1. In graduate school I compulsively read romance novels, especially ones in a series called “Second Chance at Love” which featured divorced or widowed women meeting new men.
2. Now I compulsively read the Home & Garden sections of the New York Times and the San Francisco Chronicle
3. and also the blog apartmenttherapy.com (both the New York and the San Francisco ones, and sometimes if I’m desperate I’ll read the Los Angeles one) on the web.
I actually know what days the new sections of Home & Garden show up in the newspapers. (I have been especially excited when I have found various poets in the Times Home & Garden over the last year. Katy Lederer and Mei mei Berssenbrugge have both gotten mentions.) I have no idea why I am compulsively collecting information on how to decorate million dollar homes (in the Times and the Chronicle) and rental apartments (apartmenttherapy.com) as I live in neither. But maybe that is the point. I think this reading is related to the romance novel reading.
4. I also indulge in reading that is similar to the romance novel reading by subscribing to New Yorker, Harpers, Dwell, This Old House, Sunset, Wired, and Adbusters. I read all of these either in bath and/or before going to bed as a sort of soporific. If I get behind, I usually take a bunch on an airplane and read while traveling, leaving issues behind as I finish them.
5. Of these, the New Yorker is the only one that I have a really long relationship with. (The others change from year to year.) I have read it cover to cover (but always skipping the poetry, the fiction, the theater reviews, and most of the political analysis) since high school.