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From World Cup to D Cup: Soccer the American Way

V Magazine describes itself as “…a magazine about fashion with a capital F and all the things that go with it: art, music, film, architecture…you name it.” Well, one of those F’s must stand for Football. You know, that other kind with the World Cup and those buzzy horns. It’s a sport that’s been just about to catch on in the U.S. for the past several decades. Yet unlike the metric system, soccer refuses to give up and go away.

In the rest of the world, footballers’ wives and girlfriends, or WAGS, are a subject of great interest. (I blame you, praying mantis queen Victoria Beckham.) V’s issue #66 pokes fun at the phenomenon with a photo spread that mocks the European tabloids. But there’s a twist. All the players and women are actually models. It seems that, like much of the country, V wasn’t interested in the real thing.

And did I mention there’s nudity? What’s more American than that? V may be a cutting-edge publication, but I’m guessing there will be more than one average Joe hunched over in a fancy bookstore, surreptitiously flipping the pages. Here’s my favorite:

She makes multitasking look so classy, doesn’t she? There’s no law against texting while you breastfeed yet, is there? If you’re of a mind to see the others, go to Refinery 29 for the scoop. (Don’t worry, it’s a fashion site, not a porn site.) Some of the pics are not safe for work, but most are a hoot.

Actually, in my Internet wanderings, I did find evidence that there’s at least one American who’s a bona fide soccer fan. It’s the guy who shouted, “USA!” after smashing a pie into the face of an English player who was being interviewed by the BBC. He ran off with his hands held high, no doubt feeling quite proud of himself. Of course, the Brits just laughed it off.

If he’d done that here, he’d be on his way to a secret prison with a sack over his head. Be warned, fella. Don’t bring that behavior back here. We don’t mess around. That’s why we like bone-crunching American football, not some sissy crap where you can’t use your hands. No offense.

Copyright Notice 2018 Magick Sandwich

Chocolate Powered by Prayer: Product of the Week

Despite our name, we at Magick Sandwich do not believe in magical foodstuffs. So imagine our surprise when we found this company peddling enlightened delectation: Intentional Chocolate.

First of all, let me point out that unless you’re being tortured–the technical term might be choco-boarding– your ingestion of chocolate could arguably be defined as intentional. But this company goes way beyond that simple definition.

Its founder, Jim Walsh, states: “Whoever consumes this chocolate will manifest optimal health and functioning at physical, emotional and mental levels and in particular will enjoy an increased sense of energy, vigor and well-being for the benefit of all beings.”

This feat is accomplished by having each chocolate prayed over by “advanced meditators — some who have trained with the Dalai Lama — and is delivered with love to those who eat it.” I would hope in addition to love, the Lama taught them to use sneeze guards, rubber gloves and observe the “Employees Must Wash Hands” sign in the company restroom. No offense to these highly-trained love infusion specialists, but I don’t want monk snot or worse on my chocolate.

Still skeptical? It’s been “proven by scientific research to heighten well-being.” In 2007, alternative health journal Explore (which also touts garlic as a breast cancer preventive) reported that a study of 62 people found that subjects who ate the intention-infused chocolate had more energy and better moods after three days than subjects stuck with plain chocolate. Wow, I’m convinced. Imagine what they could accomplish if they prayed for world peace?

The site also asks this deep question. “Why is a home cooked meal so satisfying and healing? Because it was made with love and infused with care.” But my grandparents hated each other. Why didn’t her cooking kill him? Hey, wait a second…he did die, eventually. This Jim Walsh guy is onto something. Just to be on the safe side, make sure someone tickles the chef or slips him a Prozac the next time you’re out to dinner.

More products:
Prescription Eyelashes: Product of the Week
Fart Filter: Product of the Week

Copyright Notice 2018 Magick Sandwich

Fun with Un

At Magick Sandwich, we like to have a little fun with prefixes every once in a while. Why should plain old nouns and verbs have all the fun?

Unbelievable: Here’s a brain teaser for you. The initial report went like this: At 2:25 A.M., Tiger Woods was leaving his home when he ran into a hydrant with his SUV. It happened at low speed. The airbags didn’t deploy. His wife broke the window with a golf club to free him. It doesn’t take long to come up with this equation: Hasty departure in the middle of the night + wife in driveway swinging a golf club = trouble at home.

