As a teenager, I was pretty sure Jane Pratt wouldn’t like me.
Not that she knew me personally. But the publisher if Sassy Magazine and I were cut from different cloth. I was not cool enough for Sassy.
I wasn’t an Evan Dando/Juliana Hatfield listener. I wasn’t even a Hole/Nirvana fan. I listened to Color Me Badd and The Little Mermaid soundtrack. The baby doll dresses that were the height of Clueless-era fashion were too short for my private boarding school; I got busted for wearing one that was an inch above the knee. In short, I was not Sassy enough.
I read the magazine. The editor-in-chief, Jane Pratt, and her clique of girlfriends (aka other editors) were all over that magazine, being all “conversational” and “just us girls-y”. They’d have articles about their fab lives, celebs they’d met, and even be demoing things like how to dye your hair with Kool-Aid and markers if you couldn’t afford Manic Panic (my mother would have killed me). They were forever proclaiming girls (who were highly dissimilar to me) “cool”. Their style was anti-journalistic; instead of a detached approach to their subjects, they cuddled right up close to them. For me, it was like being at a party where I didn’t know anybody, and nobody was making an effort to talk to me.
Also…even if I couldn’t have named it then, Jane Pratt seemed kind of…narcissistic to me. Heck, her next magazine was even named “Jane”! Her magazines were about HER; she was your aspirational best friend.
Fast forward to today. She has a new enterprise, a little online thing. And after reading her first letter from the editor, here, I think I might just be cooler than she is now.
It looks, at first glance, like the same old schtick: cool girls congregating on the quad, talking about sex and boys and beauty routines. And Jane’s first post is about having a meltdown because somebody said she looked old. DARLING, YOU’RE 46. Grow the eff up. The context is about how she’s getting a bikini wax to see her boyfriend and have REALLY GREAT SEX for the second time IN HER LIFE ZOMG! she proceeds to name drop both Nina Garcia and Michael Stipe and talk about being in an emotionally abusive relationship. Help, I have topic whiplash.
Thing is, while sharing secrets may have been cool back in the day, I just kind of felt trapped. Like getting stuck in the ladies’ room with that chick who gives you all the TMI about herself, down to her bunions and vaginal dryness, while blocking your means of egress. Do. Not. Want.
So, Jane, next month, if you want to talk about your vaginal dryness, be my guest. That idea is on me. After all, I won’t be reading.
Keep it Sassy, Jane, since you can’t seem to keep it classy.