Feeling Inadequate

Every month Southern Living shows up in my mailbox. For two to three days following its arrival I feel woefully inadequate. At no point in my lifetime will my house ever look as put together as the homes in the magazine do. My pie crust will never be as brown, my grout never that clean and my landscaping will never be that green and lush. I have expressed my self consciousness to my mother who bought me the “gift” (I secretly think it’s some kind of punishment for a long ago transgression) of a Southern Living subscription and keeps renewing it every year. She tries to remind me that people from the magazine come in and stage the homes before the photo shoot. That doesn’t help.

I eventually stop feeling inadequate and start getting pissed. Every stinking home is owned by either an architect, interior designer, or landscaper. Well hell, if I was any of those my house would look damn good too. Where are the regular people, the fellow insurance brokers and defense contractors? Let’s see their homes! Oh yeah, their homes still don’t have window treatments in the family room, or area rugs in the right places. And that hole they had to cut in the ceiling in the basement to fix a leak, yeah that’s not patched quite yet. And they probably have evidence of children and pets around the house. I love the photo shoots of houses where the homeowners admit to having multiple kids yet there is not one toy, shoe, stray Cheerio, or pet hairball laying around anywhere. Did they throw everything into a POD out front, including the kids and animals?

How about a magazine for real people where the furniture is mismatched (and not in a fun kitschy way), the laundry is piled up in the family room (I’m looking at mine now) and the only family heirloom is a sippy cup that rolled under the couch sometime last year.

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