When I was a pre-teen, my best friend and I loved to read 16 and Tiger Beat magazines. These magazines catered to the teeny-bopper crowd with articles about our idols: Davy Jones, Bobby Sherman and Donny Osmond. The articles weren’t long, but we pored over them looking for tidbits of personal information that would make us feel just that much closer to these celebrities. After reading all of the articles, we’d begin pulling out the full-page photos – our rooms were plastered with photos and posters from the magazines. In high school I read Seventeen, but then, when I should have graduated to Cosmopolitan, I was already married and the articles didn’t seem to apply to my life. Instead, I gravitated to magazines about health and family: Walking, Runner’s World, Redbook off-and-on, Adoptive Families, Family Circle. Much later I discovered More magazine – it used to be the magazine for women over 40, but now it’s the magazine for women with style and substance. I guess I have neither because I don’t care for their new direction and certainly not their new style. Their new format brings in much longer articles and I simply don’t have the time or attention to read several pages on a single subject. If you have something to say, do it concisely. Another favorite has been O. Even though I rarely watched her show, when Oprah came out with a monthly magazine I became an immediate subscriber. It’s still my favorite subscription overall.
Recently, and much to my surprise, I have discovered a magazine which I hadn’t known about. This one comes free with a membership. The articles are aimed at people my age. They’re interesting and informative (but not too lengthy). The first couple of issues that arrived went straight out with the recycle. Hah, I thought, that’s not really meant for me, but then some topic mentioned on the cover of one issue caught my eye. I set the magazine aside to look at and I’ve been reading this magazine ever since. The magazine? AARP The Magazine. That’s right, I’m reading the AARP magazine and I really enjoy it. I’ve come to think of it as the 16 or Tiger Beat for the mature group. True, there are articles about celebrities, but there is also information about eating right, exercising regularly, vacationing and life planning. I find that I do pull out recipes and information on websites I might find interesting, but I’m not pulling out any photos – Bill Clinton simply does not need to grace my bedroom wall.