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Seventeen calls this trend "High-Low" but I think "Mullet Dress" would be a more fitting name.
June 9, 2010 8:28 PM   Subscribe

The Seventeen Magazine Project. Jamie Keiles, an 18-year-old high school senior, will live her life according to the dictates of Seventeen Magazine for a month and blog about whether or not it makes her cuter/hotter/thinner/fitter/healthier/more popular/etc.
posted by joannemerriam (60 comments total) 31 users marked this as a favorite

 
This is surprisingly well-written and valuable insight. Thank you.
posted by l33tpolicywonk at 8:36 PM on June 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


There are pie charts. PIE CHARTS. I love this girl. The future will be alright!
posted by spec80 at 8:38 PM on June 9, 2010 [4 favorites]




I love this idea! But I hate the inclination of high school and undergraduate students to add "-project" to the end of whatever they're working on. It makes me wanna poke my eyes out.
posted by GilloD at 8:50 PM on June 9, 2010


cuter/
hotter/
thinner/
fitter/
healthier/
more popular/

a pig/
in a cage/
on antibiotics
posted by grobstein at 8:51 PM on June 9, 2010 [24 favorites]


Damn, few people of her age manage to be this smart, well-written, and not insufferably self-important and pharisaical. I sure as hell know I wasn't. Dem's some good articles!
posted by schroedinger at 8:52 PM on June 9, 2010 [11 favorites]


This is great actually. The girl is articulate, and she has pie charts. :-)
posted by roomthreeseventeen at 8:54 PM on June 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


This is adorable. Favorite description of the blog so far:

The room was a sauna of adolescent awkwardness, and we were very sweaty by the end of the evening. My hair eventually retreated to its natural fur-like texture and triangular shape.

posted by mykescipark at 8:55 PM on June 9, 2010


Hey, does Jamie have a friend who can act as a "control group," by assiduously ignoring every single tip promulgated by the magazine? (I realize that this would be an even harder assignment, because 1) there are as many kernels of wisdom per issue as there are kernels on a good wholesome Midwestern ear of corn, and, 2) most of these tips are things most kids do every day anyway, such as a) washing one's face and b) eating a vegetable, such as, like, you know, corn.)
posted by kozad at 8:56 PM on June 9, 2010


A month? Everyone knows that a successful blog-to-book-to-movie project requires you to live your new lifestyle for a year.
posted by hippybear at 8:59 PM on June 9, 2010 [6 favorites]


Good kid, and very entertaining. I wish some wealthy subversive gal would try this with Vogue. Come to think of it, maybe that project already has the working title of Lady Gaga.

I thnk this has also been done with Oprah and the Holy Bible, but I think there is plenty of room in this experimental "live according to rules of x" milieu. I am going to try this type of project with Dune. For thirty days, I'm going to drink the Water of Life and ride some sandworms to see if it makes me fitter/hotter/healthier/more like the Kwisatz Haderach. You can track my progress on my blog.
posted by Dr. Zira at 9:03 PM on June 9, 2010 [13 favorites]


My mom seems to like this project because it means I am dressing less like an independent bookstore employee/NPR listener and more like a Normal Teen.

Awesome.
posted by rtha at 9:06 PM on June 9, 2010 [6 favorites]


Yeah that's pretty impressive. All my mates at school lived their lives according to the dictates of High Times and Hot 4s and Rotaries.
posted by Fiasco da Gama at 9:07 PM on June 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


While I like the idea of this, I feel like it's a lot of her discussing "issues" in the magazine (the type of products advertised, the breakdown of races in the magazine/ad) and not a lot of her following her original idea. It looks like about half of her entries so far are actually about her using the advice/tips in 17. I started reading because I thought it would be really interesting, and I like her writing style, but I guess I was looking more for "This is what I looked like today and this is what it was based of off and this is what it did for me" every day instead of a fashion-related post every 3 or 4 posts. I don't know how to articulate what I'm trying to say...I was just misled a bit by her introduction, I guess.
posted by kro at 9:09 PM on June 9, 2010 [2 favorites]


...live your new lifestyle for a year

Hold on there. There's no value in following the exact same advice and articles - only barely reworked & disguised as 'new' - twelve times over.
posted by UbuRoivas at 9:09 PM on June 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


A.J. Jacobs wants his schtick back.
posted by pjdoland at 9:12 PM on June 9, 2010


Man, she's had her nails done like four times already!

Her post on the "tribal trend" was especially awesome.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 9:13 PM on June 9, 2010


I will attempt to live my life for a month according to the dictates of this old issue of Easyriders I found for a nickel at a yardsale.

Now I just need to go over to AskMeFi and see if anyone knows the best way to lose most of my teeth.
posted by billyfleetwood at 9:16 PM on June 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


All my mates at school lived their lives according to the dictates of High Times and Hot 4s and Rotaries.

