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Home alone

Sunday 12/24/23

Yesterday while between things--specifically, when racing home after running stairs to buy oranges at Haymarket and shower and get on the with the next--I phoned my mother to see if the COVID was behind her (yes) and how she was doing, and also to remind her that I won't be reachable on Christmas.

This will be the twelfth year in a row in which I don't talk to a soul on the day because the pain of it and being in this situation is just too great. And it will continue to be that way until I prevail over the forces against which I'm fighting.

As an aside she mentioned that she had set out the manger and then not put any of the Hummels in it on account of having gotten sick and also the whirling dervish that is my soon-to-be-four-year-old buddy of a niece. (Who, unfortunately, has a cold herself.)

I suggested that maybe they had all gone on away for Christmas for a holiday vacation. Then I said she could get creative, put baby Jesus in the manger all by himself, and hang a placard that read, "Home alone." On the back of the placard she could write, "Because everyone turned their back on him," thus blending the sacred and secular by making a comment about the world today and you'd have that whole double back symbolism thing going, too. Nice. Seasonal installation in MoMA! Then when the kids came over she could say, "You've all heard of Grandma Moses and her late start in life as an artist, well, it's Grammie B time now, bitches!"

She went on to say that it was only now that she realized she had so many wrinkles and how did she not know before? But there I was again with another positive! Two!

She recently had that cataract operation on her other eye, thus completing the job, so I said, "There you go, that's a good thing, your eyesight is getting better. And why think of them as wrinkles? You could go with 'striations of character." She suggested, "And maybe wisdom," and there it was.

"Hat trick of positive things. Look at that. What more can you ask for at Christmas?"


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