Yay! 2020 is about to be over! But…what does that mean?
It’s not like the clock strikes midnight and the world is suddenly back to pre-pandemic normal. While we’re waiting for vaccines and watching neighbors worry whether they’re poison, I’m focused on what 2021 will mean to me. Personally. Damn the fear. Full speed ahead!
So, what does the brand spanking new 2021 mean to me…Honey Parker…writer of the ridiculous? What will stay the same? What will change? What do I wish to see?
Status quo for the first quarter…
Count on all of the new habits to remain in place. Things like going hiking and giving a wide berth to strangers on the trail.
Continuing to connect with friends over Zoom cocktails.
Changing out of pajamas before getting to work. (Before lockdown, my policy was to never take a phone call without wearing a bra. Now, I can’t even write an email without being fully dressed for the day. No explanation.)
Headaches. Not life hassles, but actual drumbeat headaches. Hello, Excedrin headache #2021!
Two cups of coffee in the morning and a Netflix/Amazon Prime binge sessions at night. (BTW, we just started on The Kominsky Method. Highly recommend it. Two excellent comic actors going at it with swords provided by some excellent comic writers.)
No air travel.
Things that will change…
It may take a while, but I have a list of people I’m going to hug the crap out of. Not strangers passing by. But once we’ve been pumped with vaccine, I’ll be hugging up on a few key friends.
I also told my father that when I see him next (it will have been over a year) that I may hug him for ten minutes straight. He said he was fine with that, and that at the end of those ten minutes, he’d give me another ten.
I expect to be able to get out to promote Careful-ish properly, in front of rooms full of readers.
And our CoupleCo podcast will return to in-person interviews featuring me and Mr. Parker and the couplepreneurs who are brave enough to sit down and bare all.
What would be nice to see…
Before lockdown, Mr. Parker and I were about to hit the road in search of our new home base. We like change. We also like to meet people by going to a local bar and drinking up the conversations that lead to new comrades and even enduring friendships. It’s a swell way to get the feeling for a place and see if you fit. It would be great to be able to do that again. Perhaps even find a place where my dad could move nearby. (But really, separate homes. Let’s not go crazy.)
Selfishly, I’d like to see the Careful-ish series take off, sell the screen rights, and afford me the ability to write the next series from anywhere.
And here’s what would be nice present for everyone…
There’s a reason for the title of this post, “2020…Goodbye & Good Luck.”
During World War II and the Battle Of Britain, Londoners were assaulted by German air raids and nightly bombings. Despite the hell raining down on them, they kept an amazing level of civility. And not knowing if they’d see each other the next day, they’d always say to each other, “Goodnight and good luck.”
Reporting from London at the time, broadcaster Edward R. Murrow adopted the phrase as his nightly sign-off and it stuck through his career at CBS News. (You might recall the Oscar-nominated Murrow biopic Goodnight & Good Luck.) It was a much more civil time when people were much nicer to each other.
Did everyone respect everyone else back then? Of course not. But they were more inclined to treat each other with respect. I’ll take it.
And so, for the last Careful-ish blog post of 2020, I wish everyone health, happiness, the ability to laugh at ourselves, and a big fat dose of civility.
What do you wish for in 2021? I’d love to hear about it...
Oh, the things we ill-advisedly shove in our mouths and justify later.
And I’m not just referring to the calorey-laden goodies that can feel so comforting in the moment (particularly after the alcohol we drank tells us, “Go ahead. It’ll be fine”). I’m talking about flat-out weird choices. The odd combos. The items we try, knowing they’re likely a bad idea.
Years ago, I was single in New York. That alone is a combination that makes many bad choices seem like good ideas. At the time, I hit on something I thought was genius. And yes, the alcohol agreed with me completely. To me, the mark of a good snack combines something to spread with something to spread it on. After a fun night out, I came home, opened my fridge, and stared inside, searching for two such components. Something to spread…? Cheese! Now, something to spread it on…? Cheese! Yes, I spread cream cheese on Swiss cheese and felt like a genius. I couldn’t wait to wake up in the morning and share my discovery with the world. (Here’s a surprise. When I woke up, I no longer felt that the world was waiting to hear about this.)
Flash forward. When lockdown began, I was grieving for my mother. Her decline over the last two years had led to some pretty bad eating habits, and my weight was far from happy-making. So, I was looking for snacks that would satisfy while I tried to take off some pounds. Where did I land? Remember, I require something to spread and something to spread it on. I hit on raw cauliflower with yellow mustard. Hang with me while I justify. Raw cauliflower has a lot of crunch, so that element is taken care of. And yellow mustard is a tangy flavor bomb. You know you’ve eaten something. And you could literally eat an entire head of cauliflower with mustard and not feel like you’ve gone too far. Well, not in the calorie department anyway. It’s also beyond filling, and I’ve never been able to eat more than three whole florets in one sitting.
How bizarre is this combo? When meeting with my doctor for a physical, I told her about it. She thought it was genius. And not the cheese-on-cheese variety of genius. Cauliflower is high in fiber. Low in calories. Low in sodium. She was so impressed with the idea that she was going to give it a go. Then, on a recent hike, we ran into a friend who had friend of his along. Let’s call him Jake. The conversation turned to food. And Jake said that he and his wife love cauliflower with different mustards. I felt like I was in with the in crowd.
So, what new taste sensation have you eaten during lockdown?
Cheers to all our quirky behavior.
Honey Parker has been writing, writing, writing for decades, decades, decades. In there, she has also been a standup comedian, a Hollywood screenwriter, a director, and a co-author of edgy business books. Careful-ish is her debut novel. It is the first in a trilogy. It is comedy-ish.