Merry Christmas

What did you want this year
… and get?

Too much.

As I was wrapping up my work email for the holiday break yesterday, thumbing through my last few messages, a long thank you note rolled in from the president of a company with which my team does a significant amount of business.

It concluded with a bit of an explanation:

β€œWe had thought about sending out our usual gift baskets this year,” he wrote, β€œ but with the logistics of everyone working from home we decided not to do that.”

”Instead,” he continued, β€œwe have made a large donation to the food bank in the names of all our clients.”

I remember in past years when over the last week before the Christmas break a few big boxes of chocolates or candies would appear and everyone would pick away at them as the last few days wound down to vacation. As much as I know the work I do is appreciated by some, the mundane and behind-the-scenes nature of being a technology professional means a lot of it also goes unnoticed. It’s nice to be appreciated, and a bix box of treats definitely helps.

It’s a weird thing to miss, but then again there a lot of things missing these days, huh?

I hit the reply button and typed something back, thanking him and wishing him a Merry Christmas.

We miss the sweets, but most of us are doing the kind of work we do to make the world a more interesting place, not for the Christmas baskets.

I got too much of the things I thought I wanted this past year, but seeing a simple little gesture like that, as basic and seemling obvious as it is reminded me that what I really wanted this year was for the world to be a little gentler, more caring, and generous to each other.

So, I guess I got a little of that, at least.

Thirty one topics. Thirty one posts. Not exactly a list… but close. In December I like to look back on the year that was. My daily posts in December-ish are themed-ish and may contain spoilers set against the backdrop of some year-end-ish personal exposition.

My Little Orphan Plant Project

I’m overstating it a little bit, but for the second time in as many months I found myself browsing through the reject tropical plant rack at another local hardware superstore and filling an handbasket with a motley assortment of discount greenery to bring home.

Yesterday I came home with (another) six potted indoor plants, all on death’s doorstep from a season of rejection and neglect, all steeply discounted to literal cents likely because the seasonal holiday replacements need the shelf space.

A fern. A couple palms. An indoor rose. And a couple other interesting leafy explosions that were encased in root balls of dirt so dried out that even the trash bin may have questioned their existence.

I feel a bit sorry for plants like this.

Not that plants have feelings.

Not that I haven’t neglected and doomed my share of indoor foliage over the years.

Rather, because it seems a bit like a charity project, albeit a small and ultimately self-serving one, to save a few of these dregs of the greenhouse from final obliteration and see if I can’t coax some life back into them and potentially give each a new home in mine.

If they die, aw shucks and a few bucks.

If they live and thrive, I have a new houseplant on the cheap.

In short, in the last two months I’ve added at least a dozen listless but leafy loafers to my weekly watering schedule and sparked something of a small project into the notion of filling the house with a bit more organic dΓ©cor. I don’t know if it’ll be worth revisiting here on the blog, but like anything greenish, with a little sunshine and water and almost anything can happen.