Winter. Pretty, but it kinda sux. At least the holidays are almost over.
I purposely avoided making any holiday commentary this year, because I’ve been there before. I’ve seen and photographed endless tacky Christmas light displays. I’ve already dished on the annoying relatives I’d rather avoid. I’ve said my peace regarding the big gropy gatherings where someone always thinks that 800º F is an acceptable room temperature, as I’m sweating to death in the corner, wishing I’d left hours ago. I smile and put on my best behavior when Jerry is channeling his inner asshole for the yuletide festivities, and as usual, on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day I make myself scarce while he gets blitzed and feels sorry for himself.
I should do this the next time Jerry passes out- so I can keep the mess confined to one place.
Jerry doesn’t interact well with my family, and I feel obligated to go hang out with them on holidays, so I choose the lesser of two evils. The house is positively untenable when Jerry’s ripped and on a rant, which is guaranteed during the holidays. My family are mostly loud and obnoxious people, and it’s generally not pleasant being surrounded by their noise and bickering, but they are mild compared to Jerry when he’s going on and on about how much ____ sucks or how I don’t “do enough” for him. Most of my family, with the exceptions of Steve-o and Dad, get on my nerves, but they drink a lot less than Jerry does. I really didn’t want to hang out and watch Jerry go the zoo on his first Christmas without both his mother and his best friend Bob. That’s an experience I was good to do without, and since I’m sure he doesn’t remember much beyond the first 12 pack, I see it (even though I loathe sports analogies) as no harm, no foul. Jerry’s lonely drunk-and-stupids remind me of that age old quandary: If a tree falls in the forest and no one hears it, was there a noise? If he’s drunk and stupid but I don’t have to hear it, then it didn’t happen, no?
The pink tree complete with the buzzard on the top will stay lit up in the living room until New Year’s, then I will put that stuff away for another year. Then I get to settle in for two months (or so) of Februarys- dark, dismal and blessedly (hopefully) quiet, until about the middle of March. I can only hope in the mid-to-late winter funk that somewhere I will find time to read and think and just be. I’ve been scattered in so many directions lately that I really need that ivory tower time in a bad way.
I need solitude, but I can never seem to get enough of it.
This year wasn’t as depressing as Christmases go. I actually had the resources to gift people in a reasonably acceptable manner, which is a big deal to me. I like to treat people well when I can and be generous if I can, and I am thankful for having the means to do so at least in a small way. I am not a wealthy woman by any stretch of the imagination, so nobody got anything really awesome from me, but if nothing else they got a little something useful.
So another year bites the dust. Another day (year) closer to death (if I may sort of paraphrase Roger Waters and Pink Floyd) and not too much to show for it. I can, however, take solace in the truth that I can’t take it with me. The inevitability of death isn’t as depressing knowing that I’m not leaving behind a mansion, pool boy, or a garage full of tasty performance cars. That attitude is pragmatism at work. All I can do is try to do the best I can today.