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  1. This challenge was rudely interrupted by a pandemic last year. However, now that we're settling into our post-apocalyptic plaguescape for the long haul, it is yet again time. This challenge, I will endeavour to become the Disc's second greatest lover. "My name's Casanunda," he said. "I'm reputed to be the world's greatest lover. What do you think?" Nanny Ogg looked him up and down or, at least, down and further down. "You're a dwarf," she said. "Size isn't important." This challenge, I'm working my way up the rankings of the world's lovers by leveling up my international playdwarf lifestyle. (Or, as a previous challenge put it, do things with elegance. Strangely, despite years of aikido and years of urban myths about people being told to do things elegantly, I had to re-derive the principle in another way before I realized this was not about aesthetics but about managing to combine mindfulness with emptying the mind.) Some of these may seem like odd choices for a fitness/life level-up (like increasing alcohol consumption, and, I dunno, taking life advice from the worst possible people), but there are three factors at play here: first, this challenge needs to be fun, cuz this us what we do instead of vacations in plague years; second, it's addressing recovery from a certain amount (which is to say, lots) of cutting corners on self-care in the broader day to day living sense and getting by on "acceptable"; and three, it's addressing the (narrative) causality between good habits and seemingly unrelated projects and lifestyle choices. Or, as Vetinari would have it, all the little wheels must spin so the machine can turn. And this is a timely challenge. I've really been struggling with self-care lately. Part I: Casanunda Training There are two first steps to becoming the world's greatest lover: First, yoga warmups with lots of hip openers, for obvious reasons, and, second, get into bed as often as possible. (For sleep, of course. I don't know what you're thinking.) If I'm going to be a soldier of fortune, I need to work on mental stillness and physical prowess. Walking and strength training, to start with, and some meditation. Tasks to be checked off: rewatch Casanova and take notes. Part II: Be a Better Lover Than Lord Rust "It was a Guild of Assassins, after all. Black was what you wore. The night was black and so were you. And black had such style, and an Assassin without style, everyone agreed, was just a highly paid arrogant thug." While Assassin-School-trained, Lord Ronald Rust did not particularly benefit from the lessons on style. So I think I can outdo him here on the things that make an Assassin an Assassin. The projects I will do here include repairing and replacing bits of my wardrobe with a focus on rotating in my higher quality clothes, leveling up my daily grooming from ultra-practical to something attempting a little actual style, and more aperitifs-and-tapas. This will also involve getting back in the habit of making actual things with recipes and planning and cultural connotations, rather than just going with the fastest and most basic form of slapping nutrition onto the table, and managing my pantry better. Also, getting back to my macros and IF schedule. Part III: Be a Better Lover Than Rufus Drumknott "I believe he collects different types of stationery," said Vetinari. "I have sometimes speculated that he might change his life for the better should he meet a young lady willing to dress up as a manila envelope." All this lifestyle-leveling-up requires a certain amount of organization and schedule-wrangling. Being the world's second greatest is demanding. And for me, leveling up the bachelor pad is going to center on organizing: not just finding the right place for everything, but finding the right use for everything, and the most efficient way to organize it all. Where the Lord Rust half of this focuses on making everything I own beautiful, the Drumknott portion involves making it all useful, and also includes recycling things I don't use into things I do. Things will fit into the storage I already have, be more organized, and work better. Also, the habits I use to clean and organise it will be streamlined.
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