Christmas was maybe our best yet with the kids. They let us sleep until about 6:40, and we suspect Riley was up before 5:00. That level of restraint and patience is the best gift they could give me. And they didn’t even eat all of their stocking candy while they were waiting. I got a whole bunch of shirts, a nonstick skillet, and a pancake pen. And then the kids got me a new electric shaver at my request (which I feel especially obliged to mention because I seem to talk inordinately about shaving in here. Seriously, I should probably add a tag).
I’ve joined a friend’s biweekly tabletop RPG. We’re playing Necessary Evil. I’m still learning the ins and outs of the Savage Worlds system, but it’s been pretty fun so far. It ain’t City of Heroes, but it helps.
Songwriting has been a bit stalled lately, but I’m hoping I can push a bit harder now that the holiday rush is winding down. I’m considering it a New Year’s resolution to write at least six more songs, and play out at least twice (not counting the Community Circle at my kids’ school, awesome though that remains).
There’s a part of me in Paragon City, a part that most people don’t know. What’s killing me today is realizing that they never will. I have to give up hope that someday I’ll get to bond with my kids over a supergroup concept that we then get to see in action. Or that I’ll ever manage to convince my wife that the game has merits.
I haven’t even told her yet about the November 30 shutdown. It’s been a bit of a wedge in our marriage, to be brutally honest. She’s never approved of it; I’d even say she thinks less of me for playing it. And so I just never talk about it with her at all. To tell her it’s ending would just bring that difference between us into sharp focus. She doesn’t understand it, and has never really wanted to try; now she’d have even less reason to. And I expect she would react with thinly veiled satisfaction, which I would resent. (In fact I probably already am, unfairly enough.) So for now, I’m just not explaining (to anyone in meatspace, really) why I’ve been more sullen and/or easily frustrated lately.
AAAnyway. The post linked below really crystallizes why I’m so upset about the killing of City of Heroes. There is nothing out there that can fill the space it will leave behind.
On the End of a World: http://markovia.com/?p=75
Each Friday my kids’ elementary school has what they call Community Circle, in which the whole student body assembles to sing songs, and to recognize accomplishments and other good behavior from the students. It’s super adorable. Even just being there would be a high point of my week by itself—but I also get to bring my accordion and play along on the songs. I’ve been doing this when possible for the past year and a half.
It’s been a really great experience for me: I get to play accordion alongside other musicians, in a very casual and totally nonjudgmental context, with an enthusiastic audience. Everyone around here knows I love doing it, but really, they don’t know the half of it.
So I wrote a little song for Community Circle. It’s called “Gather Up, My Friends,” and it’s just basically about what Community Circle is. It’s short and sweet; I tried to keep it relatively easy to remember. I liked it well enough to share it with the music teacher and other parent musicians, and they all liked it well enough that it’s in our standard repertoire now. And today we all sang it together, with the kids, for the first time.
Oh man. What an incredible feeling! I’m getting a little choked up even now, thinking about all those voices singing along with me on it. There’s nothing else like it. I will never forget today.
Here’s the phone demo I made just to teach the song to the other musicians there: [Gather Up, My Friends] It’s just me on the uke and singing. But this pales in comparison to the full sound from today. I really need to get a recording of that eventually, if they’ll let me.
Oh I don’t know, you must be thinking of some other band THAT SENT ME MY [redacted]
After several months of traditional psychotherapy examining the navel of my psyche, I think the only thing I really learned was that I’d rather be applying a quick Occam’s Razor than ferreting out precise root causes, so that I can then put more time and energy into pragmatic actions.
I’m pretty sure that means it’s been worth it.
But yeah, I’ve decided to take a break of indeterminate length (at least with the individual therapy). I know it’s supposed to be time consuming, and take a long time to even gain any traction. But at least with the therapist I was seeing, it just doesn’t seem like the goals I came in with are even on the horizon.
I’ve been trying to do more self-help reading too, but that is slow going. The book I’m on now has so far spent all of its digital ink describing the benefits of mindfulness. I can only assume that information about actually achieving increased mindfulness is coming later. But it’s been making me drowsy almost right away, every time I start reading.