Making maudlin

So, I am an old guy.  You know.  Kinda.  And my kids are away.  My parents are deceased.  The larger family isn’t all that close.  And my friends are busy over the next few days and well, Xmas doesn’t mean as much to me right now.  Not really.

You know how it is…?  We have some lights but no tree.  That kinda says it all……… 

I am afraid it is a combination of anti-consumerism sentiment, been-there-done-that-ism and a hereditary Grinch gene mixed in with a little humbuggery.  I am not so much a downer as an outer.  Maybe a down-‘n-outer, I suppose, but it seems more like just not wanting to go the party.

‘I vont to be alone’.

Mind you, after reaching that major milestone of cynicism at seven years old when I learned there was no Santa I have never liked Christmas.  And it has been downhill ever since.

Well, so I thought, anyway.  As my daughter reminded me today, ‘Dad, that is what you always say and then when it is over, we get all those maudlin blogs that jerk tears from us….I can’t take it anymore.  Oh Gawd!  The humanity!  Please…just stop it!’

Sheesh.  And I thought I was just being a sensitive, new-age guy…?

Anyway, my friend – the one who dragged us kicking and screaming into this hell-hole of a city, the one who shanghaied us into Shanghai-on-the-west-coast, the one who bosses around a crew of tough worker-bees every day on the building site dropped by unannounced and gave Sal and me presents.  We got heated coats.  Milwaukee worker-dude heated jackets with little ‘lights’ on the front to tell everyone how cool we are by being warm.

So we walked around outside for a while being toasty and happy.  It was nice.

Xmas – for me – is for others.  If I am gonna participate at all, it is usually to make things nicer for others.  I don’t want anything I don’t already have or can get fairly easily.  I don’t need anything hardly at all.  I am about as happy as I can be for a curmudgeon and even amongst the curmudgeons, I tend to violate the happiness allotment.  They are always sending me notices to ‘curb the joy, dude!’  I verge on the cusp of curmudgeon and contented.  I could lose my membership card.

I’ll never get elected to the board.

But the present was a treat.  It really was.  It is not so much the coat (tho that is pretty neat and several of the worker guys stopped me today to tease me about it“What?  You getting chilly sitting in front of the TV, Dave?” ).  It is more the fact that my friend put himself in my shoes.  He knows those shoes are usually gumboots and we are in inclement weather a lot.  It can get pretty chilly in an open boat.  He knew that a heated jacket would really be appreciated by us.  He also knew that Sal would look cute-as-a-bug’s-earmuff in one

Put another way: it was a very thoughtful gift.

And it is only December 19th!

What else ya got?

2 thoughts on “Making maudlin

  1. Maudlin eh! I think not! But verity always verity.

    Conversely “[c]ivilization, in fact, grows more and more maudlin and hysterical; especially under democracy it tends to degenerate into a mere combat of crazes; the whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by and endless series of hobgoblins, most of them imaginary.” It the nature of civilization to stumble from one crisis to the next and heaven help the observer who points out such tendencies. Dave keep pointing out these ironies.


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