Lent starts today. I don’t participate. I may have the least amount of religious knowledge of any college educated person in America, so I hope I don’t offend anyone by using the idea of Lent for this post. If I do, it was unintended and please forgive my simple ignorance. Lent is a trending topic on Yahoo today, which allows me to familiarize myself with some of the ins and outs quite easily. I’ve always been somewhat aware of Lent, and of people giving things up. They shun chocolate, beer, caffeine or something else near and dear to their hearts for six weeks and then come Easter it’s time to celebrate. If I had to do this, what would I give up?
First, let’s take a look at the easy ways out:
Beer: Beer would be a total lay-up for me. It is about the only alcohol I drink, but the amazing thing is as I’ve grown into full adulthood I don’t drink that much. I can go a few weeks without drinking a beer just by accident. If you saw me at 21 or 22 you’d be impressed that I gave up beer, but these days I’d coast through the six weeks in a cakewalk.
Specific Dessert: I feel like this is the easiest way out. I could give up chocolate. It wouldn’t be a good time, but I’d persevere. That doesn’t mean I wouldn’t be shoveling vast quantities of vanilla ice cream into my mouth or turning the glazed donut into America’s new favorite dessert. It’d be even easier if I gave up ice cream or cookies or brownies. I’d just load up in the other areas.
Soda/Caffeinated Beverages: If you didn’t know me, you’d be impressed. If you do know me, you’d know I’ve never once had a cup of coffee in my life, was permanently turned off soda after having free fountain access in the dining hall freshman year, and about the only stimulant I drink is Iced Tea. So, quitting caffeinated beverages would be another lay-up for me. No problem.
Television: Back during the summer I lived in bumble cuss Michigan we didn’t have a television device. Pretty spartan accommodations at the crib. You know what, you get used to it. This isn’t to say I didn’t catch some TV at a bar or at work from time to time, but for the better part of 5 months I didn’t watch anything on television. I think this would be easy, but I might have to forcibly remove my TV from my apartment.
So what would be impossible for me to give up? What would I choose if I really wanted to make a sacrifice?
The Internet. There’s no doubt. I’d love to go back in time and talk to my 10-year-old self or whatever and tell him that one day he’d be mystically and magically attached to this thing called the Internet. I remember the first time I saw the process of going online. I want to say it was maybe 1993. A friend of mine had a “modem” and took the time to show me the wonders of Prodigy. I don’t want to speak out of turn but I am pretty sure there wasn’t even search engines at this point. He had this giant book of Internet addresses. It was like the yellow pages or something. I have no idea where he got it. Anyway, it was a wild and amazing thing. I had no idea how this could all be happening through the phone line, and then he showed me pictures of naked women.
Fast forward to the present and it is amazing how often I lean on the Internet like a familiar crutch that I can’t do without. When it penetrated my phone a few years back it just worsened my addiction. It is amazing how I can’t stand not having a specific piece of information anymore. I don’t wonder about things. I just immediately look them up. Phone, computer, someone else’s phone, whatever.
It’d be almost impossible to quit the Internet at this point and lead your life I would imagine. It is so ubiquitous that unless you are living off the grid you wouldn’t be able to get away with quitting the Internet unless everyone else gave it up as well. You’d have to call a lot more people. Imagine the horror. I can’t. So, that’s it for me, in the realm of chocolate, alcohol and everything else, I’d have to say my websites are most important to me. After all, I do blabber away here almost every day.
Quiz of the Day: Civil War Generals. Category: The War of Northern Aggression. My Score: 13/20.