J's Page

Originally established for times when I needed more than 140 characters to finish a thought on marketing or media.

God bless us, every one: My Christmas bit on Paragraph Planet

More with the shameless self-promotion! This is me marketing my Christmas scribbles!

I’m happy to say my short “One Toy” is featured today on Paragraph Planet, a creative writing website that features 75-word pieces on one topic. If you’re a writer, please give it a go. There’s something so satisfying about writing just 75 of just-right words. If you’re a reader, click and click daily. There are some real gems there, and they make for a nice breather between phone calls, a shared human moment before another deadline. Writers may also write a sequel to the posted paragraphs using their own 75 words.

My piece that is featured today was inspired by one of many holiday dinners at headquarters. It’s one of four pieces I submitted as a sequence, each told from a different point of view.

Check out “One Toy” while you can. The pieces change daily. I’ll post an update when the others appear.

UPDATE: Posted Dec. 29.

One toy. Dad let me bring one from the tree. It’s really cool! Just what I wanted! It makes noises and lights up! I’ve been playing for hours! Dad says it won’t be much longer. Really. He’s eating the last of Christmas pie now, but it’ll be a bit until we go back to the apartment. He says it’s his job to watch over the important news people working tonight. But he says I’m more important.

Skinny on skinny jeans for kids

Elizabeth Holmes of The Wall Street Journal is reporting on the trend of toddler “skinny jeans.”

You read that right. I had to read the article three times to make sure I was!

The article features a 29-year-old mom explaining how her 2-year-old daughter is loving her four pairs of “skinny jeans” — jeans cut slim (tight?) through the thighs and knees, and even slimmer (tighter?) through the calves and ankles. Everyone has heard of “skinny jeans” at some point, but when you — as a seemingly well-adjusted American — think of “skinny jeans,” you should be thinking of the jeans you haven’t been able to fit into since college.

You should be thinking of Audrey Hepburn circa 1957’s Funny Face, resurrected for the 2006 Gap commercial.

In fact, everyone thinking of today’s skinny jeans should just think Audrey Hepburn period — as she was really the only woman ever meant to wear skinny jeans, then or now!

Turns out that Gap (NYSE: GPS) is just one retailer pushing the skinny jeans for toddlers. They’re part of the casual apparel giant’s 1969 Collection, more specifically they’re part of babyGap’s “1969 premium jeans” line. (“Born to fit.”) The Mini Skinny is “for the budding fashionista” and favorite ways to wear are “under dresses or with a graphic T and sneakers.” The price of these little scraps of material ranges from $24.50 to $34.50.


As the WSJ article points out, parents will forgo buying clothes for themselves in a downturn, but they continue to spend on children, which is good news for the children’s apparel industry.

From the story:

Children’s clothing sales are up 5.3% year-to-date, over the same time last year, according to MasterCard Advisors’ SpendingPulse, a unit of MasterCard Inc. that tracks sales by cash, check and credit card. Total apparel sales are up just 1.4%.

Ralph Lauren is also cashing in on the trend with its Beekman skinny jean. (Pssst: They’re a bargain at $19.99, marked down from $40. Sizes available: 9 months and 12 months.) For the less-cost-conscious consumer, Joe’s Jeans has a toddler line at Saks Fifth Avenue (NYSE: SKS). (Retail price: A very adult $49. Sizes: 2-6.)

The WSJ article quotes Gap veep Mark Breitbard on the appeal of “fashion-right clothes” as they get smaller. He’s not wrong. As I clicked around for this post looking for more trend take-downs, I could see his point. The tiny outfits were super cute, if pricey. Ralph Lauren in particular had some mini-me ensembles that I would have a hard time resisting if I were a parent. Even so, the skinny jeans should be left for the grownups.

Better yet, let’s just leave ’em to Audrey.