9/13/2010
Attacked by the show

While going through my somewhat unruly magazine collection, I realized that the two copies of GQ I bought were released on the same month.

Two years ago, I found myself killing time at that humongous Fully Booked branch at Bonifacio High Street. I was going through the magazines when I chanced upon the (then) latest issue of the magazine, with Megan Fox on the cover, wearing a bikini and sticking her tongue out, on a stark off-red background. And it was a thick issue. The snap thinker in me figured it'd mean a lot of things to read during those nights when I couldn't easily fall asleep - but of course you're spending half of your six hundred bucks on advertisements that aren't relevant to you. I bought it, and realized that the cover photo was hot - and only the cover photo. The rest was a bit off-putting, pretty much what Megan is.

A year ago, I found myself killing time at some magazine stall at the Alabang Town Center, thinking to myself, I will buy a magazine since I've run out of things to read. The latest issue in stock had Olivia Wilde on the cover, and while she's someone I never really, particularly cared for, I decided to buy the issue anyway. Yes, there was a point when I told myself "she's hot, isn't she?" - and that thought kept me through the realization that at the time, there was a much newer issue. (I don't watch Mad Men, so I'm not really familiar with January Jones.) The issue was much thinner, but the cover article was interesting, if only for the juxtaposition of seeing Olivia almost naked and reading about her marriage to an Italian prince. She's married to an Italian prince! What the heck? I almost wrote about it, but the thought never really came to me.

I'll admit, I buy these magazines when there are ladies on the cover. I'm paranoid enough to worry that if I buy a magazine with a guy on the cover, people will think differently. (Then again, I bought the Esquire issue with Leonardo DiCaprio on the cover, if only because of Anna Torv's pictorial.) But since these magazines - the sort you find in those posh barbershops, the ones not usually read because the nearest copy of FHM is gone - often have men on the cover, I don't really buy them often. (Apart from the cost, of course.) Now, rest you think I'm a superficial fellow - and maybe I am - I'll say that I buy those magazines anyway when I think the contents are absolutely interesting. Thus, the DiCaprio issue.

Back to those two GQ issues - both of them, I bought in October. And, with that month coming near, I started wondering whether they'll have an interesting cover this year - one that'd warrant me buying it.

And then I read something about the magazine having a photo shoot with Olivia Munn.

That, of course, is no surprise. I've pretty much written about her hard-to-describe hotness in this blog's one-thousandth entry. The idea of having said hotness on paper, rather than online, is irresistable to me. And then I thought that it's quite possible for the magazine to feature her on the October 2010 issue. That'd keep the streak and make me a (really) happy magazine reader.

Writing that paragraph made me feel absolutely pathetic. Okay, I know, there's nothing wrong with writing about celebrity crushes - the reason I've done so, on the aforementioned blog entry - but there's something about having a crush on Olivia that makes me, well, pretty uncomfortable. It's not because she's effortless. And it's not because she's quite a crazy fellow - crazy and funny and biting at the same time. But I can't get myself to watch Attack of the Show when she's on. Watching her do the show suddenly doesn't mean paying attention to what she says, and I'd like to think I'm beyond that.

It all happened when I found myself in another bookstore, browsing a copy of Bloomberg Businessweek - not necessarily because she was there, mind you. I've been browsing that magazine for the design: it just happened that they had her as a "case study" of sorts during their recent popularity issue. Which I, of course, read. Which, of course, made me sqiurm. And more so.

Six years ago, Olivia Munn arrived in Hollywood with fading ambitions of making it as a sports reporter and set about deploying her good looks in promotional campaigns for sodas, sneakers, and rock bands. None of it got her anywhere. Things started to change only when she found a niche market to target: nerdy guys. "The people who control popularity," says Munn, "are the people who are not popular."

Now, now, I openly embrace my being a nerd. I know too much about things not everybody cares about, and I don't really spend my days hanging out with people. But that line didn't really do me favors. There I was, a guy fresh out of work, going through the magazines to find something to read, because I choose to have some substance in my down time rather than race to be wasted. Me, a guy who, despite many invitations, never really hung out with anyone - maybe because I'm just not available, but mostly because people probably think I'm that unappetizing mix of boring and obnoxious. (There's a reason I try not to talk about myself too often.) When you're out, I'm in my bedroom, asleep, my mind probably preventing that Olivia Munn person from infiltrating my dreamscape. Not really helping, that description.

It's ironic, really, that urge for acceptance - the urge to be accepted by everyone, and most importantly, the urge to be accepted by yours truly. Then again, this world treats "be yourself" like trash.

I was at the bookstore this afternoon when all of this came to my head, while I was browsing the latest issue of GQ, the one with LeBron James on the cover. And then I realize that the Olivia Munn pictorial was in that issue. In one page of that issue. That printed goodness, limited to one page - and I know for a fact that there are at least four photos. Maybe I am superficial, after all - I told myself I won't buy that issue on the power of my disappointment alone. But we'll see what next month brings. Yes, I am a hopeless nerd.

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