Jim and I met on Match.com seven years ago—back when it was still a somewhat novel (and effective) approach to finding love. The other day I came across the profile I posted and was surprised by how much of what I’d said about myself (and the guy I was looking for) still holds true. In fact, there was only one line that rang false—and it happened to be my opening salvo!
“My guilty pleasures are chocolate chip cookies, pedicures, cheeseburgers, Access Hollywood…” I began. Hmmnnnnn…what a difference seven years makes! Cheeseburgers have taken a back seat to tofu and broccoli as my cholesterol has crept steadily higher. A toenail fungus turned me off to professional pedicures. And then—there’s trashy TV.
I’ve been a media junkie my entire adult life. I’m in marketing, for Pete’s sake, so it’s my job to know what’s going on out there, right? Okay, maybe that doesn’t explain my lifelong obsession with celebrity gossip—but the point is that lately I’ve been finding myself bored, and more often, annoyed, by the very thing that used to be a pleasant diversion from life’s harsh realities.
I don’t watch much TV to begin with, and when I do I want escapist entertainment. Soapy dramas like “Grey’s Anatomy”, old-fashioned sitcoms like “Old Christine”, offbeat stuff like “No Reservations”. I simply can’t comprehend the popularity of reality shows. When Jim recently sent me a link to Mitch Albom’s list of new rules for 2010, my favorite was “Jon + Kate = gone.”
For as long as I can remember, watching “Access Hollywood” has been my guiltiest of all pleasures. 30 minutes of mindless, often cheeky, commentary on the latest celebrity shenanigans was all it took to make me forget about difficult bosses, demanding friends, and disappointing men. Now it appears to be taking its cue from the mainstream news media, spewing a relentless stream of negativity. Lying, cheating, violence, weight issues, financial problems, illness, death—jeez, it’s like escaping right back to real life! So what’s a girl to do? Bury my head in a 500-page biography of Georgia O’Keeffe. Whip through my Netflix queue. Follow Martha Stewart’s instructions for making mice out of pinecones.
Wait. Who is this woman who’s traded Brangelina for a glue gun and glitter? Who needs more than Billy Bush's ironic grin to distract her from her troubles? Who agrees with Mr. Albom’s rule that “Tiger Woods cannot do ‘Oprah’”? All I can say is it’s a damn good thing I’m still addicted to chocolate chip cookies.