quickly if you were lying.

"Um, but you told me your grandmothers were both dead already..."

The "best friend who broke up with her boyfriend" lie is actually one that has been promoted by women's magazines (Cosmo, Teen, etc) as an excuse for women to get out of a date they've decided to cancel.

That particular lie has been promoted so much now that a lot of women are using it... and a lot of men are realizing they've just been lied to when they've heard it for the fourth or fifth time.

Other common lies:

"I have to wash my hair." or "I have to wash my car." (Possibly the lamest excuses ever.)

"I am really busy and don't have time to date right now." (So whats wrong with a raincheck?)

"I am seeing someone right now."

"I've decided to go back with my ex."

Etc. Pick up a women's magazine with headings like "Top Ten Ways to Cancel a Date" and you will find a whole list of lies that they're telling women to use. (Apparently they think men can't take the truth and that its better to just to lie to men.)

People who were actually sincere about wanting to see you again would be asking for a raincheck. So if you're the person cancelling but actually wanting to see them again, ask for a raincheck because it will show you are sincere.

If you're not then TELL THEM THE TRUTH. "I am just not that into you." or "I don't think you're my type." or "I didn't feel any physical/mental connection."

WE CAN TAKE THE TRUTH. Its far more upsetting to know we're being lied to.

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