My Bad Habit? Overcommitment!

RUBY ANDERSON // FEBRUARY  22, 2019 

In high school, I would smoke weed with the desperation and expediency that could only be found in the heart of a 16 year old nationally ranked debate champion and closeted homosexual. I have vivid memories of returning from Avenue Q rehearsal, dressed in my all-black puppeteer’s outfit, and immediately running up the stairs to my room. I’d choreographed my routine and got smoking weed in my parent’s house down to an art: first, I’d burn incense. While the smell of Sour Apple filled the room, I’d roll up a towel and put in under the door, then turn my window fan on ‘suck’. I’d pack a bowl and smoke it as quickly as I could; blowing out the window and choking at every hit. This was one of my first bad habits: you heard it here first, folks. I, Ruby Anderson, used to be a certified stoner. A weed-head, a regular old pot- puffer! Sure, I’d had other Bad Habits before then: I was a scab-eater, a nose-picker, a tattle-tale, and a lying little lightskin nightmare. But it was love of dancing with the devil’s lettuce that truly had me head over heels for the first time in my life.

Then I got diagnosed with ADHD and prescribed Adderall, and my impulsive pot-smoking was quickly transformed into manic, amphetamine induced homework-doing. I traded my glass pipe for an impeccably organized Moleskine planner, my grinder for a constant supply of Advil to fend off the meth-headaches that Adderall is so well known for. Suddenly, it seemed as though my productivity knew no bounds. I could do it all! I was like Bradley Cooper’s character in Limitless, only dreamier, and with a better body.

Thus began the balancing act of overachievement for which I am now so known. Every semester, it seems, I added on more: 5 more hours of work a week, a thesis, an editorial assistant position, a co-op head cook shift, Good Talk, the Grape.

The truth is this: mommy’s tired. She needs rest, she needs free time. She wants to get a good night’s sleep, to get drunk with her friends at the Feve, to have time to write a really good thesis. And, when she found herself putting showers into her Google Calendar at the beginning of this semester, it became clear: something had to go. Some things had to go.

 

I love editing Bad Habits, I really do. It’s not too often you get paid to make memes, or write about hot lesbian admissions officers. Being on the Grape strengthened my friendship with Editor-In-Chief Sophie Jones, and bore new friendships with other members of the Grape staff. And in the end, that’s really what kept me in this job for so long during a time when I had no time to give: the people who work at the Grape are some of the funniest, sharpest, and most passionate people I’ve ever worked with. I will miss them.

But, with my newfound free time, I hope to be more available and present in my social life. I want to be able to go to a yoga class on a whim, or make last minute plans to see the Oscar-nominated shorts at the Apollo. I’m sad to leave the Grape, but I know that it’s an important step in preserving my own sanity, and ensuring my happiness. So, in my final semester at Oberlin College, may I finally bid adieu to my Baddest Habit of all: overcommitment.

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