I never knew you grew up in Canterbury.
posted by UbuRoivas at 9:16 PM on June 9, 2010


> A.J. Jacobs wants his schtick back.

Well, she is/was in high school after all. It's a bit unrealistic to expect teens embark on wholly original projects with no pre-established template. But, she does a remarkably astute job of it and seems to have a bright future ahead, so it's difficult to find a reason to tear it down like that.
posted by Burhanistan at 9:16 PM on June 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


Now I just need to go over to AskMeFi and see if anyone knows the best way to lose most of my teeth.

meth.

this would also fit in well with the bikie lifestyle.
posted by UbuRoivas at 9:17 PM on June 9, 2010


Oh, I thought this was referring to the Dutch "Seventeen" magazine, following the tenets of which would be a more questionable idea, but would surely guarantee popularity
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 9:23 PM on June 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


A.J. Jacobs wants his schtick back.

I actually love that schtick. It's perfect for blogging.
posted by Astro Zombie at 9:25 PM on June 9, 2010 [2 favorites]


When I was 9, I lived my life according to the dictates of 3-2-1 Contact magazine and it worked out okay.

Mostly, this involved a lot of typing BASIC programs into my Commodore 64.
posted by signalnine at 9:30 PM on June 9, 2010 [13 favorites]


I see a bright future for this young woman.
posted by meese at 9:30 PM on June 9, 2010


When I imagined the Seventeen Style Council it was Paul Weller covering the Sparks.
posted by klangklangston at 9:32 PM on June 9, 2010


"When I was 9, I lived my life according to the dictates of 3-2-1 Contact magazine and it worked out okay."

When I was twelve, I lived my life by the dictates of Omni magazine, yet I never managed to build that robot that acted like an insect.
posted by klangklangston at 9:33 PM on June 9, 2010 [2 favorites]


When I was 17, I tried to live my life according to the dictates of Playboy magazine, but I had a hard time convincing Hooters girls that I was actually a 71 year old millionaire.
posted by Joey Michaels at 9:40 PM on June 9, 2010 [4 favorites]


I wish I was this smart, self-aware, and sarcastic at 18.
posted by pised at 9:40 PM on June 9, 2010 [2 favorites]


I wish I was this smart, self-aware, and sarcastic at 18.

Ah, but every eighteen year-old believes they are.
posted by joe lisboa at 9:57 PM on June 9, 2010


Not taking anything away from this post or project, of course. There is a non-trivial Venn overlap between the sets of teenagers who fancy themselves in on things and teenagers who merely presume they are. I fell into the latter, sadly.
posted by joe lisboa at 9:59 PM on June 9, 2010


The girl is articulate, and she has pie charts. :-)

Well, no wonder she'll be studying economics at the U of Chicago.
posted by gyc at 10:02 PM on June 9, 2010


Something about the pigtails thing made my lip curl in distaste, but I can't quite put my finger on why. Otherwise, I like this blog quite a bit.
posted by palomar at 10:10 PM on June 9, 2010


When I was eighteen, I lived my life by the dictates of Private Eye, which mostly involved having snarky opinions about British powerbrokers and European companies I'd never heard of before.
posted by No-sword at 10:22 PM on June 9, 2010 [1 favorite]


You know, it's funny, it actually JUST came up in conversation the other day that Seventeen taught me that I shouldn't ever take pity on a guy and have sex with him just because he said he had blue balls. I also first learned who Kobe Bryant was in Seventeen - he had just been drafted and they had a little blurb on him because he was cuuuuute. Those are the two things I can recall learning from that magazine, and I have to say, both have been useful.
posted by little light-giver at 10:27 PM on June 9, 2010


Oh, wow. Man, I wanna be this girl's friend.
posted by lauranesson at 10:41 PM on June 9, 2010


When I was 18, I vaguely recall I lived my life according to the dictates of High Times magazine.
posted by unliteral at 10:45 PM on June 9, 2010


She's adorable.
posted by desuetude at 11:21 PM on June 9, 2010


I will attempt to live my life for a month according to the dictates of this old issue of Easyriders .... Now I just need to go over to AskMeFi and see if anyone knows the best way to lose most of my teeth.

Easy! Pose this problem to the readers of Easyriders. In person.
posted by zippy at 12:28 AM on June 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


So, this... was not... the Seventeen magazine I was thinking of.
posted by Joakim Ziegler at 1:19 AM on June 10, 2010


If we'd had blogs when I was seventeen, I'd like to think I'd been all over something like this. Now, at 40mumble, statements like "I am probably far too self aware for this project to draw any sort of credible conclusion on the effects of teen magazines on teen girls" just make me roll my eyes.
posted by Sweetie Darling at 2:35 AM on June 10, 2010


I love the way she writes this, it's very entertaining;

"In the salon, I ate a massive chicken salad with guacamole and oranges. A few people made comments about how surprised they were that I was eating on the day of my prom. As far as I was aware, my body still required calories for energy on this day, so I was still going to eat."
posted by dabitch at 3:20 AM on June 10, 2010 [3 favorites]


Now I just need to go over to AskMeFi and see if anyone knows the best way to lose most of my teeth.

