There Can Be Only One?

How many times have you heard someone say “but its my only vice?” This remark has always been something of a head scratcher for me. I mean, why exactly do we think its ok to have only one vice? For that matter why should it be ok for us to have any vices at all? Is it because we secretly hate those few perfect people who never do anything wrong?

I admit that I have more than one vice. There I said it. Now, who exactly is it that is going to come and slap me on the wrist and tell me that I have to give them all up, except for that one last little small one that is ok? I smoke. (Though I have quit twice in that last two years. I’m hoping it’s third time lucky). I like a drink on occasion. I have also been known to gamble, but never over my head. Are these things still vices if they aren’t having a detrimental effect on my life? Or is it only a vice if someone else says so?

Ask just about anyone and they’ll admit to at least one vice. Justify it even by saying that they don’t do anything else so it’s ok to have this one. They may have given up many young adulthood bad habits but hang on to just one long into middle age. As we get older though shouldn’t we be aiming for perfection? Shouldn’t we be trying to get rid of all of our bad habits if we want to live longer, healthier and wealthier lives? Maybe we feel like if we give up all our bad habits life won’t be fun any more and no one wants that.

Maybe it’s because there’s something annoying about people who don’t have any vices. Those paragons of perfection that make us feel guilty for not being able to live up to their shining example. Luckily I don’t know many people like this. I’m blessed with imperfect friends who are much more fun to be around, except on the occasional hungover Sunday morning when I curse whoever’s idea that last Pina Colada was.

So how about you? Are you fallible human or paragon of perfection? What one vice can’t you forgive in someone else?

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