By the time you read this, I am likely eating the chocolate covered almonds given to me as a birthday gift a week and a half ago. And I may or may not be having Nutella and a bowl of vanilla ice cream with pecan pieces thrown on top. Don’t want to go into a sugar shock or destroy my teeth any more than necessary, you know? While I may finally be able to eat chocolate again, it doesn’t mean I have to go and make myself sick. Already having a bit of that right now, and let me tell you, I look forward to not having to go to the bathroom so much. TMI, yes, so moving on.
And I did fail the challenge of not eating chocolate for this Lent. Were there any doubts it would be otherwise? I failed on three separate occasions, and all quite funny stories. My first failure was by strange mistake, one fueled by exhaustion from work. I had gotten in the habit of driving around town and exploring after buying snacks from the local Kwik Trip, and I had a craving for some peanut butter cookies. I quickly picked up a case, and over the course of the next couple days after that night munched on two cookies driving to and from work. Halfway through the container, I finally noticed the type of cookies they were via the label: white chocolate chip and macadamia nut. I honestly don’t know how I could have made the mistake, especially given they look nothing like Kwik Trip peanut butter cookies. Strangely enough, I discovered they taste similar when I eventually bought real peanut butter cookies later on (though white chocolate was slightly sweeter).
The next failure was from another one of those Kwik Trip visits, and I made sure to buy one of the Halloween themed Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, because I knew they would have more peanut butter and I love that stuff. I didn’t buy this on the hope of having it the day I was finally released from the Lent, because that would have been smart. No, I bought it for basic and normal consumption as always. Once again, eating chocolate is so very normal for me, and I forgot I was in the midst of a Lent and couldn’t sample treats that only came once a year. This happened on my last Lent for chocolate as well, so at least I’m being consistent? I know that’s a bad thing, shut up.
And my final failure was completely on purpose. Yep! I knew I was on Lent, and I made the choice to break my vow and partake of a chocolate chip cookie from Jimmy John’s. But it was for a good reason!…If you consider keeping a consistent schedule with my video production a good reason that is. I feel it trumps a lot of things in my life, especially Lent, and will likely never be given up for any amount of days because I have too much to be doing. The video I broke my vow for was a Strange Combos In My Mouth episode, and it’s my newest to date. Pretty soon I’ll need to force myself to make another one, because schedules: they are important.
Now for the next Lent. This one is going to be hard. I’ve said that before about a lot of things, but this is no joke. I’ve made it fairly obvious how entrenched I am in the world of media and pop culture. I once gave up Channel Awesome because I was watching too many reviewers while not getting my own work done. Porn was given its own attempt as well (twice actually), though I merely went to other avenues to arouse that technically weren’t porn. I spend so many hours on YouTube, and I even spend too much time playing Neopets or my Gameboy (latter doesn’t count too much given when I play, but as it goes). Despite how I say I wish to be a producer of entertainment, all I seem to be is a consumer of entertainment. Starting here till December 19, 2012, I give up my addiction of entertainment.
Pretty much doomed to fail, isn’t it? But I have to try, you know? To help keep the focus, here is a list of items I need to keep in mind. There will likely be things I missed, but let it be known that this is enough to make me go mad till December 19, 2012. I have pretty much had my life revolve around entertainment for so long…
- I will stay away from videos hosted by YouTube, Channel Awesome, Newgrounds, etc. and not seek out their entertainment because I am bored. Should I use any of these services, they will be for the purpose of research, production or communication. This mostly applies to YouTube, for which I use as a platform for my creations and small income (first check in December). Should I be in a social environment, however, viewing such places is okay, because I’m not wasting time but building a connection with another.
- Video games shall not be touched, be they from consoles I own (Gameboy, PS1, NES, etc.) or games that are played from a computer (bye bye Newgrounds). The exception to gaming is if I’m playing with another, and it is therefore a social act and thus permissible. MMO games are not social, however, so no Realm of the Mad God, okay?
- No porn in any capacity, be it video, photographs, comics, or text. This also includes that which isn’t considered porn, because I would still be wasting my time on entertainment. Not quite sure if the socializing rule applies to this, because I don’t know anyone who could possibly want to share such a moment with me. Single and all, so…*shrug*
- Movie theaters, DVDs, VHS, or even digital copies of movies will not be watched on my own, unless they are for the purpose of research or work (mostly a future idea, but whatever). The obvious socializing rule, but its to be handled with care, for there is a slipping slope for when it becomes move than basic socializing. Films take awhile to watch yo!
- Neopets will only be allowed for the sake of keeping up with other users. I’m bad at keeping up with folks, and my Lent for Neopets showed that, because I forgot who I was even having conversations with. Those conversations were slow, mind you, with a week or more spanning between each message, so…again, bad at keeping up with folks.
- Any social act with another living being, even if it’s as little as a Facebook message or Tweet, is allowed. Socializing it awesome! At least that’s the thought I have to start keeping in mind. I’m a horrid socializer as it stands, and when I’m literally drowning myself in self absorbed entertainment, I forget that some of the best times I’ve ever had were with others, despite how much anxiety it put me through. Instead of watching others raise the price of bacon, connect with a friend, and even plan a visit.
- Books are also okay, because at this point it’s not consumerism, but goal completion. There are plenty of books I own I haven’t even read yet, so taking out one at a time for Great Justice will give me a huge break. If I’m smart, it will become my sleep aid now that I can’t play my Gameboy.
- I don’t listen to music that much, so should it happen it’s quite alright. Just need to make sure it’s from musicians I haven’t heard in awhile or heard at all. Even better, how about catching up on all the Podcasts saved in iTunes? I have over 90+ at this point, all the way back in May 2012. Though music/talking tends to deter me from other goals of concentration, so we shall see.
Doing this Lent is a timely act, because not only is video production getting behind again (despite the fact I’ve uploaded a new video almost every day for a month), it’s NaNoWriMo. I have a fresh story idea that’s bursting to be known, and I’ve only written a little under 6k words at this time, when I’m supposed to be over 16k, with 50k by November 30th. I plan to damn well finish a novel this time, because I’m tired of saying to myself I’m going to participate or even consider finishing. So I’m finishing, and punching the idea of “just participating” in the face.
And yet, it’s during this time I find myself wanting to catch up with all the other things I haven’t been doing, like unfucking my habitat and cleaning up my body, mind, and lifestyle along with all the other projects mentioned. It’s a never-ending process, I tell you, but I suppose I wouldn’t have it any other way. Hoping to keep true to this Lent, because it’s otherwise my biggest attempt thus far. Lots to gain should I keep it as well. Ever I knock on wood.