Days have been long—the nights, rather, excruciatingly lightless, while time drops like a depth charge out of my control. I’d’ve been all over this forever night nonsense were I, say, fourteen and goth. Unfortunately (?) I’m adult and postmodern (postpunk, postrave, postyouth, postal) and prime to succumb to seasonal affective disorder.
Thank god (ahem—a mangered baby Jesus in swaddling garb) for science and the oncoming Solstice, my favorite co-opted celebration passed like a secret between humanist friends like there’s really such a thing as atheist identity or a true need for a substitute holiday. I just like the sun.
That Christmas thing is okay, too, the colored-lights I begrudgingly put up (quicklike, before my mother arrived) now turned on every night because I realize, yeah, they make me happy. I’ve noticed in the Cities stringed lights don’t come down until late February, a collective resistance, unspoken sentiments spanning neighborhoods and salary lines it’s cold and dark and depressing, dammit the lights stay on.
My mom, stepdad and two younger brothers visited last weekend, trying out my new rollaway pulled off a boulevard, sampling my mp3s with attention deficit delight (Joe particularly liked “Eye of the Tiger,” heh heh) and playing the crappy games I didn’t know I had on my computer.
Along with Sam we checked out the Swedish Institute in all its tasty free juice and myopic, self-congratulatory glory and experienced the Holidazzle parade, the annual nightly-for-a-month, live-action marketing campaign marched through the streets of downtown Minneapolis. The light rail was free Saturday evening, so we took the train at moshpit density along with ten thousand other fleece-ensconced potential consumers eager to get their holiday glee. An intended pitstop, the Marshall Field’s holiday display (featuring Snow White this year—*yawn*), had a line that stretched down three floors. Hm, maybe if I were five and cute, not adult, smug and in the company of teenage boys who’d rather browse the manga at Barnes and Noble, with, pulp as it is, narratives infinitely more imaginative than falling asleep and falling in love.
When my youngest brother showed intense interest in a simple blank book, my heart became thick in my throat. Encouraging. Terrified. What would he use it for? Cataloging PS2 cheats or documenting the Diary of a Madboy? I’ll get him one and take the risk. Which is the hazard, I don’t know.
As go-time approached, we all rushed to the street, several bodies deep from the curb. The procession was entertaining: the floats, the lights, the music, the spastic Motown giraffe kid dancing in a cage. But best was witnessing the spectacle with family, testing smartass virtuosity with PG-rated sarcasm and spreading holiday jeer. Ain’t nothing like heckling at a parade, I tell ya—nothing.
In music news: Wormwood releases its debut album Meiosis to do away with two-oh-oh-four and bring in steadfast stern the new year (stern as in we’re seriously going to rock all the rupture from your life—like out with like—and make you make). Hear a couple songs at wormwoodband.com and keep checking for more album details—the release party is slated for January 5 at the Star Bar in Columbia Heights (8 pm, 18+). If you’re in the Cities, drop me a line—I’ll pick you up and won’t even ditch you.