The Barrage Starts Here.

And now we launch into a New Year, trajectories pointed at the stars, but with expectations desperately clinging to just-a-cut-above-mediocrity; prepared to come tumbling down to Earth all the same…because that’s what we know. But no more, because we are now prepared to make our own decisions, to craft our own destinies, and to start making things fucking happen. This is the start of every New Year’s resolution, of every make-yourself-better affirmation.

Man, I hate people who substitute ‘we’ for ‘I’ to conjure a false semblance of solidarity with a phantom cabinet of supporters. The Royal ‘We’.

But there hasn’t been a We in some time, now…only shadows and promises and cool-dipped toes into pools of the past. For the first time in my life, I’m absolutely content with what’s laid out before me. I thought for some time that my journey afar had raised more questions than it had quashed, and I thought that I had finally come back to myself *before* I had left for Scotland – that the dismantling of a carefully crafted life here in the States had disarticulated the delicate, bird-like bones of my comfort when I left. The end of my tenure in Edinburgh brought a grim realization that I would have to face that reconstruction…and I didn’t know if all the puzzle pieces were still available. But forensics is a time-honored science, and I should have had faith in the subtle traces with which the dead leave us.

The questions were answered, but silently. And now that the channels of everyday life are delineated and there’s no scratching at the walls to ensure my path is right and just; now that I can take a breather and again see what I had wrought before I left, and that the numbed, sponge-like countenance of a Displaced Plaid Boy on the Island of Wonder (coming soon to a theater near you) was just a sham – I soaked away and well, and the memories are still minty-fresh upon my pinstriped breast and now I am reaping the rewards of that time far and away.

You see, it was the most difficult thing I could have done…for me…for my Taurean nature. But it was The Dream, and I’ve never been one to shirk or to shy away from things like that. Before you know it, you’re old and droopy and filled with regurgitory regret and time is already as fleeting as it gets…if you listen closely, you can hear it pumping away with every heartbeat, and with every easy breath in and out. This late Caledonian challenge was made infinitely easier by a select group of lovelies on both sides of the Pond, and I thank my lucky stars and garters, as I have done many times and will do often again. And now I’m happy, and filled with resolve and strength and comfort in who I am and what I’m doing in so many areas, even though I’d surely thought that isolation and temporal shrinkage and fields of wooly sheep had rendered me into a deep recession, into the icy river between the fertile glens.

Yet still I have a New Year’s resolution, because even sublimity has room for improvement. Progressiveness can still be found in the dynamic wielding of righteous joy and contentedness.

Britain showed me that I am through with bullshit.

If every year should be better than the last, this shall be the best year yet – for it has armed me with the bristling ambuscade of toleration, meted with a wafer-thin veil of self-worth – something I could not previously find beneath the blankets of insecurity and fear. I’ve since been accused of being quick to anger, perhaps a bit too reactionary to half-assed friendships and wishy-washy promises, pledges, and agreements. It’s none of these things, though. Now I’m back as me – someone I haven’t been in many, many years – but as me with the unwillingness to be trodden upon for my open heart and firm shoulders. The refusal to accept words sans action, and the disinterest in believing the unbelievable. I’m through giving merit where it’s unheralded and completely over offering a simmering stream of endless appreciation and love to those who are loathe to whisper even a specter of a reciprocity. It’s a simple thing, really.

I’m through with the bullshit, and I shall no longer worry about my steading in the eyes of those so-called friends. I’ve done my part, and I’ve accepted that there’s no changing anyone else but myself. I’m not giving up, but rather giving ground. This is not a closed door; this is a window to see through to the other side.

A very long time ago, I made a promise to be the best person that I could possibly be – a promise for life, and never to be reneged upon, never to be rescinded. Now I see that this doesn’t mean I have to be a martyr, or a victim, or a would-be saint. It’s not a sin to circle the wagons around so many worthy, precious gems of friends, but rather a survival technique. Life maintenance. A promise to myself, for a change.

A fucking New Year’s resolution to be proud of.

12 Responses to “The Barrage Starts Here.”

  1. thistlelurid Says:
    January 9th, 2005 at 1:51 pm

    Promises to yourself are the most important….and the hardest to keep….
    make sure those wagons are circled around you as well! xxx

  2. FunkyPlaid Says:
    January 12th, 2005 at 2:41 am

    My wagons are full of arrow-holes, cast-aside scalps, and screamin' Injuns.
    Wanna venture forth and reinforce the palisades with me?

