“Things that I used to do. Lord, I don’t do no more.” That’s the start of a 1953 recording by Guitar Slim. It was quite popular back in the day. It’s a song about unrequited love, but many things that make us say “Never Again” are about things unrequited. Love is just one of them.
Usually, when we do something or try something that disappoints us, our disappointment can be traced to becoming too invested in the thing, sometimes to the point that the thing will never live up to our expectations. That restaurant that everyone is talking about, that you’re so eager to try, that you’ve been dying to eat at all week, sometimes it’s just not all that. The restaurant may be all that, but you became so invested that even all that isn’t enough. So you say never again. You’re anticipation was unrequited.
There are lots of things I won’t do no more, to borrow a phrase from Guitar Slim. Most of them I did when I was much younger, and far less wise. Some of them are things I think back on and wonder how I made it to here and now. Things I shouldn’t have done. Some of them are things unrequited. Some I thought were requited, turns out they weren’t.
There was a time when anything I tried, or anywhere I went, or anyone I met, would get the benefit of the doubt, a second chance, sometimes even a third chance. As time goes by, and I have less of it left, I’m much more apt to say Never Again.