Friday, January 01, 2021

New Year memo

Happy new year, everybody. I hope you have survived the ongoing disasters and are taking all due precautionary measures. Don't go out if you can help it. Wear a face mask when you do. Get the vaccination when you can. Avoid domestic terrorists. How the fuck did this happen—that is the question. We've never seen anything like it. It's been that kind of year—unprecedented at multiple levels. And, honestly, I don't anticipate 2021 being much better, except I'm hoping for a change in direction, from gradual worsening to gradual improvement. I'm hoping. There is still a lot we don't know about the coronavirus or American politics or racial justice or climate change or or or—somebody stop me. I always think about writing something long and personal for these New Year posts and then my mind goes blank when I sit down to them and they end up short. Maybe that's for the best! My two cats finally became buddies, more or less—a welcome development. Along about June or July I saw an open-ended question on social media somewhere, asking what we were most proud of ourselves for this past year. My first thought was "Kept blogging." There was always a temptation to give up on everything this year, and I struggled a lot with routines of things like exercise, housework, and shopping, but for better or worse I stuck with blogging, which makes me think I will probably keep it up this year as well and into the future. I also wrote a few short stories, but I'll let you know more about that if any of them ever see the light of day. Otherwise pretty much all as usual: book and story reviews on Sundays, albums on Saturdays, classic movies on Fridays, horror stories on Thursdays. Last Sundays this year will go to Raymond Carver. One notable change due to the pandemic is the movie reviews on Mondays, which started five years ago as an exercise to get me out and looking at new releases more. But there was no going out to movies most of this past year and, with the fate of movie theaters still unclear, not for the time being either (at least we don't have to think about Oscars for a while, which have meant less every year for at least 40 years). Streaming options have stepped in instead, and with them more TV shows. That will continue this year, including various catch-up business. I'm also thinking of a track-by-track review of the Pet Shop Boys' Very Relentless, my favorite album by them and one of my favorites of all time—probably a Wednesday project. Thanks for visiting, reading, leaving comments. It's always appreciated as much as you can know.

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