Tuesday, December 23, 2014


So it's Festivus, huh? A holiday invented on a sitcom that I never watched until it was in reruns? (Disclosure: I never watched one complete "The Colbert Report." It's not that I wouldn't have found them humorous or thought-provoking. I just never got in the habit.) According to the holidailies prompt:
Today is Festivus, which is marked by Feats of Strength and the Airing of Grievances. What do you consider your strengths? Alternatively, air your grievances in today's blog post.
What are my strengths? Well, it isn't a long list.
  •  I don't always follow the herd. If everyone is watching a particular sitcom or comedy show, I don't feel the need to watch it as well. (See above.) If everyone is wearing green this season, I'll still wear my black and gray until it's threadbare. If everyone is drinking Cosmopolitans or Moscow Mules, I'll still order a Manhattan. If everyone wants to serve Manhattans up, I'll still usually insist on ice. If everyone gets all their news on their computer or gadget, I'll still insist on seeing and touching a newspaper even though I may go find the same article online and pass it on to someone. When my friends are sure that I should vote a 'straight party line' or take a certain view, you can be sure that I'll think the issue through myself.
  • I do what I say I'm going to do. My best friends do this, too. This means we RSVP and we go to the event or don't go as we said. We do this unless serious events intervene. If I say that I'll take care of something I do it. Now this means that I don't make promises lightly, but you can trust me to do what I say. I said I was going to post something in this space every day from December 1 to January 1. And I will. Even though, really, Holidailies isn't a pledge of allegiance to online gods or anything.
  • I'm able to see the humor in things. If a stock goes down after I buy it, I'm able to joke about what we call the 'P-B Effect' after our combined last names. If it rains when I don't take my umbrella and doesn't when I do, I'm able to laugh and take credit for the weather.
  • I'm able to see that most things don't matter and will barely be remembered. If I lose my phone or forget my credit card somewhere, if plans go awry, if I have a little illness then I'm quick to say "this isn't cosmic." Even when serious illness and death comes to those around me, I grieve but I understand that it is their fate and will one day be mine. 
  • I do the mundane things even though (see above). Does it matter if you pay your bills on time or try to accurately calculate and pay your taxes? Does it matter if you write a note to someone to thank them for a kindness? Does it matter if you get your inspection sticker and put your registration on your car in a timely manner? Does it matter if you ever clean out the refrigerator? Yes. Because these little things are all there is that keeps civilization sort of ticking. None of them matter. But neglecting all of them is a tsunami. 
Grievances? Well, I have a few. But I try to file them away. To all the twitter feeds that say "STFU" to my sort I (silently) say "I already did so I can't defend myself." I am very lucky to live out my life (which will end, heroically or ignominiously, in pain or in joy) from a pretty high point that I've arrived at: relatively healthy, somewhat wealthy and not too wise for my own good. I'm not complaining. You can't make me.

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