This has been one long hard frickin' year. As I was making my coffee on this the last morning of 2016 I mused, "If this year were a movie character, what character would it be?" And Jabba the Hutt popped into my mind.
After all, didn't the year seem to crawl past at a slug-like pace all through the never-ending low-brow mud-slinging (aka political campaigns)? Didn't it all end with a slimy joke and lugubrious laughter? "Ho ho ho ho ho," Jabba chortled fatly as he slithered through his palace, jerking people's chains left and right. "You're screwed now!"
On a personal note, being chained to my computer all year preparing for the launch of my latest book The E Word was a necessary evil. Yes, I got a LOT done. But I must say, given a choice, I much preferred 2015 when all I had to do was travel and write the sucker. Creation is the best gig on the globe. And travel ... great food, great people, new sights and sounds, is like ambrosia to the soul. Well, at least my soul. Have laptop will travel is a motto I wouldn't mind laying claim to.
But life is a sine wave function, after all. You know the sine wave? That curvy uphill downhill mathematical signature of oscillation? One moment you're skylarking from one adventure to the next. The next you're hip-deep in edit-land doing rewrites. One moment everything looks rosy, the next moment you're walking the plank, headed towards the gaping maw of the sarlacc in the Great Pit of Carkoon.
I've always been an all-or-nothing kind of person. At least that's been my ego's story so far. Why eat a slice of cake when you can face-plant the whole thing? Why have one martini when you can survive five? Why have one husband when you can have two or three or four? (Not at the same time.) Hell, last night I went to the theatre (resisting my desk chains, too tired to work another minute) and saw three movies back-to-back. And ate two buckets of popcorn (with help, thank God).
But I've paid the price for my extremes over and over and over again. Hangovers, brain-drain, butt-spread, Visine-eyes, divorces, heartbreak, indigestion, weight gain ... you name it. Could've been a lot worse considering all the shit I've pulled this lifetime. But at a certain point, if you want to live long and prosper, the Black Diamond Extreme Approach to Living ceases to be productive.
Which brings me back to Ja ... I mean our next President Elect.
I've watched a lot of people go into deep depression over the prospect of the next four years. I've watched a lot of fear come up. Will we even survive the next four years? Frankly, I don't know. But I do know we can't afford to swing into that sine wave curve of extremism called AGAINST.
We already did that during the campaigns. Whether you were for him or against him, all the attention and energy of the 2016 election was focused on Donald J. Trump. And look where that got us.
No no no. The time now is to be FOR your innermost heart-based dreams. Be FOR life. Be FOR connection and respect and mutual support. Be FOR banding together and implementing grass roots programs that aid and abet those who need the most help. Be FOR progress, love, service and caring. Be FOR getting involved. Be FOR reaching out and be giving of your time, intelligence and connections.
Our next president and his Wall Street insider cronies are hell bent on dismantling the government from the inside out, striking hard the ego's tune of Capitalistic "ME-ism." But you know ... maybe a blatant gutting of all that is honorable and generous is what we need. Seriously ... government was never about that anyway. Right?
Honor and generosity belong to the heart of the individual--not an institution. So while our president is busy waving the corporate flag advancing his own interests, I suggest we hitch up our collective git-alongs and quietly do the same. He tears everything apart from the top down while we join hands and quietly (or not so quietly) build a whole new world from the bottom up.
We've never done that before. Humans have always built walls and systems out of fear. And the bloated self-serving government edifice we now have has been the result.
So don't swing into 2017 with a vengeance. Enter it with love and determination and a vision of a world based in unity and peace ... then roll up your sleeves and get to work.