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11:42 pm - Weds 12.27.2012
Wrapping Up Xmas

Wrapping Up Xmas

There is so much to write about, and as always I've waited till I won't possibly have enough juice to get it all down.

I continue to wonder why I do that...

I've said it before, probably to the point where you'd wish I'd just shut the hell up about it, but the holidays are difficult for me.

They always are. It's just a question of "degree". They're rarely "difficult" in the same way twice.

Sometimes they've been difficult because I can't stop obsessing about them, so I spend weeks being unhappy about the approaching day (then often the day itself ends up being no big deal, and I wonder what all the fuss was about).

Sometimes I don't obsess about the approaching holiday, but the day itself is terribly painful and lonely (And "lonely" doesn't necessarily mean I'm physically alone - I've often had holidays where I kind of wished I were alone because I felt so lonely and out-of-place where I was at).

And sometime I don't unduly obsess about the approaching holiday, the day itself is very enjoyable and fulfilling, and I crash in the days following the holiday.

This year I seem to be doing the latter (That's been the case the last number of years, now that I think about it)...

It really wasn't till maybe the week before Xmas that it struck me "It's almost Xmas...". And as I told Jane in an email earlier this evening, that's how I like it (I'd be thrilled if, sometime in the future, I'm just going about my business and then think, "Oh! It was Xmas last week...!").

And considering things didn't work out this year for me to do my "traditional" holiday thing, which is visit my friend Cary in Santa Clarita (That I've done for the last number of years), I was honestly pretty happy with how things did work out - doing Thanksgiving with my friend Pat (We had "Thanksgiving Dinner" at a restaurant downtown, then saw Skyfall at The Royal) and Xmas with my friend Howard.

Howard gave me a great Xmas present - He paid for the three movies we saw between Xmas Eve (Zero Dark Thirty and Amour) and Xmas Day (Les Miserables).

That was really great; I'm starting to seriously sweat my finances (Have I mentioned lately how much I want to book a commercial early in the New Year?), so it allowed me to just enjoy going to the movies without the anxiety that I was "breaking the bank" to do it.

(Enjoyed all three movies. And while they are three totally different things, and different experiences, if I had to list them in order of preference, it would be 1. Amour, 2. Les Miserables, and 3. Zero Dark Thirty.)

After seeing Les Miserables yesterday - which I have never seen on stage. I've never even heard the full score before - we went to a dinner party at Donald M's place.

I've recently come to the conclusion that "I just don't enjoy parties" - I struggle with them. I get bored, I feel lonely, and in the post-WW era, I struggle not to overeat - but the party at Donald M's was okay; I knew most everyone there from ArcLight Cinema days, and while there was a little "I don't know what to do with myself" feeling at times - and too much junk eating as a result - I didn't regret going, as I often do.

Interesting, if brief, conversation with Donald's girlfriend Merrique, a lovely African American woman (African-French, actually) who's a nude model (In light of my own discomfort and unhappiness with my appearance, I find that a pretty fascinating job for someone to have. I'm also still getting my head around the fact that it's something of a given that I've seen my friend's girlfriend naked).

I told her I hadn't known if she'd be at the party because of a Facebook status of hers about a trip to Vegas to work (A trip scheduled after the holidays, turns out).

She said, kind of wistfully, that she does these various jobs - making a "posing" face as she said it - but wished something would come along to "inspire" her.

We could hardly be more different in most regards (Though I think our jobs have some things in common - revealing yourself, "playing a role", being vulnerable, etc), but man do I understand that "I wish I felt inspired by what I was doing" feeling...!


Thurs 12/27/12 (10:26 am)

This is the part of the holiday season I really don't like - where the holiday, such as it is, is completely over for me (I'm not even getting New Year's Day off), but seems to be going on for everyone else.

(I'm not only working my WW meeting this evening, but am working a 4 1/12 hour "open hours" shift beforehand - filling in for someone - because I need to make up some hours because of auditions, and the whole "Not booking a commercial this year" thing.)

This year, one thing adding an interesting "wrinkle" to the Xmas holiday was the fact that it's my first one having actual, biological family.

I called them all (Tony, Gregg, and Mom), and had sent cards to all the adults (And gift certificates to the kids, and to Mom), but really, since they're in Virginia and West Virginia and I'm in LA, that was pretty much the extent of "the family thing" for the holidays.

(I did wonder what the holidays would have been like if I lived near them, and if I'd still feel awkward - Cause throughout my life, it's been pretty rare that I ever completely feel I "belong" during the holidays.)

Gregg sent me a Starbucks card, which I've used once already to get coffee for me and Amy, the WW Leader I work with on Wednesdays (Who often buys me coffee).

Tony gave me something I've seen made fun of on at least one or two sitcoms and in a standup routine or two, but which I'm actually pretty enthused about - Membership in the "Fruit of the Month" club (Got the first box yesterday - Royal Riviera Pears - and was relieved it wasn't a big box of fattening foodstuffs).

(Fruit's often kind of expensive, and I've fallen into a rut where I basically only eat canned pineapple, bananas, and Granny Smith apples, so it'll be good for me to experience some alternatives, risk-free.)

I also called Mark and Jane (Who you could pretty convincingly argue are my real "family"), leaving a message on their machine (They tried to call me back twice, but we couldn't hook up).

Jane sent her annual "Xmas Box of Goodies" - Homemade treats (A little problematic, considering my overeating issues, but a loving gesture nevertheless), a couple of books (The one I find most intriguing is The Positive Power of Negative Thinking), and a generous Target gift certificate, along with her family Xmas newsletter.

I was disappointed this year - even more than most years - that I didn't feel able to do more.

Typically, since I have no idea what to do for the adults in my life - who pretty much all make more money than I do, and can give themselves what they want/need - I've done small charitable donations in their names.

I didn't feel able to do that this year, between the relatively crappy year and the addition of nephews and mothers to buy for (I also like to get something for Cary's son Donovan - this year I bought him Country and Blues Harmonica for the Musically Hopeless Hopeful, the harmonica book I first learned from, back in the 80s). It's the kind of thing that probably doesn't make much difference to anyone but me...but I would like to have been in a position to do that, and hope I can next year.

As always, people were very generous to me this year, and I "got more than I gave", which I'm appreciative of (I know a lot of nice people), but which also makes me feel guilty.

I'd like to do better next year...and if I can't do better materially, at least figure out what else I can do to acknowledge the special people in my life.

And on that note, I'm outta here...!


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