It's NaNoWriMo. (That stands for National Novel Writing Month, if you're too tired from all that democracy to click the link.) I tried that once. Ended up on heavy meds, hating myself — no joke. Won't be attempting to write the story of that part of my life again.
Actually, I won't be attempting NaNo at all again, ever. Writing 50,000 words in 30 days is tantamount to running a marathon in my mind: Mortals were not built to do this. No. If I write a book, I will do it the right way. It will be an agonizing, years-long process with a frustrating end. And it may have the same result: heavy meds and hating myself.
But it's also NaBloPoMo. Which stands for National Blog Posting Month and is fun to say.
Some writers are taking on the equally ridiculous task of writing a blog post every day this month, and while I won't unrealistically commit myself to actually doing this, it's a good excuse to try to write more. I miss writing here; I even miss getting comment notifications in my e-mail that are so mean they make me cry. (Say it with me: Heavy meds. Hating self.)
One variation on the blogging-every-day theme, which has also found its way to Facebook: A post every day about things we're thankful for. I like it.
I don't express gratitude nearly enough for the things I love, and with Thanksgiving just around the proverbial corner, now's as good a time as any to do a little of that, even if I'm starting six days late for the month.
So: Starting off on a partisan foot, I'm thankful for having been raised to have an open mind. Thankful for having my priorities in line, and thankful to have my head on my shoulders — not in my ass — enough to vote for progress.
Sure, I'm thankful for the right to vote, but we've had that for long enough that I take it for granted.
I voted for President Barack Obama because he deserves another four years to move past the obstacles he faced when he came into office and rise above the obstructionist efforts against him in Congress. But above all things, I voted for him because he believes in equality for all Americans and isn't afraid to say so.
Whether it's decrying rape as a crime with no qualifiers or waffling, or coming out and saying he supports gay marriage, this is the man I want representing our country to the world as a progressive, open place that treats its citizens like humans.
Mitt Romney isn't ready for office — he can't even take a firm, public stance on even one issue, it seems — and his camp is full of liars, cheaters and bigots. Not to mention the Republican Party that falls in line with him. I know they're the ones I ought to be afraid of, and I can only hope that states do the right thing in voting some of those people out, too.
It's a foregone conclusion that Illinois will go blue, but I voted all the same — I did it a week ago and happily waited in line for 30 minutes, long after my grande soy extra-hot, no-water, no-foam chai from the Starbucks up the street was gone, to choose the candidate I want in office.
And I hope that tomorrow, I'll be thankful for a country that shares my hopes of continuing the move forward — at least enough to eke out another four years.