The G.P. score: Sharon’s top ten

To me, guilty pleasures are indulgences—definitely things my idealized higher self deplores, because she’s the type with money in the back, the ideal physique, a clean kitchen, and a better working career. But that version of myself is a bore and I switch her off as often as possible. I’m at peace with my baser instincts.

What gives me that sparkly feeling of getting away with something I perhaps should not? What cost too much? What’s a taste sensation I should skip but can’t? Where do I fail in my responsibilities and love it? Stay tuned, because I made a list.

How to be guilty? Oh, let me count the ways – or ten of them, at least.

10. My red boots. Yes, they were expensive imports. Yes, the heels are high. Whatever. It’s my feet.

9. Suffed grape leaves from that little Greek place in Sidney that makes the best darned lemon sauce. Nom nom nom!

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8. Buying my Christmas holiday read hardcover and not waiting for the paperback.

7. Hotel room writing sprees. Mini-bar, laptop, room service: go! Of course, I paid a substantial sum of money for that conference I more or less ignored, but whatever …

6. Fashion magazines. Utterly useless. Love ‘em.

5. Horror flicks. Cliché counting is a great drinking game.

4. The BIG bag of red licorice at the movie theatre. Red vinyl! Yum!

3. Going on computer/email/phone strike for 24 hours. Ah, peace.

2. The Friday meltdown: lying on the couch with a book and a glass of wine and ignoring the million chores waiting for me. (Bonus points for refusing to move because it would disturb the cat.)

1. Friends’ nights out with appropriate world domination discussion.

That last one isn’t really a guilty pleasure, but I value it so much it should be. There’s no substitute for conviviality and nachos. We need that face time to catch up, to plot and plan, and relieve the stresses of unplanned adulthood. Diets are blown, restraint programs sunk, but it’s still cheaper than psychotherapy!

I think that’s the point of guilty pleasures–they’re small transgressions, but have a high payoff in enjoyment. Blowing off a little bit of steam is healthy.

Question of the day: When standing in the junk food aisle and faced with enough money for one treat, what would you pick?

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