Pimpcron has made a conclusion. It’s all existential and stuff.
Hey brothers and sisters of the wargaming world. IT IS I! The Pimpcron! I’m edging towards the end of my *real life* job’s busy season, and I had something happen to me while I was playing a game of 40k last week. It was an eye-opener.
In real life, when I’m not busy making children (I have four of those things), I run the family business. I won’t tell you what that is because it’s irrelevant. So I will make something up. My family owns a store where we do unique spa treatments for our customers that the establishment doesn’t want you to know about! We specialize in homeopathic remedies using everyday items in our Boardwalk shop in Ocean City. We are very busy in the summer and have more free time in the winter as things slow down. I love winter. It would take 3 articles to tell you how many ways I love the off season.
Anyway, while many of our customers are nice people, but it only takes a handful of jerks to really crank up the stress. Couple that with constant employee issues, and I end up being a good candidate for a stomach ulcer. In a typical day at my imaginary shop, these things happen to give me a burning feeling in my stomach. Obviously the situations are silly, but the underlying themes are real.:
An employee, being negligent, mistakenly puts crushed up Cool Ranch Doritos on a customer’s boil. I have told them time and time again that you put crushed up Nacho Cheese Doritos on a boil. NOT Cool Ranch. Idiot! Cool Ranch makes a boil worse! Now the customer is mad, and I have to fix it for free.
Another customer doesn’t know what they’re talking about and complains for no reason. “Ow, you got French Fry Grease in my eye! It burns!” Dammit! That’s what you paid for! Your receipt clearly says “cataract treatment”. THAT IS HOW YOU TREAT IT!
Or they try to tell you how to do your job. “Well, I read online that soaking your hand in sheep urine cures dry skin.” Or so you’re suddenly an authority because you read some ridiculous article on some woo-woo site? Well I’m here to tell you something. I’ve been in this business for more than ten years, and suddenly I’m wrong for soaking your hand in cat urine. Well, I guess I can cancel my weekly shipment of cat urine now! You obviously know more than me!
So last week I was at my local hobby shop, playing a game of 40k with my friends. We laugh, we joke, and we have a great time. I have made many friends in this hobby and nearly everyone I have met is just a good person at their core. I was in the middle of a game, completely immersed in it and having fun. It was then that a tiny thought crept back into my head.
“Oh, don’t forget to call the supplier about that delivery of powdered vomit.”
It was that crack in the dam that suddenly caused a crashing wave of stress and thoughts to come back.
“You have two interviews tomorrow for new employees.”
“I have to do payroll tomorrow.”
“I’m almost out of shredded dirt.”
“I need to research a way to cure warts with ketchup.”
It suddenly became very apparent that all of these ideas and stressful thoughts had been in the back of my mind all along, but my immersion in the game and spending time with friends had let me escape.
I felt tension in my chest, and suddenly I was super stressed and part of me wanted to quit playing and go home and work on some of that stuff. But just as that became clear, it became equally clear that I desperately NEED this fun time away from work for my own mental health.
So I took a deep breath or two and pushed that stuff behind me again so that I could enjoy the game. And within a few minutes I was enjoying myself again, knowing that all of that crap will be waiting for me later, BUT NOT RIGHT NOW!
That is 40k among my other worries.
This isn’t just a game, this isn’t just a hobby, it is literal therapy and relaxation for me. I’m sure it is with you too. And while you might not have to worry about running out of your stock of salted fish eyes, you have plenty of stress in your life too.
Work, family and life in general is quite stressful for all of us. We need that escape. So for the first time in one of my articles, I have some homework for you.
#1: Leave your stress at work as much as you can, and when needed, immerse yourself in the hobby to give you just a couple hours of respite. We all need this quite badly. It’s good for health, and good for mind. Stress kills. It increases all of your chances of diseases and will shorten your life.
#2: The next time you want to tear someone down for their opinion of something hobby-related, or their subpar paint job, or the way they enjoy playing a game, stop and think. We are all stressed, we all have difficulty in our life, and we’re all in this together. The person who slops paint onto their models might be enjoying themselves just as much as you are with your 27 different layers of directional light-shading. If someone likes 9th Age over AoS, or Infinity over 40k, just let them enjoy what they enjoy and give them a moment of freedom away from life’s hardships.
I have just transcended. I am now The Buddha Pimpron. When you see me at Shorehammer you can rub my belly for good luck.
Have anything to add? Does this help you with stress?