This should be a lesson in critical thinking. If the guy’s own publicist is gagging on the story, you should think twice about it. (Because I must, let me get the obligatory golf-related joke out of the way. If Woods had been feeling more successful in his career, maybe he wouldn’t have been putting on someone else’s green. And his wife wouldn’t have been aiming for a hole in one. I have more but they’re even worse.)

Unspoken: Did you know that November 27th was the National Day of Listening? Me, neither. I guess everybody was too busy listening to be able to tell us. It’s a day to appreciate the stories of your friends, family and others, to make time to hear them speak about their lives.

Next year, perhaps the organizers should plan ahead and tell us about it, so we’ll know that, just like Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Valentine’s Day and so many others, there’s just one day a year that we have to be aware of other peoples’ importance and contributions to our lives. Now we’re free to jabber on, be self-involved and thoughtless for the next year. Just mark your calendars: you wouldn’t want to miss that one day of caring.

Unfriend has been chosen as Oxford English Dictionary’s 2009 Word of the Year. Facebook must be so proud. The corrosion of our language continues apace.

Over the coming months, we should all submit entries for Oxford’s 2010 Word of the Year.I’ve come up with a couple based on my viewing of A&E’s Hoarders. (I watch it to feel better about my own housekeeping.) The subject, Augustine, had not one but two dead, desiccated cats squashed flat under the garbage in her living room. This is something I will never be able to “unsee” and now you cannot “unknow”– come on, Oxford! If you’re going to degrade the English language, the least you can do is let me help!

Copyright Notice 2018 Magick Sandwich

 

breast versus penis word game

I See Your Breast and Raise You a Penis: A Word Game

breast versus penis word gameToday, the United States Preventive Services Task Force released its recommendation that women begin routine breast cancer screening at age 50, instead of 40. It has based this on the modest benefit of mammograms versus the harm of overtreatment.

First, let me explain that the study’s idea of modest benefit is a fifteen percent reduction in breast cancer deaths. That number sounds kind of good to me. If I were one of those women, I’d be one hundred percent happy with that.*

And the harm of overtreatment? Cancers might be removed that would have grown too slowly to kill the women in which they are detected. As you can imagine, this is a real drag for insurance companies who have to pay for the procedures when they would be happier to spin the Wheel of Fortune and bet their customers will die of natural causes. And since insurance companies are for-profit organizations, that’s exactly what they do when insuring us.

The other egregious harm the task force cites? Can mammography kill us, as cancer can? No, but unnecessary tests can cause anxiety. Isn’t it so much better for us just not to worry our pretty little heads about it? After all, only fifteen percent of our mothers, sisters, and daughters will be saved. What a tough choice.

According to one statistician, although this will save billions of dollars in health costs, “the money was buying something of net negative value. This decision is a no-brainer. The economy benefits, but women are the major beneficiaries.” I’m no number cruncher, but when did a fifteen percent reduction in mortality have a negative value?

So, what I’d like to do is play a little word game with a New York Times article published on this subject. Wherever there’s a mention of women and breast cancer, I’m going to substitute something else. See if you can tell where:

Overall, the report says, the modest benefit of the exam — reducing the dick cancer death rate by 15 percent — must be weighed against the harms. And those harms loom larger for men in their 40s, who are 60 percent more likely to experience them than men 50 and older but are less likely to have their balls fall off, skewing the risk-benefit equation. The task force concluded that one death by cock rot is prevented for every 1,904 men age 40 to 49 who are screened for 10 years, compared with one prick withering for every 1,339 men age 50 to 74, and one fatal phallus for every 377 men age 60 to 69.

But the new report conflicts with advice from groups like the American Cancer Society and the American College of Radiology. They are staying with their guidelines advising annual knob screening starting at age 40.

The cancer society agreed that man-o-grams had risks as well as benefits but, he said, the society’s experts had looked at “‘virtually all” the task force and additional data and concluded that the benefits of annual exams starting at age 40 outweighed the risks of unnecessary dickectomy.

Private insurers are required by law in every state except Utah to pay for a chubby checker for men in their 40s.

