In the grips of a vice, no wiggle room for reason

Joyce Pemberton

I rarely have time to watch TV, preferring instead to frolic outside in the warm summer sun before these days slip back over the mountains and go south where they came from.

Joyce Pemberton

But, the other night I found myself mindlessly surfing through the channels, not sure what I was looking for, when I landed on a show with a gal who was obviously upset about something. I decided to give her a listen.

She was talking about her vices, and was frustrated by her lack of discipline concerning them. (A vice, by the way, is usually referred to as a fault or unhealthy habit.)

Her vice, it turns out, was eating too much unhealthy food. She had weight to lose, and apparently, was having a hard time harnessing her food habits.

Really? Food is a vice?? I almost choked on my nachos.

That got me to thinking . . . . Do I have vices? And if I do, are they harmful to me?

I guess my biggest vice, since we are confessing, would probably be procrastination. I put off everything. I think I’ve talked about that before in this column. I was even late being born. And this column was due yesterday.

I asked some of my friends and family if they had vices. The answers were enlightening and entertaining.

My first-born had a long list of vices. This wonderful child I had raised and is now a successful Coast Guard pilot and father of three had more vices than his mother was ready to hear; “Ice cream. Chips. Beer. Chocolate. Popcorn at movies. Nachos. Video games. Lowe’s. Comics. Soccer. Binge watching Netflix.”

I’m not sure how Lowe’s is a vice, but I figure I caught him in a rare, chatty moment, which thrilled me, so who am I to question?

My sister sent an interesting answer.  Instead of listing a vice, she took the opportunity to vent about ungrateful cashiers. “Yes I have a vice, when you ask for something and they give it to you, and you say ‘thank you’, but they say, ‘no problem’, instead of saying thank you.”  (I don’t think she understood the question.  But I love my sister, so I’m gonna let this slide.)

One of my friends told me her vice is “drinking soda.”  Seriously, if that’s the worse vice she has then I think she’s doing just fine.

My daughter-in-law was also having a chatty moment. She listed her vices as “Sugar. Internet. Procrastination. Dogs. Laziness.” I don’t think dogs are a vice. I think that anything huggable is the exact opposite of a vice. Huggable fur-babies are the anti-vice.

My brother the cop lists his vices as “Beer, chocolate, beer, bacon, beer.”

I sense a theme here. But he’s a cop, and considering the mood of the country right now with regards to our men in blue, I’ll give him his beer. In fact I’ll give him all three of them. He has earned that and more.

Another friend listed smoking cigarettes as his vice. I have to say; this is probably the nastiest, most unhealthy vice I can think of. So just stop already. You can do it, I know you can.

My friend Alasdair from Scotland listed Islay Single Malt as his vice. According to Google, this is a Scotch whiskey.  (Yes, I had to google it.) And I’m still not sure what a single malt is. Are their double malts? Would that make it a double vice?

I have no idea what vices you may have, if you have any at all, or if you want to change them.  As for me, I’m keeping my nachos, regardless if they are a vice. But my vice of procrastination is one I probably will work on.  Eventually.