'07 IS GONE, '08 IS HERE.
LC Van Savage
Well, one more year has passed. As I am every New Yearís Eve, I am again most happily alone in my livingroom, Mongo gently snoring upstairs, the Christmas lights blinking kind of forlornly because they know deep in their tiny filaments their days are numbered, at least for another year, and Iím doing my favorite New Yearís Eve thing; watching old, old black and white movies which, whenever I do that with my family around, Iím forced to suffer through a whole lot of quite unnecessary cruel mockery. MPBN just showed the glorious ďMy Man GodfreyĒ which was made in 1936, two years before I was actually born! Itís still holding its own, and very well I may say. I saw it for the first time in the early 1940s.
The next film was ďThe Dorsey BrothersĒ made in 1947, nine years after I was born and I saw that one for the first time back in the early 1950s. So you can see Iím in heaven here.
Somewhere out there in the cold, a big, glittering ball has fallen, telling the world or at least this part of it that 2008 has safely landed. People are screaming everywhere, maybe getting a wee bit tight, maybe getting into a wee bit of celebratory trouble. Not I. Beentheredonethat. Frankly I donít much care for all that grossly wet, boozy midnight kissing stuff with screaming, singing strangers when I could be sitting at home here with The Dorsey Brothers and My Man Godfrey, the sweet sounds of Mongo serenading me from abovestairs, our beautiful fading Christmas lights still twinkling while I dwell on a good life behind me and a better one coming.
Tomorrow---well, I guess tomorrow is now today, Iíll have hit the 70 mark. I can hardly get my tongue around that "seventy" word. Very foreign sounding. Hard to believe. Weíre all stuck at a certain age they say, and mine is 19. I forget what Mongoís age to be stuck at is, if in fact he has one, but Iím pretty sure if I wake him to ask him that, my happiness in this sweet, shiny moment will become a bit tarnished because he rarely enjoys being pulled out of a deep sleep to be asked capricious questions. He doesnít find that sort of thing particularly endearing and believe me, after fifty years with this big man, I know of what I speak.
Odd isnít it, how the glitter and gleam of Christmas kind of dulls down as of December 26th. Lights are still up, still on, still there but theyíve lost their attitude. Iím going to stretch the season just a bit and leave ours up for a while longer. Things look so cold, bleak and dull when the decorations have been all pulled down and repacked for next year, and it takes a day or so to readjust to regular home living.
Iíve noticed over the last decade or so that people are leaving their outdoor lights up all the time, some lit, some not. The tiny clear lights look beautiful amongst the branches of summertime trees. And wreathes? Some remain for months on front doors until they are brown, crisp circles of drying, shedding pine and holly, the red bows hanging sadly down, frames rusting on the nail. Christmas wreathes just donít look quite so great in late August. Some wreathes are made of twigs and they stay up forever because they look so pretty; that is, if youíre into wreathes. And twigs. And I am.
But down itíll all eventually come in my home, and put back into plastic bags and big dusty boxes. The New Year will have begun, my 70th will bang into me on this day, Jan. 1 right on schedule whether I like it or not, Mongo and I will shovel out the remains and detritus of the 11 beloved family members who were in and out of here for 8 blissful, loud, wild, calamitous and joyful days, and itíll take us a week to settle back into non-holiday life. Two. Maybe three. Weíre in no hurry.
How everyone yearns for the holiday spirit to stay with us all year, but we know it canít and wonít, so letís string it out for as long as we can, OK? I will if you will. But in the meanwhile, from Godfrey, The Dorsey Brothers and everyone Iíve ever known or will know or wish I had or hope I shall, may the Universe bless us all, everyone.
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