Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Seconds

2day.

I'm sick. I hate being sick. I woke up and could barely open my throat. I took the day off. But it wasn't fulfilling because I couldn't do anything. I feel awful.

Oh New Year's. What an odd holiday. The celebration of the passage of a distinct unit of time holds special significance to us Westerners. It is the day we pretend to have changed and progressed. It is for this facade—a non-denominational otherwise insignificant event—that I think we never experience the climax we search for. There is no catharsis in the ball dropping.

It is 364 days 23 hours 59 minutes and 49 seconds of waiting so we can all countdown from 10 with the entirety of the population in the same time zone—that hasn't fallen asleep yet.

So I slept in my head and wandered in my body. Our group—Ciera, Olivia, Micaela, Peter, and I—ended up at a bar. The upstairs had been rented out by Peter's friend. It was a quiet scene, full of singles milling about. Everyone dressed up and covered in sequins.

I felt disassociated from the scene. I hadn't drank anything yet I felt I was in between sobriety and another dimension. I was observing from the far away land of another life—I found no solace amongst my fellow bar attendees—i did not share in their sadness or their loneliness.

“I'm just going to be fun this year. I was such a prude, I'm going to change. I'm going to be fun.”

“I'm going to get motivated, I'm going to work out.”

“This year, when I eat, none of it will have calories.”

“And starting at midnight, I'm going to be free. That was the old me—tied to being boring and fat and lazy and stupid.”

I quietly made a resolution to myself while glasses slipped from the hands of patrons and shattered on the floor. A fizzy concoction spilled from the fragments of crystal and soaked into the bar that had seen too many of these celebrations.

Ciera and I idly hit billiards with cues, unselfconsciously missing the majority of our shots. Peter ran into his ex, Kellen. And Pete's friend Gordon was there. Gordon is in a band—Watertower. Great bluegrass band—support them.

Olivia was flammable. On our way out I found her sitting by a fire with a bunch of strangers, shooting the bull. Somehow she does that.

I stood at the top of the stairs while people passed between me, too many of them smiling through their drinks, and going home alone. No amount of sequins can hide the timid mind that spends the first ten seconds of the new year forgetting the resolutions made in the last ten seconds of the last year. Which is a long way of saying that resolutions function in just the opposite way during New Year's. There is no resolution, only the burst of light that signifies a new beginning.

Making a resolution is a way to open a can of worms and walk down the unlit path. It is the beginning of a story we want to hear. But far too often we turn tail and run because our candles are not bright enough and the end is a far off future; a distorted grayness we can't comprehend.

So we count down from ten and forget that we are lost for a moment. My 2013 began with a kiss—the first New Year's kiss I've ever had. And it wasn't awkward, though the kisses around me were. And being with Ciera made me feel oriented and grounded in a way I did not think I could be.

Perhaps it's just a delusion—a shared hallucination. In that moment, in that third second of the first day of the thirteenth year in the twenty first century, I felt lost. I disappeared into the world between worlds. I slipped into the alternate dimension where time's form is irrelevant, where space contracts into the moment of the big bang and where I exist as the soul I believe myself to be.

Which is just a fancy way of saying Ciera is a great kisser.