Tuesday, June 5, 2007

The last t-shirt

I wore my last guilty pleasures t-shirt for awhile. On May 31 I ended my month-long stint of wearing someone's guilty pleasure each day. The final shirt was, "I like Disney's High School Musical" which I feel truly embodies what a guilty pleasure is to me. It is something that is totally embarrassing but harms no one. It is something you get pleasure out of, but won't want to tell other people for fear of what they might think. I've actually never seen it, but I can image not wanting to admit it here.

Now that my shirts are done, I've been struggling on what I want to do with them all. I don't really need 31 grey and white t-shirts with iron-on transfers. What I've decided is that I want to give them away, so if you would like one please email me your mailing address of where you'll be in June and July at confessionsessions@gmail.com.

Thanks for all your participation, and please check back for updates on the project.

Thursday, May 31, 2007


There are over 6,000 Starbucks in the world, and I feel like they are all trying to rip me off. Everytime I've walked out of one I say to myself, "Did I really just pay that man in the green apron that much for coffee?"

I'm only going on this rant because yesterday's shirt was, "I spend $4.00 or more for coffee." This one got a particularly large reaction because so many people can identify. I had people going up to me all night saying, "That's me!I need that shirt!"

The funny thing was, I was wearing this shirt while I was paying $4.00 for a rum and coke I know costs about 25 cents to make. This had never bothered me before, it was a fact of life that when you eat and drink out it costs a lot more. I've never felt dooped walking out of a bar. I've even paid $300 for a bottle of vodka that costs $30 so I could sit with prettier people and have someone wait on me. It made me realize I shouldn't feel that bad about my frappuccino. Starbucks has created this space, an ambiance that makes it ok for people to spend that much money on coffee. If a cushy chair and some soft jazz music is enough to get people to pay $4.00, then good for Starbucks.

If you're still feeling bad you can always order the "poor man's latte" I've been hearing about. This drink, aka "Ghetto Latte" is an Americano, half ice, no water. Then you go over to the condiment counter and fill it with your own dairy. The dirty feeling you may get from cheating Starbucks is countered by the fact you just saved a few dollars.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Television vs. Internet

Yesterday my shirt said, "I love watching TV marathons." Very few of you actually saw this one, because I was in fact laying on my couch all day switching back and forth between marathons of The Sopranos and Flavor of Love. I do admit, after four or five (or more...) hours Tony and Flav have some striking similarities, but that's another discussion.

I've started a small debate with myself about whether TV or the Internet is a bigger guilty pleasure. There's been a lot of responses about each of them, and I think it is because both TV and the Internet have a certain privacy as an outlet for guilty pleasures. Unlike a public movie theater, concert or the grocery store, no one knows what I watch on TV or websites I go search. Since they invented wireless, you can often find me partaking in both simultaneously.

In one of my searches I found this article about music guilty pleasures. It reminded me that the Internet wasn't always there, and the author says, "Of course, the advent of podcasting, iTunes and general internet free love has meant that our access to our most unspeakable desires is now readier than ever. Pre-Napster (and surely time will one day be marked as such), a trip to the record store to buy Chicago or Lionel Richie would possibly incur the disparaging, judgmental sneers of the cooler-than-thou clerk. Now, we can download "All Night Long" in the privacy of our own home. No muss, no fuss, no brown paper bag. Let the sappy times roll."

What would I do if I had to buy the Pussycat Dolls CD in a store--with people around?! Would I drive to one 30 minutes away? I couldn't find the image, but a few weeks ago there was a Postsecret sent in that read, "Whenever I buy something embarrassing I get a birthday card too." Very clever, and I guess if everyone did that I'd have some more job security.

In the end of my small debate, I fall on the side of the Internet. It is a black hole for time that I wish I could pull myself away from, but I love it too much. Actually, I don't know if I'd trade the hours spent on Facebook, MySpace and YouTube for anything. Well...maybe another Flav marathon.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Culture Killer?

A few days ago, my shirt was "I read romance novels" a pretty standard guilty pleasure. I feel like every time I go on a vacation people are hiding behind them constantly. But as I was walking out of class, a girl stops me and says, "I love your shirt. I need to buy that." This probably wouldn't have bothered me before, but coincidentally I just finished discussing Clement Greenburg's Avant-garde and Kitsch. It made me wonder, am I killing culture by accepting kitsch? I really hope my t-shirts aren't just another thing people want to buy.

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Don't make my vices better for me!

