Visions of blogging sugarplums were dancing in my head, I swear! Sweet dreams of authoring some magical piece about the warmth of chestnuts roasting on an open fire, or the spirit of jolly ol’ Saint Nick were had. There are so many who do it so much better than I dare dream, so I am going to leave Christmas tale-telling to the masters. I’m no Dickens.
I am however, acquainted with a talented bunch of writers from whom I will steal. And by steal, I mean share selected works with you. Because Christmas is about giving, y’all, not stealing. Geez, what kind of Grinch do you think I am anyway? What follows is a short compendium of blog posts that, for various though not necessarily linear, logical reasons to you, struck a nerve with me this past year. Consider this my gift to you: I am going to shut the heck up in deference to these people whose tales beg to be read. Merry Christmas.
Ghosts of October made me miss my best friend acutely. Like @seanpcarlin, its author, my best friend Deb is a transplant from a four-season climate to southern California. Sean captures the crisp of autumn in a way you can smell and feel the chill in your very bones. Sean is an author–a for reals writer–and all-around good guy. My best friend is a librarian, and reading his post made me feel like they’d met for coffee in an alternate universe.
Doug Warren is a blogger I met last winter in one of WordPress’s Blogging U courses. He’s a musicologist of sorts, and has been turning out Spotify playlists and recommendations I love. Though having a full time job significantly cuts into my listening time (stupid reality of paying bills and stuff!), I do enjoy the playlists he pulls together. Please enjoy this classic Christmas collection. Your ears will thank you.
I was recently introduced to the term inspiration porn. You’re flooded with quotes and memes and life hacks if you visit social media in any capacity. Jackie’s blog used to be titled Diary of an Inspiration Junkie, but as she has morphed, so has her blog. I never understood how inspiration as a package, so to speak, can backfire on a person, on us all, and Jackie illustrated that for me. Read her insightful and forward-leaning response to it here.
You know that I celebrate a “concentrated hobby” with a certain Canadian musical foursome. I know what you say about me–I mean I’m right here in the room with you when you say stuff, people, so I can hear you! I have Barenaked Ladies; my friend Jennifer has Hamilton. Neither of us is alone in our, ahem, focus, and both of us freely admit to inching one pinky toe over the line when it comes to the musical loves of our lives. #ATL2Lin_Manuel was her hashtag and rallying cry, and by the powers of the Great White Way, Jennifer and her daughter got to to see Hamilton’s original Broadway cast in one of its final performances last July. There were tears shed and cheers heard from NYC to ATL to MKE. Read about Jennifah’s road trip of a lifetime, complete with Broadway-style show stopping finale here.
And because I am who I am, here’s BNL’s Elf’s Lament. It’s the best lyrical holiday ditty of all time.
The psychology minor in me loves The Psy of Life blog by @calicojack always, and even a little more for this one: His post was written after he read something I wrote. It’s an indescribable compliment and a recognition I’ll never forget. I had written about my Facebook life, observing how some people overshare on social media. Yikes! The stuff people broadcast when they’re down and seeking comfort (attention?) is something to write about. Read what I wrote here if you wanna. Jack explains the psychological and biochemical processes underlying human behavior, plus he uses genteel and sophisticated phrases like “blog whoring” and “shit show,” so I’m pretty sure we’d be best friends in the real world.
I’d previously taken this and run with it, but if you didn’t read it when I recommended it before, do read it now. It’s a gift that looks AMAZING on you and totally doesn’t make your ass look fat. Wil Wheaton, yes, that Wil Wheaton, writes so well. Read his post. Follow this advice. This is the moment. Do it.
This IS the moment–Merry Christmas, friends. Thank you for being here with me. You, my dear readers, my individual and collective therapists you, thank you. You’re a gift I treasure each day. Your readership, your feedback means the world to me. Space here allows to me to call out but a handful of blogs today, but there are so many voices worth hearing, so many stories that demand telling. Keep writing, keep reading. Do more of what makes you happy, and keep being kind to one another.
I love receiving gifts of all stripes (red and white wines equally appreciated), but so far, this is my favorite physical gift of this holiday season. Who knew a decorative little tin box was specially crafted with me in mind? Profanity DOES make talking fun! I’m totally putting that on a tee shirt.