Glossy Talk: The new Julia Gillard guest edits Woman's Day; Tony Abbott sidelined to a marginal sidebar
Between Kevin Rudd, Mark Latham and now Kyle Sandilands, the blokes are really cutting Julia Gillard's grass, if a potential PM is judged by the company she keeps in public. Still, the latest edition of Woman's Day gives Gillard another chance to connect with female voters – or at least the 1,563,000 of them who read The Day.
Following on from The Day's celebratory special edition after Gillard's controversial rise to the prime ministerial role, and the cover of stablemate title The Australian Women's Weekly, the PM has been given the opportunity to guest edit the weekly magazine, contributing an editor's letter, "reviewing this week's real life and lifestyle content" and answering a Q&A.
"I understand that Australian women face challenges every day – balancing the demands of work and family, managing the household budget and contributing to their community," writes Gillard in the opening missive. "In this week's issue, we see plenty of people enhancing the lives of those around them and inspiring us with their efforts... I'm also happy to share with you my partner Tim's lamb roast recipe (page 87), which is a favourite of mine."
Gillard goes on to recommend a story on Lady Flo Bjelke-Peterson, whose "views were on the other side of politics to mine", and jokes that "it's nice to see fellow red head Prince Harry gracing the pages this week (page 8)", before signing off with, "One of the joys of sitting back with a good magazine is you can set aside the stresses for a while. Have a good week and enjoy your Woman's Day!"
Needless to say, there's little chance Gillard stopped by ACP's Park Street offices to approve the Sandliands "secret lover" cover, or the 'Tears, heels & ranga pride' cover line (Sydney is considered a very safe Labor seat with the Greens coming up a close second). In the Gillard feature, the PM answers hard-hitting questions about her hair ("redheads do OK"), heels ("I don't own a lot of high heels"), MasterChef ("I was glad it came down to two South Australian contestants"), celebrity crushes (Bruce Willis), relationships ("it's really important to have time with your family and relax") and crying (she doesn't).
We learn that a "younger version of Judi Dench" could play her in a movie, she would call Tim or her sister Alison in the event of an emotional crisis, that she had seafood lasagne at her last social dinner and that she believes the key for fair opportunities for women is "a strong economy and a great education system". Can she relate to mums? "I don't know what it's like to be an Indigenous Australian, don't know what it's like to face the world with a disability, but you can seek to put yourself in the shoes of others and attempt to see the world through their eyes."
The Day has relegated opposition leader Tony Abbott to a small sidebar titled 'My Dad Tony' in which Katherine Chatfield chats to Abbott and his daughter, Louise. "He does a good charcoal barbecue," says Louise of her father's cooking repertoire. A lack of culinary skills may be the only thing Abbott and Gillard have in common.
Girl With a Satchel