  3. parnasus Says:
    January 9th, 2005 at 2:02 pm

    Happy new year
    And I hope it is, it seems you have laid the ground work for it to be so.
    Me too, I hope. Apparently the strongest foundation is laid with blood, sweat, and tears, it strengthens the resolve.
    Your inspiring, thank you.
    PS. you definitely deserve cookies… I'll have to work that out…

  4. FunkyPlaid Says:
    January 12th, 2005 at 2:42 am

    Re: Happy new year
    Is there any way you can make some cookies with an extra dose of Strong Resolve?
    Thanks for your kind words, Janise, and Happy New Year to you.

  5. sibelian Says:
    January 9th, 2005 at 4:58 pm

    And very sensible, too.

  6. FunkyPlaid Says:
    January 12th, 2005 at 2:43 am

    Well, my shoes sure ain't, so it's a first all the way around, it seems.

  7. dsrt_faery Says:
    January 9th, 2005 at 6:57 pm

    keep that promise – youll be amazed at how hard itll be – but itll make you proud and whole later. good luck.

  8. FunkyPlaid Says:
    January 12th, 2005 at 2:46 am

    I promise to keep that promise. I know how hard it's been, but I'm not one to backtrack once my perspective is established, and any slips that do occur quickly shame me into awareness.
    Thanks for saying Hi, S. I trust you've been keeping well in your rain-swept, crenelated fortress o'er the Bay?

  9. podle Says:
    January 10th, 2005 at 7:48 pm

    You know, you are really something. I read this post days ago and have been wanting to comment and waiting until my thoughts had organized a bit better (not that your consistently articulate, intelligent and thought provoking entries are ever a bit intimidating – noooooo).
    You are one of the few people I know who lives such an intensely examined life. Most of the people I've met over the years that have this level of self-awareness are also possessed of enormous egos that leave little room on their planets for other creatures. I was waiting for the bus tonight (and watching the sky just open up and pour – yay!) and I realized that in a lot of ways you remind me of one of those fabulous questing knights. Constantly refining a sense of purpose – excepting, of course, that there's too much pixie in you to be a Lancelot (probably one of those puffy ego guys) or Percival. I suppose they could have left bits out – but I can't imagine a good laughing bender with Percival and I most definitely can with you.
    Retaining an open and loving heart while protecting it is rough work indeed. I've found myself missing that about me over the past few years – I feel I lack the spirit in that respect and it saddens me. In the business of becoming more protective of myself I think I've become suspicious of others. Unwilling to welcome people into my castle as I never was in the past.
    I think, for me, the anger comes from that protectiveness. I am far quicker to anger now than I have been for most of my life. Admittedly – I know I've always had a hell of a temper – I think its just part of me, the bag of characteristics I was born with. Its also been squished inside and swallowed up for most of my life (festiness is inappropriate, don't you know, particularly in little girls) But I also think that it does come with that toughening up – that resistance to being eaten alive any damn more.
    Oops, got interrupted – anyways – I had to say something finally.
    Much love,

  10. FunkyPlaid Says:
    January 13th, 2005 at 12:14 am

    Could you be any more dear?
    I don't think I've ever been assigned such a lovely and romantic allegory. I take this deeply into my heart and thank you greatly for it. The more we read each other's writings, the more we find out how similar we are on the inside. Our manifestos are aligned and so are our wishes for the future. And I'm heartened that we're both willing to go through the drudgery to work on it.
    I feel your frustration and share the burden of keeping your heart open while reinforcing it. But we've also both decided that we're too sensitive to let outside forces ride our skins like necrofanatic brigands while we stand around and try to pleasure them. We've both done it for too long, and I'm quite aware that making the decision to stop is one of the most difficult things we will ever face. But plans are in action, confidence is being restored…
    I think it's okay to be suspicious, G. It keeps your awareness sharp and your boundaries intact. It ensures that your choices of friends and retainers are good ones, and it reinforces your ability to trust yourself and your own judgments. Good things, all the way around.
    Let's add this one to the infinite list of subjects to have in-depth chats about next time we meet for tea.

  11. angledge Says:
    January 12th, 2005 at 10:59 pm

    you've made the resolution
    Now make it happen.

  12. FunkyPlaid Says:
    January 12th, 2005 at 11:52 pm

    Re: you've made the resolution
    And just what the heck have I been doing for the past three months?
    Other than drinking…

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