A Nunnery—Habit No. 3: Left wrong to write right


Practicing moderation in moderation. <– Platitudinous Garbage…

We’re moving onto Habit No. 3: practicing moderation in moderation left wrong to write right…

A Nunnery—Habit No. 3: Left wrong to write right

I started writing about an important habit of mine. I lacked a good way to describe it. The habit was/is important enough that I needed to find the perfect way to describe it before I continued writing about it. What would the perfect phrase sound like? With (my) communication, I focus on accuracy, concision, humour, and originality. I’d also include impression but—actually, on second thought, I will include impression. Oh also, it needed to reflect my identity! Let’s try that again:

With (my) communication, I focus on accuracy, concision, humour, impression, and originality. It also needs to reflect my identity.

My description of the habit needed to satisfy all of that. Soon after I realized what I needed, I hit a wall. I couldn’t write further about that habit, but I also knew that if I stopped writing, everything would fall apart; it was easy to keep writing, but difficult to start. I needed to keep writing, so I wrote down the next thing that came to mind:

practicing moderation in moderation

Was that the right phrase? I didn’t know; I just felt uneasy. Why? Seriously, I didn’t know. It just felt… off… Why did it disquiet me? Perhaps looking at how it lined up with my criteria would answer that:

Was it accurate?

Not enough…

Was it concise?


Was it humorous?

Not enough…

Would it impress?


Was it original?

It felt too familiar to be original. Where did I hear it…?

Did it reflect my identity?


Okay, so practicing moderation in moderation wasn’t right. Still, it was something to build on: that’s what mattered. Now I could iterate on it to find the right description. I left something wrong (the mediocre first attempt “practicing moderation in moderation”) behind in my writing, so I could continue writing until I got it right (i.e. found the ideal phrase). This was when the fire nation attacked my mind derailed me…

I often get derailed by thoughts and memories. How often is often? My conservative guess is about once/h (on average). It frustrated me; it still frustrates me. It’s not something I got used to—just something I’ve learned to live with. It interferes consistently; it inhibits me from functioning well in society. It’s part of why I stick out (in a bad way). It contributes greatly to my overall misery when dealing with professional matters… It’s awful when dealing with personal matters… From others’ perspectives, some guy frequently experiencing flashbacks is damaged goods—it’s not worth their time or money… (Note: do I believe that about myself? –> It doesn’t matter; I’m not the one in power (in these situations)…) Anyway, experience has taught me that my best approach to resolving this—in a socially convenient way—is to follow those thoughts and memories until I calmed down, and then return to what I needed to address before the interruption… Avoiding or denying them always ends poorly… Also, there’s always a bunch tangled together—the most influential ones are upsetting and disruptive (e.g. might induce a panic attack): I will not be discussing any of those right now. Some of the memories and thoughts are relevant though—there’s always at least one of those; I’ll take you through the most relevant one here:

Sometime within the past five (give or take two) years, I was chatting with a close friend of mine about the same problem… I was attempting to explain myself. Back then (like right now…) I was struggling to stay on topic, so I threw out my first attempt at describing it, and hoped it would lead somewhere (like right now…): practicing moderation in moderation… I didn’t receive the reaction I expected—no, not expected; I didn’t evoke the reaction I wanted… I was trying to evoke a polite laugh—a laugh of acknowledgement and understanding: that’s what I aim for when explaining myself to close friends (or when I’m likely to receive constructive, valuable feedback). So, I expected a sarcastic “Ha ha, very funny; I get it.”; instead, I received a squint of suspicion: “I can’t tell if he’s being serious.” (Picture Fry from Futurama…) This surprised me; it intrigued me. I needed to know why they weren’t reacting how I expected. As one of my closer friends, I trusted their judgement enough to further pursue the topic: it paid off!

They’d encountered “practicing moderation in moderation” frequently on a social media platform that I shall not name (Hint: it involves faces, perhaps a few books, and plenty of disinformation…). During their explanation, I realized the phrase wasn’t just unoriginal; it was far worse: it was platitudinous… I loathe platitudes… (Pardon me for being vague. For now, please understand that the realization was triggering…) It set off feelings of rage and disgust (at myself) accompanied by self-loathing (more than usual), and attenuated to frustration at my inability to explain my thoughts clearly. That cascade lasted less than a second; it culminated with uneasiness… Yes, it was the same uneasiness I was feeling now. Suddenly, I remembered what I called it—

Welcome back to the present! Acknowledging that memory reminded me that I’d already named the habit; it helped me remember the phrase: binge bingeing. There! I know exactly what to call what I set out to write about, and I found—through my habit of leaving something behind so I could continue writing—the right phrase.

I appreciate you taking the time to read this. Next time, we’ll move on to the more important habit—habit no. 4: binge bingeing.

Thank you for your time,
Roybert S. Henanigans

P.S. 96: I’ve updated my Contact Me page explaining how you can help me if you choose to. This includes a messaging form, my gmail address, my Twitter account, and a donation button to my Ko-Fi page. I’ll update specifics gradually. If there’s one thing I could ask for above all else, I’d ask for two—then I’d use one of those two to say that the best way to help is to share my work with someone.

On a serious note, thank you so much for reading—it truly means the world to me!


Published by justcallmeroybert


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