Saturday, December 30, 2017

See ya Next Year!

You’ve probably heard it a lot this week.

Probably said it, yourself...more than once.

“See ya next year!”

Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha hah.....

So clever....

We wait all year to say know, because it’s so clever....

And if we happen to run into the same people again, before the New Year...we’ll say it again...just because we can!

“See ya next year!”

And of course the variation...”Talk to ya next year”...which is different, but subtle.

So much fun....

Makes the whole weird week “in-between” Christmas and New Years worth all the weirdness.

Weird because you’re never really sure what day it is, depending on when you went back to work.

Is it Wednesday or is it Tuesday...or possibly Monday?

And if you didn’t go back to work, or you’re a writer and your work consists of a lot of sitting around staring out the window, anyway, you’re still thrown by how even more boring this “in-between week” is than all the other weeks.

Plus, all the other lost faces staring out my neighbor’s windows is a bit jarring, because, usually, when I stare out the window, no one stares back...let alone waves.

Or worse, walks out their door and approaches my house.

Apparently, there are a lot of lost, lonely people during “in-between week”; more than you would think.

Which is so annoying to the writers, because...hey...lost and lonely is our domain.

Can we at least have that to ourselves?

Can a window full of nose marks be ours and ours alone?

I guess not...not during “in-between week”.

Ideally, these normal people should be congregating with friends, somewhere for lunch.

You know, keep the celebration going, kind of thing.

“We’re on a break...let’s go to the mall and buy calendars for 50% off!”

“Come with me to return that designer underwear!”

“Let’s go get wasted...on a the afternoon!”

All worthwhile activities for “in-between week”.

Unless you have friends whose idea of “in-between week” activity is catching up on old “Rifleman” reruns.

Which is apparently the case for my lost, lonely neighbor George who was now at my front door ringing the doorbell.

Now, I know George saw me with my nose pressed up against the glass so I can’t pull my usual hide behind the couch and wait for the “uninvited” to wear out their bell ringing finger and leave, I reluctantly opened the door, all the while wondering, what do I say to a person with whom 99% of our yearly interaction consists of a polite wave while one or both of us is safely ensconced inside a car passing by at 30 miles an hour.

“Hey, George...what’s up?”

Not bad, I thought. Although I did leave an opening for him to make a response...damn!

“Hey, I saw you were off this week, too. So boring, am I I right?  I thought you might want to hang out or something. I got this weird underwear for Christmas, and I want to return em before I start to like em.”

“Well, actually, I’m not really off.  I’m a writer and I work from home.”

“Oh, that’s cool. I thought you were off, like me, for “in-between week”.

“Nope...I’m actually on...on on on. Not off at all.”

“But you were just staring out the window for the last three hours.”

“Yeah, that’s true...though I doubt it was three hours....”

“Yep, exactly three, I timed it.”

“You timed me staring out the window?”

“I told you this week was boring.”

“Well, no. I’m not bored at all. I’m actually writing.”

“Oh, looked like you were, with all the staring out the window for­—”­

“Right, I can see where you might think that, but I actually do my best writing while I’m staring out the window.”

“Ahhhh, I see...I think. But I always thought writing involved typing on a computer or something, or at least scribbling on paper.”

“Actually, I think of the computer part as more like taking dictation and recording what’s already there.”

I actually had no idea what any of that meant, so I doubt George did either, but as a writer you can say stuff like that and most people will just think you’re profound and walk away...usually at a fairly quick pace.

But not George...especially not a bored George.

“Hmmmmmm...never thought of it like that before.”

“’s kind of a process.”

“So I guess you could say you’re always writing, even when it look like you’re doing nothing.”

“Exactly, especially when it looks like I’m doing nothing.”

“So it looks like you write a lot.”

“Now you’re getting it.”

Just about then, Big Mitch from down the street trundles up my front path to join us.

“Hey, guys, what’s up?”

Maybe it’s not such a great opener, after all.

George gives Big Mitch an overly zealous handshake, which Big Mitch compounds by actually pounding George back...on the back...while I begin to slip further and further behind the front door.

“Hey, Big have the week off, too? So I I right?

“Yep,” Big Mitch answers. "Looks like everyone’s looking for something to do. I saw y’all staring out your windows, too, all morning.”

“Well, no...actually”— I begin to say.

George jumps in, “Hey, wanna take a field trip to the mall, I gotta return this weird underwear.”

“Sure!” Big Mitch says. “I heard the calendars are 50% off!”

And with that, they both turn and head off, back down the walkway.

“Later, we can come back to my place and catch the “Rifleman” marathon”, George said.

“I love the “Rifleman”, Big Mitch replied. “I’ll bring beer!”

Then they both looked back and said....

“Try not to work too hard...see ya next year!”

To which I gave a big thumbs up, closed the door and went off to find another window, preferably in the back, to stare out of.

This stuff doesn’t write itself, you know....

See ya next year!


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  1. My imagination won't allow you to stand in the open door in l0 degree temp talking to boring neighbors. Better to grab a Kleenex and stand at the window mouthing that you have the flu. And sneeze a lot for good measure.

    1. My imagination thanks your imagination. So much warmwr now! See ya next year!


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