“Many Sides to Consider… (The Holiday Noose Begins to Tighten)” by Richard F. Yates

Hey folks, it’s Sunday. A day of contemplation. A day for cleaning the house and getting prepared for a return to the daily 9 to 5. A day to recuperate from trying to go shopping at a huge mall ten days before Christmas without punching anyone…

So yesterday, we drove to a big mall in Clackamas County, Oregon (the Clackamas Town Center) to do some Christmas shopping—on December 15th. Ten days before Christmas. It turns out (and I wouldn’t have guessed this) that shopping at a mall on a Saturday, right before Christmas, can be a bit stressful. I did my little bit of shopping in the bookstore there—got what I was looking for in about ten minutes, paid for it, and then sat and wrote in my notebook for the next few hours while the rest of the family shopped. My back still ain’t 100 percent, and since I forgot to take any pain pills before leaving town (we live about an hour from the mall,) my back got a bit sore sitting and waiting. (Totally my fault, and I knew before we ever got in the car that this was not going to be a quick trip.) Eventually, the back-ache turned into a head-ache, and I turned grouchy. (On a slightly positive note, I wrote about twelve and a half pages of ideas for future writing and art projects. Productive day, if a bit painful.)

After the family shopped for a while, they came and got me, and we headed to the food court for some linner (lunch + dinner = linner.) Everyone else, though a bit tired from their shopping experiences, was feeling pretty good and having fun. We ate, stopped at one or two more shops, and then headed for the car—at which time, I had a mini-panic attack. The parking lot was SO CROWDED that we couldn’t move. Inching forward here, getting cut off by some asshole there, and me wanting to crash into every car around us over there… I steadily became grouchier and more claustrophobic and, finally, rage-monstery. After a shorter amount of time than my attitude would suggest, we managed to get out of the parking lot, and we headed to a different, less busy, shopping area, but by then, the damage had been done. I was crabby and nasty and said some very un-Christmas-like things in the car—which I feel really bad about now. I don’t KNOW if my family has forgiven me yet, completely, but they all seem to be talking to me today, so that’s good.

I didn’t punch anyone, but I was a total jerk… Not sure if there’s a lesson there for anyone but me, but if there is, it might be this: DON’T BE A JERK! (Especially to your own family.) Calm down and breathe…

many sides to consider (16 dec. 2018) by rfy - (peg)

Anyway, with my confession of naughtiness out of the way (Santa wasn’t coming to see me anyway—I’m less naughty and more EVIL, most of the time…), here’s a few GOOD things that I’m going to mention to try and balance the scales!!!

  1. My family is pretty cool. They’ve been in good spirits this season, and we’ve got the house all nicely decorated, which does make me feel good when I just stop and look around. We’ve also watched about a hundred holiday shows, which are fun, and we’ve got the plans for Xmas all sorted and formalized (pizza and bingo!!!) AND, when I really think about it, this family is really supportive of each other, through the bad and the good. (They even support me, big time, despite my neurotic, panicky, grouchy, and weird personality.) I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: Be nice to your family—whether that family is biological, friends who are so close they’re LIKE family, or even if they’re just a network that you’ve developed (however and wherever you’ve developed it.) Keep the connections alive!
  2. I’ve had some good fortune on Steemit lately! There seems to be a slow, creeping increase in interest in my posts, which I am incredibly grateful for (and don’t take for granted!!!) In addition, I found out today that I was awarded a delegation of Steem Power by @thedarkhorse !!! (For you non-Steemians, “Steem Power” is the stuff that lets you post and comment and engage on the platform. If you are curious about Steemit.com, send me a note, and I’ll share my experiences with you and try to convince you to join!!!) The delegation is for four weeks AND it includes a daily upvote from the Minnow Builder project, which is pretty dang cool!!! This extra Steem Power will allow me to write and post more often, comment more, and generally be more active on the platform. (Just a few weeks ago, I wrote a piece about how frustrated I was because I didn’t have enough resource credits to post or comment more than once or twice a day! Now, I can really get out there and engage!!!) Thanks a million!!!
  3. Mariah says we are having chicken and mashed potatoes for dinner tonight! It may not be the healthiest thing in the world—but I don’t care! Simple pleasures can be enough sometimes… Look for them and enjoy them when you can!!!
  4. I’m progressing on my file compression project on the Primitive Entertainment Workshop. I only have about 132 or 133 megs left to find and smash out, so I should be able to finish before the premium plan runs out and the blog goes back to the free plan. And that progress has happened even WITH my adding new posts every day. (Once I upload this bit on the P.E.W., I will have posted for 538 days in a row. Seems like a lot…) Once I get enough memory cleared out, I’ll still need to go into all the different pages and change the links back to what they were before I went premium (there will undoubtedly be broken links for DAYS!!!) but that’s more clean-up than essential, as most people only really look at the newer blog posts and don’t really delve into the “back catalog.”

Upcoming projects: I’m almost finished reading another comic, which I hope to get reviewed in the next day or two, so that’s pretty cool. (Oddly, I liked the story BETTER the second time reading the book than I did the first time. I’ll have to do some heavy contemplation to figure out WHY… Maybe I entered the book with expectations that weren’t fulfilled last time, and since I knew what was coming this time, I just went with it? I’ll do some considering.) I’ve also got several drawings completed that I’m trying to come up with some stories for. I’m enjoying writing stories to go with my drawings lately, so I’m going to keep that up. Fun stuff… Anything else??? Well, the part for my broken dryer should be here in the next day or two—maybe I’ll write a battle story about my experiences putting the machine back together. (Maybe not…) Oh yeah, I’m also slowly compiling a new MUSIC playlist in my head to share with you folks. This one probably won’t be holiday themed, just music, but that’s because I’m starting to burn out (just a bit) on Christmas music already. It’s not that I don’t love it, but we’ve been listening to holiday tunes, pretty heavily, since before December 1st. Time for some NEW WAVE or TECHNO of POST-PUNK tunes to take center stage, if you ask me…

Okay, that’s it—now go be nice to your family! (Don’t be a RICHARD!!!) Later!

—Richard F. Yates

(P.S. – The drawing above was created with the Paint 3D program that came with this computer. I have only really used that program one other time, so I don’t know what I’m doing with it. (I know—that’s obvious.) Still, it’s good to experiment, right???)

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About richardfyates

Compulsive creator of the bizarre and absurd. (Artist, writer, poet, provocateur...)
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