Truth in Advertising: 10 Lessons of Fall

A new season is just around the bend, ladies and gentlemen, and you know what that means: a fresh set of life rules to be gained from our favorite fashion magazines, especially from the advertising.

I’ve studied the new ad campaigns closely, and I can tell you they cover it all — everyday safety, overcoming social anxiety, mingling betwixt the sexes, personal comportment, autumnal leisure, and, as always, instructions on how to be sexy.*

(* I was once told that as long as you feel sexy, you are sexy; but the thing is, that’s a lie. If it were true, it would be sexy to tuck one’s pajama pants into cowboy boots and wear them to Office Depot or to point out misspellings on a stranger’s iPhone screen over their shoulder. But guess what? No one finds those things sexy. Or so I hear.)

So anyway. Here are the top 10 take-aways from the new fall ads:

1. Fashion is no match for a kidnapper with a sultry gaze.

A belted unitard with a peek of brassiere is not the weapon you think it is, ladies. Enroll in a self-defense class, or this will be you.

 * * *

2. All the fun happens on trains.

The Crazy-Hat Express departs the station at noon, and these bitches are ready to play some strip bridge. Pass the twinkies and absinthe, Alice.

 * * *

3. The ones touching their faces are the ones wearing the high-quality makeup.

They are also the ones with alien hands who don’t have knuckle-wrinkles.

* * *

4. It’s hard to stand up in leather.

In fact, if you have on any leather at all, you will be unable to resist the urge to stretch out and support yourself on the nearest surface.

Or even the ground.

* * *

5. Men resent having to wear cologne.

Doesn’t matter how many vixens drape themselves half-conscious across you, does it, buddy? You smell like lemon blossoms and squirrel musk. You’re pissed, and we don’t blame you.

* * *

6. There’s a fine line between accessorized and overdone.

Here’s when you know you’re right at that line and about to cross it: chin strap.

* * *

7. Girls night out always needs one guy.

Sometimes you just need to cut through all that estrogen by inviting a man along on ladies night. Just a good ol’ regular dude who’s like, “I’ll hold your foot! Let’s share chapstick! Which one of your earrings unscrews and has a teeny weeny pile of cocaine in it? That one? YAY!”

* * *

8. Either you know how this works, or you don’t.

All the cools go hunting when fall comes, natch. Must haves: elbow patches, tweed, boots, saddles, belts upon belts, and one superfly child/midget up on a table. How does it all go down? Skippy tips his newsboy cap to signal Vanessa, who whips out a riding crop, only to have Tony Socks-a-Lot snipe at her for getting the occasion wrong (“It’s a foxhunt, ‘Nessa, not a fucking dressage event,” eye roll). Jeff runs a driving glove through his ringlets and hollers, “Everyone with decorative leather accents, to the meadow!” and that’s when it really gets interesting.

* * *

9. It’s all about attitude.

Think you can’t? Yes, you CAN. Practice in a mirror: “I am aloof. I wear black. I make the rules.” Now just drive your motorcycle right on into the museum and dry-hump the back of the young countess. Her friends won’t mind.

* * *

10. The best way to showcase a fantastic handbag is by reclining and placing it just in front of your crotch.

It’s ALWAYS sexy.

See? Always sexy.

Always. Sexy.

Always se-WHOA.

Never mind.

(If you’re still trying to eek out a decent life in the last few weeks of summer but never consulted the fashion ads to learn how, it’s probably too late for you, but you can always try here.)


  1. You are too funny, love your writing! The one that made me laugh the most was the woman with alien hands. It is true! Where are her knuckle wrinkles ha ha?

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