Friday, December 31, 2004

Not a Resolution

This is the time of year when I remind myself that it is just another day, then go about trying to believe it. So, here is the obligatory self-assessment (or at least the parts I plan to post here).

First, my last year’s resolution was to be published, as in "Yes I am a published writer." So perhaps that will be this year’s resolution too. I wrote a lot but didn't submit anything. I have a few things going on right now, and maybe I can break through and get my first rejection letter this year. College this year will force me to write, at least, even if it is things like "Amerindian Issues in American Literature" or something exciting like that. I failed to keep up with the NaNoWriMo thing this year, but I had lots of good excuses. My English Composition class (yeah, I actually had to take one of those) professor forced me to write some experimental essays, which was fun but hard work. I have most of the first "book" of my novel done, but now I actually have to start writing it. In short, I fell way short of my writing goals this year. No book signings this year. Maybe in '05.

Second, I did go back to college (the community variety) and got all A's except for my statistics class (they made me take it, and I got a B after three F's on tests; thank god for "the curve"). In the Spring I get to take a KILLER schedule. Technically I will only be taking 18 units at CSUN and three at AVC, but in reality I may be taking as much as 28 units, if one counts classes I will be taking on audit or "for fun" reasons. I literally skated last semester, so I am cocky going into this next semester. Stay tuned for my "Oh My God What Have I Done" post in the near future.

Third, I promised to write here a few times a week. Well, as with the rest of my public promises, I meant well and performed less than well. So here are some more promises! I will be posting some of my writing as soon as I can figure out how to do it without making it its own post here (maybe a new blog for my novel exerpts). I will try to write more.

Forth, I survived the year without losing any friends (that I know about) to politics. That is saying something, as it was an election year and I have a lot of rather fanatic friends. I was right about the election outcome, wrong about WMD, and end the year still behind the President’s foreign policy. I believe Iraq was a net positive (I can almost hear my friends’ incredulous screams) and that elections will happen in January with limited success. We may still have a civil war there, and to be honest I think that going to that level will actually be a way to end the fighting with less bloodshed, but you will have to guess why I think that. I tried very hard not to vote for Bush this year, actually, and failed. Kerry was such a fake and refused to give me anything at all to stand on, so I went with Bush. Perhaps next election I will have a candidate that I actually believe in enough to volunteer for. One can hope. I end the year as I began, a fiscal and political conservative, but a staunch social liberal. Mostly, though, I remain a devout believer in the credo of the Independent. There is no leap-of-faith in my future to turn me into a Democrat or Republican.

I did have fun in a History class that had the stereotypical agenda-driven professor. I think his whole goal of the year was to convince us that the Iraq war was just like Vietnam. The fact that I passed the class without getting a F for calling him on his lowsy proofs is amazing. I don't mind fanatics, but people with unfounded opinions annoy the hell outa me, doubly so if that person is supposed to be a scholar. I mean, if you go so far as to state an opinion, at least be able to defend it. Sorry, but the fact that you may be a college history professor holds little weight. And to think, now I get to go back to the University department that once told me "you have to be a woman to be a writer." Oh what fun. I will continue to fight for a fair treatement of politics in classes with the famous CSUN writing department feminist agenda. It is like digging a hole in water, but I just can't help myself.

So here is my New Years Resolution: I will try to begin less sentences with the letter I.

Susan, James, Jessica and Griffin all say hi. If you want to feel old, James is 16, Jessica is 12 and Griffin in 11. Susan is [Deleted on the request of a reader]. I am 36.

So how do I end this year? I just learned how to use "izzle" in a sentence. That is something right? No, I don't plan on using that knowledge any time soon.

- Jim

Friday, December 17, 2004

Your Christmas Card

They said there'll be snow at Christmas,
They said there'll be peace on earth,
But instead it just kept on raining,
A veil of tears for the Virgin birth.

I remember one Christmas morning,
The Winter's light and a distant choir,
And the peal of a bell and that Christmas tree smell,
And eyes full of tinsel and fire.

They sold me a dream of Christmas,
They sold me a silent night,
They told me a fairy story,
'Til I believed in the Israelite.

And I believed in Father Christmas,
And I looked to the sky with excited eyes,
Then I woke with a yawn in the first light of dawn,
And I saw him and through his disguise.

I wish you a hopeful Christmas,
I wish you a brave New Year,
All anguish, pain and sadness,
Leave your heart and let your road be clear.

They said there'd be snow at Christmas,
They said there'd be peace on earth,
Hallelujah! Noel!, be it Heaven or Hell,
The Christmas we get, we deserve.

"I believe in Father Christmas" - Greg Lake