If I ever try and convince you that I don’t have an addictive personality I want you to call 911 and tell them I’m in trouble, because that’s my safe word. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve never been addicted to anything super dramatic. Only things that are incredibly stupid. So much so that I feel weird calling them addictions, so let’s just call them obsessions. Which makes this post feel less serious and also more like a perfume commercial. OBSESSION. But also because I’m about halfway between an average human and that girl on My Strange Addiction that couldn’t stop eating her couch.
It started in elementary school when, for whatever reason, I would get super anxious about other people seeing me laughing when they weren’t laughing, or smiling when they weren’t smiling, or having an existential mental breakdown when they weren’t having an existential mental breakdown. It was like some kind of advanced fear of standing out. They used to play music whenever we would run laps in gym and anytime the Spice Girls would come on I’d start beaming because I was always very gay but then I would get all self-conscious about it because this was like two decades before half my class realized that they were very gay too. And so I’d start biting my cheek to stop myself from smiling like a gay 5-year-old idiot. That made me less concentrated on how embarrassed I was and more concentrated on the SHARP PAIN IN MY MOUTH. So after that point I’d chew on my cheek anytime I felt anxious about school. Which, when I was younger, was anytime that I was in school. Or thought about school. Or was in a time period where school was invented. To be fair, it helped me save a lot of money on gum.
I had an obsession with simulation game mods as well. Which is ridiculously specific, I know. But, listen, everybody has their vices. Some people blackout from drinking, some people blackout from lack of sleep, and some people blackout while downloading 300 Sims 4 mods over the course of 8 hours and then never actually load up the game to play it afterwards. And some people blackout from all three at the same time and that’s me.
And you might say, “Ryan, why not just not download the mods? Seems like an easy fix to your problem.” But sometimes you’re in the middle of buying Sims DLC that lets you do laundry even though you refuse to do it in real life, and then you realize that you need to download the mod that lets you play “Wannabe” on your Sim’s radio while they wait for the dryer to finish. And then your gay 5-year-old Sim gets embarrassed and you need to download the “bite inside of own cheek” mod to get rid of his embarrassed moodlet. Listen, I don’t make the rules for the Sims, I just blackout from downloading too many mods and never play it. Don’t hate the non-player, hate the barely functional money-grabbing game.
Ryan C. Robert is the writer of multiple comedy blogs, most of which are satirical and self-deprecating. He writes about his life in his personal essay series "Before Color," parodies cooking blogs in "Trish's Dishes" and posts writing prompts every single day.