For as long as I can remember I have wanted to be Pink. I'd see people posting on the Neoboards with their lovely pink avatar and I would turn green with envy. Occasionally I'd even visit the Kadoatery but every time I did either all the Kadoaties had been fed or the one or two who were still sad wanted items I couldn't afford, and I'd leave the Kadoatery feeling defeated and as sad as the unfed kads. Being Pink seemed as unobtainable to me as getting a Fountain Faerie Quest. It was something that happened to other people, not ordinary little old me.
A few years passed, then one morning I woke up feeling determined. My mind was made up. I was giving myself one month to turn Pink. The uninitiated here may well be wondering why in Neopia I would want to be pink when there are so many other weird and wonderful colours out there, but I'm not talking about paint brushes. No, in Kad-speak, being Pink, turning pink, going pink, etc., are terms for getting the pink Kadoatery avatar. If you haven't seen it, then do check it out, because it is one of the nicest, cutest avatars there is, and more than that it is a true status symbol, a sign that you've achieved something that you've really had to work hard for. Feeding 75 Kadoaties is no easy task. It certainly isn't for the faint-hearted.
So last month, with a sense of tenacity I hadn't known I possessed, I read a Kadoatie guide, starting following the Kad chat board, familiarised myself with popular Kad foods, learned the complicated feed times, pend times, refresh times, decoded all the complex Kad-speak (trust me, it's a whole new language), and I even met a group of lovely, helpful fellow Kad-feeders. My inventory was permanently packed with 45 different faerie foods, my shop wizard tab was permanently ready, and for three whole weeks I lived and breathed and existed only in the Kadoatery. My entire Neopian life consisted of feeding those pesky, pendy Kadoaties. Or rather, *waiting* to feed those pesky, pendy Kadoaties. Once a huge fan of random events that filled my inventory with goodies fallen from the sky, I now equally dreaded and resented these strokes of luck for giving me items that my inventory had no room to house. My SDB quickly filled with food items I'd rushed to buy only to be owned (grrrrrr slow internet connection!), and my bank balance plummeted. Dailies got missed, my own Neopets found themselves neglected and unfed. I went to sleep dreaming of Kads. I woke up thinking of Kads.
But while my once-varied Neopian life suffered, my career as a Kadoatie feeder began to thrive. A bronze trophy soon turned into a silver trophy which then became a gold trophy and, instead of saying "Twenty five fed, only fifty more to go," I found myself saying, "Fifty fed, only twenty five more to go!"
There were high points (the thrill of actually having an item in your inventory and being able to do an instant inventory feed!) and many, oh so many low points. And then before I knew it, the day came. "Hoorah! You've made Lucy a very happy Kadoatie. *Mew!* Thanks for doing a good deed! (Also, in case you were wondering, you have now fed 75 Kadoaties in all!)"
No lie, I actually jumped for joy! I rushed to my user lookup and there it was, the message I had worked so hard for. "
"Something Has Happened! You are now eligible to use 'Kadoatery - Mew!' as an avatar on the Neoboards!"
I. Had. Turned. Pink.
I shouted it out on the Kad board - "Conkads!" fellow feeders congratulated me. One even sent me a Kadoatie music box. I shouted it out in my Guild. I even shouted it out in RL. I was euphoric. I was PINK!
Then came the question: "Are you going to over feed?"
My answer was a firm and resounding "NO!" It had been the hardest, most fraught, stressful experience in my whole Neopian life. I couldn't get out of the Kadoatery quick enough. All I wanted to do was go back to my ordinary life in Neopia (albeit in all my pink glory). If I never saw another Kadoatie again, it would be too soon! The first thing I did was empty my SDB and my inventory. Every single food item I owned was placed in my shop and sold, at least clawing back some of the thousands upon thousands of Neopoints I had spent feeding those greedy kads. I started doing my dailies again, I fed my pets, I played games, I eagerly awaited random event items falling into my now-empty inventory. I wandered around Neopia. I played a few more games. I wandered around Neopia some more.
Of course, it was great to be pink but, now the initial exhilaration of turning pink had faded and worn off, my once-yearned for pink avatar was now just another signature option. I couldn't shake the feeling that something was missing. I felt ... empty. Realisation hit me - I had the post-pink blues! I had devoted so much time to feeding those Kads that, rather than it taking me away from my Neopian experience as I had thought at the time, Kad-feeding had actually added to my Neopian experience! Could it be? Was I actually missing those pesky, pendy Kadoaties?
In a word, yes.
I found myself wandering over to the Kad boards. Reading the posts from all the familiar, regular feeders and some new feeders made me wish I was still waiting to turn pink. I even popped in to the Kadoatery, wondering if the Kads were missing me.
While I was trying so hard to get the Kadoatie avatar, the idea of being an over feeder just seemed wrong to me. Like so many others, I thought over feeders were being greedy and making it harder for other people to get the avatar. I used to wonder to myself why anyone would ever want to feed in excess of 4000 Kadoaties. There was nothing in it for them, so why do it? But now I have the avatar and I also have the post-pink blues and, with it, a clearer understanding of the appeal of over feeding. It isn't being greedy or deliberately trying to make the avatar harder to get - it's the thrill and the adrenaline-rush. Kadoaties get under your skin and into your blood.
Today I bought some food from the faerie food shop...
There's only one way to banish these post-pink blues.
I'll see you in the kadoatery!
Good luck feeders!