After years of aspiration and experimentation I have finally found the environment in which the alluring US Weekly is completely intelligible to me: treadmill. It’s good. I feel temporarily assimilated into an otherwise impenetrable (sorry) girl-world. You never know when you’ll have a chance to reap the benefits of your showbisdom by mentioning the new Pitt-Jolie house (therapy), talking about star “post baby bodies” (Angela), or listing all the celebrity couples with a 12-year age difference (this one actually failed).

However, since the writers’ strike ended I have found myself lost amidst all this tv coverage. These magazines are no longer talking about banal mega-celebrities like Halle, Will, and Miley, but have instead gone back to banal reality stars. I was ready for Gossip Girl. All is well with Grey’s Anatomy. And if anyone ever decides to do a piece on Hugh Laurie and Lisa Edelstein, I’m all ready. Unfortunately the coverage is going to shows I’ve never seen and they’re either ones you have to watch in order to (presumably) enjoy  gossip about (American Idol) or just things that I’ve never heard of.

For a while it was okay. I could just read over the Dancing with the Stars and Next Top Model. Still, something wayward blossomed on the glossy horizon. Her name was Lauren Conrad.

I spent a couple of weeks looking at her picture and nodding along as if I knew who she was. Every time I saw her picture I just pretended that she was Christine Taylor– the actress who played Melody on that classic Nick sitcom “Hey Dude.” Please, I’m not insane. Just willful. Look:

Every time an article would mention Conrad’s age I would just hum loudly or act like the number referred to something else. All this to get out of Google-for-the-answer– or perhaps to prolong that killer-cacti song in my head. But, as you all know, you can not actually elude Google-for-the-answer. You can only postpone it. Which means that I’ve just seen three whole episode of The Hills.

I am aware of the fact that I just had to do some garbage-watching in order to make other garbage more interesting. And I’m into it. And not in a completely performative way.

Also– something else came out of this whole thing. I hate to restart blag with kernals of truth etc etc but now have to. I have found a perfect way to access unadulterated, idealistic girl-advice. This hypervisible information is actually invisible to me. It seems I don’t know the girl-maxims or the girl-morals. It’s a whole world of indoctrination that I seemingly missed. At least I, female-friendlessly, missed a lot of it. Which is good and bad but whatever it is, The Hills is the solution.

You actually get to SEE one character start dating a total asshole and her friend say generic supportive, get-rid-of-him things. You see the character’s confidence rise as she threatens the boy saying something to the effect of: since you are a rude asshole maybe we shouldn’t see each other any more. And he replies: well, we can do whatever you want, but remember that I always liked you for you and I never wanted YOU to change at all. And she actually gets weepy. And then Lauren Conrad’s all like: I love you, you are my friend, wtf though.

I have to go finish mainlining these messages about loyality and assholes. It is so overdetermined it’s almost a Greek myth.

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