Traditions Pt. II: Fall Edition OR What in the World Keeps Me Going, Anyway?

In my last blog post (ahem… probably written about three months ago, just before school let out), I wrote about end-of-the-year traditions. It was bittersweet. Once in a while, I still shed a tear for good, ol’ breakdancin’ Mr. Martin.

Now, after a long and overly-productive summer “break,” I find myself in front of a desktop computer once again and severely in denial. In denial about summer being over, losing the warm weather, losing my relative freedom, and having to put my toes back in shoe jail. Or would that be foot jail?

Beach holidays icons. Umbrella and sandals.
And no fun, too.

Either way, it sucks.

However, I’ve lived long enough on this blasted sphere to know at least a few things about myself. In particular, I need a motherfuckin’ reason to keep going (beyond, you know, the whole biological imperative to see my children to relative adulthood).

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So… yeah… someone felt the need to create and share this…

What, as an adult, seems to keep me looking forward to the near-future (as opposed to the sweet embrace of death)?

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FALL TRADITIONS

Yes, it’s nice to notice the leaves begin their first, tentative earthward descents. Sure, it’s nice to get a break from the searing heat of summer in high desert. It’s also great to keep fantasizing about food, beer, candy, and more food!

Ale, Yeah!

Oh, yeah, baby. It’s time to drink some actual beer. Apologies to beer snobs out there; I wish I could be one, but it will always baffle me how you can drink a triple IPA or a chocolate stout after mowing the lawn. No, my friends, summer is all about lagers, pilsners, and cheap, American swill.

Now, I can drink a vaguely sweet amber ale without cringing. Now, I can look at a stout without getting that sickly salivation feeling in the back of my throat. Now, I can drink what I want!

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Some Like it Hot

Changing temperatures also mean I don’t have to eat salad, hard-boiled eggs from the fridge, and ice water at every meal. I can quit running from the shower to the freezer in a vain attempt to halt the production of sweat, eventually pulling my undies from the freezer and cautiously stepping into them. I can make chili! Wifey can make her famous squash soup! We can wear sweaters and long pants and even keep up the sandal charade for a few more months (nights and weekends, anyway). We can eat french fries during…

Fire Up the Ol’ Gridiron!

…FOOTBALL SEASON! I know Tom has my back on this one. Football season approacheth. Your favorite team sucks. Mine rocks. Regardless of recent performance or any amount of quarterbacks lost for political activism.

By the way, who’s your team? College? Pro? Just name one.

THA BONEZ!

Halloweeeeeen! I’m sure most children-turned-adults-turned-parents find their Halloween-related arc looking something like this:

  1. This is weird, but the folks want to walk around at night, so…
  2. This is awesome! Free candy!!
  3. This is pretty cool. A night away from the parents and plenty of distractions around the ‘hood…
  4. Okay, they quit giving me candy. Guess I’d better hang out with my zitty friends at 7-11.
  5. I’m in college! Let’s drink and be naked!
  6. hqdefault.jpg
    Of sound mind and body.
  7. … (for ten or fifteen years)…
  8. I can’t wait to take the kids trick or treating! What should we dress them up as this year? Pebbles and  Bam-Bam? Bart and  Maggie?! SIMON AND GARFUNKLE!!!

So, yeah, Garrett and I are pretty stoked for Halloweener. He wants to be “the bones,” which is a skeleton (in lay terms). He also wants to be a Ninja Turtle, Batman, a mummy, a dinosaur, one of those obnoxious little rats on Miniforce (the worst children’s show ever… check it out!), and probably three other things we see at the costume store the day of.

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Although, the intro has a pretty ass-metal, non-stop-guitar-solo style song a la Power Rangers.

Spoiler: we’re probably forcing the kids to do the pebbles and bam-bam thing. Pics to follow!

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As opposed to the way we dress Garrett the other 364 days… and they said the terrible twos was bad…

‘Tis the Season

And, of course, Fall transitions so nicely (and so consistently) into Winter, bringing even more traditions. A gigantic, inappropriately huge Thanksgiving meal with family and football. Bundling up to shovel the driveway. Staying indoors by our gas stove. Christmas lights and cookies. Chilly walks around the block while batches of Kelly’s browned butter chocolate chip cookies bake. The prospect of seeing family (and maybe even enjoying ourselves).

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Auld Lang Zyne

That phrase is as difficult to spell as the word Hannukah (Channukah… Chewbacca…).

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Anyway, there’s always New Year’s Eve. Those wacky traditions. Watching black and white Twilight Zone episodes with wifey. Champagne. Staying up late… some years we even wake back up and make it ’til midnight.

Yes, there’s New Year’s Eve… and the feeling we’ve been doing the same thing for… how many years now?

Groundhog’s Year

Then, we wake up New Year’s Day and do it all again. Until next New Year’s Day. And the next. And so on.

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Ignore the little Lebowski stuff… focus more about the human comedy perpetuatin’.

I don’t think this post really has an ending. I suppose that’s appropriate, given the revelation of how frustratingly predictable my life is, but that’s only when viewed through the macro perspective. In reality, life is every. Fucking. Day. It’s hard. It also flies by quickly.

