Bad Habits



A habit (or wont) is a routine of behavior that is repeated regularly and tends to occur unconsciously.  Like brushing your teeth first thing in the morning or putting on the breaks at a stop sign.

It is also the costume of a Catholic nun.  Don’t you just love the English language?  Don’t you relish its opportunities?  When I went to my stock photography website to find an ironic image for this post (I searched NUN’S HABITS), there were mostly come-hither photos of hot women in garter-belts and religious kits.  Is that a thing?  Why did I not know this?  And for the record, I can think of almost nothing less erotic than clerical garb…

Back to the subject at hand.

Is drinking alcohol and over-drinking alcohol a habit?  When does it move from habit to addiction?

According to, neurologically, the line between habit and addiction is a subtle one.  A habit becomes an addiction when you lose control.  My old friend dopamine is the culprit – the brain stores habits as “chunks” of activity and doles out a lesser and lesser pleasure fix the more you perform an activity.  That’s why it’s not particularly exciting to brush one’s teeth (although maybe that’s a thing too – I’m obviously out of touch…). That’s why eating chocolate or drinking wine is so habit forming – after a while it takes more to feel the all important pleasure we seek (I also HATE eating food of any sort off another person’s body parts…).

I never drank alcohol when I went to Flint to visit my mother.  I didn’t sneak a bottle into Canyon Ranch.  I never even thought about it. I abstained for 30 days several times (I now realize) by changing my habits.

I salivate right now when I think about opening my old wine cabinet (the smell), seeing the green wine glasses, selecting one – going to the counter, the sound of the cork popping… the leopard couch in the den calling.


I took this photograph after I was sober, for the blog. See how it gleams? The dais on which it stands?


For me the addiction began when I could not stop myself from going to the wine cupboard.  When I was unable to move from the couch.

Old habits die hard.


Today I’m not drinking, because it’s habit forming…

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