One of my own guilty pleasures is that I rarely read anything in the New York Times that's not the style section. It feeds my needs for trends and pop culture in a way that makes me feel better about liking them at all.

This week there was a great article about Diet Coke Plus. For those of you who don't know, Coca-Cola has decided to put vitamins in Diet Coke. I had my own adverse reaction when I saw it on campus. I bought it (I had to see if it tasted different) and was complaining about it in class. Someone asked me if it tasted any different, and it doesn't, so they said to me, "Be thankful you're getting some vitamins then."

My favorite exerpt from this article is this:

"Diet Coke Plus with vitamins indeed! What will be next, Absolut-Plus?

I guess it shouldn’t come as such a surprise. After all, we are living at a time when we just can’t leave bad enough alone. Whole wheat pasta and whole grain Froot Loops. Lactose-free reduced-fat Swiss cheese. Sugar-free ice cream. Alcohol-free beer. Trans-fat-free French fries. Yoga classes instead of expense-account lunches. Cruise ships are supplanting gluttony and hedonism with “edu-tainment” classes for self-improvement.

And along with candy for its turndown service, Ritz-Carlton plans to offer a book of quality short fiction. Can’t we just have a chocolate? Must we be given the burden of lyrical, mind-improving literature when all we want is sugar and cable TV?"

You can read the rest of the article Here

Thank you!

Thank you everyone who came out on Thursday for the opening reception. It was great to see all of you. For those of you who couldn't make it, here are some pictures.

I can't leave out the Relation Station! Who knew the Dittmar Gallery was so hip on relational aesthetics?

The rest of my shirts for the week were pretty good. On Friday I wore, "I play the Sims" and Saturday was, "I watch The Hills". I think these both are great shirts, because they're about wasting time. They speak about this constant need we feel to be doing something "valuable" but I think there's a lot of value in relaxing and enjoying yourself. The biggest waste of time is when you're doing something you're not enjoying.

I haven't figured out today's shirt yet, but even God took a break on the seventh day.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

The "I treat my body poorly" shirts

The past two days have both been shirts about doing things that are bad for you physically. Tuesday was, "I smoke" followed by "I eat Cheddar Cheese Ruffles." Everyone knows that you shouldn't smoke, but people do it anyways. Everyone knows that you shouldn't eat a lot of Cheddar Cheese Ruffles, but people do it anyways. When it comes down to it, we all have to die of something so we might as well enjoy ourselves. I guess I can't judge someone who smokes, because I eat all kinds of crap. Would you rather have more years to your life or life in your years?

In other news, the senior show at Northwestern is having an opening reception tomorrow from 6-9 in the Dittmar Gallery in Norris. You'll get to browse through my t-shirts, have some free food and conversation. I'd love if all of you came out.

Tuesday, May 15, 2007

Darn you Oprah!

Thanks to Julie, I found out Oprah's on top of my guilty pleasure fascination. In this month's O Magazine a bunch of celebrities spill their guilty pleasures to Oprah (well writer Aimee Lee Ball). Here is a link to one of the pages and you can also read more on Oprah.com. But don't worry, I'll get a copy and scan it all soon. Frankly, I think the answers I've received are a lot more interesting. A rich actress buying expensive shoes? Who cares.

Still in my naked phase...

Sometimes I close the miniblinds when I know I am going to be completely naked in my apartment. Sometimes I don't.

Television for Women

Yesterday's shirt was, "I can spend a weekend watching Lifetime movies." I had this great picture planned of me in the grocery store, looking very domestic but I forgot my camera. Apologies dear readers.

This was a shirt that again got some more reaction, because it isn't anything like a typical slogan-T. I like how some movies are more worthy of our two hours than others (in Lifetime's case it could be four or five hours.) Yes, Lifetime movies are low budget, low plot, bad acting and extra sappy. I'm sure Lifetime watchers know this, but they love them regardless. I think that's kind of sweet.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

I like to push people over!

I found this video when I was searching guilty pleasures, and parts of it are really funny. My favorite line is at the end, "You don't have to feel guilty if it makes you feel good." That's part of what I am hoping to get out of this project. I think the other line that sticks out is, "I call them guilty pleasure but I don't feel guilty (not at all)." Calling something a guilty pleasure is a great scapegoat.

Weekend Review

I have to apologize for the lack of pictures from the weekend, but I've been a bit of a hermit working and I keep on forgetting my camera.