I fear that some day, I’ll wake up from my spot on the floor, wondering what happened to my life, only to be greeted by a golfer, a professional sketch artist, and Wu.

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Jackie Treehorn sends his regards.

Rarely do I get much feedback from my readership (beyond the faithful three or four or five of you… thanks, by the way), so I’m going to do my best to open it up to YOU!

TE TOCA A TI!

What are you favorite fall traditions? What keeps you moving through the year? What do you look forward to?! What day or week or month do you absolutely dread?!

Sound off! I demand it! If nothing else, at least say a little something about beer.

Please?

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37 thoughts on “Traditions Pt. II: Fall Edition OR What in the World Keeps Me Going, Anyway?”

    1. Kelly, by joining forces, we can endure:

      고 고 최강 전사 미니 특공대 (미니 특공대)
      Go go strongest warrior Mini Force (Mini Force)
      정의를 위해 싸우는 우리의 친구
      Our friends fighting for justice
      고 고 최강 전사 미니 특공대 (미니 특공대)
      Go go strongest warrior Mini Force (Mini Force)
      평화를 위해 싸우는 용감한 전사
      Brave warriors fighting for peace
      최강 전사 미니 특공대
      Strongest warrior Mini Force

      어떤 두려움도 힘든 일들도 모두 날려버리자
      Whatever fears, whatever hardships, fling them all away
      친구들과 함께라면 우린 외롭지 않아
      Together with friends, we are never lonely

      아무리 힘들어도 절대 포기하지마
      However difficult it gets, never give up
      힘을 합쳐 싸운다면 우린 이겨낼 수 있어
      By joining forces we can endure

      고 고 최강 전사 미니 특공대 (미니 특공대)
      Go go strongest warrior Mini Force (Mini Force)
      정의를 위해 싸우는 우리의 친구
      Our friends fighting for justice
      고 고 최강 전사 미니 특공대 (미니 특공대)
      Go go strongest warrior Mini Force (Mini Force)
      평화를 위해 싸우는 용감한 전사
      Brave warriors fighting for peace
      최강 전사 미니 특공대
      Strongest warrior Mini Force

      Liked by 1 person

  1. Hey, welcome back. You’ve been missed (for real). I’m thrilled to find you in front of a desktop computer once again, although severely in denial.

    To answer your questions –
    No favorite fall traditions (I swear). I guess, planning my next vacation, watching the leaves fall and swapping beer for wine.
    What keeps me moving through the year is traveling abroad, family, get-togethers, nature and books.
    I look forward to more quality time with my kid, more travel, reading and writing, reading you.
    I don’t dread any day in particular. They are what we make of them. That is, what our kids make of them…
    I need another drink now.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Kids and drinking go together like pizza and beer, beer and tacos, or even beer with whiskey.

      Classic.

      Thanks for your kind and informative words! It’s good to be back. I miss communicating with you guys and reading your stuff. Fortunately, I have classrooms full of students to ignore. Time to catch up!

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Ah, yes, fall means many, many things. Football. Beer. The Return of the King. Welcome back, your majesty. 😉

    My favorite football team is the Rams (duh). My favorite tennis player is now Djokovic (don’t ask). My favorite fall tradition is football (duh), though I love Christmas most of all. I don’t do presents, hardly ever decorate, and I don’t believe in angels or Hey-Zeus, but for some reason … the music and mirth just get to me.

    And now, to answer the other questions:

    What keeps you moving through the year? Beer.
    What do you look forward to?! Every morning.
    What day or week or month do you absolutely dread?! I hate Tuesdays.

    Also, my favorite Star Wars character is Han Solo, I don’t like wearing pants and shoes, I favor cheap american swill and I’ve only seen Lebowski once. Once.

    Welcome back, my friend. As the endearing and illustrious Blogging Bojana once said: “God I missed you, Justin.”

    Thank Notos for Fall.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Notos? You must enlighten me.

      Tom, I’m fairly atheist and I get all nuts about Christmas. It’s much more the tradition and the family and, in honesty, the excuse to get excited about something. Wifey and I are Christmas dorks. I have an iPod and our 15 albums never leave it; they go into daily play mode on random for the entire month… sometimes even after Thanksgiving. We decorate. We give presents. We overindulge.

      Han Solo is probably THE choice for SW characters. I have a soft spot for Chewie (you know, gibberish and superhuman strength).

      It’s great to be back and even better to be welcomed back by fellow, respected opinionists.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. “NOTOS (Notus) was the god of the south wind … He was the wet, storm-bringing wind of late summer and early autumn.”

        A devout agnostic such as myself should never use the word “God” in two sentences in a row; I had to find a pagan example. 😉

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Jesus, Tom, you sure know a lot about this Notus guy. I’m starting to feel like he’s becoming between you and I. Starting to feel like it’s truly Not us… it’s you two!

        Sorry, I’d been trying to figure out a way to say that for at least a few minutes…

        But, seriously, what’s his astrological sign, favorite cocktail, and least favorite Bobby McFerrin song?

