Saturday, December 25, 2010

A Brief Note from the Grinch

Before I begin to muse about my feelings about this time of the year I have to make one thing perfectly clear. My feelings for the abomination which has come to be called the"holiday season"  are beyond words for me.   A nice idea totally ruined.

Now,  I have never  been a  big fan of holidays in general.....of course when I was going to school or working I loved having a day off but mostly I would go around muttering, "Bah, Humbug"  even on the 4th of July and Labor Day. It wasn't the idea of what the days commemorated..........I always felt that the ways they were celebrated demeaned them.  And I  REALLY dislike the year-end holiday is not good enough.....detest, abhor, loathe are better words to describe it.  For one thing,  I hate the ends of things......even when they are followed by a beginning of something.  The ends create a definitive mark in the saga of your life and rub your nose in it.  No more ignoring how much of the journey, the adventure, the struggle, the whole wonderful effing thing is behind you.  No more just shuffling along happily procrastinating about everything and pretending that you'll take care of it tomorrow.  At the "ends of things" you must face your shortcomings and acknowledge your failures.  And then go on....... somehow........

And the "beginning of things"  is even worse"..........a measured span of time during which you have the obligation to try to correct the flaws and committed disasters.  I used to falsely promise to do better before the next "end of things",  a ghastly charade I have abandoned in my old age.  NO, NO- No more resolutions for me......they simply set a person up for more failures.  I much prefer to see time as an unmarked span .......a road of ups and downs during which I try to do the best I can.  I have been doing that for the past gazillion years or so and am still working on getting it right.  The quality of my "best" varies a lot ............sometimes it is more like my worst, but I have been working on the lesson of trying to accept my "best" whatever the degree of quality.

At this moment my "best" has consisted of some  very strange undertakings.  I am convinced that I must apply instantly for membership in  marvelous Ms. Mary Moon's (Bless Our Hearts) Church of Batshit Crazy.  If ever anyone deserved to be a congregant it's gotta be me.  The recent downpours in Southern California found me cutting apart plastic gallon milk cartons to make teensy awnings for the hummingbird feeders that are not protected from the rain.  Can't have the little monsters getting drowned while trying to sip their 93 or so meals a day, now can we?  And then, of course, when the concrete around the pool developed puddles as deep as lakes I had to construct a makeshift  bridge of some 2 x 4's I had in the garage so that Baskin, my crazy cat who chooses to live outdoors and eat indoors, could enter the house through the door I leave open for him to dine on kibble without being up to his kitty knees in water....(I don't think they make galoshes in sets of 4, especially in such a tiny size).  The best thing about such bizarre projects is that no standards have yet  been established....consequently I can bask in the glow of having really done my  best.

All of this reminds me of the most wonderful compliment I have ever received.  One of my dearest friends (now gone) was Bob, a brilliant man I worked with for many years during my days as a starving artist.  He founded the little greeting card company for whom I designed cards and subsequently ended up as Art Director and my boss when we worked at UCLA designing and producing all their publications.  When I was struggling against a deadline  to produce a poster for one of the Theater Arts projects and groaning about  being unable to come up with anything I felt was acceptable, he stopped what he was doing, turned to me, looked me in the eye and said, "Lois, believe me, your worst is good enough". 

Happy Holidays  and God Bless Us Every One!


  1. Oh my goodness, Lo! To read my name in your blog! I am completely undone! Thank-you. And let me say this- the gorgeous thing about the Church of the Batshit Crazy is that each and every one of us is a preacher in it, a parson, a follower of the belief of the time-span without beginnings or ends. And good music. And good beer. And good food. And hummingbirds and rain and trees and dirt and words, words, words.
    Merry Everything, dear woman.
    I am so glad to have found you.
    From Sister Mary to Sister Lo- Merry EVERYTHING!

  2. I'd like to sign up with this church!!! Love the help you gave the hummers and kitties ~ you are an angel ~~~

  3. I like that...'your worst is good enough'.
    That's the New year Resolution taken care of then.

  4. Bob was right.

    A blessed and beautiful (and dry) day to you.

  5. As usual, your blog has me smiling, then deep in thought, sometimes sad, but always glad to see your new posts!! I never make any "New Year resolutions,,,if I do, I don't tell anyone,,,If it works, good, if not, no one can say."I knew you couldn't do it," I have seen your artwork on the cards,,you sent me a few, they are fantastic,,so I imagine your worst was great!!

  6. Wonderful! I'm not even going to try anymore.

  7. Lo,
    I got the new anthology by Carol Ann Duffy from Alan and D.H.Lawrence's "Humming Bird" is in...thought that you might like it!

    Humming Bird

    I can imagine, in some otherworld
    Primeval-dumb, far back
    In that awful stillness, that only gasped and hummed,
    Humming birds raced down the avenues.

    Before any thing had a soul,
    While life was a heave of Matter, half inanimate,
    This little bit chipped pff in brilliance
    And went whizzing through the slow, vast succulent stems.

    I believe there were no flowers then,
    In the world where humming-bird flashed ahead of creation.
    I believe he pierced the slow vegetable veins with his long beak.

    Probably he was big
    As mosses, and little lizards, they say, were once big.
    Probably he was a jabbing, terrifying monster.

    We look at him through the wrong end of the long telescope of Time,
    Luckily for us.


  8. Your worst is good enough. I guess that raises the bar very little. I like it. Have a good day.

  9. Your blog is my read of the day - every day. :)

  10. I am one of those annoying people who enjoy the holiday season, endings and beginnings. But I don't tend to make resolutions as they are far too easily broken.

    Really like the compliment you got paid, that must have been amazing to receive! x

  11. When your worst is good enough, you are, without a doubt, a success! :) I, too, do not make New Year's resolutions. Who ever thought up such a diabolical thing in the first place? Piffle.

  12. The last time I made a new years resolution it went disastrously wrong...

    Much like Chinese Fortune cookies - you can make the words mean just about anything...

  13. Many agree..your worst is good are your own standard! How good do you have to be?
    All suffer at the end of's just life..Laugh!!
    Blessings for the New Year!!

  14. What a fantastic post, appreciate it very much.

  15. The Grinch has since become an icon of the winter holidays, despite the character's hatred of the season, and has appeared on various forms of memorabilia such as Christmas ornaments, plush dolls, Halloween costumes, and various clothing items.

  16. At the "ends of things" you must face your shortcomings and acknowledge your failures.

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