I'm comfortable with my place somewhere in the top third of Kardashian-Jenner family fandom, a part of my life I've managed to sneak into my work here at The Verge. I've written about Kim Kardashian's battles with the FDA over an Instagram ad for morning sickness medication. I've written about the injustice of the region-blocking applied to Kris Jenner's 60th birthday video. I've considered buying Khloé Kardashian's self-help book / recipe collection / workout diary Strong Looks Better Naked for personal reasons despite its terrible title and ambiguous purpose.
And while I've always prided myself on steering clear of the various Kardashian-Jenner subscription-based apps — exclusive live streams, smoothie recipes, and outfit guides be damned — I'm sad to report that I was broken today. Kim Kardashian blogged about eating her placenta, and I knew right away I was willing to shell out at least $2.99 per month to read about her adventures in placentophagy.
I'm not belittling people who choose to eat their placentas for the alleged medical benefits, or even for tradition's sake. (I haven't even come close to an opportunity to make a personal decision in this regard.) I had to take a moment to justify the immediate compulsion I felt to read about Kim's experience with her benign-looking placenta capsules.
I like the fantasy of Kim Kardashian, hippie-leaning mommy blogger
It boils down to this: there is something intriguing about one of the world's proudest and most prominent mothers — a woman I admire and respect for both her business acumen and social consciousness, if not her musical career — endorsing a natural post-partum medication that's somewhere outside the border of mainstream consciousness. And I'll admit I'm tickled by the fantasy of Kim Kardashian, hippie-leaning mommy blogger; I like the idea of Kim sitting at a broad, impressive desk, hunching over her laptop and struggling to find the right shade of purple-blue that describes her placenta pills. I don't like it because it's infantilizing or patronizing. I like it because it sounds like my life, or at least a weirder, more fabulous alternate version of it.
So! Having shelled out my personal and credit card information to KimKorp, I should give you the scoop on the quality of this placenta-centric blog entry. My excitement probably peaked upon reaching the entry screen, where I was greeted by a lovely black-and-white snapshot and a header: "From the Desk of: Eating My Placenta."
Unfortunately, I couldn't sustain my Kim-the-blogger fantasy for much longer. "Eating My Placenta" is more like Kim's aforementioned Instagram ad than a reflective, first-person blog post; it finishes with a linked ad for a placenta encapsulation service in Los Angeles. A quick summary of what I learned:
Kim is "really not this holistic person," i.e. the kind of person who'd usually try this. Her older sister Kourtney is usually down for this kind of thing, but the status of her placenta is currently unknown.
Some people fry their placentas like steaks and eat them. Kim's was freeze-dried and turned into a bunch of pills.
She feels "a surge of energy" every time she takes one.
Now that I've read everything there is to know about Kim's placentophagy experience, I'm torn on whether or not to maintain my monthly subscription. On one hand, the next article linked below "Eating My Placenta" is "Pregnancy Update: My Baby Boy is TURNT!" I can't deny my interest in learning exactly why Kim could tell the young Saint West was TURNT well before he was even born. But temporarily subscribing to Kim's app may have had the opposite effect I expected: instead of enabling an even greater kind of fandom, it's revealed my personal limit. When my experience with Kim's placenta stops at her tweeted picture of the lovely little pill bottle, she's still open to interpretation. The blog post can read however I want it to read; the mommy-blogging dream Kim remains intact in my imagination, pacing around her office with writer's block. In the real world, I've just paid three dollars to read an advertisement for a LA boutique an intern might've spun up before grabbing lunch.
Negotiating the extent of your fandom is an inescapable part of contemporary celebrity culture, one I don't often have reason to consider. I'm glad I know Khloé's book is called Strong Looks Better Naked, and I can revel in its nonsense; I'm not going to actually read it. I love the thought of Ben Affleck's midlife crisis back tattoo, but I don't want to see it in full or hear about why he paid for it. It's almost a relief: it took a paywalled blog post about eating placenta to remind me gorging on celebrity lives isn't always filling.