thriving store. It's the writer in me, the projecting drama queen, that invents scenarios of failure. Scandal. Disease. Divorce. December with its dark cloak and thin air. Its whistle-blast of chill. The Matchstick Girl. The Grim Reaper. How can you hoist a glass all rosy-cheeked in the face of all this overness?
Do you ever see some random person on the street you think you know, then, horrified, edit the false recognition because the person you thought it was, you suddenly realize, is dead? I hate when that happens. That's what December feels like. A sort of deja vu yet-to-come. Like the A Christmas Carol and that foreboding ghost of the future. Or It's a Wonderful Life and the scary propositions of what could have been. Chains and whatnot. Evil Mr. Potter types casting glances of spite and rancor: spiritual concussion. Residue of dread.
My daughter the social worker was over tonight and poring over her laptop writing notes on intakes in preparation for several court dates where she'll be advocating in behalf of her caseload of abused children. Abuse is way up in December. As is suicide and pneumonia and fatal accidents and heart attacks.
And yet, here in my tiny writing nook with my puppy snoring beside me, on this very first day of December, I feel oddly bolstered by hope and gratitude. I spent the long weekend with various members of my loving family and long-time friends. I ate (and mostly didn't over eat) delicious, satisfying food. I read the entire Sunday paper (two of them!) and supported local merchants while eschewing big box deals. All my children were here tonight for dinner (except for the stepdaughter in California, but we had a stand-in young adult from Columbia in her stead, so it felt like a full house) and we had miso soup and sushi and salmon and potstickers (because, we're all a little sick of turkey at this point). For dessert, we nibbled on Alma ginger-almond toffee. Bliss, bliss, so much bliss.
So. My goal for the month is to smite that December downer matchstick girl ennui. I want to be energized and loving and kind to strangers and family alike. Toss the drunk dude at the highway a ramp a fiver. Offer my premium parking space to the shithead in the Escalade. Laugh at the folly of life when I accidentally track in a sodden clump of dog crap and don't notice it until I've tattooed it on every carpeted stair tread.
Fahoo Fores Dahoo Dores...
So, friends, what's your favorite Christmas Carol?