Monday, May 7, 2012

Selections from "Martha's Month"

Earlier this year, I started getting issues of Martha Stewart Living in my mailbox, addressed to my name. Did someone buy me a secret gift subscription? (If so, they haven't come forward.) Did I win it somehow? Is it a clerical error? Who knows?

The truth is, I kind of like the magazine (and I kind of like Martha Stewart, even though she's nominally hostile to feminism); it's full of pretty photographs of gardens and floral arrangements and various elements of a lifestyle I don't and can't aspire to. I do take inspiration from the recipes, which are generally simple and effective.

But the most delightful part of each issue is "Martha's Month," a calendar of "gentle reminders, helpful tips, and important dates." Presumably, these are Martha's agenda items, but readers are invited and encouraged to follow suit.

The following is a list of real, unembellished items from "Martha's Month" in May and June:

  • Reinstall fans in chicken coop for summer
  • Deadhead daffodils
  • Speak at James Beard Foundation Awards 
  • Spray peas with compost tea to add micronutrients
  • Horseback ride
  • Harvest last of spinach and cool-weather lettuces
  • Receive honorary degree at the New York School of Interior Design
  • Assemble garden first-aid kit with insect-bite remedies
  • Give a speech at the Financial Times Business of Luxury Summit in Marrakech 
  • Friend David Rockefeller Sr.'s Birthday
  • Plant cold-house beds with melons
  • Boat trip to islands
  • Apply organic fertilizer to eggplant, pepper, and tomato plants
  • Friesians and miniature donkeys get their checkups

14 comments:

  1. deadhead as a verb is the most excellent thing I have seen this morning.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is suggested, btw, that you deadhead your peonies in June.

      Delete
  2. the one time i saw an oprah mag i flipped it open to this article, "what i know for sure", that turned out to be the total bomb. so uhhh... yeah. i like martha too though.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So what does she know for sure??

      Delete
    2. Elisa, she knows something new every month! And I subscribe, consciously, to O magazine year after year and it's fantastic.

      Delete
    3. Wow, you two really make a compelling case.

      Delete
  3. you gotta read it, she also brings in like an outside panel. she ends up having too many to really meditate on but there are some good ones.

    it was legit, cause in the intro she was like, the question is actually gene siskel's, after an interview or something he asked me this and i was totally dumbstruck, then i went home and had like a mini-crisis and thought hard for a while. it was awesome, i gotta respect it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That does indeed sound legit. Way more legit than miniature donkeys.

      Delete
    2. how bout a follow-on post about what WE know for sure. that's gonna blow our minds.

      Delete
  4. marvelous! i ripped out and kept a spread from an issue of martha stewart magazine (which I also mysteriously received in the mail for about a year after moving to Boston--did I subscribe in a dream? is someone sending me a message?) depicting the most organized and beautiful drawers i have ever seen, just perfect orderly little items collected and displayed in this supremely relaxing manner (this spread somehow gives me the opposite feeling I get from looking at an andreas gursky photo).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. (& I love it when you post lists! This one is just so good.)

      Delete
    2. You too with the free mystery subscription?! Who, oh who is our Martha Stewart fairy godmother??

      Delete
  5. Miniature donkeys?

    There are just too many good punchlines for that...

    ReplyDelete
  6. Gee, I only ever got the magazine Shape mysteriously delivered... What was MY message? I dont want to think about it...

    ReplyDelete