Actually, if you think about it, it’s not really a new ‘year’ or anything else. Time is man-made, it’s something we’ve created to anchor ourselves. Probably a few majillion years ago whenever the first women roamed the earth they had the “bright sunshine warm” time and the “grey cold” time and the “oh sh*t a baby is coming out of me” time. And when that happened it wasn’t like she could tell the medicine woman that her contractions were three minutes apart – she didn’t have minutes. She also didn’t have epidurals so you know that sucked.
However, here we are, anchored in space and time with many gadgets that tell us just how much time we didn’t use wisely, and how much time we spent looking at some really cute boots on sale at Zappos, and how much time we spent trying to decide whether to buy the boots at Zappos even though we don’t need them because we only have two feet and we can only wear one pair of boots at a time and we already have three pair of boots. Which, by the way, “pair”, while being two, is singular. (also, hubs, if you ever happen to read my blog, I did. not. buy any boots)
This is what I thought was a really great idea a month ago: put a bunch of lights on the bushes outside. I was driven to do this because the awesome retired man across the street – seriously – is in annual competition for the local Griswold Award. He’s got the most incredibly fantastic random assortment of Christmas yard art you’ve ever seen. There are light up ducks and singing Mr. & Mrs. Santa, and light globes made of clear plastic cups glued in a circle with a light shoved through the bottom of each cup. He has a light up countdown calendar to Christmas on the wall next to the front door. There are inflatables that he inflates and deflates every evening, snowflake shaped lights in the grass, icicle lights hanging randomly from the trees. I cannot believe I am lucky enough to live across the street from this. It’s SO COOL. Whenever the B’ster comes over we go across the street and he runs around looking at everything. One night we put the leash on Murph and took him, too. We walked across the street, looked at lights and went back home. Murphy looked at us. What the hell? That was a walk? Are you idiots?
Apparently, yes, because yesterday in the steely grey afternoon at a damp 31 degrees I was outside unstringing the stupid lights while my fingertips (in gloves) turned white, laboriously wrapping them awkwardly around wooden thingies the hubs made to laboriously wrap lights around. Meanwhile Mr. Awesome was across the street undecorating his house. I did not want to ask if he won the award because the first year we lived here he came in second and seemed rather disgusted about it. No need rubbing salt in the wound if that happened again. This is what he had: A little round rolling up thingie. He stuck the end of a string of lights in it. Then he wound the handle and the lights wound their own selves up. What the hell am I doing, wrapping the damn things around a piece of wood?
Also, is it ever not going to be 31 degrees and grey outside? July is going to be pretty weird.
GUESS WHAT? I ran 5-1/2 miles New Years Day! Afterward there was a potluck and Tom brought the best chili. It’s Weight Watchers, too. Here’s the recipe:
Brown 2 lbs of hamburger, ground turkey or a mixture of hamburger/sausage along with one package of Taco seasoning
Put it in a crockpot with one can of each:
Whole Kernel Corn
Stir in one packet of Hidden Valley Ranch dry mix
YUM! (You should know that if you eat the chili by scooping each bite up with a large Frito, the Weight Watcher’s thing is largely negated.)
Anyway, getting back to our laboring foremother who did not worry about decorating bushes with lights, which are something she wouldn’t know about, with not having any electricity and stuff, and who was probably wearing some boots she’d made out of leather she’d tanned after chewing up a bunch of herbs or something and spitting them on the hide of the auroch and rubbing them in for about 10 hours (although she had no time so was it really ten hours? or … not?) to soften the hide and then sewing them together with some ivory sewing needles an enterprising male (perhaps the progenitor of the “oh sh*t the baby is coming”? I think maybe so.) had hewn (cool word, hewn. “How are all ya’ll hewin’?” they say in the South. Which means, “is everyone healthy? and, if not, can you spare the surgical details?”) (Dammit. I’m … lying …)
ANYWAY back to our foremother who is laboring to bring forth the child which could possibly be your many-times-removed grandparent all because some enterprising male managed to make a sewing needle out of a cactus sticker, wooing her with promises of auroch hides to spit upon: a New Year probably meant about as much as a crockpot. “Right, then, I’ll just stick this auroch leg in the crockpot and we’ll have us some nice dinner tonight, right after I pop out this little baby thing that I have no idea where it came from because that was 9 months ago and we don’t have months and don’t know what sperm are.” (sperm, while being many, is singular)
“And, also, Happy New Year” she pronounced.