Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Are you there God? It's me, Dirtina.

Ever since my early days in college my aunt has provided me with an annual subscription to Vogue. It's a wonderful gift as it's truly the gift that keeps on giving: it arrives every month, and so far, without fail. It's also an improbable gift for a girl like me. I'm no fashionista. I shop the sales rack, or Goodwill. The only time I've come close to touching anything couture-esque was when I tried on a fetching Marc Jacobs miniskirt at Century 21. I balked at the skirt's $90 price tag and settled instead for the (now infamous) G-unit camisole. In any event, my monthly mag is a lovely guilty pleasure.

Today on my commute home from work I was paging through Vogue and came across a surprising ad. Random House Publishing is sponsoring a contest to promote what appears to be the reissuing of the entire Judy Blume canon. For starters, this is a weird advertisement for Vogue. It's definitely something of an outsider in a magazine that is chock-full of Prada, Tiffanys, and Cadillac. It reads at the top "ARE YOU PART OF GENERATION BLUME?" After some glowing reviews of Blume's books it explains that "one grand-prize winner will win a trip to have lunch with Judy Blume." The contest entails writing a 250-word essay on which Judy Blume book had the biggest impact on your life and how it affected you.

I had never considered myself to be a member of "Generation Blume." I was more of a Laura Ingalls Wilder, Encyclopedia Brown, Anastasia Krupnick, and Madeleine L'Engle fan. However, looking back on the Blume memories I do have, a few were somewhat formative. I read "Deenie" when bored one day at my grandparents' house as a preteen. It was, bizarrely, the only book I could find in their house that wasn't on Orthodox theology or WWII. It actually seemed pretty adult to me then since it addressed scoliosis and masturbation. As a younger kid I also recall reading, but not really enjoying, the Superfudge books. The only Blume book that spoke to me was "Are you there God? It's me Margaret?" The first time I read it I was unimpressed. Then, as a first year at Chicago my roommate decided to hold storytime every night with some of our favorite housemates. Our literary choice was none other than "Are you there God?" It was a hit. Irreverent and nostalgic, we filled our evenings with the trauma of bra-stuffing in place of Calculus and stupid dating drama.

Thank you Vogue, thank you Random House and thank you Judy B for this unexpected trip down memory lane. Perhaps if I find time (which I would have more of if Blogger would stop eating my posts) I'll enter this little contest. I could use a free trip to NYC.

[Note: Hallelujah - I'm back on wireless. Procrastination and posting - here I come.]

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