        Liked by 1 person

      3. Lmao!

        As a storm god he never did much care for Sunshine of Your Love, but McFerrin in general, never did much for him. Jay Ferguson was more his thing. He was a Libra.

        He probably drank wine but it’s hard to say. I’m no expert on the subject. 😉

        Liked by 1 person

      1. Way, and it was just a few short years ago. I enjoyed it quite a lot, Mrs C was tepid on it. Since I really never sit and watch movies alone, her desire to re-see a thing plays heavily into my willingness to do so. I’ll try and convince sometime to revisit … maybe the Sam Elliot sighting will be enough for her. 😉

        Tuesdays just tend to suck. I’ve never been able to properly explain it. Perhaps I’ll lay out my reasons and theories in a future blog …

        Liked by 2 people

  3. Hello! Enjoyed this post, guess welcome back is a given after reading Tom’s post. I agree with just about everything you’ve written. I am curious as to what you teach, possibly high school or college subjects? I love autumn, my favorite season, but I grew up in NE so that’s also a given. I never cared for beer much, but a cold one on a hot humid day camping is a treat. I’ve been a Broncos fan forever but have stopped watching football the past few years. My husband was an allsportsallthetime guy so I enjoy a break. Have a fun Halloween with the kids. Here the youngest living grandchild living nearby just turned twelve so it’s her last trick or treating year, according to her parents. I’m disappointed no children come to the apartments to do it, miss those cuties. I didn’t mean to write a book, but wanted you to know I enjoy your blog.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Ha! No worries on the book. Write away, right away! I appreciate the feedback and simply getting to hear other people’s perspectives.

      I grew up in Oregon, and, believe it or not, the leaves in the Portland area just might rival those of NE (I say this with no idea of what that looks like… so maybe not). When you live in Oregon, you have to choose a pro football team from the surrounding area. I still don’t think my father, a Seahawks fan, has forgiven me for choosing 49ers. He also digs Broncos and loved Peyton Manning.

      I’m going to re-post one from last Halloween (with just lovely pictures of my son). I’ll have to do an update with our daughter here now. She just missed Halloween last year, so we’re going to torture them both with THEME COSTUMES!

      Write again! Write often! Glad to meet you and thanks so much for the positive feedback!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Also, you’re probably overdue to rewatch Lebowski! It’s easy to find the motivation; simply turn it into a drinking game. A sip for every curse word you hear… you may not exactly make it to the end.

      Like

  4. Welcome back. And thank you for devoting most of the space to my favorite fall tradition: Halloween. It’s the one time of year I get to take off my mask. It’s the time of year I can stand in line for an hour just to spend fifteen minutes walking through a pitch black corridor where some guy dressed up like Freddy Krueger will jump out at me at the end. It’s the time of year I pull out all my Vincent Price and Roger Corman movies. It’s the time some small breweries put out some really excellent Oktoberfest brews. And once again I will beg my co-workers to do a Princess Bride-themed departmental costume day so I’ll have an excuse to dress up like Miracle Max.
    Like I need an excuse.
    So, yeah, Halloween is what keeps me going through the rest of the year.
    And I don’t really follow football but I will be cheering for Team USA in the Mosconi Cup in December, mainly because they’ve lost eight years in a row and I feel like they need all the support they can get. And I think it’s groovy that the Rams have added male cheerleaders.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Have fun storming the castle!

      Chris, thanks for your response. Halloween has been a really hit-or-miss tradition for me. Since having kids, it’s become a lot more fun. I almost never get into dressing up, but two years ago I MADE MY OWN COSTUME. I don’t think anyone was that impressed, but I was Ale Viking. It rocked. It makes it a lot better to get excited about something, so I say Miracle Max your month away.

      Looking forward to some decent Oktoberfests and Marzens!!

      Liked by 2 people

  5. Gotta thank Tom and Bojana for pointing me this way. They have yet to fail when it comes to suggesting readers to explore. What a great read, and I SOOOO look forward to reading more.

    Now, as for those questions:

    My favorite team is my New Orleans Saints.
    Fall for me is DEFINITELY Halloween. It’s when the weather finally turns from making one want to commit suicide to making you want to finally come out of the cave. ( I do love Christmas for the magic feeling I still get.)
    What keeps you moving through the year?
    What do you look forward to?! Things
    What day or week or month do you absolutely dread?! While I have a reason to like it, I am still a Boomtown Rats kind of guy….”I don’t like Mondays”
    My favorite Star Wars character is Yoda.
    I am way more a wine drinker than beer.
    Last but not least…Just like the Dude, the Eagles do NOT play on this Wulf’s radio.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’ve had a hard day and I hate the fuckin’ Eagles…

      I have to say, you’re the second person in my life who knows The Boomtown Rats. I play that song back to back with “Pumped Up Kicks.” Isnt’ that fun? We get to compare songs about school shootings from various generations, kind of like a vertical tasting.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It is. I am not familiar with Pumped Up Kicks. I had to google it, but that’s a thing to love with things you don’t know. Finding out about them.

        Like

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