LONDON — In the old days, ladies would turn on the television set and find Donna Reed singing the praises of soup, with the idea that purchasing this soup would make your house tidy and your hair glossy and your children upstanding heterosexuals. Who wouldn't want that life?
But then "style" had to come along and create that most dreaded compound noun, lifestyle, and its patron saint was Oprah. Until this week, that is, with the introduction of Gwyneth Paltrow's new website, Goop.com. Why is it called Goop? Perhaps "Any Old Load of Rubbish" and "Learn From Me, Ungrateful Peasant" were both taken.
"My life is good because I am not passive about it," writes the woman last seen serving coffee in Iron Man. "I want to nourish what is real, and I want to do it without wasting time." The website is in its infancy, but you can sign up for the e-mail newsletter, which soon will tell you what cool restaurants to visit in London or where to stay in Austin. "Learn something new," it urges. "Don't be lazy. Work out and stick with it." It's as if John Calvin and Princess Grace got together and wrote a game plan on a cocktail napkin.