In the last decade, I have fallen out of the habit of watching television on any regular basis, which is a big change from my twenties, when I had a cable subscription and watched it every day. One of my favorite shows back in the day was the reality show What Not To Wear. In What Not To Wear, a person (usually a woman) was nominated by her friends and family to receive a $5000 clothing budget to revamp her wardrobe. The catch was that she had to choose clothes that the hosts considered appropriate.
Anthony Bourdain recently killed himself. I am using the words “killed himself”, not the euphemisms “took his own life” or “committed suicide.” He iced himself. Snuffed himself. Ended it. Topped himself. Kicked the chair. I say these terms with respect: it is no easy thing to kill yourself. I know; I failed to do it several times. I no longer feel that way, so please don’t worry on my behalf; but as a formerly-suicidal person, I can admit I didn’t have the guts to go all the way, and in hindsight I’m incredibly glad I wasn’t hardcore enough for the job.
Every day I get into my car for at least an hour a day and it terrifies me. I have the type of sensory-overload difficulties that accompany high-functioning autism, which means the noise of other vehicles revving their engines, the sensation of hurtling along at 45 miles an hour, and the trial-by-force of cautiously avoiding the mistakes of other drivers sends me into a state of anxious dread.
I recently visited a large chain store called Meijer, which is basically a clothing, small appliance, home decor, and household store with a super-deluxe grocery store inside it; a coffee shop, a pretzel shop, an optometrist, and the works. In America, these places crowd in donut formations around the areas where houses are, far away from old town centers where there is public transportation such as trains. In this chain store, I saw a decent cross-section of the average American. About 20 percent of them were so overweight, they could barely walk.
I am having one of those days where I am not sure if I am mentally and physically well enough to work. We all have them, but if you are one of the vast numbers of the lower middle class, you do not get to choose: you’re going to work.
My fiance and I have been meaning to go to Kama for a while now. They have one in LaGrange Park where we live, so we made reservations for Valentine's Day.
Before dinner we had hoped to go to a local metaphysical store but saw they were closed Sundays. Instead we wound up wandering LaGrange and driving around Hinsdale, looking at beautiful houses we'll probably never be able to afford. Oh well. If I had that kind of money I probably wouldn't spend it on a house anyway.
I am not a fan of Christmas. Admittedly, there are a few good things about it: the pretty lights, a general spirit of giving, and peppermint lattes. As for the rest of it, I could just soon as do without, especially the one thing that makes Christmas, well, Christmas. That one thing is not holiday cheer, nor is it a sense of peace on Earth and good will towards mankind. It’s certainly not the birth of Christ, though that factors into things.
What Christmas means to me can be summed up in one word: GUILT.