1. Spending Christmas Day alone doesn't have to be sad, dreary, pathetic, lonely, or even undesirable. For all of its outward expressions of joy and gratitude and good cheer, at its core, Christmas is, for me, an introspective holiday. I had an introspective day, a day of reckoning, as I contemplated the many ways my life is dark with regret and uncertainty and bouts of depression,and I contemplated upon how in the midst of this darkness that's always with me, there is always light. The light of Jesus Christ, yes. But so many other sources of light and today when I talked to the Deke and to my mother and sisters and when I called Ed, who'd just hit a Mr. Cashman machine for 150 bucks in Worley and when I read how Diane brushed her cats and read and watched movies and when I saw Taryn's pictures of her Athol Christmas and when Snug and Charly and Maggie had long stretches of time when they weren't barking and all was still in the house and when I looked at the photographs of Silver Valley Girl and PKR and my mom and my nieces eating food from Africa for Christmas Eve and when I thought of the snow piled high at Martin Creek on the shores of Lake Roosevelt and how InlandEmpireGirl and JEJ were snowed in for Christmas and cozy, and when I listened to Karen Armstrong elaborate on her thoughts about religion in the world in an interview with Bob Edwards, well, the light of dogs and cats and snow and food and dominoes and family pushed the darkness away a bit and with few visible signs of Christmas to be found in my house, I was filled with the spirit of Christmas.
2. Thanks to Adrienne, I can drink ice packed Diet Pepsi in tumblers featuring images of an English Springer Spaniel. I'll christen one of these tumbler tomorrow. (It's too bad I don't drink much anymore. The tumblers are the perfect size and dimension for a gin and tonic.)
3. Without being asked my age, the woman who took my money at the Three Rivers Casino buffet gave me the senior discount. I'm still two days away from turning fifty-five, the age when a person becomes a senior citizen at the casino, but today I must have looked every bit the age I'm about to turn.