Another Christmas alone to get through however I must get through it, with work and with what I do on my own.
Took the trash out at 4 this AM. The weather is mild; not misting as such, but everything was wet, like it recently had been.
Made coffee--$4.99 diner blend from CVS--and two mugs of tea for my heart health: blueberry and cranberry.
Patriots won last night. Not very surprised. If the quarterback change had happened earlier, they could have gotten to 7, maybe 8 wins. More like 7. Or 6. But two or three more.
I've been flipping back and forth between marathons of A Christmas Story, It's a Wonderful Life, and Scrooge. As a director, in terms of range and being under appreciated, Bob Clark is similar to Don Siegel. Auteurs who are rarely treated as such.
Seeing It's a Wonderful Life I am thinking all the more that I should do a book about it as a horror film; or focusing on its horror film parts. The portion beginning at the bridge and then ending back again at the bridge is a kind of horror movie within a movie that can stand alongside any horror movie; actually, I'd say that sequence makes for the best of all American horror movies. It's just encased in this other picture.
Watching Scrooge, I've been thinking about my book. I'm a member of a number of A Christmas Carol film groups on Facebook, and even a group devoted entirely to Scrooge the 1951 movie itself, plus groups about ghost stories and ghost story films. They talk about Scrooge a lot. Not one of these people has any idea that my book exists. No effort has ever been made to sell it or have anyone know by the press.
But mostly as I watch I've thought about the book I did and how right it is. How spot on and illuminating. The sheer, staggering volume of knowledge that was poured into it, the insight with which it's shot through. The parts about hands, for instance. Nailed that.
Also: Noel Langley was the man. I'm not going to write things here that I already wrote in the book, but that sequence when Scrooge gets out of work and goes from the bottom of the stairs at Marley's house to the top--where he has that exchange with the undertaker--is as effective as script writing has ever been in cinema. Granted, those three players in the scene bring it off as the best that it can be, which is how you want it to work--and that's before Sim has his bedroom scene with Michael Hordern's Marley.
As I am unavailable today, I reached out to some people about the day. I told my sister to wish the kids the happiest of Christmases from me, and to say a little something extra something to me to Amelia because the poor little thing is sick and she's my buddy who calls me on the FaceTime for our talks. I asked my sister to let me know if they don't end up seeing my mom on account of all of these sicknesses--my sister was at the health clinic yesterday morning and has strep, I believe--because then I would break with this not talking to anyone on Christmas thing if my mom was all by herself. I also texted my friend's wife--I had already spoken to him--and told her I wished the girls much peace and love this Christmas, and that I knew it had been a bit of a tricky year for one of them--the girl who lost her friend. My friend told me that he was taking that girl of his and another friend of hers who recently lost her dad hiking early in the morning on Tuesday, and I told his wife that I thought that was a great idea. Nothing like being up and at it outside early in the cold morning.
I've had blood streaming out of my nose for the last half hour. I don't get bloody noses, or at least I hadn't before, but my sink looks like someone tried to clean up after a murder. I have paper towel wadded up each nostril now. Feels like a fitting image. If I was ever out of this situation and I was talking to someone who loved me about these days, these Christmases, or she was watching a video provided by the fates of what they looked like, and here was the scene, Christmas 2023, this man in this vile apartment, tissues up the nose, working on "Finder of Views," of all things, that would do a neat job summing it up. Summing something up.
I'm going out shortly to run stairs in the pre-dawn at City Hall. Last week I went four straight days without doing any stairs or push-ups. On Saturday I began to make amends by walking three miles, running 5000 stairs, and doing 300 push-ups. After just a few days of not doing the push-ups, I found that I had backslid. Things were sore--well, somewhat--and harder. Yesterday I did five circuits in the Monument and 200 push-ups. As one might surmise, I'm doing my 100 push-ups for each new day and making up for the 400 I didn't do, so 200 today will bring me back to even, though if we're being technical about it I have a ton in the bank, so to speak, given all the days I do more, or much more, than 100. But this is still what I'm doing right now. Yesterday marked 2723 days, or 389 weeks, without a drink.
I'm leaving after I finish this because I'd like to be back to put on Rankin-Bass's 'Twas the Night Before Christmas as I work. Guess I'll leave the tissues in--don't want to leave some blood trail and end up with some Christmas version of The Wrong Man.