Chile’s Quit Now Challenge

Drawing of pile of books (c) Katrien Vander Straeten

I discovered Chile’s Quit Now Challenge (see the logo to the sidebar: it’s the clearest, most uncluttered, Peak Oil logo I’ve come across). I devoted some deep thinking about what I would give up…

  • Cigarettes? Diet Coke? McDonalds? Never did that / haven’t done that in half a decade.
  • Paper towels? TV? Airco? Plastic bags? Did that, done.
  • Dryer? Junking veggie waste? Will give that up the moment we move to the new place, where hanging clothes and composting are possible.
  • Procrastination? Can’t. I mean, loafing is an integral part of my job (writing). So are coffee and black tea.


Look, it’s not that difficult! Here goes:

I will give up buying toys and books for Amie, and books for myself.

From today (5 July) until 5 July, and after that we’ll see.

The comments and Chile’s later post on the matter discuss whether this means depriving oneself (negative spin) or gaining space and time (positive). In our case, of books and toy we have enough, too much already. Getting more will actually mean having less: less space and less time to discover and rediscover what we already have.

Also, we’re looking at our move, coming up soon (it’s planned in two weeks). I haven’t been able to bring myself to pack yet. It’s the books!

My 1000+ count philosophy library is already in boxes in storage. But since “giving up” philosophy, I’ve gained many more books, mainly children’s books, ecological treatises and all manner of homesteading books. I could never ever think of books as “clutter,” but truly, when you have to move them, they are, factually, weight.

So there. Can I do it? Can I be a Quitter?

Join the Conversation


  1. I love your decision. And, speaking as one who has loaded the UHaul many, many times, you will be grateful you aren’t adding any more weight. Plus, think of the gas you’ll save…

  2. I love your illustrations, don’t get an illustrator, maybe just scan and touch them up a little in PS or Illustrator, your work is so unique. This pile of books is great as are your drawings from your zine you once posted about. What can I give up? I should give up snacking excessively and mindlessly in between meals. I’ve tried to tell myself to eat a fruit and drink some green tea when I’m hungry.

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