January’s column historically presents (hilarious!) fake predictions for the new year, contributed by the wingnuts I call friends. Not this year, due to lack of participation (read: interest) last year. Well!
We will, however, do our annual Suggested Reading column. Please submit nominees with 10 words on why; books don’t have to be prizeworthy, just something-worthy. These may appear in the Sooperbowl issue under “Other Interests.” This year the Sooperbowl falls on Groundhog’s Day. If the groundhog emerges and sees the shadow of a wardrobe malfunction, it’s, er, halftime?
When I’m not busy being chased by snow devils, finding grocery items marked reduced to clear, or serving as a cautionary tale, I’m gathering information on the meaninglessfulness of life to share with you, dear Reader. Let’s proceed in an orderly fashion. Reduced chaos is part of the UVG 2014 New Program for All.
Snow Devils: Did you know that when you see a snow devil, you can make a wish? Same goes for sightings of blimps, salamanders, exploding light bulbs, and DHART. My lunatics invented these rules, and of course with DHART the wish is for the occupant of that medical emergency helicopter. You can make up rules, too—we need all the luck we can get. I saw a snow devil while snowshoeing and didn’t even make the wish until days later while sledding in my car on glare ice; my wish was to survive. Wish granted. See? It works! The next wish will be that it doesn’t go tens below zero again. Your car’s otherworldly sound upon starting and the radio dial’s groaning reluctance make a girl…nervous. Brutal cold does not grease the wheels of the 2014 New Program (lit. or fig.).
Reduced To Clear: Store items discounted with these three precious words should include not only expired vitamins, discontinued products, and foodstuffs past their prime, but also those with asinine labeling like Snack Pack’s “As much CALCIUM as an 8 0z. glass of MILK” (emphasis theirs). Adults who can read don’t consider Snack Pack® a source of anything more than tasty goo; if we want to ingest or give kids calcium we’ll grab a stick of Cabot, for God’s sake. And three words for purveyors promising a Vitamin D Blowout!!! (exclamation points theirs): count me in. With overcast wintry skies fostering deep mid-winter psychoses, northerners need all the D we can guzzle. Vigilance is part of the New Program. Vigilance!
On Serving as a Cautionary Tale: This would be me discussing football (“So the linebacker, he receives the ball?”), slashing my enfant terrible way through moronic Facebook posts or comments, and in some of my, uh, “career” “choices.” It’s a prickly job, the archetypal role of cautionary tale, but someone’s got to do it. Besides, being the object of scorn and ridicule has its advantages. One, expectations of you are exceedingly low; if you say or do anything remotely smart, people get excited—even laudatory. Also, as a believer in the beautiful soup of our combined creatural energy, I feel we either add to or detract from this stew via our moods and actions. Your minusculest chuckle, dear Reader, elevates our collective vibration! Feeling good and making others do so is important. But as much as I strive to make people feel good or even hoot, I can only intentionally elicit so much. If they are laughing at me behind me back, discharging a solid guttural blast at my expense, well that’s a freebie. The collective soup wins. Earth needs all the laffs she can get. Laugh at my expense, babies. Laugh it up.
The Meaninglessfulness of Life: By this I mean that as meaningless as our lives often seem, they are full in that we have impact that half the time we don’t even know about (nod to It’s A Wonderful Life, which we forget promptly upon viewing). I’ll leave this one to Christopher Hitchens, the deceased, British-born, non-partisan equal opportunity offender, writer, philosopher, intellect, lush, and fearlessly funny professional soap boxer:
“A life that partakes even a little of friendship, love, irony, humor, parenthood, literature, and music, and the chance to take part in battles for the liberation of others cannot be called ‘meaningless’ except if the person living it is also an existentialist and elects to call it so. It could be that all existence is a pointless joke, but it is not in fact possible to live one’s everyday life as if this were so.” – Hitch-22: A Memoir
Cosmic joke or no, grab all you can get, people. Get all you can need. Give it back tenfold via your laffs without even trying. Make up luck rules that square with your own New Program for 2014. See what happens. And by all means, report in. Good day.