Friday I wore, "I read multiple celebrity gossip blogs everyday." I decided to wear this shirt because my favorite celebrity obsessed friend came back in town, and I've received so many responses about celebrity blogs. I don't tend to read them unless I'm stuck at work with nothing to do, but they really are repulsive and fascinating at the same time. Why do people like hearing snarky comments about celebrities so much? Do I really care that they take out the trash too? I guess it helps us realize that the people we idolize are human, but then I don't think we should treat them with so little respect.

Saturday was, "I stalk my crushes on Facebook." Oh Mark Zuckerberg, you have definitely changed the ways students procrastinate. My friends and I were just talking about the good old days when we had a real freshman facebook. Where you had to go through pages of only a single photo to try and find that guy you saw at a party. Then you'd look him up on PH, those were the days. I guess I like to think of it not as stalking but just being curious.

Now, it's Sunday, Mother's Day. I haven't gotten any responses that remind me of my mother, so I went with one that reminds me of my dad. It says, "I play solitaire on my computer for hours." My father was the one who taught me solitaire when I was younger, and even how to cheat on the computer.

Friday, May 11, 2007

A bit behind...

Sorry folks, I've been lacking on the posting and the pictures this week. I've been busy getting ready for Northwestern's Senior Show. Everyone who can, should come out for the opening reception next Thursday (May 17) from 6-8 at the Dittmar Gallery in Norris.

On Wednesday I wore, "I read People Magazine in the airport." I've come to the conclusion that there are two types of people in the world. Those who read People Magazine in the airport, doctor's offices etc., and those who read People on a regular basis. Either way, everyone loves reading it.

Thursday's shirt said, "I like to get attention when I'm sad." This is one of my favorite responses that I've received (right up there with I love dancing like a ho.) I guess it seems so ambiguous. Everyone wants attention when they're sad, but it makes me wonder what guilty things we do to get attention. Do we throw tantrums, make up lies so people feel sorry for us? I guess I think the guilt lies not in wanting it, but the means we use to get the attention. What do you do to get attention?

I've received some other great responses, and thank you to everyone who has sent one. But I'd love to get more, so keep them coming! Check back later today and I'll have some more up.

Wednesday, May 9, 2007

A great t-shirt day

Yesterday was a great day for the shirt. This shirt said, "I spread rumors." It is one of the guiltier guilty pleasures, and I got my first glare from someone! I was walking into Kresge and this girl walking out looked at my shirt, rolled her eyes and glared at me. I was pretty excited.

Then I went to the Cubs game, and realized how effective the shirts are when I actually go out instead of staying in my apartment doing work. I got the chance to tell a lot of friends I don't see very often about them, and also had my first conversation about them with a stranger. I met a lovely woman in the bathroom at Wrigley field, and our conversation went a little something like this:

Cubs fan:
You spread rumors?! That's bad.
Me: Actually, I don't...or I try not to. This month I'm wearing different people's guilty pleasures. What's yours?
CF: Let me think about that. I don't spread rumors but I like to listen.

We walk into the stalls, side by side.

CF: I know what my guilty pleasure is! SEX!
Me: Oh, just sex?
NO, lots of SEX!
What's a lot of sex?
CF: No, a lot of sex, WITH MYSELF!
Woman in random stall:
Honey, you have to have toys, do you have toys?!
I have four, one in every color.
(laughs uncontrollably)

That's the truth kids, no rumors here. Be looking forward to the shirt.

Monday, May 7, 2007

I'm a flirt!

I love flirting with other men even though I'm married.

*not included in email, but I thought you'd enjoy a little R. Kelly.

I didn't tell you this but....

Today's shirt was "I like having gossip sessions about my friends." My favorite place to gossip is the car. It's completely private, and you have their undivided attention. Plus, driving is another guilty pleasure of mine, so it's a double whammy.

Gossip is one of the most prevalent themes from the answers I've received, that I have decided to dedicate the week to it. Why is it that talking about other people's lives is so entertaining? Between celebrities, friends, enemies and family it's hard not to gossip. Plus gossip is such a grey line anyways. When does talking about something that happened to a friend stop being a story and start being gossip? Is it when it starts to get exaggerated? I always think exaggeration is just a part of story telling. This week is for all the story tellers out there.

Friday, May 4, 2007

What's that you say?

I love to eavesdrop on other people's conversations. I have to hold back from actually joining them sometimes.