Meth takes too long. I recommend playing ice hockey, or what zippy said.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 3:41 AM on June 10, 2010


Sweetie Darling, I took that as a statement of fact rather than a moment of backpatting. She's not asking us to admire her for being self-aware; she's pointing out that her following Seventeen's advice as a deliberate investigation/send-up of its value is not the same thing as another girl following Seventeen's advice because she believes it has value.
posted by bettafish at 3:51 AM on June 10, 2010


[tig]
posted by sciurus at 4:31 AM on June 10, 2010


I think many of you are already trying out the Meatbomb project... a month of sitting in front of your computer, drinking coffee, and reading MetaFilter will eventually turn you into this.
posted by Meatbomb at 4:49 AM on June 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


First train of thought: this particular A.J. Jacobs schtick (which I also like) has, as with all things self-help related, it's been tried in regards to Oprah already.

Second train of thought (after actually reading the blog): hey, MCMikeNamara, she's totally charming so quit being a douche; she's making a valid point probably. (I posit that teen magazines are far more insidious than the Big O)

Third train of thought: Isn't she getting off easy doing it only for 30 days?

Fourth train of thought: Suggesting that would mean something something endangering a minor. Oh she's 18. Okay then, you still shouldn't endanger a young person.
posted by MCMikeNamara at 5:52 AM on June 10, 2010


It's lucky she's not doing this with Cosmo. She'd wind up with chlamydia.


I enjoyed this, though. However, back when I was in the teenage girl magazine demographic, ten years ago, I thought Seventeen was towards the top in quality. Way better than YM or Teen. Not nearly as good as Sassy, of course. This girl is ripe for Sassy. RIP.
posted by millipede at 6:42 AM on June 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


18 till I die eh?
posted by infini at 6:44 AM on June 10, 2010


This is great. Most of the time I have seen high school students try to take on something like this, the writing has been horrible. If nothing else, than horribly pretentious.

Seventeen suggested that I take some beach time to flirt with boys on adjacent blankets, but the beach I go to is mostly middle-aged Jewish men, so there weren't really any opportunities to apply this advice.

Awesome.
posted by grouse at 7:21 AM on June 10, 2010


thanthen
posted by grouse at 7:34 AM on June 10, 2010


Yep, this person is awesome.
posted by odinsdream at 8:03 AM on June 10, 2010


Just the other day, I was talking with a friend about Sassy and how lucky we were to have it, and how it sucked for smart, weird-ish teenage girls today that they didn't. But hey, they have blogs that they write themselves, which is probably even better.
posted by lunasol at 8:16 AM on June 10, 2010


Fun premise, but the execution so far falls a little short of my expectations. I don't seem to have seen any mention of her complying with points 3, 5, 6 and 7 of her project rules.

If I'm going to read about teen girls and their magazines, I'm sticking to Tavi/thestylerookie and her tributes to Sassy.
posted by hellopanda at 8:32 AM on June 10, 2010


The best magazine out there for young women (and others interested in this kind of perspective) is Bitch. They also have a website.
posted by kozad at 9:57 AM on June 10, 2010


I like it! A++.
posted by ThePinkSuperhero at 10:50 AM on June 10, 2010


Excellent. I was this girl at 17, except it was only in my head because I was too introverted and socially awkward to show it on the outside. She's going to grow up to be pretty awesome, I think.
posted by geeky at 10:56 AM on June 10, 2010


Not nearly as good as Sassy, of course. This girl is ripe for Sassy. RIP.
I think she's a little too old for teen magazines in general. I bet that in real life she reads Bitch and is thinking that this blog might be a good way to one day score an internship.

Anyway, I like her, and I predict that she lasts exactly one semester as an Econ major.
posted by craichead at 12:54 PM on June 10, 2010


No, way! The best mag out there for the transitional teen/20s crowd is Bust. It still has fun style pages in it! But they're more what this awesome person they saw on the street was wearing. Also, it has awesome craft projects.
posted by stoneweaver at 3:10 PM on June 10, 2010 [1 favorite]


I think she's a little too old for teen magazines in general.

I was a teenager during Sassy's run, and I'd still be a subscriber if it had survived; its defining feature was that it didn't condescend to teen girls. How Sassy Changed My Life.
posted by lalex at 4:00 PM on June 10, 2010


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