BINGE-WATCHING “The Crown” on Netflix was about all I could do to bloody get away from all the madness the holidays brought. Yes, it was still madness even if it were only in my head. There’s something about the countdown to Christmas and the soft reset for New Year’s Eve that makes monsters out of everyday highs and lows. One minute you’re gently tapping on the keyboard, your fingers playing the keys as if they could produce a symphony in words, but the next, pounding it to mincemeat like a third-generation Brooklyn butcher upon realizing your favorite nostalgic ham won’t make an appearance on this year’s Noche Buena table because some swine have fever from Africa they can’t shake off. (It’s not their fault, really.)
One word made matters worse: pandemic.
Two words made it worser: new strain.
Writing off 2020 may be No. 1 on everyone’s to-do list on the first day of January, but it doesn’t look as though COVID-19 is now waving the white flag.
(At a nerd mixer) “Everyone, meet 2021, 2020’s slicker twin, three minutes younger.”
And they’re both wearing polyester AND Crocs.
You gotta admit: those are just hideous. Even for nerds.
I was at JD Bakeshop-La Paz the other day and saw an otherwise attractive young woman wearing white platform Crocs. And, instantly, a hundred question marks blasted off from the top of my head. Where do they make these things? Aren’t they radioactive? Why wear them? Why? You’re in the prime of your life! You should lose face by getting drunk at a frat party, disco dancing to rap music, not by wearing orthopedic shoes.
There’s no salvaging your reputation after that.
The holidays really have a way of outing emotions we would rather keep to ourselves the rest of the year. Suddenly, people are friendlier to one another. You see a neighbor you had purposely ignored 364 of the 365 days last year and you flash her a smile—rather sincere, too, at that moment—only to panic as soon as the brief interaction ends. Because…what have you done, woman? This was your only defense against the attack of the niceties; the only one that made it possible for you to walk around the village without having to stop and chat. How dreadful!
Believe me, so many of life’s complications could be avoided if we were more mindful of precedent.
noun: precedent; plural noun: precedents
an earlier event or action that is regarded as an example or guide to be considered in subsequent similar circumstances.
a previous case or legal decision that may be or (binding precedent) must be followed in subsequent similar cases.
noun: binding precedent; plural noun: binding precedents
A single lapse in judgment and now I have to be nice to everyone. Crocs one day, fashion pariah forever.
Levity aside, may 2021 see us all with better, stronger mental health because half of life’s battles are fought and won (or lost) in the mind. I am still trying to manage my waves, to be honest, to not allow the next one to take me far away from the shore and sink me. But a good friend recently told me you don’t need to know how to swim to survive sinking; just stay on the surface and breathe.
What you think, you become.
What you feel, you attract.
What you imagine, you create. – Buddha
Cheers to you and me!
(Terri Amador is an ambivert bicycle commuter who thinks social distancing is the next best thing since sliced banana bread. She writes about her daily life on and off the saddle with often biting humor and knows no other way.)