Ok, so by ‘just’, I mean over the past ten years, and the £1.5k figure is a rough estimate (or guesstimate, if you insist on being an insufferable human), but whichever way you cut it, it’s a lot of money to have spent on magazines. And we’re not talking National Geographic or New Scientist here. We’re not talking anything that could have broadened my intellect or even aided me in scoring a Pointless answer; oh no – we’re talking Grade A trash. The only thing these magazines could possibly have taught me is what Kerry Katona has in her fridge.
Several years ago, an acquaintance confronted my magazine obsession with the charmingly condescending question: ‘why would an intelligent girl like you want to read trash like that?’ It wasn’t until I left the ‘anything goes’ safe haven of my student years that I discovered that, in the professional world, this seems to be a view shared by many people. I’ve lost count of the number of colleagues who seem to find it impossible to reconcile the idea of a woman with a fully-formed brain and career reading an article entitled ‘My New KKK Boobs Have Snagged Me a Hot Nazi Toyboy’.
Even more incomprehensible is the notion of an ACTUAL FEMINIST enjoying the very literature often thought to objectify women and fill them with insecurity and self-loathing. The reading of my beloved trashy literature has therefore become a clandestine activity for me, and many lunch breaks are now spent poised in a defensive crouch, with the words ‘IT’S ESCAPISM, OK?’ already half-formed on my lips.
But does it have to be like this? Or is there a chance that I can justify this grubby habit of mine?