joy breeds habits; habits, addictions -- there I am
I do not drink alcohol. I more than make it up on soft drinks.
I loved them from the first time I tasted one. I basically like them all. Even though I pretty much stick to the diet versions, these days, I like basically every brand. I do heavily favor ones with caffeine, however.
I don’t drink coffee, either. Or milk. I drink fruit juice maybe twice a year.
I will, however, drink tea. I like tea equally well, but, unlike soft drinks, there is a lot of tea sold out there I do not like. The kind I like is more trouble to buy (and more expensive) — or more trouble to make, which I just don’t ever do. So I end up drinking either soft drinks, energy drinks (which to me are just extra-caffeinated soft drinks) or water.
Water comes in a distant third. I of course know it ought to be a distant first.
In wondering why it is I knowingly do something that I am aware is suboptimal, healthwise, I find myself going through a series of excuses. But at the bottom of all of those is “because I want to”.
That I am addicted to caffeine is evident. I have gotten off it (for as long as 18 months, as an older adult) and the transition period was not particularly fun. At that time, I used heavy exercise to get my heart going fast enough to duplicate the effects of caffeine in my body; which would be much more difficult to do at the age I am now.
Difficult, but not impossible.
I’ve seldom been able to use the positive aspects of my personality (like willpower) to make positive changes in my life; as it turns out, the negative aspects of my personality (like being a creature of habit) have been much more useful in achieving healthier results. So I would have to make a habit out of water consumption and avoiding caffeine, just as I did 12 years ago.
But I don’t know that I will. I mean, I also ought to eat healthier, exercise more, find more constructive ways to deal with stress, be more understanding of my fellow human beings, do more for others, care less what other people think, and finish a book once in a while.
I don’t know that I will effectively do any of those things, either.
The term “wrong” is used ambiguously in everyday conversation; for that reason, people equivocate between the wrong of ingesting too much caffeine and the wrong of (say) stealing. In between those might be any number of other “wrongs” that turn out to either be a big deal, or not, depending on one’s perspective.
Just as a trivial example, I know a guy who screams online daily about the immorality of certain NCAA football rule violations, but who has no problem parking in handicapped parking spots he isn’t entitled to. He definitely thinks the former of those two things is a bigger deal than the latter; I might think the opposite. From such sources do many of the ongoing disputes of humanity arise, although, not in this case, as I have never brought the subject up with him — nor do I plan to.
I do not feel like I am in any position to deal in moral judgments; I am too flawed. I tend to fall back on what I will call “effective judgments”, which don’t deal as much with good/bad dichotomies as better/worse ones.
Like, it would be better to have a purpose to these essays than not. But having one doesn’t make the essay “good”, just better.
Better than what, I’ll leave up to you.