Wednesday, December 31, 2008

It's three and a half hours till the end of 2008, and I'm working on my novel and listening to Radiohead's "Black Star". Sound like fun? Hey, don't judge. I've also got some Jarlsburg cheese and my secret New Year's Eve weapon: grape Kool-Aid. Really, it's all you hipsters that have the short end of the stick this year. You have to get all dressed up and put on your cool outfits and go to your neato parties and choke down all those tasty appetizers and high-quality liquor... You don't know what you're missing. Hah! You too could be right where I am, if only you had planned a little better. You're probably reading this right now from your awesome BlackBerry or iPhone and thinking "aww, man..." Don't get all jealous on me now. It's not every couple that can bask in the exhaustion of being the sole source of entertainment for a busy two-year-old who rises promptly at 6:30 each morning ready to play play play. To my son, my wife and I are like a pair of live in rock stars.

You hear me, world, I'm a ROCK STAR!!!


Yeah, I hate New Year's Eve.

There's a great line from Jamie T's song "Alicia Quays":
How come New Year's Eve is always shit?

I can't really blame it all on parenthood, I've had sort of a long and storied history of failing to enjoy myself on this non-holiday. Either it's a deep-seated personality flaw of mine, or it's some sort of Karmic rising action where I'm going to have some legendary New Years Eve in some future year that will make up for all of the lame ones. Either that or I did something awful on New Years in some past life where I'm doomed to live in my own personal ironic Groundhog Day/Sisyphus myth where the universe categorically disallows me to enjoy the 31st of December.

Oh well. Anyway, a number of terrific things happened this year, and I managed to keep some of my old New Year's resolutions. The obvious awesomeness of Barack Obama being elected president sort of overshadowed most of the other positive things that happened this year, but some sort of summary is in order because it was a pretty eventful year in general. So here we go:

January -February: After hemming and hawing for a while, I fell off the Warcraft wagon and spent about six weeks playing it before tearing myself away and getting a membership at X-Sport to try and do something positive with what little free time I had. John's vocabulary improved exponentially.

March: American Idol rocks into the semi-finals and John and I watch Jason Castro singing Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah". Beth catches it on video and we YouTube it. Dozens of anonymous comments and thousands of hits/views rocket this poingnant little video past all of my web pages from the last ten years in popularity.

April: Our office spectacularly massacres a KonicaMinolta Document Center. We get a visit from Grandma and Grandpa Brand and fuel prices threaten to plunge the world into a dystopian malthusian catastrophe.

May: John agrees offhand that "Serenity" was an awful movie, the Brand Family takes a trip to Iowa city, and John starts looking less like a baby and more like a little person.

June: John says his first full sentence, I get a strong start on my newest novel, I saw the back of the big O, I tried my hand at the game with the clubs, splurged on a new writing tool, celebrated a relative winning a Tony for Best Director, got something hilarious instead of a milkshake at McDonald's, and saw Len get married.

July: Reprised my role as the Scrooge of the Fourth of July, went to Eagle Ridge for some O'Malley family fun and golf, and took a trip to see the wildlife at the Brookfield Zoo. Played the Sunglasses and Hats game and rediscovered my love of Legos.

August: Indian Lake trip, and more writing, went to see my cousin Kate get married.

September: Some fun Labor Day-ish stuff like LegoLand, swimming at the Westmoreland pool, and the Mommy Meetup from Beth's MommyGossip board. Saw the top 10 finalists of American Idol in concert.

October: Made a Lego version of our family, prepared for the election, got in some end-of-season park time, saw an awesome movie, rustled up some Halloween candy with Pecos John.

November: Chose my candidate, had a righteous Bacon-Themed birthday.

December: John turned two and put a drumstick through one of his bongos, someone called George Bush a dog and threw a shoe at him, zombies invaded Chicago, I was tortured by four weeks of nonstop Christmas cheer, we were struck by the snowmageddon, John visited Santa, who in turn, delivered in classic form with a nice big Lego castle. And last but not least, my sister announcee that she and Walter are having a baby.

Well, that's not all that happened of course, but hey the world is a small place and I've got a lot to do. Happy new year to all my loved ones and my excellent friends.

Oh, and for the record:

Best book I read this year: "The Road" by Cormack McCarthy
Best movie I saw this year: "Once"
Favorite song of the year: "Cannonball" by Damien Rice and Lisa Hannigan

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