Sunday, October 31, 2010

Pumpkin Carving Adventures

Back when I was a little kid, my family had a tradition every Halloween: we used to go to one of those pumpkin farms with the hay rides and petting zoos, pick our pumpkins straight from the patch, and then carve whatever kinds of faces on them we could imagine. As my siblings and I got older, though, the tradition was slowly phased out due to lack of interest.

The last time I carved a pumpkin was in 2006. At 21, I no longer had the excuse of being a little kid; it was something I did out of boredom or nostalgia or something. And I didn't really plan out a pattern ahead of time -- I just got a knife from the kitchen and started stabbing at it. Not unexpectedly, the result was rather crappy:

(This was taken before I got into digital photography in any serious way, so the photo is also pretty crappy.)

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Wedding Magazine Content Analysis

I'm happy to report that our wedding is over, that things went more or less as I expected, and that my shiny new husband and I are now basking in the sweet, sweet glory of stage five. (The first few nights, I had these terrible dreams where we were still frantically planning a wedding... but thankfully those have passed.)

That being said, I do have one more wedding-related post to get out of my system before I go back to blogging about other things.

As a bit of background, in the leadup to our wedding I received a few wedding magazines as gifts. It was fun looking through them -- even though most of the decisions relating to the dress and so forth had already been made by then -- but I thought I noticed something peculiar: there seemed to be about four times as many ads as content.

Just to be sure I wasn't imagining things, I picked one magazine at random and tallied up the pages as an approximate, unscientific exercise. This was the result:

I defined "content" loosely enough to include the index, the table of contents, credits, etc. and still the above pie chart shows how lopsided the ratio is. But what happens if you break down the ads into categories?

If I wanted to be more thorough, I could have used a larger sample size including a wide range of wedding magazine titles, just to make sure that the same pattern holds. But for now, it seems like the (perfectly predictable) conclusion is: if you buy a wedding magazine, there's a good chance it'll be mostly pictures of dresses.

Luckily for wedding magazine publishers, most people who buy wedding magazines are probably looking for exactly that. So... everybody wins and all is right with the world, I guess.