>A warm December day

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Another warm December day in San Antonio. A little snow would be nice. I love sitting in the hot tub as the steam rises into the cold dry air. None of that today. It was almost 80 degrees. At least I had a good time. Real winter doesn’t get here until January or February. Then it’s back to summer again. I kind of miss running around naked all summer but it’s nice to wear nice warm clothes on a cold winter day.
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>Gas prices need to go back up.

>I think life was better when gas prices were high.

Now that it has come down from almost $4.00 to $1.48 per gallon the number of drivers on the road has increased exponentially. The amount of frivolous driving is way up. I’m pretty sure people are out driving around just to burn gas. Driving was much more pleasant when the price was way up.

Now I have a scooter sitting in the garage but it’s not worth driving now. I didn’t mind risking my life before because I was saving so much money. Now I might as well take the car. There were a lot fewer large vehicles on the road as well so it just felt safer anyway.

My fingers are crossed for record high gas prices to return.

>A tiny bit of magic

>I just watched the Charlie Brown Christmas special. It and the rest of the cartoons aired much earlier in the month. Most likely to help stimulate the masses to go shopping. Christmas is run by a big eastern syndicate you know. I save them on my DVR for a few weeks until it is more Chrismassy and appropriate.

The cartoon is special to me. It’s not necessarily the content of the cartoon as much as the experience itself. The music, the animation, the overall simplicity that can have so much effect on the psyche. It actually transports me back to a happier time where I had family, friends and experenced love and magic. I can actually place myself on the floor in front of the TV back in the early 1970s and experience the beauty of the Season. The Christmas tree and presents. So special. I love Vince Guaraldi’s music. I need to get some MP3s of his other work.

It’s really hard for me now to get into any Christmas spirit. Putting up a tree seems too much trouble and once it is up, even though I still have the same old ornaments that are tarnished and horrible looking but still hold some magic, it just means nothing to me. It’s like a sandwitch made by someone else. If you do it yourself, it’s just not as good.

Christmas lights always seemed magic to me. I would get close up to them and stare at the little glowing filiment in the little bitty glass bulb. Being an electrical engineer now and knowing how they work, the magic is gone. And the new LED bulbs? Totally cold and empty. Awesome from an engineering point of view but no love at all.

Thank you Charlie Brown for giving me 30 minutes of reminicent happiness at least once a year where the world isn’t so cold and lonely for just a little time.

>Christmas Peace

>This month my assignment is to make peace with Christmas. Over 40 years I’ve watched Christmas slowly transform from an magical, beautiful, peaceful, anticipated event to a boring, crass, anxiety filled, unbearable “Holiday”. My heart longs for that childish glee. It’s obvious now that my deep unfulfillable desire to enjoy Christmas like it once was adds to my frustration and anger.

Every year I look forward to Christmas starting in the summer but by the time it gets here it’s just so gross that I can’t stand it. I realize now that Christmas is really just a marketing excuse perpetrated by the stores taking advantage of adults wanting to relive Christmas through their children. Not having any children, it really has no relevance to my life. I must let go and let it be.

There are two ways that make Christmas mean anything at all to me and that is playing Christmas music in the band and the classic cartoons that take me back to my youth if even just for 30 minutes at a time. They are special to me because they were made during or just before my childhood during a simpler time of life. They probably mean almost nothing to the kids of today.

It’s really just a simple thing and nothing to get freaked out about. Let Christmas be because there’s nothing I can do about it. Peace on earth and goodwill inside my head.