Comments: November 19, 2007

1. A new spinoff magazine called New York Look hits newsstands this week. It’s a fashion magazine, but without traditional fashion photography, more like a direct feed from the runways of New York, Paris, and Milan. Utilizing techniques that we’ve refined in these pages, Look decodes, organizes, and demystifies the tsunami of styles and trends that arrive each season. Like, what’s the deal with those cropped, slouchy pants, or those floaty dresses, or Marc Jacobs’s crazy shoe? Wide belts, big necklaces, sexy skirts, shorts?! What are the next iterations of preppiness—can we throw out those Docksiders? Plus, Magnum photographer Paolo Pellegrin captures the shows from angles you’ve never seen before. Look will be a twice-a-year event.

2. John Heilemann’s November 5 “Power Grid” column (“Web Bubble 2.0”), about how Silicon Valley understands and accepts the failure that comes with risk, while New York simply fears it, inspired positive chatter in the tech world, particularly from Californians pleased to see a New Yorker speaking what they perceive as truth. Heilemann’s fellow New Yorkers, on the other hand, were a tad defensive. “We do not need a New York based report debasing a burgeoning moment in our tech history,” wrote the NextNY blog. The Silicon Alley Insider added that “in contrast to the traditional media edifices that are crumbling on every corner, [New York’s tech start-up culture] is alive, well, and stronger than ever.”

3. Sam Anderson, our book critic, was lauded for his critical circus trick of reviewing Pierre Bayard’s How to Talk About Books You Haven’t Read without reading it (“Books: French Twist,” October 29). “What a counter-intuitive move,” wrote The Daily Journal, “like a poker player sharing his ‘tell’ before bidding.” We have yet to get a similar response to Anderson’s equally unconventional Donald Barthelme review (“Books: Barthelmania,” November 12). “Comments” kindly requests that you read that one.

4. This week, Larry Burstein, the publisher of New York, announced that the magazine will no longer accept advertising in the “Adult” category of our “Marketplace” section (existing contracts will be honored; all such ads will disappear by the end of the year). This decision had been in the works for some time, and was greeted with enthusiasm by many readers. “I love your magazine, and was struggling about whether to keep subscribing because of this issue,” wrote Lourine Clark. She signed off as “even more of a fan.”

5. In the category of non-fans, Rosalinde Emeraud, a French expat living in Brooklyn, expressed beaucoup de mépris about Amy Larocca’s story imagining Cécilia Sarkozy’s life in New York (“Intelligencer: What She Wants,” November 5), in particular the characterization of her husband, the French president. “If I were you,” Emeraud scolded us, “I would stop trying to discredit the man by means of such very childish forms of insult … calling the man short and hyper! Perhaps this is all right for the way Americans speak about their president, but in France people have more self-control.”

6. Finally, we complete “Comments” with word from the aggrieved, a.k.a. fans of the old “Letters” page. Out of respect, we run this letter, from Emily Grote of Brooklyn, unabridged: “Please, please, please bring back the letters from your readers outside of the ‘Comments’ format. I love your cheeky editing—but sometimes I want to hear my neighbors, in their voices. After all, aren’t letters to the editor the original ‘consumer-generated content’?”

In honor of the publication of New York Look, we present a roster of the most popular models on’s Model Manual, which offers slideshows and biographical sketches of 200 of them. Traffic shows that Agyness Deyn (real name: Laura Hollins), tagged the next Kate Moss by the British press, is our readers’ favorite model. Local teen Ali Michael (interests: riding horses, psychology, going to concerts) is at No. 10.

Photo: Firstview
Comments: November 19, 2007