Does anyone ever do exactly what they want to on New Year's Eve?
I think the only people that really get their wish that night are those who want nothing more than to ignore the festivities altogether. Those people go about their days, make supper, have a drink, watch tv and go to bed before ten, and while they don't watch the ball drop on Times Square as midnight hits the eastern seaboard, they also don't wake up the next day with regrets or hangovers or a stranger's underwear on their bedroom floors.
The last three New Year's Eves for me haven't been THAT bad, but I can say that ringing in 2007, I didn't want to be drinking sparkling cider or watching cheesy movies. I didn't want to be pinned on a couch by a girl just after the arrival of 2008. Welcoming 2009 was a bit better, but in spite of good company, I felt awkward and out of place- mostly because I was obscenely sober.
It's always a compromise. To be with the people I want to see, I have to sacrifice my location, or vice-versa. It'd be grand to have both the people and the place, but there are so many options for people any more, and the likelihood of landing at the same gathering as the friends I care most about is pretty small. Hell, some of the friends I want to see aren't even in Ohio.
What would I like this year? Short of a trip to South Florida, I mean. I'd like a fireplace- I don't care where, but I want a hot, wood-burning fireplace, and I want a game of scrabble, a good cartoon, and a glass of scotch or a chocolate porter. I want peanut butter toast and I want a warm body to spoon...
that, or I want a big, raucous party, with all of my friends from the CRG, the heights, Phoenix, Deweys...all of my buddies from Chagrin, and my friends from Bowdoin- all in one place, with a good damn band playing and a bar selling bottles of Christmas Ale.
Neither option is in the cards for this Thursday night, but I'm getting better about choosing where to be and who to be with. It's sort of a non-holiday anyway, and I don't assign too much import to its celebration...but I do care enough not to end up pinned on a couch by a girl, surrounded by semi-friends and empty champagne bottles.
Not that there's anything wrong with empty champagne bottles.