Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Traditions

The last couple of weeks have been, well, lackluster at best. It's always hard to write about the goings-on when things are like this.

Last week I took my drive through a favorite neighborhood looking at the Christmas lights and listening to Christmas music on the radio (I, personally, like the old standards). This is kind of a little tradition I started doing a few years ago. This year the light displays were not nearly as impressive as in years past. Being by myself again doing this gave me time to reflect on some things...

The most obvious reflection was that I was again doing my now-traditional Christmas light tour alone. This seems to be a recuring theme lately. While I have taken a genuine interest in what my friends do and have, I don't feel as though the feeling is returned. I realized that I've reduced my answer to being questioned about what I've been doing to the old standby of, "Not much." That just isn't true though. A lot has happened, but it seems that trying to finish talking about it or garner any interest in what I do is met with polite disinterest, or impolite change-of-topic as soon as someone interrupts me. Witholding my genuine interest isn't an option because of that word genuine. Likewise, if folks truly think what I say and do is boring, uninteresting, too abstract, or otherwise undesirable, I can't say I'd want them to feign interest either. It does make me wonder where in heck I belong among people. Psychology's favorite comment is that you have to be happy with yourself before others will be happy with you, and that isn't my problem. So as I drove along listening to the Christmas music that I have since I was a kid looking at the lights, enjoying others' creativity and artistry, I wondered what made this experience (among many) so unique that it was always me enjoying things alone.

Christmas dinner was spent a friend's house that I only see about once or twice a year. Seeing them around this time of the year has started to be come a tradition of sorts. I've mentioned these friends in passing a couple of times on here -- I don't see them much because they have three kids and are good parents (very involved in their kids' stuff). The dinner was good and it was good seeing them.

Slightly out-of-order timewise...

Several friends came to the open house where I work this year. I'm still not sure how enjoyable it was for them, and whether they came out of the experience with any better idea of what it is that I do.

The annual Austin Childfree holiday party was. It was a little more stressful this year because some unexpected horrible traffic caused me and the two passengers I had with me to be almost an hour late. I don't like driving in traffic. I also don't like being late either. So the event started with two strikes against it. It was otherwise good, but showing-up late there were several people I wanted to say "hello" to that I never really got to see.

So the past week and a half has mostly been filled with me staying-up late watching TV (after all I went through to get it working), playing solitaire on pogo.com, and poking around okcupid.com. I finally discovered what happens when you answer all 3,500 questions on it -- you get to evaluate people's suggestions for new questions. I haven't found anyone I'd want to consider a relationship (of the romantic kind) with on there yet though, and as time goes on I doubt that ever will happen.

So with trepidation I approach the oncoming new year, another tradition as well. When I return to work next week I have some supervisory responsibilities (people management) that need to be done that are going to be painful at best. I have to finish documenting the phone system interface and get a system management interface going. The documentation is not fun, and is being done so someone else can write the interface software. I don't have a lot of confidence that it will be done in a way I will feel comfortable with. In short, I'm not looking forward to going back. I don't see much else right now.

See y'all in the new year, probably.

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