Vices schmices

So, I’ve got a couple of vices. By a couple, I pretty much mean a laundry list, but at 23 you don’t need to really evaluate the esteemed place of queso fries and Busch Lights in your life because, well, almost everyone else you know is eating and drinking their faces off as a form of recreation. These habits are not alarming, yet. However, of late, I have been forced to take a long hard look at a couple of my habits that have proven troublesome, namely candy and clothes.

Now for reasons that I am not going to go into here for all of the information superhighway to read I have recently been told to give up sugar. When I told one of my friends this her response was “WTF, you are a candy fiend!” Indeed, it is true. I keep dark chocolate and peanut butter M&M’s stashed all over my office, car and apartment. After I got the news that I was now going to be sugar free I had to dig through every drawer, cabinet, and cubby to get rid of my stash. Upon seeing it all in the garbage I sobbed uncontrollably in my office for 20 minutes and then emailed Boyfriend to ask if I were being irrational. Yes, we concluded, I probably was, but I pretty much always am being irrational so it’s fine. Currently, we are at day 7 AS (after sugar) and I have yet to really cheat. The second I come across some chocolate mousse I guarantee it will be a whole different ball game.

As long as I can remember I have had a serious addiction to clothes. Even as a toddler I had very concrete ideas about the garments I deemed acceptable to put on my back. Ruffle butt bathing suits, great; anything from Talbots, terrible. In high school I refused to wear the same outfit twice. In my dream world this meant at all, but in reality it boiled down to no repeats within a span of about 8 weeks. In college, I was not as rigid with my rules. I mean, I still mostly did not repeat outfits, but this is more because I never, ever did laundry and less because I was a pretentious jerk.

Now that I have an income, my problem with clothing has reached an all time high. Every Wednesday, after work I go to Bloomingdales, just to see what I can see. Half the time, I just wander around finding new things to covet. The other half of the time I become so wildly intoxicated by the buttery soft leather of the handbags or the fabulous three dimensionality of some dress and black out. When I finally come to I’m standing in the parking lot clutching 4 medium brown bags filled with purchases that were really, actually sensible because I will wear them so many times that the actual cost is only like 5 dollars a use.

Fiscally, this is not the most responsible thing to do with my cash money, but it has yet to really do any damage. The problem here arises from the fact that my bedroom has more or less become a glorified closet. I long for the day when I own a home and can justify converting one of the bedrooms into a big ass closet to house all of my clothes strategically organized by color, occasion and appropriate season. Much to my dismay I am not there, yet, which is why it is concerning that my room is currently under siege by an army of shoes, coats, bags and dresses. Just yesterday, I dropped my dry cleaning off and was shocked to see that the inventory on the receipt noted 4 pairs of gray pants. Seriously, I had no idea that I owned that many gray pants, but a quick mental tally left me with the sad realization that this was, in fact, true. No wonder my tshirt collection has outgrown my dresser and the 4 rubbermaid containers that formerly housed it, apparently I have no idea what I own. I thought I was just messy, but there is actually no way to physically contain everything given my current space allotment.

Most people might take this as a sign that it is time to purge my closet and only keep the pieces I really need. I tried that, and I only got rid of approximately two (out of 15) white camisoles. I also thought about giving up shopping, but then I was invited to a fancy dinner, so I’m going to need something for that. Plus, last weekend I fell off my black dress shoes and sprained my ankle, so I will need to replace those since they have become a health hazard. Essentially, the problem here is that I am able to justify any purchase. Literally, I can talk myself into just about any article of clothing because even though I already own 53 black cardigans I don’t own any with leopard print, satin lining, so that is a must have.

Though I never would have guessed it given my hearty addiction to candy, I am having a much easier time cutting my sugar rather than my garment intake. If only someone had told me owning 15 pairs of jeans would likely result in a bleak and tragic future followed shortly thereafter by an untimely death I might feel more intrinsic motivation to cut up my credit cards, but for now I’m going to save the drastic measures until my spending begins to metastasize into something serious.


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