Sunday, April 6, 2008

Day 92 - "Red letter day that I learn, I'm sure you'll get what you deserve..."


Today marks exactly 3 months into my little experiment. I'm officially a quarter of a year into my 365 days off from gaming, and, as luck with have it, also now 29 1/4 years old. That's the first time I've taken note of my 1/4 birthday*.

So far my life hasn't changed that dramatically, though a few catalysts have set things into motion. I'm definitely a lot more productive on the weekends - as they were the last bastion of free time I had available to devote to games before I gave them up. I've noticed that I've had to turn down the opportunity to play games socially (one of my biggest regrets with all of this was not allowing for a "social gaming" clause in my contract) more often than I thought I would have to. Which inevitably leads to my having to tell new people my 'story'.

What's funny about telling people I've given up video games for a year, is that it's not something that most people in the world would ever consider giving up since, well, very few of them even get that it's possible to play that much. It'd be like someone telling me they've given up scented candle shopping for a year. I can't fathom someone having to actually wake up one day, take a good look at their life, and come to the realization that they 'need a break' from time spent wandering through malls for 'the perfect vanilla-lavender combo*'.

So whenever I wind up telling anyone that I've given up video games for a year - I've instantly given them the unspoken back-story into my history with games. I've clearly come to this decision because of an unhealthy addiction to them. Maybe there was an intervention at some point? Did I seek counseling? Have relationships suffered? Was I alone, sobbing silently to myself, wiping tears away with my Wiimotes when I decided to make a change? I'm sure all of these questions flash quickly in everyone's mind upon hearing of my game abstinence.

Of course none of that stuff happened, but it's human nature to let your imagination fill in the gaps. I certainly would do that if I met anyone involved in AA. At least the people who give a damn immediately ask about the story behind my decision, and at that point I do my best to put the best spin on the story as possible. In the future I might just start telling people I lost some kind of bet to avoid all the hullabaloo.

Other than that - not much else has changed. I still frequent all the gaming websites I used to - I don't know if that's helping or hurting, or doing nothing at all. It's another small addiction of mine, one that's possibly heightened a bit since I gave up playing them. To borrow from the alcoholic analogy one more time, visiting them is probably the equivalent of walking into a bar and sitting down and watching all your friends get sloshed. But all you gotta do in those situations, is sit back with a smug look on your face, confident in the fact that you're better than everyone else in the room/website - cause you're too good for that shit!

-
Matt

Yeah, but I'd still rather be: Hanging out in the streets of Liberty City.

*Though my half birthday is always remembered, since its also the nation's birthday!
*I literally made up this scent on the spot, only to discover that it does exist! This may seem like a fairly obvious and stupid comment to anyone who knows a thing about candles, but keep in mind I am an idiot.

1 comment:

Liz Remus said...

Did you feel you had an unhealthy relationship with video games?