I’m Baaack!

As I suspected, I went (almost) completely off-line for the holidays, and I must say it was a welcome respite. Of course, that meant I had hundreds of e-mail messages to sort through today, but I can live with that — especially since Apple’s Mail client does such a good job of filtering out spam.

I suppose one thing that made staying out of cyberspace easier was the lack of anything that really made me irate in the political arena. Oh, I got upset a few times, but nothing made me jump up and scream that I had to post something. Probably the closest thing was Ashcroft’s almost-a-recusal on the whole Valerie Plame case — “Sure, I’ll bow out, but the guy I’m putting in charge is another political appointee who still technically answers to me.” Or maybe the likely fallout from the democratic candidates’ relentless efforts to unseat Howard Dean as the front-runner; if, as seems likely, Dean emerges as the Democratic candidate, the party will be left in the undesirable situation of having to claim they didn’t really mean all those nasty things they said about him. Then there are the right-wing pundits who try desperately to water down the Democratic candidate by crowing that Bush will handily trounce a leftie like Dean; yeah, we’ll see about that — E.J. Dionne presents a far more credible analysis (and Harold Meyerson a rational admonition). And I couldn’t decide whether to laugh or worry about the whole Almanac warning; I suppose next we should be on the lookout for folks reading other nefarious publications; say, the Constitution, for example.

The holiday went swimmingly, the girls had a wonderful Christmas — and both stayed up until one a.m. on New Year’s Eve — and I got some much-needed rest. I think that last one was the most important for me. I’d been noticing over the past few weeks that I was much quicker to overreact to the smallest perceived slight, to the point where I wasn’t liking myself very much — I mean, when you yell at a store manager for closing five minutes early on Christmas Eve (and all you wanted was a “nice-to-have” but not “need-to have” gift), you know you’ve gone over the edge. Here, of course, I feel no guilt whatsoever about going off on a rant, but in the real world, I tend to be a little more circumspect. Not that I’m making a “resolution” to that effect — there are times when the “bad cop” routine is necessary — but having brought my sleep cycle back into the realm of normality is allowing me to decide when those times should be.

So welcome to 2004 (or 3170 to us Discordians), and thanks for putting up with my extended absence. Rest assured, I may take a break now and again, but I’m not going anywhere.


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