Spiderman at midnight

Last night I went and saw Spiderman at 12:01 (not to be confused with the suckers who had to see it at 12:05 or 12:10). I decided it would be appropriate to wear the "I laugh at Comic Book Guy when he starts spouting random superhero factoids during the previews of fantasy action movies...but I know exactly what he's talking about" I don't know if the phrase was too long, or comic book people feel uncomfortable talking to other people, but no one commented.

All was not lost. I did make the realization that evil spiderman/black spiderman has an uncanny resemblance to a mix between a young Hitler and Conor Oberst from Bright Eyes.

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

First comment on my shirt!

This shirt was a little dirty, or made me feel a little dirty. Today was an exciting day, because I got my first comment from a stranger about my shirt. The shirt was, "I read the hooker/escort ads in the back of the Reader." As I was walking through campus a girl stopped me and said, "Wait, what does your shirt say? I just saw hooker and escort." At first I was just said, "yep." Like, yeah I like to read them, got a problem with that? But then I felt compelled to tell her about my project, and realized I need some business cards to just give people when they comment.

Also, I went to Chipotle today and felt like it was Taco Time instead. There's just no nice way to eat a burrito the size of your face. I don't intend to have all my shirt pictures with food, just coincidence.

THE American Idol

I like Kelly Clarkson, especially Since U Been Gone.

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

First day of the t-shirts

Today's shirt was, "I consistently prefer to watch E! news over any real news shows"

This shirt seemed more embarrassing than I thought it would. I did wear it to class and just wearing it made me feel a little dumber. I don't think I would feel more intelligent if I wore a shirt that said, "I read the entire paper everyday." But, somehow wearing something that is considered "stupid" lowers your self confidence.

In other guilty pleasure news, I saw this episode of Will & Grace the other night and they mentioned guilty pleasures.

SCENE IV: Taco Time Restaurant
(KAREN and GRACE enter. KAREN is carrying a bloody mary.)

GRACE: Taco Time? What are we doing at taco time? And... Wait, did you bring that drink from the restaurant? What is this, Vegas? Look, Karen--

KAREN: Hey, forget it, Red! Don't call me by my real name! Call me by my alias: Anastasia Beaverhausen! I wanna be incognito.

GRACE: Why? Who could possibly know you here?



KAREN: Hmm. The Duchess of York.

GRACE: The what?! Why would the Duch-- Oh, my god! It's Fergie! Do you think that Weight Watchers knows about this? What is going on here?

KAREN: Taco Time is a guilty pleasure for some of the ladies in my circle. Nobody questions it. Nobody talks about it.

GRACE: Ok, but why are we here?

KAREN: Come on, Grace. It's like it says in the Bible: "The best way to make you feel good is to make someone else look bad." And nothing looks worse than a socialite shoveling a couple of Taco Gigantes down her gullet.

GRACE: Are you trying to tell me that--

KAREN: Over there, honey. The slob in the dark glasses.

GRACE: Are you sure that's her?

HELENA: Paxil, if you are not going to finish that, mommy will. All right? Very well, then. It's mine! Oh! Mmm. it's good!


GRACE: When is she gonna come up for air? And she's-- I mean, my God! Oh, Anastasia, this is the best gift you've ever given me!

No Dirty Pop here

I would still pay a hundred dollars for the chance to touch Brian Littrell.


I like to smash my fingertips in kitchen drawers. I'm not a masochist, though. honestly.

Monday, April 30, 2007

OMG a new car!

I clear my Monday nights to watch My Super Sweet 16.

Shake it

I love dancing like a ho.

Sunday, April 29, 2007

Hola chicos

Dear Confession Sessions

I turn on Mexican soap operas right before I go to sleep so I can have dreams in Spanish.


Hey, they wouldn't put it out there if they didn't want me to eat it.

My guilty pleasure is going to whole foods and eating all of their free samples and not purchasing anything.

Hey Comic Book Guy!

Dear Confession Sessions,

I laugh at Comic Book Guy when he starts spouting random superhero factoids during the previews of fantasy action movies ... but, secretly, I know exactly what he's talking about (and maybe more)!!!


Sunday, April 15, 2007


Confession Sessions is an online forum dealing with guilty pleasures.

Confession Sessions asks people, what is your guilty pleasure?

I ask that you send your guilty pleasures to confessionsessions@gmail.com. I will then anonymously post them on the site and leave them open for discussion.

During the month of May 2007, I will be wearing a different guilty pleasure t-shirt everyday from the emails I receive . I will then post pictures and tell you about my experience. Check back often, maybe I'll be wearing your guilty pleasure.

Thank you for your interest, and I look forward to your emails.