Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Delay of Gratification

I'm still waffling about the whole resolution thing. Part of me wants to curl up and hide because the responsibility of keeping any resolution seems far too heavy. Part of me disagrees. So I'll make it short and sweet. Since I have been saying that physical things I'd like to accomplish such as run a half marathon, do a pull-up (some people say I will still be able to try; others, that having torn a rotator cuff I kiss pull-ups good-bye), or use the OCR jungle gym in progress in the yard will wait until 2016, I resolve to be ready in 2016. This means lots of things, mental and physical, certainly enough to fill one year.
I have been bad about including photos lately. This is the OCR jungle gym mentioned above. Since this photo was taken, crosspieces have been added to one side for climbing up to the top. Said crosspieces are about three feet apart. The cargo net that will occupy another side is underway in the basement. The whole thing had better be done by 2016.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

You Say You Want a Resolution...

This is the time of year when I traditionally look at last year's or July 1's resolutions and consider how I've done with them. Then I make a new batch or propose a new direction in which to live. I'm just not in the mood for that this year, chiefly because the past half year has been a wee bit or more crappy. The last good, full workout I got was almost exactly six months ago. In no small part because of that, I can no longer wear most of the pants I fit into six months ago. Although I have somewhat gotten used to asking for help, it sucks still to be doing it on a more-than-daily basis. I tell myself that there's no direction in which to go save for "up" (there's no comeback without a setback), but really, truly believing that is more difficult. Still, there are some hours left in 2014 and 24 in January 1, 2015. I may still be able to wrestle my angst into something useful. As the song I started out with ends, "Don't you know it's gonna be alright." Resolutions or none, I imagine it will be.

Monday, December 22, 2014

It's Beginning to Sound a Lot Like Christmas

I love Christmas music and have been known to make it the soundtrack of my day even in the depths of summer. I especially love the carols, by which I mean the religious rather than secular pieces. It seems hard these days, though, to find a radio station playing the day away with carols or, for that matter, secular songs. Perhaps I just have the wrong stations "buttoned" on my car radio.

The physical therapy assistant who runs me through shoulder exercises twice a week asked what my favorite Christmas song is. For carols, it has to be "Silent Night" especially when sung in what I imagine the original manner was, by a solo singer to minimal accompaniment such as just a guitar. The large-scale choral or orchestral versions don't do it for me. I prefer simplicity.

Thinking about a favorite of course led to thoughts of a least favorite. I'm not sure I have one of those when it comes to carols, though there are some that do much less for me that others. I have never, for example, warmed up to "Good King Wenceslas." "Ding Dong Merrily On High" doesn't do much for me either.

When it comes to the secular side, it is safe to say that my favorite song can change from year to year. For the past couple of years, it has been "I'll Be Home for Christmas," but one specific version, the one on Josh Groban's Noel. Before, after, and during the song are clips of deployed soldiers or their families talking about their wishes for the season. Hearing those adds so much meaning to the lyrics. Oh that they all could be home for Christmas and not just in their dreams.

And if I have a favorite secular song, where to begin with the least favorite? Does anyone like "Grandma Got Run over by a Reindeer"? Or "Jingle Bell Rock"? Or the current version of "Winter Wonderland" in which the snowman built in the meadow is no longer Parson Brown but a circus clown? Really? It's not politically correct to have Pastor Brown marry them while he's in town? Give me a carol or Josh, please.

Now where's my iPod?