Friday, December 12, 2008

Yuletide Cheer

I'm depressed. Have no fear -- it's not serious. I get blue every winter, only it usually hits me in January or February. December is usually too frantic. Besides, Christmas season makes me happy.

At least it used to. I like buying presents for people I love, and I like the anticipation of opening presents. I don't even care if the gift is goofy. It's free! I'm delighted to open a Pink Panther DVD starring a hit-or-miss Steve Martin in one of his worst misses. Extra large snow mittens? My hands might still grow.

This year, I haven't gotten into the Christmas spirit. For the most part, it seems like a hassle. I used to buy books for everyone in my family, but I've forgetten which books I've bought, and I don't want to give one of my sisters The Life of Pi for the third year in a row. Besides, if I go by my "Do unto others" credo, I don't want anyone to buy me a book because I already have three different stacks of unread books in three different rooms. So this year -- gift certificates! Merry Christmas, shoppers!

I do enjoy putting up the Christmas lights. My overly helpful neighbor, a guy who lights up his own house as if he wants to outdo Clark Griswold, comes over every Thanksgiving weekend when he sees me standing on the very top of my wobbly 8-foot ladder trying to hang lights on the gutter. He drags over his super long ladder, which means I have no choice but to string lights on the upper story as well.

Wendy and the boys get excited about Christmas. Wendy decorates every nook of the house, and I help with the Christmas village and tree. When we finished trimming the tree, Max shouted, "This is the best Christmas ever!"

Question: So why am I glum?

Answer A: I may just be glum. Not every emotion has to be attached to something going on in your life. Sometimes you're just glum, or happy, or horny, or angry. No reason.

Answer B: No dangling carrots. No Leadville to train for. No fascinating elections to obsess over. No interesting blog to write (I too have noticed that this blog is nearly dead). No Friday stories. No upcoming work projects. No big trips planned. No chance of the Colts playing in the Super Bowl. Not with those banged-up lines.

Answer C: The economy. I lost more than half of my savings. Suppose I had worked hard to save $350 for my retirement. In two months, that $350 has turned into $185. And let's say I bought a house for $600. That house is now worth $575, and dropping. Even though I made it through yet another round of layoffs (that's the seventh one since I've been here), the slumping housing market and depressing job market gives me a sense of being stuck. I need to stick it out at Adobe, and I need to stay put in my house. Forget about the fact that my job is good and I really like my house. No one said emotions have to be rational.

Answer D: Donuts.


  1. mostly dead isn't all dead. far from it.

    you haven't lost half your savings. you only lose your savings if you actually SELL right now. and i'm guessing you're not selling anything.

    nothing to train for? what, you're not coming to white rim in april? you're not coming to brad's gooseberry extravaganza in juanuary? nick's st george lallapalooza in march?

    cmon man. chin up.

  2. Glum about donuts? Say it ain't so!

    And what's this about no Leadville this year - what happened?

    And if you were all dead, nothing to do but check your pockets for change.

    You need some good all round holiday fun - and as soon as I think of some, I'll let you know.

    MTB W

  3. Oxycodone typically helps me when I'm in those moods. For example, I can not remember 2005 at all...or was it 2004?


  4. i'll give you something to be glum about.

  5. Here we are having a nice little pity party and Elden has to throw down the trump card (mother of all trump cards really). But of course he's right.

    Still, I'm having a hard time getting into the spirit of the season this year. But it's snowing and below zero today and for some reason that's helping.

  6. "One must the lows or they can not know the highs." Job or somebody from the Book of Mormon

    "It could be worse." Famous Old American saying

    "Aim High" (Air Force saying)

    "Buck Up Buckaroo" Aussie saying?

    "Rise and Shout the Cougars are Out!" Pearl of Great Price?

    "Life goes on - long after the thrill of living is gone." J. Mellencamp

    I honestly will miss your book pick for me this year. I still feel bad for saying there was too much Max and Luke in the calendar that one year - like some EEOC/FCC affirmative action lawyer trying to equal out air time and opportunity.

    You should go to the Rain Forest with Minette and I next time. The moss makes you happy.

    Merry XMas. Your brother Mark.

    P.S. I'm probably getting you a certificate too - cause you have every book I can think of getting for you.

  7. Lets do tapeworm to lift your spirits - or Tolt, or St Eds - or even a Movie.

  8. When the dog bites,
    When the bee stings,
    When I'm feeling sad,
    I simply remember my favorite things,
    And then I don't bad.

    And if that doesn't work, there's always drinkin'...and moss.

  9. I feel your pain Bob – I'm a little out of it myself this year. But it did finally start to rain yesterday, which always cheers me right up (might not work so well where you live, I realize). The snow, though – that'll be fun to remember, right? And Christmas lights! And waffles?! Oh the world is so full of a number of things, I'm sure we should all be – oh – etc. Works for me.

  10. "Into each life some rain must fall. Some days must be dark and dreary."