But the new guidelines are expected to alter the grading system for health plans, which are used as a marketing tool. The message for most men is to forgo ensuring their johnsons aren’t killing them if they are in their 40s. In fact, even though exams are of greater benefit to older men, they still prevent only a small fraction of dick cancer deaths.

Researchers worry the new report will be interpreted as a political effort by the Obama administration to save money on health care costs.

Of course, Dr. Dingle Berry noted, if the new guidelines are followed, billions of dollars will be saved.

“But the money was buying something of net negative value,” he said. “This decision is a no-brainer. The economy benefits, but men are the major beneficiaries.”

Do you doubt that if the above were true, there would be a million men brandishing pitchforks and torches marching on Washington right now? You know the answer as well as I do. I’m just being a tease.

P.S. On a serious note, check out this study on digital mammography funded by the National Cancer Institute and published in 2005. Digital mammography is much more accurate in detecting breast cancer in women under 50 and in older women with dense breast tissue than traditional mammography. It saved my mother’s life. I may need it to save mine someday. But even at high risk, my insurance will not cover the computer-assisted exam. The superior technology exists, right now, to save more women. Why isn’t it recommended? Because it’s a lot more expensive than telling us not to worry or to wait to have the inferior test. Statistically speaking, we’re not worth it.

*Update 2018: As it turns out, I was one of those women. In June of 2012, at the age of 47, I was diagnosed with breast cancer. It was caught early because of a digital mammogram that showed enough detail for a radiologist to see a very small tumor. I’m lucky that my insurance covered the more sensitive test. If I’d had to wait until age 50 to get it, I could be dead now, and my little word game would just be a sad coda to my smart-alecky life. I’m happy it didn’t turn out that way.

Copyright Notice 2018 Magick Sandwich

7 Shopping Tips from the September Issues

September is the time of year when fashion magazines try to outdo each other with the “mine is bigger than yours” competition usually reserved for the boys. Vogue won the prize this year at just under two and a half pounds, with 447 of its 584 pages devoted to ad space.

This season’s mandate: appear to acknowledge the recession while repackaging frivolous, insanely expensive items as smart, economical purchases. The following is what I gleaned from the magazines’ advice on how to indulge my inner greedhead in these dark recessionary times. Apparently, saving money involves spending stupid amounts of it.

1. Cunnilingus sells shoes. (Well, duh! Of course it does!)

This ad appeared in Vogue, Elle, Harper’s Bazaar and Allure. Tear it out and watch your significant other search for the shoe, then immediately take you shopping…for anything.

2. Shop your closet.

Everyone knows that when money is tight, we can’t afford to buy head-to-toe designer looks. For this reason, InStyle advises accessorizing the $395 chiffon wrap that is undoubtedly already hanging in your closet with the D-Bag from Tod’s. No, it’s not a feminine hygiene product. It’s a purse which retails for $1,445 and is named in memory of Princess Diana. She would be so proud.


How did shopping my closet get so expensive? The several receptacles I already own are not up to snuff. Who am I to argue with the experts?

3. Indulge in life’s little luxuries.

Vogue writes of the “new economy”:

Irrationally exuberant spending has been replaced by carefully considered decisions about getting our money’s worth–like the smart buys on these pages, made by designers exclusively for Vogue.

One of these “pick-me-ups that won’t bring you down” is a $495 lipstick case.

There’s something so wonderfully ingenious about this invented necessity. I had been unaware that my lipstick case pined for a wardrobe of its own. I’d been considering saving on lipstick by dragging my mouth across a stucco wall for some color. Now I need to steal $500 and shoplift some Revlon in order to feel complete.

4. Consult the stars.

From my horoscope in Allure:

Saturn–the planet that’s caused you misery these past two years–finally does you a favor when it conjoins the Sun in Virgo on the 17th. It’ll still cost you time and money to resolve the issue, but the price is worth it for the peace of mind you’ll get in return.

Fucking Saturn. Even the heavens want me to go shopping.

5. You deserve a piece of the pie, even if you can’t afford a piece of pie.

The normally populist Us Weekly rationalizes deficit spending in its 28-page Fall Style Special, which touts Hilary Duff’s discount duds, then segues into this advice:

Can’t spring for that big designer tote? Help yourself to these hot-label accessories that A-listers adore

They include a $260 Fendi coin purse and a $345 pair of metal and resin (what my people call plastic) Chanel earrings.

