Yesterday at work I was posed the question, “Would you rather give up Facebook or cheese for Lent?” First off, Facebook is for moms and poors. To make this a fair fight, I changed the question to Instagram. Instagram or cheese? Major white girl problem. While I decided which of my hobbies (yes, eating cheese is a hobby) would be the weakest link, I came to the conclusion that I have the same conversation with my girlfriends every year. Wine, Cheese, and Instagram? Be more basic. You can’t.
So, this year I decided to weigh the pros and cons of my very favorite things in order to prioritize what to sacrifice.
Um, everything but the hangover. Wine is a main staple in my mid-20-something year old diet. Unlike OMB, my grocery list usually consists of red wine ($), white wine ($), and string cheese ($). I legitimately can’t remember the last time I went more than two days without a glass (or two) of wine. Red wine in the wintertime is like a warm hug when you walk in the door from a long day of cube life. It relaxes you, tastes good, and pairs well with The Bachelor. My friends and I roll up to BYO Sushi with a bottle per person and finish them ALL. Club goin’ up on a Tuesday.
I have always said that giving up red wine would be the hardest thing for me to give up for Lent. If I really wanted to dedicate myself for 40 days and nights, it would have to be wine. Then I remember that I will likely be pregnant one day and that can make up for all of those years I didn’t give it up for Lent. Nine months per kid is some serious retroactive sacrifice. Still counts, right?
The hangover. There is not much worse than a wine hangover. The headache and dry mouth are enough to do you in for the majority of your Sunday. Then you bounce back and there is nothing that cures the Scaries like a bougie candle and a glass of red in The Panic Room.
PASS. Even if I had the willpower to give up wine, I wouldn’t make it through the entire span of Lent, and then I would feel guiltier than if I hadn’t given up anything. I’ll give up wine when I give up my... well you know, when I’m pregnant.
Cheese, like wine, is a major staple in my diet. Sharp Cheddar is like my crack; it’s seriously addicting (and delicious). Cheese also happens to go great with wine, so they may or may not be mutually exclusive. Not to brag, but I make amazing charcuterie platters. DBP and Tube Socks can attest to this (#lionwhisperer / #babysitter). I like to take pictures of my cheese plates then post them to Instagram, that’s how proud (and basic) I am. I have actually inspired Scaries to go to the store to buy meat and cheese as a result of these posts.
I know what you're all thinking: it would be super easy to give up cheese for Lent. Some people are not as bewitched by a smoked Gouda and prosciutto spread as I am. But you are thinking too narrowly. Take a moment to think about everything that cheese is in/on. Pizza, salads (you can’t have a Greek without feta), soups (see: chili), DIPS DIPS DIPS, etc.
And P.S. Everyone always bitches about buffalo chicken dip, but imagine that without cheese. Cheese basically rules our world whether we like it or not. Your culinary experiences would be beyond bland for those 40 days/nights without our best friend: cheese.
The calories. In the pursuit of S-K-I-N-N-Y, cheese is not your friend. One time I got a text from one of my best friends that just said “so stoned- ate an entire bag of string cheese.” I try to have a “fuck it, you’re only young once” (YOYO) attitude to the calorie predicament, but when I start feeling guilty, I hit the gym. When I set my intention during every yoga class (where you set a goal at the beginning of class) I think “cheese and wine.” Boom, problem solved.
PASS. If I’m pouring my favorite Pinot, I can guarantee there will be a block of something on the cutting board next to the cork. I Can’t give up cheese if I’m not giving up wine. That, and pizza. ALWAYS pizza.
Instagram is a white girl’s best friend. It’s a way to showcase all the “awesome” things we do (see: charcuterie plate) while making it look way better than it does in real life by throwing on the Valencia filter and a border.
I just went to Cancun and there is no way I would have been able to not post had that trip fallen within the parameters of Lent. Like, honestly, if you don’t Instagram something, did it really even happen?
Another pro of Instagram is that it is a fantastic time waster. I ride the bus to work (I live in a city, I’m not a peasant) and I scroll Insta the entire time. It makes the ride way more enjoyable. Need a break at work? It’s so easy to get stuck in a wormhole of your ex's ex-best friend’s new girlfriend who is a food blogger and a fitness FREAK. It’s already five? How did that happen? Mail it in and head home to your cheese and wine.
Probably the only cons to Instagram are either 1. not getting enough likes or 2. not having anything to Instagram. If you don’t get into the double digits on likes, your picture sucks. Delete it. That’s embarrassing. If you don’t have anything to Instagram you need to step it up, like, yesterday. Although don’t just to post to post (that makes you a bad Instagrammer and annoying). I have an actual list of people who are terrible at Instagramming. Blurry photos? Seriously, that’s on you being flawed and not your phone. The new Starbucks cup? You have to be fucking kidding me. I obviously take my ‘gramming very seriously. Feel free to call me out if you think my pics aren’t up to snuff going forward.
PASS. I actually don’t know what I would do without Instagram. While this may be slightly concerning, that concern is for a different day. The 'Gram makes me happy. It’s an easy medium to see all the awesome things my friends are doing and look back on all the awesome things we have done. I would actually recommend looking back on some old pics when you have a bad day. Remember that time you were shotgunning Miller Lites on the pontoon over the fourth? Me neither, but Instagram does and it’s telling you how good you have it.
I think I have come to the conclusion that wine, cheese, and Instagram are mutually exclusive. You can’t have one without the other. I also don’t have the wherewithal to give any of them up because I don’t have the willpower and I am a selfish human. Yes, I think this does make me a terrible person. Maybe next year when my friends and I have the exact same inception-like conversation, I will put my foot down and make a sacrifice. But then again, maybe not. Sorry, God.