It’s amazing how much of being a grown-up is an endless cycle of facing new things that I’m not 100% sure I’m enough of an adult to handle adequately. Luckily, I also have enough foundational decades of adulting my way through everything I’ve faced thus far in life as to face each new adulting challenge with a core sense of faith that I will find my way through.
And sometimes I come out the other side feeling kinda proud of myself. Which is how I’m feeling tonight.
I have—rather demonstrably—a potty mouth. I even lay claim to it in my tagline up there.
This propensity towards foul-mouthed discourse probably explains my love for T-shirts with provocatively foul–mouthedslogans.
Now, I’m actually too chicken-shit to wear anything so bold and brassy, but I continue to dream of myself as if I were braver. And there was a time, back at Penn, when I had a mildly foul-mouthed shirt that I loved.
I am, of course, musing on honorifics today on account of a truly execrable Op-Ed published in the Wall Street Journal some week-and-a-half ago. You probably know the one—I’m not linking it here—where Joseph Epstein, some retired lecturer I shall be calling “Joey” for the duration of this piece, lambasted Dr. Jill Biden for continuing to use the academic title (Dr.) relevant to her graduate degree (Ed.D.) and profession (community college professor). Since Dr. Jill Biden is not an MD-carrying medical doctor, Joey suggests, she shouldn’t put on airs by using any title beyond “First Lady.”
Honestly, I wasn’t planning to write about this. It was so obviously click-bait, something designed to provide outrage—which it quite deservedly and expectedly did, despite the follow-on article by the WSJ’s opinions editor saying how shocked (SHOCKED, I tell you!) he was about the liberal snowflakes over-reacting to the piece.
So why give these douche-canoes more of the attention they were so obviously craving? There’d be better things to write about…
But then someone on a distant external ring of my professional circle commented in an email about how, ideologically and symbolically speaking, he and Dr. Jill Biden were equally under attack by this op-ed’s voicing of current anti-intellectual and anti-education beliefs. Him and Dr. Jill and their “fake degrees.”
And I nearly took his fucking head off. Which belatedly made me aware that I’ve been having some feelings about this all.
I’ve been a very lazy blogger this week. Took Wednesday off—the dog was all snuggly in my lap and I didn’t have the heart to displace her. And honestly, most Wednesday nights, Mr. Mezz plays D&D with his friends, so I might just plan for that to be a semi-regular night off while I dog-sit.
And then I took last night off, because…
What the hell were we doing last night?
I know we watched something on DVR together, and then I watched Grey’s Anatomy on my own. But what was it we watched together? It was more than a regular length TV show.
(This is not a great sign about my current headspace.)
Every now and then SNL has a pre-filmed sketch that perfectly hits the zeitgeist. This past weekend is no exception:
I felt this one, hard. No, it doesn’t match the surface details of Christmas planning with Mr. Mezz and our extended family at all: we’re all in agreement about the proper, safe, course of action, so our Christmas conversations have already taken place without any of the comic guilt-tripping demonstrated here by Heidi Garner, Punkie Johnson, and Kate McKinnon.
My car emailed me this morning with a low battery warning.
And that’s actually more of true a statement than not.
You see, part of my multi-pronged Verizon package* is a device called the Hum. I think of it as the poor man’s On-Star: a gadget/speaker-box that would allow me to call out for road-side assistance in the case of breakdown or accident.
You see, when you’re classy, you get to have your tech built into the rear-view like in the photo above. Instead, my gadget just clips onto the visor like souped-up garage door opener. But even though I have the non-luxury version of this asset, it’s given me peace of mind to have this extra bit of equipment in the car as I’ve been commuting in snowy New England conditions these past several years.
But I hadn’t ever paid attention to this whole other diagnostic suite of features the Hum has.
That is: not until the Hum app emailed me at 16 minutes past midnight with a “Yellow” battery alert.**
Some of it is my inherent laziness: after putting in a full day at the NPO, there’s some nights I have not been in the mood to work on things. And my general philosophy for all this year’s decorating is “only if it makes me happy.” So if it makes me happier to do things slowly, I’m A-OK with that.
The objective is to go as long as possible without hearing WHAM’s Christmas classic, “Last Christmas.”
The game starts on December 1st, and ends at midnight on December 24th.
Only the original version applies. Enjoy the ?#!$&%! out of remixes and covers.
You’re out as soon as you recognize the song.
Now, you might remember me mentioning that I have a lot of CDs. (Like: a LOT.) As such, I think that no one will be especially surprised to hear that I also have a healthy number of holiday CDs.
So I usually go into each annual round of Whamageddon with a decent advantage, because I’m going to spend a lot of my time listening to my own collection of holiday music. Which means I can consciously program around that track for as long as I have other CDs to listen to.**
The main Whamageddon risks to me are when I’m out in the world where every store, restaurant and gas station has their own holiday playlist going.
I was gonna write an entirely different post tonight. I finished another “just for fun” read over the weekend, and was gonna do that one last fluffy book review before coming back to more serious topics.
But then I saw this tweet from NBC news:
So I guess it’s back to seriousness sooner rather than later.
Although, in all honestly, I’m not sure what more I have to say aside from.
Mr. Mezzo and I have a monthly Datebox subscription. I gave it to him as a Christmas present last year, and we enjoyed it enough that we re-upped once the initial subscription term ended.
For the record, this was not one of those passive-aggressive “you aren’t bringing enough romance into my life” kinds of gifts. Between my workaholism and my mental health, I have been the less-romantic member of this partnership for a long damn time. Instead, the gift was offered in the spirit of “I know I’m often too busy or distracted or depressed for romance, but this is my commitment to you to regularly carve out time together“—and I’m pretty confident that was the spirit in which said gift was also received.
I’m sharing all of this because one of the activities in a recentish Datebox involved rolling dice to randomly get questions to answer so we could learn new and quirky things about each other. One of the questions was “If you could have one wish, what would it be?”
I don’t actually remember how I answered that question, but I do remember that we then organically and nerdily moved from there into the question “If you could choose one superpower, what would it be?”
Or maybe, I should just call it: I may be a sad sack about my solo Solstice, but I am NOT going to be a selfish, solipsistic, self-destructive shithead.
(That kind of alliteration has to be kind of impressive, right?)
Basically, this is me riffing further to expound on a comment from yesterday’s post. Someone’s initial response to my sadness from last night was to go see my family anyhow—cos life is short and nothing is guaranteed, anyways.
And I know that advice is coming from a place of individual compassion for me and my pain. But it is not counsel I can take in good conscience. ‘Cos I only have the tiniest bit of epidemiological understanding, but I know enough to know the importance of public health and to know how important it is to listen to public health and medical experts when you’re in the middle of a global pandemic.