Saturday, October 24, 2009

Overheard at the checkout counter....

So, as promised - the following is the story that really made me think about how supermarkets need to remerchandise their magazines.

My son and daughter were with me at the market while I was shopping - and as I'm loading up the register area (you know, that scrolling black thing that pushes your food up to the scanner -- what's that called??) my son says to me "Mom, look at this..." in that "I see something I know I'm not supposed to see" kind of way.

So me, being very blase about it all says: "Oh, right - Cosmo - that's a woman's fashion magazine. You know, perfume ads - clothing ads, advice on what "not" to wear".
T: Fashion, huh? No it's's about sex.
Me: No, of course not! It's a Fashion magazine, truly...
T: Um, okay so then why is there an article about "12 ways to please your man"?
Me: Well, grown men like their women in pretty dresses! (feeling pretty proud of the quick response, might I add - but knowing he's so not buying it.)
T: Okay, well what about "the sexy (stressing the word "sexy" ) ass workout?
Me: Don't say that word!! (*thinking of a good answer...coming up with nothing....* )
T: Why does a person's butt (again, stressing butt) have to be sexy?!? That's disgusting! See, I told you it's about S-E-X.
Me: (Thankful that he loves pretty girls but still loving that he thinks that they're kind of disgusting at the same time --and at the same time defeated because he won. It's clearly about sex.) "Honey, honestly - that magazine shouldn't be here - I think someone filed it incorrectly -- it's about fashion, but there's dating advice too, you know? Just let it go, it's a grown up magazine..."

Seriously though -- why Cosmo is at the counter for impressionable 8 year olds to read -- is beyond me.

Anyone have any insight into this? Anyone....?


Daniel said...

Great post. I never thought of it that way before, but Cosmo and those other magazines probably belong with Penthouse, Playboy, and the cigarettes. I guess people figure reading about different positions and means of erotic stimulation is fundamentally different from looking at pictures of these things.
One thing's for sure: I never see a "fashion magazine" without the word "SEX" on the cover, usually in the most prominent position possible.

~**Dawn**~ said...

The conveyor belt at the checkout you mean? ;-)

I really like what they do here in Florida. If there are any items of "questionable content" on the cover of a magazine in the checkout line, there is a white plastic opaque "flap" that is put in the front of that magazine in the rack so that only the magazine title shows. Now, granted, that doesn't prevent a child from flipping it forward to look (or people who cannot be bothered to put things back as they found them after browsing) but at least it is enough to catch a parent's eye as an alert & is an attempt to shield young eyes from reading blurbs you would prefer they did not.

Suldog said...

I suppose the folks who stock magazine racks assume that kids have heard about erectile dysfunction, menstruation, urinary incontinence, birth control, yeast infections, and flatulence on TV (and I'm just talking about advertisements, let alone what content they've heard on talk shows and soaps and sitcoms) so why should they be the ones to be prudish?

As you know, I'm a pretty liberal sort when it comes to such things, but I can't help thinking that I was pretty lucky to be one of the last generation to almost never hear of those things - or see them on magazine covers - before I was a teen. There sometimes seems to be a decent argument for censorship when there's a lack of propriety.

Rebecca said...

Daniel - Thanks! And, you're absolutely right - they all have some semblence of "questionable" content on them. And the funny thing is - I'm not a prude, I'm just being a parent - and for young impressionable children, it's just not appropriate to have to explain to them. Not yet anyway!

Dawn - OMG, total brain cramp on that one! LOL. Thanks sistah!

Suldog - you totally cracked me up. And you're so right....seriously, you can't watch a decent football game with a million commercials for erectile dysfunction. Thank GOD I haven't had to explain THAT one yet...!