Thursday, September 29

a toast

It's Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year. I'm not Jewish, as far as I know, but I do attend a synagogue; something like, I'm not a doctor, but I play one on TV...or not. It's a long story, but apparently being in the physically handicapped minority just wasn't marginalized enough for me.

New year pooch smooch, anyone?
But I kind of like starting a new year in the fall, when everything is changing anyway. So I've been thinking about resolutions. I know the old New Year's resolution is a bit of a farce, but a little reflection never hurt anyone, right?...Actually I have evidence to the contrary, so scratch that, too.

Let's start over. Yes, exactly. The turning over of old year to new is a time to start over, and that's a nice thought. It motivated me to turn my generally free rambling thoughts toward a little self-evaluation, and run down a checklist of areas that need a little upkeep. And this is what I found: I've been drinking too much beer. Actually, I may have been drinking a beer at the time that I made this observation.

What's that? You wouldn't have pegged me as a beer-loving kind of gal? Well, it's true that alcohol has historically not exactly been welcome in my family. But in just three generations, we've gone from teetotaling to having an average of one beer per night––yes, that's what I mean by too much. But despite a strong historical cocktail of puritanism with a twist of prohibition, I hold that I'm just getting back to my German roots. I hear they drink beer at breakfast over there.

And I'm a snobby beer drinker. No Bud Light or Coors for me, though I'm not opposed to Corona, in theory, because of my pseudo Mexican pride. But the micro brew is my beer of choice. A good ale to be exact. Maybe something a little hopier if necessary. And there are few things nicer on a summer afternoon...or fall, or winter, or spring...than sitting on the patio of some local pub with friends. The last time I went out for a beer with Opie, I saw a guy with the international handicap accessible sign––the asexual figure in a wheelchair--tattooed under his ear. I never got up the nerve to ask why. And I'm still wondering. 

Little Gen demonstrates a new vice.
It's not really that I feel at risk of overindulgence, despite my mother's fears that the next generation will all be raging alcoholics; but that drink to close the day is just getting a little too important. I'm just wanting it a little too much, to relax, to not think, to have something to hold while Little Gen and I finish up the next episode of Breaking Bad.

But mostly, at the end of a day, I don't want to forget things that make me feel grateful and things that need forgiving. It's nice to feel like we can erase those things, that it's just another day done, but these are the stuff of life. If I have to sweep away the tracks I made today, something's wrong with the way I'm walking.

So, if you just checked out through the last paragraph, it's just this: I decided no more beer. But when I thought about never having another beer ever again, it sounded like a long time, so I decided no beer till the end of October. No need to get carried away, right? And after a month, I'll reassess. Maybe I won't want to drink beer anymore. Maybe I'll be feeling healthier. Or maybe I'll run to the closest micro-brewery to celebrate. I don't know.

But while I'm not drinking, I'll think about how much I want a beer, how much I think I need one, and then I'll remember that what I really need can never be filled in a glass.