A bridge to 2010

Out with the old, in with the new.
New year, new decade, new unwatchable Rose Parade.

New Year’s Eve. It’s always been such a maudlin time. In spite of the random and capricious nature of our wild souls, we still abide by the rigid and orderly guidelines of time. The structure that the calendar demands of us. The structure we crave.

The calendar, time’s labels, like religion, providing us a playing field with rules and referees which prevent us from taking the game to inhuman and uncontrolled depths.

So, despite the fact that tonight, December 31, is no different than any other night of the year, we nevertheless paint it with our happy magic paint brush and gush (in unison) with corny sentimentality about all we have been through this year.

I do it too. I’ve always done it. It feels good to speak in grand sweeping notions about the impersonal trajectory of time’s arrow. It feels good, like a drug, to mark that moment, the very second when one year, a series of digits, finishes up and a new begins. And we mark it with fireworks and song and gunshots here in beautiful East L.A.

Digits. Numbers.
2009 becomes 2010.
Tomorrow we are one day older. That’s it.

Why not celebrate, let’s say, May 13, for the fact that we are one day older than we were on May 12.

Did anything substantive change between May 12 and May 13?
Does anything substantive change between December 31 and January 1? Other than the fact we need to begin dating everything differently now and force of habit says that we will forget about half the time for the first few weeks of the new year, necessitating destruction of valuable checks or a fair amount of reprints.

Well it’s time for bed.
I’m too sleepy to struggle to stay awake another hour.
Cost/benefit analysis tells me that watching a ball of lightbulbs sink 3 hours later than it actually did (the curse of the West Coast) just ain’t worth it.

Good night and happy new year.