Meeting your future sister-in-law can be an intimidating experience. Lucky for us, the introduction was made easier by an instant connection over reality TV. More specifically, Season 7 of The Bachelorette. Upon meeting, we spent hours watching Ashley Hebert in her quest for love and took turns talking (perhaps sometimes yelling) at the TV, as our relationship advice needed to be heard.
Silly as it may seem, our shared interest in the distribution of roses and two-on-one dates served as a welcome ice breaker. Our initial nervousness dissipated as we discovered that beyond the roles of brother’s girlfriend and sister, we might actually be friends.
In the five years since then, we’ve bonded over a little bit of everything – career changes, the seeming difficulty of creating new connections as an adult, relationship insecurities, the current political landscape, and, of course, our moderately competitive Bachelor Fantasy League, four seasons strong.
Our love of celeb culture has not dwindled in the past few years – if anything, it’s gotten stronger. We’ll proudly tell you that we’re hardcore Beliebers, that we’re genuinely curious about Taylor Swift‘s relationship status, and that we find inspiration in many famous actresses. And so with that, we want to take a minute to tell everyone who may be listening that it is okay to care about celebrities. In fact, it’s more than okay.
Last week, Demi Lovato went on a tweet-storm about society’s obsession with celebs.
Almost the same day, Thirty On Tap‘s editor De shared an article she wrote about Pretty Little Liars on her Facebook page, to which someone commented: “Wow, glad you’re writing about the important issues here.”
And before we continue, let’s be clear – we love Demi, and we appreciate how outspoken she is regarding the things she’s passionate about. And the aforementioned FB commenter is a d*bag who doesn’t really deserve to be discussed. But the sentiment in both Demi’s twitter rant and the FB commenter is the same. It’s a sentiment that says, “You care about celebrities, therefore you don’t care about anything else that’s important. You’re writing about TV shows, so you must not know what’s going on in the world. You enjoy consuming the fruits of pop-culture, therefore you are ignorant.”
Here’s the thing though – caring about celebrities and caring about “issues” are not mutually exclusive from one another. Human beings are complex creatures who can care about a diverse array of things. And caring about one thing doesn’t detract from caring about something else.
Furthermore, and perhaps more importantly, caring about celebrities doesn’t make you ignorant, stupid, vapid, or silly. Part of why the average person loves celebrities so much is because we recognize ourselves in them. We see this superstar in the public eye, and we find something to which we can relate. Whether it’s a common identity, or sexuality, or a struggle with a disease or mental illness – celebrities regularly remind us that we are not alone.
Plus, as we mentioned at the start of this post, celebrities and entertainment give us something to bond over. A shared interest (or a shared dismay) might be the start of a conversation with a future partner, or, in our case, best friends and sisters. Pop culture allows us to connect with one another, and get further in touch with ourselves.
What’s more, by the time we flip away from the nightly news or close the tab after scrolling though today’s top headlines, we often feel disheartened, sometimes even hopeless. We’re saddened and quite honestly, frightened, by the things happening in our community, our country, and the world. While we want to be informed and educated on supreme court rulings and international relations, the heaviness of these issues often leaves us craving an escape to something more lighthearted.
And, at the end of the day, people are free to enjoy what they enjoy. Some people enjoy video games. Some people enjoy sports. And others enjoy paying attention to Kylie Jenner’s latest hair color. Perhaps you enjoy all three. And none of it means that you don’t care about the 2016 election, or global warming, or any other socio-political issue of our time.
So, if you need us, we’ll be updating our fantasy league chart and figuring out who got the most points in this week’s Bachelorette episode. Because it makes us happy to do so.