Kicking It To The Kerb

  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Oct 10, 2008 1:00 AM GMT
    The past couple of years have been all about detoxing and liberating myself from
    the so-called "necessities" or "inevitablities" of modern life.

    Party Drugs: 36 months this week (Black & Blue)

    Television: 27 months
    It took ten whole months after I had the cable cut for my mind to awaken and, suddenly, I began to feel human for the first time in my life. I won't get into the transformations of perception and the amazing leaps in creativity that have occured as a result, but I invite---nay, challenge!---everyone to give up TV for just one whole year---lock it up in your parents' basement---just to experience the world with completely different eyes..

    "Lifestyle" Magazines: 15 months
    Food, Interiors, Travel, Fashion, Gay, and "Fitness" magazines.
    I realized what a slave to fashion I had become and how it had been seriously cramping my own innate style.

    Alcohol: 12 months this week
    I haven't purchased any in 52 weeks, although -- depending on the circumstances and company -- I'll gladly accept a glass of wine.

    Supermarkets: 12 months
    Didn't like them, never had. Public markets and local independent grocers have everything any individual needs to be happily fed and healthy. "Supermarkets are for buying toilet paper", I decreed, and I've haven't been since. But then again, I can stock up on TP when I purchase hygiene and grooming products at the pharmacy four times a year.

    Sugar: 12 months
    Since banishing supermarkets and so-called 'convenience stores' from my world, it's been extremely easy to forget about sweets, soft drinks, industrial snack foods and the like. They simply don't exist for me anymore, except as rustling wrappers littering the streets or plastic bottles and paper cups crowning the countless overflowing rubbish bins. (edit: I will have dessert when offered, especially if it's homemade; I am a gracious and delightful guest, after all.)

    Meat: 11 months
    I'm not a vegetarian; on my summer-long roadtrip, when people would occasionally invite me over to dinner---praise the gods!---there' was always meat served (and I enjoyed it like never before). It was an exercise in further self-denial prompted by the need to cut expenses for my open-ended sabbatical from society. I will resume buying meat again sometime soon---once I've sourced reliable suppliers of ethically-raised livestock---and reserve it only for weekend dinners and other festive occasions.

    Cigarettes: 5 months
    Nothing to say about this nasty beast but: Finally!


    All of this will certainly seem extreme to a great many of you, impossible even, but I couldn't have effected such massive changes in my life if I hadn't "checked out" from mainstream consumer society for a year, away from the social norms and peer pressure that bind us into little, restricted orbits.


    Any one else make sweeping changes for the better that they're proud of?
    What was the greatest challenge in making the change(s)?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Oct 10, 2008 9:00 PM GMT
    bump
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Oct 10, 2008 9:01 PM GMT

    Yeah, reading threads like this one. icon_twisted.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Oct 10, 2008 9:10 PM GMT
    Wow, Aero. All admirable. Kudos!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Oct 10, 2008 9:12 PM GMT
    wow. that's a lot of change. it actually got me thinking about looking at my life and making some MORE changes. i tend to be very aware of the people in my life and what purpose they are serving. upon moving back to los angeles, i realized the crowd i was running with was more interested in dragging me down, rather than us lifting each other up - so i cleaned house. my new friends are just that - friends. it has made my life so much better.

    congratulations and thanks for the inspiration. off i go to reflect...
  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Oct 10, 2008 9:25 PM GMT
    Glad to hear you gave up cigarettes, fortunately one I never had to begin with. You gave up television and magazines, but you didn't seem to give up time on the computer. How did you arrive at your choices?
  • EricLA

    Posts: 3461

    Oct 10, 2008 9:36 PM GMT
    Aero,

    Great story, congrats on the accomplishment.

    How difficult was it for you to quit sugar? I would love to cut down, maybe even banish it, but I think it is my one substance addiction.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Oct 11, 2008 12:44 AM GMT
    WOW! You've been sober for a whole year?

    Way to go, bro!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Oct 11, 2008 12:46 AM GMT
    Yeah. I can't quite believe it myself. Thank you!

