Can you love a magazine without actually having read it? Answer is yes. Recently, I found myself in a cloud of buzz about Good magazine, and oddly, what I was hearing had little to do with any magazine.
It started with an email about a Flickr group called Intercontinental Breakfast, in which people posted photos of their breakfasts around the world. Being a loyal fan of the most important meal of the day, obviously I was enamored.
Next, I read on Eating LA about some awesome event they were having, which consisted of a tamal-making workshop, free Intelligentsia coffee, and a bunch of other random stuff. I liked what I was hearing. When I find out about people who find significance in building community through bringing together cool people, delicious food, and opportunities to learn stuff, it makes me very happy.
But, then, in a moment of Baader-Meinhofian goodness, I found myself at Good Magazine headquarters. My friend Debra invited me to a holiday party at their space on Melrose, which turned out to be an event called SlideLuck GoodShow. It was a riff on an international event called SlideLuck PotShow, where people bring food and booze (the potluck part), and then there's art, in the form of a series of slideshows (get it now?).
The crowd was eclectic, the food and drink were plentiful (a combination of homemade foods and donated wine, teas, organic chocolate bars, ice cream, and more), and the space is awesome. One hallway houses a row of headphones hanging over chairs, where you can listen to podcasts from some of the world's young movers and shakers. The main room has a bar in the back, a custom-designed DJ booth up front, and a door to a small yard. Maps play a big role in the decor: California maps, Metro maps, Fallen Fruit maps, and a wall-sized map of Los Angeles, annotated with a bajillion stickies. There's a lot to love.
The slideshow featured some awesome images: a piece featuring kids' disturbingly emotive faces as they played video games, some thought-provoking posters from Obey Giant, and a piece based on one of my favorite books, Hungry Planet: What the World Eats, among many others.
All very cool, right? But still, no magazine. Until at lunch one day during break, bff Rachel slides a copy of Good Magazine across the table to me. I glance at the page she's opened it to, and see her name. These Good people, as if they hadn't already won my affections, had interviewed Rachel about her new role producing Arabic language films for Disney. Small world.
So, here's what we learned: Good is rad. They've got so much going on, and have such a hand in the community (little do they know they're gonna get hit up for the bake sale this year!), not to mention the global community, and the magazine is just one part of it. And in fact, the magazine itself is a means to make the world a better place: pay as much as you want to subscribe, and 100% of it goes to the charity of your choosing. See? Rad. I'm excited to discover where they go in 2009. (Ready for the cheesy?) I bet it's somewhere good.
here are more photos from the night, including some closeups of the stickynote map.