Trance, Kardashians and Toenail Picking: Guilty Pleasures That I'm Not Sorry About

I am uncool and disgusting.

Yesterday, I was waiting for my flight home from Edinburgh and trying to find some music I wanted to listen to on Spotify. There were all the new releases, some indie band that are way cooler than me, some D&B or grime or whatever it is that's in the charts at the moment and I just didn't want to listen to any of it.

The sun was beaming through the floor-to-ceiling windows of the departure lounge, warming up my face and kind of making me feel like I was actually outside, that it was summer.

Then I knew what I had to listen to. It came at me HARD. The Kevin and Perry Go Large soundtrack, obviously! Commercial trance, man!

As I boarded the plane, with ATB's "9PM (Till I Come)" blasting into my poor, defeated ear'oles, I realised that I was actually really quite embarrassed about my listening choice. Probably quite rightly so. BUT I WAS ENJOYING IT! I was actually hiding the screen of my phone away from the person next to me in case they saw what it was I was listening to and threw up all over themselves. The shame.

Listening to dodgy '90s and '00s trance is not my only little guilty pleasure, though. I say guilty, but really it's more "things I am actually quite embarrassed about liking" pleasures. Is that the same thing? I don't know. Here are some more things I secretly enjoy whilst pretending not to in order to try and fool everyone into thinking I am way more intellectual/stylish/cool than I really am. But if I share mine, you have to share yours. Them's the deals.

Everything Kardashian related, ever.

I'm not actually sure if this is much of a secret, actually, but I think it's supposed to be one of those things you're slightly ashamed about. There is no greater pleasure in life for me than going home, eating a fried egg sandwich and watching 5 back-to-back episodes of "Keeping Up With the Kardashians" or "Kourtney and Kim Take Miami" or "Watch The Kardashians Sleeping" or any of the other million incarnations. It's just so vacuous and brilliant. I can be half brain dead after a hard day at work and sit in front of these guys and instantly I've forgotten how shit my day was.

Picking my toenails.

This is a really gross habit but I enjoy it so, so, so much. I find it's best when you've had a long bath and your toenails are a bit softer so they tear away easier. Sorry.

Eating peanut butter with a spoon.

Everyone knows peanut butter is delicious and wonderful and magical. My brand of choice is Peter Pan, probably because they chuck a load of really bad stuff in it that will one day render me blind and with no legs. But that won't matter, because as long as I can hold a spoon, I'll be happy. Spooning the thick globs of divine nectar into my gob while standing by the cupboard, not even taking the time to sit and really savour the moment, is one of life's great joys. I don't even care that it's really bad for you blah blah blah not listening.


Natalie's adventures in really terminally uncool music choices continue! I just really fucking love haunting Celtic music, alright? And OMG seriously Orinoco Flow is bloody brilliant, I don't even care what you say. Plus, they've all got really cool, hard to pronounce names which probably sound really lovely when spoken aloud by someone who can actually pronounce them. I wish my name was Máire Ní Bhraonáin. Maybe I'll change it by deed poll.

Pork scratchings.

Deep fried pig skin. Gross but really tasty. I even like the really crappy bags you get in pubs that still actually have pig hair in them. I never order them when I'm with people though, because people are JUDGEY BASTARDS.

Getting other people's blackheads out.

This is the most satisfying thing EVER. My mum used to always get this one really deep one on her back and I'd spend ages squeezing it out, until it first made the skin raised like a volcano and then applying more pressure until the head would pop out and the long worm of congestion would squiggle out. I'd then lay it on a piece of paper and revel in how long it was. Such gratification. See also: watching YouTube videos of people doing the same thing.

Have I scarred you for life yet? Sorry. NOT SORRY!

I also asked the xoStaff for their Guilty Pleasures lists. Here's what they had to say:

Kate Conway: "Zit popping, the TV show Duck Dynasty, smoking weed every four months or so and locking myself in a masturbation cave for hours, frosting straight from the jar, Fall Out Boy's entire milieu."

Lesley: "I DON'T BELIEVE IN GUILTY PLEASURES. But if I did, mine would be cheesy Sherlock Holmes pastiches, survivalist TV shows, and Mexicokes."

Marianne: "My primary guilty pleasures are the monthly Harlequin romance novels. Particularly the Harlequin Blaze set of books. They're so bad. But there is something super comforting in the formula."

Rebecca: "I'm partial to cleaning out my ears, seeing how long I can go without washing my hair, seeing how clear I can make my own pee, and watching Twin Peaks instead of going on dates with appropriate men."

Louise Hung: "Things I don't feel especially guilty about, but I may not readily volunteer if i just met you. Or I might. I'm fickle. 7-11 salted plum musubi (a Hawai'i thing, basically pickled plum, rice and seaweed shaped into a triangle), my 3rd cup of coffee, picking at my scalp, obsessive late night TV watching (current shows of choice are Star Trek and Arrested Development), reading anything and everything about ghosts, hauntings, and unsolved murders, and to that end, if Celebrity Ghost Story is on, I HAVE TO WATCH IT.

Annie of xoVain: "Whataburger. Ultimate guilty pleasure. But all of my other guilty pleasures are now a part of my job. I guess maybe buying furniture and decorating are guilty pleasures now."

Corynne: "Pedicures, Long hot showers, Massages, Sneaking cigarettes, Tequila, Kardashians also!, Pitbulls and Parolees, FB stalking people from high school and Talking shit about people who are AWFUL. Only when they are AWFUL. Truly."

Madeline: "Pretty Little Liars, Woman's World weekly supermarket magazine, the soundtrack to the TV show Nashville (especially this one song called "I'm A Girl"), Jennifer Weiner books (I should not feel guilty, but I do a little bit), Doritos, the $1 section at the entrance of every Target, seasonally themed dishtowels and potholders." - That last one made me snort with laughter.

Hannah: "Cheese fries with that gooey orange faux-cheese, tweezing ingrown hairs (always leads to scars but it's SO SATISFYING), all the stupid wedding shows on TLC. I would also say McDonald's but I never really feel guilty afterwards, just awesome and proud of my life choices."

Daisy: "I don't actually consider any of my pleasures "guilty" because I don't think I should feel guilt over things that make me happy. Omg, am I taking this too seriously? Things I enjoy, however, that may seem "base" include YA dystopian novels (I NEED MORE SUGGESTIONS, PLEASE!), reality TV (all of it), and sleeping way more than any one person should. Oh. And cookies of every shape and size, except chocolate chip. But that's just assumed, right?"

So that's our confession time over. Now it's your turn. SPILL IT, SISTAS.

Natalie's being gross on Twitter - @Natalie_KateM