Everyone has a guilty pleasure: From chocolate chip cookies at midnight to watching Gilmore Girls with a tub of ice cream for the millionth time, there’s something we all do when we’re desperate for comfort, and never tell anyone. And here comes my confession, my ultimate guilty pleasure: Reality TV. From ”Survivor” to ”Love Island,” from “The Circle” to “Bachelor in Paradise,” I’ve watched it all. With a tub of ice cream and popcorn handy, wrapped up in my favorite blanket and sitting in my “spot” on the couch. My suitemates know I’ve assumed my position for the day when I then proceed to turn on the tv and watch the tenth season of “Love Island.”

As a connoisseur of reality TV, I will state that it is as far from reality as it can be. Most shows involve perfectly sculpted humans socializing in a beach house in an attempt to find “the one”. So how does an international student and no-bullshit STEM major get sucked in by the blackhole that is reality TV? It starts with self-indulgent cringe-watching with a group of gal pals, but before you know it, your perception starts to warp and you’re suddenly actually invested in Grocery Store Joe and his struggles in Paradise. Believe it or not, I bonded over a very pretentious show called “The Circle” with a friend that I had absolutely nothing else in common with at that point. Shows like these, despite their seeming stupidity, can be great conversation starters!

Reality shows are entertaining, and they have something for everyone: From baking competitions to mating shows, you can find your thing, killing hours of your time by binging one of these gems on TV. And this brings me to “Rochester in Paradise”: an outlet for a school filled with stressed-out overachievers. When I first saw the Instagram notification for this incredibly close-to-home reality show, I was beyond psyched. I think it was about time that something like this came into being, after a slew of initiatives like UR Matched and the Marriage Pact. The Instagram story’s highlights of application snippets for our silly little home-grown reality show are not only entertaining, but also very intriguing. The fact that one of the “celebs” on the show may be behind you in the Douglass pasta line is, I believe, very funny and exciting. 

So, if you’re one of those reality TV haters, I’d say just give it a shot. It has something for almost anyone, and I promise you won’t be disappointed.



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