You can’t be serious…28 February, 2009
Scott has given up video games for Lent. This is extraordinary. I predict that by Easter he will be very good on guitar, have watched an awful lot of films, and find that his thumbs have wasted away.
Meanwhile, Heather is doing Fair Trade Fortnight: fair trade and local food only. I understand that it’s pretty difficult unless you can live on coffee, bananas and vegetables, but she seems to be surviving. In an ideal world, it wouldn’t be difficult; I guess that’s the point.
Giving something up is an interesting experiment in how much of a hold it has on you (usually not as much as you think) and your culture (usually huge). It’s also interesting to find out how your attitude to it changes afterwards: do you still want to go back?
Things I deliberately have given up (not counting things that just sorta happened, like TV and Windows):
- Gave up alcohol for a month. Missed wine.
- Went vegetarian for a week. It was fun, leading to many new foods and strange conversations. It turned into two weeks. Then it stuck (and I had to tell my parents). It’s roughly the same warm fuzzy feeling as refactoring code; to use an entirely inappropriate analogy, being vegetarian is like swallowing a kitten ;). I miss fish. That’s about it.
- BBC News Have Your Say: I used to read it religiously every day during my lunch break. Most of the topics boiled down to: driving (in which men, women, old people, young people, native people, foreign people, car drivers, van drivers, lorry drivers and cyclists are clearly dangerous and should be banned from the road), The Youth Of Today (hooded criminals who should be banned from going outside), video games (direct causal links to obesity and violence and should be banned) and banning things (there’s far too much of it, and the phrases ‘nanny state’ and ‘cotton wool’ would be used liberally). That’s a whole extra dose of gloom every day, and really, who needs that?
All well and good. But those are not quite in the same league as Abi giving up tea or Scott giving up his One True Purpose.
Things I would have big problems giving up:
- The Internet
- Sleeping too much