Friday, July 3, 2020

We chose yesterday as the day to catch up on our self-created holidays, as the list of prescribed merriment was uncharacteristically short. The pause of reflection hit early in the morning as I ventured to the bathroom and learned that the previous day’s embrace of creative ice cream flavors – in particular my black licorice indulgence – somehow emerged from its digestive journey a glorious turquoise. My initial thought was, “Wow, that’s pretty.” Then the reality hit me, that my innards partially invoke a Caribbean travel brochure, and I got a little worried. It was an auspicious start to a Thursday.

Build Your Final Playlist Day

This was my contribution to the notion of celebration creation. I felt it would be beneficial for people to curate the music that would play at their funeral, their celebration of life, their memorial, their pyre-lighting… whatever post-mortem commemoration your loved ones will throw together after your demise. This is your last chance to impose your musical tastes upon the people around you, to demonstrate to them which art you feel best reflects who you are and how you made your way through the world.

It’s a dark concept, I get that. And dark concepts are not overly appreciated in this weird little project. But this was something that always irked me. My wife knows me better than anyone else, but what would she play at my service? She’d be too distraught to care, or so I’d hope. Would my kids throw something together? Perhaps. But they likely have no idea just how much I’ve come to connect with “Groovin’ Is Easy” by the Electric Flag.

This was one Jodie had little interest in joining in, and that’s fine. I told her how to locate my playlist and I trust she’ll be able to figure it out. If she happens to venture into the beyond first, I plan on playing Napoleon XIV’s “They’re Coming To Take Me Away (Ha Ha)” on repeat. That’s what she gets for neglecting the important parts of this project.

As for what is on my playlist, you’ll just have to be fortunate enough to snag an invite when the day comes. Let’s just say I expect all of you to sit still and silently for the entirety of “In-A-Gadda-Da-Vida,” the long version. Out of respect.

Midway Day

How does one look back on the first half of a year like this and reflect? The first six months of 2020 have been unprecedented mangles of our expectations, and a moment in history that will likely haunt us all until the end of our days. Millions of people infected with a virus we’d never heard of just a few months earlier. Racial protests and violence that have sustained longer than any America has seen since the 1960s. A complete restructuring of how we live our lives, from where we work to how we walk through a grocery store to how we now obtain food and drink from our favourite eateries.

Everything is different. And some things will never be the same again – see my entry under Global Handshake Day last month to see my hopes for the end of that tradition. And yet for us, it has been a mixed bag.

Jodie’s first six months were a blend of great and awful. She missed her kids fiercely in the last part of the school year, and felt that they were robbed of a quality education, just as Jodie was robbed of what she loves about her profession. But at the same time, she went on a run of probably 30 straight days with an afternoon nap. That’s a huge win. She faces the next half of the year with trepidation and concern. No one knows what school will look like, and her teaching is her passion. Well, one of them. The other – theatre – has also been placed into carbon-freeze. It’s been a roller coaster year so far.

My 2020 has been something else entirely. While watching the world burn outside my window, I have found myself vocationally relocated to the office across the hall from my bedroom, and suddenly in receipt of 3.5 hours of every workday to do as I please. I have found comfort in introversion, and been fascinated watching how artists have created art and how the world has shifted to account for this weird twisting of reality. In short, I’ve been one of the few who have actually benefited from this cluster-fuck of a year.

The second half of the year may bring a rabbit flu, it might bring locusts, or maybe those murder hornets will finally show up and wreak havoc. As long as I can observe it all from my little room, I know I can handle it.

I Forgot Day

Created by a lady named Gaye Anderson, this day is meant to ease the minds of those of us who occasionally deal with bouts of forgetfulness. On this day we are meant to back off from our stress and allow ourselves to forget things.

I forget things all the time, so I’m happy to take a day off worrying about it. Whether it’s forgetting to follow up with a contractor to get a quote on eavestroughs, or forgetting to take food out to thaw for dinner, I’m kind of a champ. Some might say it’s the weed intake, but that’s okay; I’ll just forget they said that a few minutes later anyway. Everybody wins!

The funny thing is, yesterday I didn’t forget much. I mean, both of those things in the previous paragraph, but that’s really about it. At least I think so. If I forget that I forgot, does that cancel itself out? These are the questions for our age.

World UFO Day

Nothing really to say here – last week’s World UFO Day was commemorating the anniversary of the first spotted ‘flying saucer’, and this one commemorates the Roswell crash, both of which occurred in 1947. So if you missed celebrating last week, you can still grab this one, though I’m not sure how to effectively celebrate it. Build a UFO? Wander around the countryside, screaming up at the sky for someone to come abduct you? Enlist a friend to don an alien costume and probe your anus?

However you wish to celebrate, that’s up to you. We observed this one once already, but for fun I did a bit of reading on the Roswell crash. I’m as skeptical as the next skeptic, but it’s hard to read about all the goings-on in 1947 and not think there might be something fishy afoot.

Clean Beaches Week

Remember how cool it was that World Surfing Day was actually all about encouraging surfers to take a moment and tidy up the beaches they love so much? Well, this one is for the rest of us. For the first week of July we are all encouraged to pick a spot of beach and tidy it up so that it’s in its best shape for the next people or animals who stumble upon it.

Naturally, this year is different. Beaches get littered more on July 4 (which is a full-on weekend party this year) than at any other time. Of course, most of the beaches along the American coasts will be abandoned or very sparsely populated this year, so the damage may not be so bad. Will it be enough? That depends on how many people read this article (HA!) or find out some other way that this is Clean Beaches Week, and that the planet has some expectations for us.

We are doing our part by not contributing to any beach mess since we won’t be leaving our house much over the next several days. But if you’re headed to a beach, please do your part and then some. The earth could use a hand.

Due to budget constraints (and other reasons) we may be skipping a few of these. Our hearts will be there even if our stomachs can’t be:

  • National Fried Clam Day. Not sure where in the city to get the best fried clams; they won’t be super-fresh given the lack of wild clams on the prairie. We might skip this one.
  • National Eat Your Beans Day. Jodie hates beans. This one may get skipped for that reason.
  • National Chocolate Wafer Day. On the other hand, we still have some of these unopened from Baked Alaska Day, so we’ll be feasting on this for dessert.
  • National Stay Out of the Sun Day. I was worried this would happen on a day that was too glorious and hot to stay away from my hammock. I didn’t have to worry.
  • Compliment Your Mirror Day. A day for self-positivity. Or, if you own a really bitchin’ mirror, for being grateful for that.
  • Disobedience Day. We might encourage some civil disobedience today. There is some good cause for that right now.
  • Comic Sans Day. I will write in this font, though I don’t think WordPress will let me publish in this font. Thankfully.
  • American Redneck Day. Nope. They get no love from us right now.
  • Drive Your Corvette To Work Day. I wish!
  • Plastic Bag Free Day. We won’t be purchasing anything that will result in us getting a plastic bag.
  • National Independent Beer Run Day. Not a bad plan.

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