    And thanks for the kudos, guys---even you, GiGi. :-)
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Oct 11, 2008 12:47 AM GMT
    I haven't been sober for a whole year since I was 13.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Oct 11, 2008 12:56 AM GMT
    metroPAULitan said i tend to be very aware of the people in my life and what purpose they are serving. upon moving back to los angeles, i realized the crowd i was running with was more interested in dragging me down, rather than us lifting each other up - so i cleaned house. my new friends are just that - friends. it has made my life so much better.

    congratulations and thanks for the inspiration. off i go to reflect...


    Well, PAUL, I can certainly relate to the notion of "house-cleaning". I flushed EVERYONE in order to re-invent myself and my life the way I saw fit. I, too, took stock of those that I had surrounded myself with over the years, and after much deliberation, I just let them all go. I hadn't had friends in YEARS, I realized, only playmates and accomplices that didn't want me to grow up.

    The time has come for me to consciously choose my new friends. Got any tips or advice on how to proceed with this crucial undertaking? I've only been a conscious being for some 17 months. O, the infinite curious tasks required of mortals---I don't think I'll ever be bored again!


    until Monday.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Oct 11, 2008 12:59 AM GMT
    Wow, you were a mess....drugs, alcohol, cigarettes, fashion slave ... icon_eek.gif ...Personally, I never got into all that crap in the first place.


    Now, what about your shitty personality, zero? Are you the same arrogant ...hmmmm...I'll just say......person ....since I would hate to disparage donkeys .....you have been on here?
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Oct 11, 2008 1:49 AM GMT
    My word.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Oct 11, 2008 2:19 AM GMT
    I lived without television for about three years in the mid/late-80s, and they were the most social years of my life. It helped that most of my friends didn't have TVs either. I did definitely miss it now and then (like when all my friends left town for a holiday), but on balance I think I was better off without it.
  • Thirdbeach

    Posts: 1364

    Oct 11, 2008 2:30 AM GMT
    Congratulations on making some positive life choices and sticking to them.

    I, however must admit;

    Party Drugs/Cigarettes: never done them...

    Television: I cut the off the cable company back in 1989. Never missed it. I do watch once and awhile at friends places

    "Lifestyle" Magazines: stopped buying fitness magazines some years ago, I guess I got too old for them.

    Alcohol: its been about 23 hours since my last drink. I too, gladly accept a glass of wine when offered.

    Supermarkets: Public markets and small stores are much better, I live in neighbourhood with a lot in walking distance.

    Big Box stores: I do not support them, except for Home Depot.

    Sugar: I would like to cut this back in diet. Any tips?

    Meat: I like a good steak or Hamburger, but not everyday. I eat some Vegetarian meals each week, but not everyday.

    Car: I do not drive if I can walk to my destination.


  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Oct 13, 2008 3:59 PM GMT
    EricLA saidAero,
    How difficult was it for you to quit sugar? I would love to cut down, maybe even banish it, but I think it is my one substance addiction.


    Well, actually... I've been coming off sugar for quite some years now---including all industrial foods save saltines and some dry dessert biscuits to have on hand "just in case"---eliminating one, then another, and then another. But I'd always have on hand some sort of sugar (white, brown, caster, raw, etc.) for baking, the occasional dessert concoction and for certain traditional dishes that required some sweetening to taste authentic (Austrian and Cantonese mainly).

    As I stated in the OP, just by virtue of swearing off supermarkets and convenience stores, I never even think of processed, factory foods---not even crisps.

    To break my habits, some years ago I'd only leave the house with EXACTLY the money I calculated that I'd NEED each particular day, and do that for 30-day cycles.

