Things are starting to settle back into their normal grooves. People are going back to work. Heads are fuzzy, but clearing. The wrappings and trappings of festivity are being put away. Decisions are being made, darnit. Chins are being set, chests puffed up, arms folded.
This will be my year.
January’s good for that sort of thing, isn’t it? February is usually the rock upon which January’s determination founders, but we won’t think about that just now. Right now, we’re on board with positivity. Change. Improvement.
And so this year – this year of our Lord two thousand and fifteen, however that happened – I resolve a few things.
To be more patient. I had a dream last night in which I was a customer in a shop which offered me shoddy service, and I got tetchy with the store assistant. I woke up annoyed with myself because I know the dream reflects reality: I do get tetchy too quickly when things don’t go my way. So, patience. Tolerance. Deep breathing. Smiling. I resolve to do all these things, and to keep doing them.
To read more. I know this sounds odd, because I read a lot anyway. But you can never read enough. Amirite?
To blog less. I’m sorry if this upsets some of my die-hard fans (What? I so have die-hard fans!) but I know that blogging every day can sometimes mean my content isn’t as tip-top as I’d like. So, I’m giving advance warning that my blogging schedule will, most likely, change over the next while. I’m not sure yet exactly how I’ll manage it, but I can promise at least two posts a week, and – with any luck – at least one of those will be on a Wednesday or a Friday which will mean a new story each week, too. It’s a work in progress. Bear with.
To take better care of my health. Mental, physical, all of it. I don’t see the doctor enough, for lots of reasons. I muddle through. I cross my fingers and hope. My luck will run out one of these days, and I want to avoid that. So I’ll be scheduling a health check as soon as possible.
To stop panicking. Stop laughing, all of you.
To learn something new. Maybe a language. Maybe computer programming. Maybe a craft. Who knows? I’ve got to keep the old brain ticking over, is all I can tell you.
To be tidier, generally, than I am at the moment. Mentally, as well as literally. My office is a mess. My house is controlled chaos. I feel, somehow, that this is indicative of my inner reality. So, if I clean up a bit more I’ll instantly become the paragon of virtue and accomplishment to which I’ve always aspired. Right? Right.
And – that’s about it. I’m sure there are at least ten million ways I could self-improve, but I’ll have to work on these few for the moment. If you’re going to eat an elephant you’d better use a long spoon, and all that. (What?)
Anyway, look. Here’s a bit of flash fiction.
Soda for Shirley
Every day. Every day, he showed up, same time and place. Rain, shine – hell, even if it snowed.
Snow? Huh. Stranger things had happened.
He’d only stopped for a soda. One, because he didn’t have enough for two. A soda for Shirley, with a straw and a pretty pink napkin around the cool, sweating bottle. He’d only left her alone for a second, just long enough to hand over his dime.
But when he’d turned around, Shirley was gone, and a yellow Beetle was pulling away. A yellow Beetle with a strange shadow in the driver’s seat and no licence plate, going too fast.
He hadn’t heard the bottle smash. He ran, but it didn’t matter. He lost the car at the next intersection, heart ripping inside him. It vanished, and his baby sister with it.
So now, every day, he showed up, same time and place, waiting.
When the Beetle came back, he’d be ready.
Happy New Year, all y’all, followers old and new. I hope you have a fantastic twelve months ahead.