I've had a moment of clarity after years of subscribing to magazines of house porn -- you know, Architectural Digest, HG, Veranda, House Beautiful and the like.
It started innocently enough with a subscription to Country Living many years ago. I loved looking at pictures of pretty rooms and some of the ideas were interesting and achievable.
It was the beginning of a slippery slope as I succumbed to the lure of higher end house magazines -- houses and gardens that would never be in my reach.
"I'm just looking," I told myself. It was a nice diversion from hoeing the garden, milking the cow, dealing with the dirt engendered by life on a farm, life with kids and cows and dogs and cats.
A cup of coffee made indulgent with heated milk and a little sugar and I could stretch out on the sofa with my feet up and enjoy perusing those monthly little treats.
Sometimes I'd get an idea -- pomanders -- I can do that! And have. A mirror wreathed in bay leaves -- or are those eucalyptus? I have a bay tree -- that would be doable -- but paper white narcissi -- no way. They'd wilt.
I had pretty much quit subscribing to these magazines when they began to send me imploring letters and cut rate subscription offers -- so, just for old times' sake I gave in. And yesterday I was leafing through the glossy pages (of which over half are glossy ads) of a nameless publication when I saw this:
And I realized, yes, it is. And not in a good or reasonable way like that rich chocolate cake or the Eggs Benedict we had for breakfast on our anniversary, but really truly decadence.
Like a watch paved with diamonds -- a watch that suggests rather than tells time. (Anyone who could afford this watch doubtless has no need to be punctual. She has people to do that for her.)
Or a custom built kitchen range. In my years of following trends in magazine kitchens, I've seen that as people seem to cook less and less, their kitchens get more and more elaborate. A restaurant range is almost standard -- so in order to be really decadent, one can go for this beauty-- if you have to ask what it costs, you can't afford it.
Somehow, the innocent indulgence of ogling a lifestyle that will never be mine -- and moreover, a lifestyle I wouldn't choose, even should the Money Fairy drop millions of dollars into my lap -- somehow the indulgence no longer seems innocent but silly.
I mean, can you imagine the mess our dogs would make of all that white upholstery?