6. You’re investing in the future, just not the one you were expecting.

Speaking of Chanel, Us has a two-page spread about the history and production of the 2.55 Chanel bag, so worth it at a cool $2,495. It helpfully lists Chanel’s website so you can order right away. The bag is just large enough to carry your lipstick case, coin purse, eviction notice and tissues to wipe your daughter’s tears when you tell her you can’t afford braces this year.Oh well, maybe snaggle teeth will be in next year. If not, she can always move to England, land of unfortunate orthodontia. You can always pass it down to her. It will hold her dentures quite handily, right next to her broken dreams of a better life.

7. When all else fails, multitask.

Don’t overlook the hidden benefits of your crass materialism. If the amortization of daily usage can’t justify your purchase of a designer Zip-loc with handles, look at that Chanel bag in a new light. Clear some space on your closet rod and those chain straps will make a trendy noose. (Autoerotic asphyxiation not included. Fashion can’t teach us everything.)

More fashion:
Gnashin’ Fashion
3 Uses for September Vogue

Gnashin’ Fashion

At Magick Sandwich, we try to keep up with the latest trends. In the aftermath of Fashion Week in New York City, we try to put the pieces together of our blown minds.

As usual, the runways were rife with looks that suggest designers have gone off their meds. One of my favorites for Spring is the Stormtrooper/Fat Albert homage shown in Thom Browne’s men’s collection.


Runway garb is meant to be fanciful. No one really expects anyone to wear that hat in real life (though I would pay to see it). But the most puzzling outfit premiered this past week didn’t appear on the catwalk: It debuted in stores.

Topshop, in case you haven’t heard of it, is a retail chain that sells disposable fashion: that is, trendy, cheap skivvies with delusions of grandeur. Christopher Kane is the latest in a long list of designers and celebrities to team up with the outlet and produce a limited edition clothing line. These clothes are meant to be worn now, in public.

I have to admit, the Crocodile Dress has me throwing up my hands and exclaiming, “I don’t get it!” Then my primitive limbic system takes over and I yank my arms back to my sides to avoid having them bitten off by a prehistoric beast from hell.

Apparently, I’m the only one reacting this way. The line arrived in stores September 18th and was promptly snapped up–that’s pun-speak for sold out–within hours.

Call me crazy, but choosing to depict one’s cooterial region as a cavernous, toothy maw seems counter-intuitive at best. Conjuring the specter of vagina dentata can’t be a good idea. Tickle a guy’s subconscious fear of dismemberment by a fanged birth canal and you just might take the wind out of his sails, permanently. It’s what I would call a Negative Date Outcome.

Perhaps the back of Kane’s next dress could depict the swollen red bottom a baboon presents to her prospective mates. For the sake of young men’s psyches everywhere, I hope Kane’s friends will steer him toward Animal Planet. And away from Shark Week.

 

Magick Monday Manscaping Tutorial

Magick Monday Manscaping Tutorial

Here at Magick Sandwich, we are committed to the social construct known as pube grooming.

We are proud to see that Gillette supports this cause with its online instructional videos for men. It tells men how to shave their faces, backs and chests. But “How to Shave: Shaving Down There” is our hands-down favorite.

“When there’s no underbrush, the tree looks taller.” Wow. That’s subtle.

Oddly enough, for sheer balls, you’ll have to watch the ad that Schick Quattro for Women is running on televisions across our great nation. Stop over at Bee’s Musings to see the incredible shrinking bushes. I have to say I understand the one cropped to a landing strip and the inverted triangle, but the round and square ones? Kinky. Also, where was the topiary that gets pruned to nothing a la the Sphinx? (That’s completely bare for you laymen out there.)

Schick’s website’s tagline is “Because you never know what might happen between shaves.” Yeah, don’t let that spontaneous standup assignation with a busboy in the restroom at Red Lobster catch you unaware. Pubic stubble? Now that would be embarrassing.

More personal care items:
Fart Filter: Product of the Week
Scrotal Deodorant Wash: Product of the Week

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