    Another technique that really worked for me, even though I came to realize it ten years after I had read about somewhere or other: the pain/pleasure principle. If you attach enough painful associations to something, eventually it'll become too unbearable. This will sound terribly haughty to some, but for me, I came to associate sugary industrial non-foods with 'low-lifes'. Brutal, I know, but I'd actually LOOK at the people that walked around with 2-litre bottles of cola as if it were a hot fashion accessory, count the number of gargantuan shapeless arses attached to the super-sized-shake-sucking beings, or look at the street people that spend the few coins they have on chips and alcopops and Oreos. I'd look at all these things and think to myself "This shyte is for the ignorant, the irresponsible, and the downright ugly. It's completely undignified." After a while, I promise you, you won't want to touch any of that stuff when all it does is bring to mind unpalatable images.

    Mind you, even though I won't be bringing that stuff into my own home again, I'll probably be the first to attack the cheezpuffs at any party and I don't go around judging everyone as 'trash' for buying these things---I surely have consumed enough in my time; was raised on it.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Oct 13, 2008 4:03 PM GMT
    I don't even have sugar.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Oct 13, 2008 5:15 PM GMT
    I gave up WATER.....I got tired of having to walk on it....Huh?

    Actually, congrats on the detox program....it has an almost zen-like quality of self denial to reconect with your soul,,,,not to mention saving money. If you feel better for it and it works for you, I bow in respect to your accomplishment. Keep up the good work.
    Sporty_G icon_biggrin.gif
  • UncleverName

    Posts: 741

    Oct 13, 2008 7:11 PM GMT
    Wow. Way to go on all of that.
  • Timbales

    Posts: 13993

    Oct 14, 2008 12:57 AM GMT
    I have given up:
    wheat (gluten)
    coffee
    dairy
    sugar
    soda/pop

    I'm 20lbs lighter for it and counting.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Oct 14, 2008 1:28 AM GMT
    HndsmKansan saidGlad to hear you gave up cigarettes, fortunately one I never had to begin with. You gave up television and magazines, but you didn't seem to give up time on the computer. How did you arrive at your choices?

    Alas, I'm not the quite the Luddite I suspected I might be; the computer is an indispensible tool for information gathering and communication. The very next day after taking my leave from RJ, in early February, I cancelled my internet and telephone connexions 'indefinitely' and it was only in July that I started reconnecting with the world that I had left behind. This entire year, it turns out, has been about determining the true value of just about everything that made up my (increasingly unsatisfactory) life.

    That's how I arrived at my choices basically: cut out the unnecessary crap that provides little or absolutely no positive returns.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Oct 14, 2008 1:56 AM GMT
    Caslon7000 saidWow, you were a mess....drugs, alcohol, cigarettes, fashion slave ... icon_eek.gif ...Personally, I never got into all that crap in the first place.


    Now, what about your shitty personality, zero? Are you the same arrogant ...hmmmm...I'll just say......person ....since I would hate to disparage donkeys .....you have been on here?


    Everywhere I looked today I saw Parthenocissus Quinquefolia in their dazzling autumn hues, which got me to thinking of one particular specimen that invariably displayed only this highly distasteful shade of Green. I wondered if it might be coaxed into turning over a new leaf, but, given the nature of this Virginia Creeper, decided that it wasn't very probable---it's far too entrenched at this point---and no matter how much it might will itself to develop some Colour it would never, ever, be qualified enough to be me. :-)
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Oct 14, 2008 1:59 AM GMT
    MikeOnMain saidI lived without television for about three years in the mid/late-80s, and they were the most social years of my life. It helped that most of my friends didn't have TVs either. I did definitely miss it now and then (like when all my friends left town for a holiday), but on balance I think I was better off without it.


    I learned HOW to make friends this summer because I ditched the tube---and without pop culture as an opener. I so love being out of that loop and actually listening to people talk about what's interesting in THEIR lives.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Oct 14, 2008 2:19 AM GMT
    All I can say is: Life is way to short not to drink, and I am a diabetic, so I make it shorter!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
    Log in to view his profile

    Oct 14, 2008 2:20 AM GMT
    Pattison saidAll I can say is: Life is way to short not to drink, and I am a diabetic, so I make it shorter!


    What on earth are you babbling about now?