I never know what to make of the “issue” issues of Vanity Fair – the environment, the celebrities, the money brokers, the political power brokers. Are these issues just marketing ploys – goodness knows how many subscription postcards and perfume inserts keep a reader from finding the page you want – even though the Annie Liebowitz pictures pull you in and the prose, generally speaking, compliments her images? My one of 20 covers was Oprah – rather ominous that I wouldn’t like it because, of all the folks they photoed for the cover, she’s perhaps my least favorite.
Regardless, I like the July issue. It didn’t strike me as bloated or pretentious and although Bono’s guest editor letter didn’t flip my lid, overall, from an editorial perspective, it’s a good piece of work. Great – I don’t know that I can judge that. But rather than opening just once to look at the pictures, read the Proust questionnaire and George Wayne‘s interviews (this month with Leya Kebede), I read several more articles than I usually do.
In particular, I highly recommend the interview between Brad Pitt and Archbishop Desmond Tutu. Yes, Brad Pitt and the Archbishop, who discusses Ubuntu with great eloquence, no surprise (and makes me think of menschkeit).
Chris Rock’s take on visiting South Africa and Bill Clinton on Nelson Mandela are also worth the time, especially the latter.
It’s Father’s Day, and July’s Vanity Fair is definitely a good read on the deck while you’re being served. For a change, no doubt.