An introductory list of Kate's not-so-guilty pleasures
by Kate Sheridan (actor/writer/boyband enthusiast)
Hey y'all! My name is Kate, and I'm pumped to be spending the summer in Crazytown. I'll be giving you a warm, well-placed mix of topics (pop culture to soul-searching, with just the right amount of vibrato) right here every Friday.
In the unabashed spirit of Rebecca Black, I'd like to start my time here with a topic close to my heart: guilty pleasures. I know, its a subject that has been covered many times on Crazytown/the greater internet, but here's the thing: I don't have any. I don't believe in guilty pleasures. For the most part, I don't really believe in guilt, period - it's usually unnecessary, and almost always unproductive. So why in the world would anyone accept that extraneous negativity when it comes to something that makes us happy?
I'm not claiming that a Lifetime original movie is as GOOD, artistically speaking, as an Oscar-winning foreign-language documentary, but don't you dare try to tell me it's not ENTERTAINING. Everything is good for something. If you're not hurting anyone, get down with your bad self. (And bad TV shows, and music, and eating habits...) Here are the top 5 things I'd feel guilty about loving... if they weren't so awesome.
1. ONE DIRECTION
The formulaic goodness of the boy band is without flaws and I love it/them unequivocally. A cute boy dancing around stage singing about how much he loves me? Awesome. FIVE cute boys doing that? FOOLPROOF. Please. I'm a musical theatre kid. You're basically feeding me a sexier version of Enjolras rallying the troops to the barricade.
One Direction has a few advantages over the boy bands of yore, because a. they are fucking adorable b. they are like, 17, coming on the scene just in time to add a cougar-y flair to my quarter life crisis, and c. BRITISH ACCENTS.
2. GAS STATION SNACKS
Normal snacks: berries, Cheez-its, nuts, popcorn; pigging out: chips, gummies, or the ever-reliable Ben & Jerry's. But when stopping for a snack at the gas station, despite all those options and more being readily available, my road-trip addled stomach wants weird shit and it wants it now. Give me that hunk of trans-fat calling itself a danish. Hit me with a dusty, year old bag of "cotton candy" no kid would touch. Haven't had a hot dog in years? STRANGE NEED TO EAT THIS TERRIBLE ONE, WITH RADIOACTIVE ORANGE CHEESE GOO ON IT. I love every weird, chemical-filled bite.
3. THE OC
I don't feel the need to justify this one, because of two words: Seth. Cohen.
Full disclosure: when "The OC" premiered in 2003, I was Team Ryan. So blonde. So brooding. But even before Adam Brody/Seth Cohen stole my heart (leaving me, to this day, with an unfulfilled fantasy of a lanky, awkward, pop-culture loving Jewish boyfriend of my own), I was OBSESSED. And rightly so- the show was a phenomenon, nourishing my 13-year-old soul with capital-d DRAMA, beautiful people to ogle, and a kickass starter kit of indie music. (Seriously, remember that soundtrack?)
Though the show went downhill after the first season, I still cried for two days when Marissa Cooper died. It was the end of an era, okay? And with that Imogen Heap song? GAHHHH.
4. THE BACHELOR/ETTE
I started watching "The Bachelor" last season in a fit of post-grad angst, prepared to mock its very existence & all the silly women who allow it to influence their ideas of love. And while it is definitively, hilariously terrible, I think there is some voodoo magic in its conception that twists the tiniest piece of your cold, black heart into saying "Wow, maybe love IS supposed to be riding into a Thai sunset on the back of an elephant with 1 of the 25 identical, white male models I met 6 weeks ago!" (Or at least, "awww! I want love!") This season, I've mostly given up the facade that I am hate-watching, and have instead become INTENSELY invested in the men's success (can we call it that?) for my Fantasy Bachelor League.
5. BEING BETCHY
I'm a pretty normal person. I'm don't consider myself particularly cool, or stylish, or girly. I will not Instagram a selfie, my salad or my Starbucks cup on principle and I try reaaaallly hard not to use the hashtag #blessed. But there is secret glee in a day where all my girlish indulgences seem to coincide in one glorious display of basic-bitch-dom. When I happen to lay out tanning on the same day as yoga and cocktails with my girlfriends.... Venti Passion Tea Lemonade at the nail salon, salad for lunch... sushi & vodka sodas post-shopping with a gay bff... I hate myself. BUT I LOVE IT.
 Does not apply to murder, arson, etc. Feel guilty about that.
 I have SO much more to say on the subject of a definitive, objective "good" when it comes to art - namely, I don't really believe in one - but then again, I'm writing about One Direction. So... it's all relative.
 Boybands are also good for the musical-theatre raised, in that we like our men constantly toeing the line of homosexuality. (Skip to 1:00)
 Basic rules here; for those watching, my team is Drew, Zak W., Chris, and the eliminated James, Brad, Dan, Nick M. & Brandon. Lost Michael G. to a mid-season trade, but whatever.
 Probably because it makes me feel like I'm on The OC. Also, sorry about all the footnotes. Who do I think I am, David Foster Wallace? #ifonly