Friday, December 19, 2008

My Favorite Holiday Movie

Every year, either on Christmas eve or Christmas night, I watch "It's a Wonderful Life." (Okay, a few times when I was younger, Channel 2 showed it on New Year's Eve, so I watched it then.)

My point: I love this movie.

It's my desert island movie.

I love this movie so much, that my family members laugh hysterically at the mere mention of it in my presence.

And in today's issue of The New York Times online, there is an interesting piece about what a terrifying tale George Bailey's life truly is.

And I agree.

Life is, generally speaking, not that pleasant most of the time. George's life in particular, is a long, hard road of deferred dreams and sacrifice, culminating in a suicide attempt at the depressing realization that he's "worth more dead than alive".

But like most lives, George has a choice. And no one is untouched by George's choices. And therein lies the redemptive power of this film.

When George finally realizes that his (self-perceived) horrible life touched so many others for the better, and that he was always surrounded by the only truly valuable thing we can ever have--love--it's a moment of pure grace.

And that's why I adore this movie so much. Grace, love, joy, the choice to do good....they are always possible even in the darkest and most self-doubting moments.

Embrace them.

Are You Essential? Take the Inclement Weather Quiz!

Welcome back, studio audience!

In today's changing and precarious times, it's important that employees living and working in a region where weather occurs, spend a few moments asking themselves this question: Am I essential? Is my physical presence at my place of toil of the essence? Not sure? We're here to help.

Take the Quiz: Are You Essential?
1. Are you responsible for ensuring that others continue living?
2. Are you responsible for somehow mitigating an occurrence that would result in the potential maiming/harming/dismemberment/ death of other humans (and possibly also any well-loved pets)?
3. If you do not risk life and limb (and a new car) to journey to and from your workplace, will you lose your job?
4. Do you get a secret thrill from driving around in a hurricane/earthquake/blizzard/flash flood/wildfire/tornado/frog plague?
5. Is an Act of Congress or a Presidential Executive Order required for you to miss work when faced with a hurricane/earthquake/ blizzard/flash flood/wildfire/tornado/frog plague?

One or more "Yes" answers. If you answered "Yes" to to any of these questions, congratulations! You are essential. As essential personnel, be aware that you may die in the process of arriving to, or departing from, your place of work, which would render you both non-corporeal and inessential (but perhaps not deprive you of your essence, although that's still subject to debate).

No on all questions but #4. If you answered "No" on questions 1,2,3, and 5, I'm sorry, you are not essential, you're just a dangerous adrenalin junkie. Please remain in the assumed safety of your own home, comfortable in the knowledge that today, you my have saved a life: Your own!

Today's quiz is brought to you by the United States Federal Government(TM): Providers of Silly Bureaucracy Since 1774!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Maybe it's the holidays....

but I do not feel like this.

I feel like I'm having the moment after the Grinch's heart grew three sizes. I feel so happy, and so freakishly lucky.

How did I get this life? Was I bathing the wounds of lepers or something in a past life? Yikes.

I have no right to complain.

About anything!

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

An Uncomfortable Position

And I'm not talking about my sciatica, or my office chair.

For the first time in eight years, I find myself in a very, very difficult position.

I have to be thankful to the man who inspires shoe-tossers everywhere.


I have reason to..cough...cough...thank President Bush.


Well, the rat bastard signed an executive order giving non-essential Executive Branch personnel the day off on 12/26.

Now, do I think the idiot did it out of the kindness of the Christmas Spirit? Do I think that his heart grew three sizes that day? Did he have a visit from the Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come?


I think some number-crunching peon calculated the total payroll for everyone on vacation that day, compared it to the savings in light, heat, and overtime by closing up shop, and it was an easy answer: No one's going to be here anyway, so I'll come off seeming not so shoe-throwable-at if I do this.

Sadly, the end result is still the same: I have to thank him for the extra vacation day. And believe you me, if you work for the feds....that's a lot. We only get two weeks a year to begin with.