Friday, December 14, 2012

I Got Your Cup of Cheer Right Here

And I spiced it with cinnamon and nutmeg!

In ages past, I hated Christmas.  The Shopping Season emphasized everything about my culture that I absolutely despised, with the added feelings on intense disappointment in my family when they didn't give me what I requested.*  I remember a December when I received exactly nothing on my list, and I thought my family was a bunch of jerks who thought they knew better than me.  I was thirteen or something, so just about anyone other than my brother did know better than me, but that didn't stop my from being an angry little snotrag about it.

I abandoned this feeling of disappointment a few years later for a whole new feeling of disappointment in humanity as expressed in American media.  This feeling was only intensified by being unable to buy anything for the people I wanted to give stuff.  I was in boarding school and then college, and any money I made during the summer didn't last longer than my short-sighted budget.  The only gift that I bought that I still remember and feel somewhat good about was a special mug I bought for my dad when I was a sophomore.**

I wanted to be happier during this time, because I like my family, for the most part.  I like visiting them, and we have fun together, despite my brother's attempts to ruin everything with plans.  I found it hard to be cheerful when I was bombarded with scenes of utter assholery in malls and on television.  Basically, I was angry because Christmas was a constant reminder of how I wasn't a kid anymore.  I couldn't just sit in a pile of wrapping paper and experience sheer joy anymore.  The world was sitting on my head, just crapping all  over any fun I might have had.

Something changed in 2008.  No, not something, someone.  I was trying to win back a woman I had wronged, and I had this idea, inspired by Gene Hackman in Heist, that if I wanted to be a better version of me, maybe I could just fake it.  I'm a pretty good liar on a bad day, so I thought maybe I would change the way I lie to myself.  Maybe if I pretend to be a better person, I'll eventually be that better person, and I won't have to keep pretending.  I'm not 100% there yet, but I'm not pretending anymore.

Part of this whole thing was that I realized that I was over Christmas.  If other people want to run around and be assholes to each other in malls and parking lots, so be it.  I'm just gonna make cookies, not send them to my friends, and eat the hell out of them.***  I'll invite my friends over for rum drinks, cookies, pie, and the Star Wars Holiday Special.  I'll try to find one or two small, meaningful, little gifts for my people.  Or maybe I'll make something to give.

The short of this is that I can also enjoy holiday music again.  This is much easier when i am not out in the world, but even when I am in the world, I just tune it out.  I just play Mahna Mahna on constant loop in the jukebox of my subconscious, and I move through the world.  I could have written a much shorter version of this post by just typing, OMG HOLIDAY MUSIC MASH-UPS HERE!!!1111!!1!!

*  There's a paradox somewhere in there that a kid might miss for a few years.
**  Much like a certain lamp, I'm pretty sure my mother introduced this mug to Mr. Baseballbat, and Mr. Backyard.
***  One of these years, I'm gonna mail some cookies to some friends, and those friends will be so frigging impressed.  Some jokes aren't worth it.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Who am I? 1

One of the high schools I attended required incoming freshpersons to write a paper titled "Who am I?"  These papers were fairly big deals for the kids, and a source of much stress.  Every year, there were rumors of kids trying to photocopy their student I.D. cards and turn them as a clever meta-essay, but none of these rumors were ever confirmed by me.*

These papers were then read by the student at the end of their four years at the school.  I guess the goal was a forced existential examination, but given the vast gulf between the person I was in my senior year of high school and the person I was in the fall of my first year of college, I can't imagine that this would have been particularly fruitful for the students. 

Since I started attending this school with my sophomore year, I did not write one of these papers.  I have plenty of written paragraphs that can only really be described as journal entries from the last fourteen years, a great many of which are thoroughly public as blog posts.  Leafing through them traces a character arc that I doubt is unique among the lives of American consumers aged 18-35.  Looking back at my various journals, paper or digital, is a great way to remind myself that while I may be unemployed, at least I am not as much of a chundernozzle as I used to be. 

Who am I?:  I make two u-turns and hold up traffic on a one lane road to move a turtle off that road.

* I never cared enough to even begin the process of asking my advisor about the grading process for these papers.

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

The Daily Caller Will Never Become "the Conservative Huffington Post"

"In his new book, “The KinderGarden of Eden: How The Modern Liberal Things And Why He’s Convinced That Ignorance Is Bliss,” Sayet strays from the humorous to explore why what he calls “Modern Liberals” support the policies they do."
"Explain the title, 'The KiderGarden of Eden.'"

So I was flipping some news on Yahoo, I think, and I saw a link to this Daily Caller piece.  The Daily Caller is usually good for a laugh because of frequent copy editing errors.  Every time I see one, I laugh at The Great Orange One's attempt to start a conservative version of the Huffington Post.  Maybe if you could frame your worldview in some way that wasn't a conservative version of someone else's work, you might succeed someday, Tuckbag.  Maybe if right wing cobags had some imagination, they might criticize Obama about something real instead of "He's so well respected and I don't like that! Waaaaaah!"

The article claims that Evan Thomas of Newsweek said that Obama is a god, but there is no link to back this up.  In fact, the only links in the article are from those Ad Choices auto-links.  This is just lazy, lazy reporting.  There is no attempt to fabricate even the smallest shred of journalistic integrity. 

The whole article fails to mention that Saturday Night Live has been making fun of Obama nearly every week, but I suppose they are too cool for SNL.  I think SNL has gotten much better lately. A search for Obama parody returns a wealth of hits, but I will admit that I have not investigated the political opinions of the people involved with those hits.  They could all be conservative, but I think can safely that this isn't the case because Key and Peele are on the first page of hits.

I took a screenshot to preserve these failures for posteriority.  That is not a typo, that is term that means we will all be wiping our butts with rags like the Daily Caller after the Whateveralypse.

Exactly the Kind of Robot I Want

This should come as no surprise to anyone familiar with my desire for pets of unusual cuddle-less-ness, but if someone were to buy me a robotic companion, I would want a tarantulabot friend.  We would hang out all day.

My daily task calendar just reminded me that I am a couple years late on Tarantula Tuesday posts.