The times, they are - well, not changing so much really
At this point in time, vast numbers of bloggers - and apparently even a few blogging housepets - are busy plotting, crafting, molding, and presenting in a flurry of confetti and kazoos their annual retrospective of 2005 and/or all the promises they intend to keep with themselves for 2006. That's because every one of them has the inner sense of something winding down while in turn something else is winding up. This, they think, is the time to make a change. They've been waiting around all year for something miraculous to fall from the sky onto their laps and change them, but each day, every day, day in and day out, who they were and what they did remained pretty much the same as the day before. So now must be the time. It's all that's left, after all. They think: oh sure, there was change over the past year, certainly, but change of the sort you just can't poke with a fork and pin down to the table. It was wispy, nebulous change, the kind we walk right into without notice, or perhaps with a slight blink and flutter of hands as we would do walking through a cloud of aphids.
come hither - back off
Even when something miraculous did fall from the sky, be it in the form of a windfall of cash, a baby, a death, a boyfriend, a death of a boyfriend, criminal charges, or jet engine parts, if it happened on a Tuesday in the middle of September, it just didn't seem to have the same oomph to it as it would if it were to have happened on New Year's Eve and New Year's Day. We even capitalize the days to indicate their significance. They are mighty Days! Bow down! It is the turning of a year on the giant spit of the universe!
The transition from the old, funky-smelling year to the year that is fetus is also seen, not only as a symbolic roasted pig in the sky, but as one of those buoys in the moderately polluted stream of life. It is the end of something! And the beginning of something! A year! Look - it says so right there on the calendar!
This is all great and good and wonderful and everything, and I'm glad you've all been imbued with a sense of initiative and drive. There's just one small, teensy problem.
There is no end. And no beginning. There is, in fact, nothing really there to celebrate at all.
Not that this ever stops us. Any excuse for beer, right?
The whole calendar hoohah is something some guy a few centuries ago just knocked off after looking at some stars and checking the temperature so we could all synchronize our sundials. Yes, sure, he put a lot of effort into it, there were many funny implements and gauges involved, and much debate occurred amongst other calendar men of old regarding where exactly to put Groundhog's Day. When all is said and done, however, there is no real significance to December 31. None. No, no - don't you go getting all Christian on my ass. Jesus would so be with me on this one. What's more, with all the screwing around that went on fiddling with numbers to make them fit the conclusions reached by whatever the latest craze was in funny implements, we're not even really sure if December 31 is actually December 31. For all we know, it could be January 14, and who has ever seen January 14 capitalized as a mighty Day anywhere? January 14 is not a mighty Day. January 14 is just a regular old shlubby day with bedhead and a need for a haircut, a day just like the rest of those regular old shlubby days.
I could understand all this excitement if something spectacular happened today to signal the end of a year. Then it would make sense. There would be plenty of reasons to view today and tomorrow as the end and the beginning of something, signals for all of us to finally get the hell off our asses and build that spaceship we've always dreamed of or bungie jump off the Eiffel Tower, if the universe itself was an active participant in the whole to-do. I'd be out there myself, drinking heavily, running around in circles with my arms out to my side and making loud train noises if, for example, the planet's rotation were to suddenly switch directions. "Get down off that fence this instant, Tommy! Look at the time! Do you want to spin off into oblivion like your brother did two years ago when he was playing on the trampoline?" It's all fun and games until the Coriolis Effect kills the children. Either that or I'd be staring fascinated at the Weather Channel waiting for hurricanes to start spinning in a clockwise direction. If there was an annual meteor shower that made the night sky all sparkly and pretty and occasionally wiped out a city, then, oh then, December 31 would be a mighty Day. We'd all be on board with December 31 as the end of days if the sun snuffed out for 3 1/2 minutes or turned puce, or if Madonna spontaneously regrew her hymen. Astronomical phenomena such as these are the stuff that mighty Days are made of.
Why isn't December 21 the end of a year? Midwinter's Day would make perfect sense. The druids knew what the fo shizzle was all about with Midwinter's Day. It's the shortest day. Or the shortest night. Either way, it's the shortest something. After that, all the days grow up. Or shrivel into oblivion. End of something. Beginning of something. Ta da! Now you can throw your confetti, toot your horn, and pass out!
December 31 not being what it is, there is therefore no reason, none at all, to sit on your keester waiting for New Year's to finally get a move on and magically transform yourself. If you want to sit on your keester, keep sitting. Hell, I myself am developing pressure sores. There's no shame in just living a life, and then living it, and then living it some more. You don't have to be the next Deepak Chopra or Dr. Phil's poster child. If you are comfortable and happy, then you are living your life. Even if you're not, you're living your life. If the yen strikes, then yes, by all means - change. However, if you want to change, don't wait around for change to fall magically from the sky - change now. Right now. And then - right now. And right now again. Life change is not a calendar event. It is your own symbolic roasted pig: the turning happens when you grab the damn handle and push.
make idle gossip (10 comments so far)
Last 5 entries:
Hosted by Diaryland