For the next month, I am doing this. I am looking forward to it both as a creative exercise, as well as a challenge to meet head on. I hope to have fun with this project and not view it as something to cross off before the end of the day.
I’ve been letting the first prompt bounce around all day and it finally settled earlier this evening.
Prompt: One Word. Encapsulate the year 2010 in one word. Explain why you’re choosing that word. Now, imagine it’s one year from today, what would you like the word to be that captures 2011 for you?
Trivial. 2010 was trivial. It was trivial in a very literal sense in that it was the year that this became a weekly event for me and the pals. It seems so silly, but having that standing date with some of my favorite people in the world was one of the best, most consistent parts of my year. It combines friends, beer, competition and scattered bits of knowledge in a way so pleasing that I wouldn’t know what to do if I suddenly found myself at home on a Wednesday evening at 7:30, rather than with the team.
Perhaps another reason that trivia has meant so much to me is that in 2010 there has been a space for it in my life that there wasn’t before. It frustrates me to have to mention him here, particularly in the first damn post, but a big part of what 2010 means to me is precisely what it is not. I spent 2009 and the last half of 2008 utterly consumed by someone. This someone was troubled and damaged as well as troubling and damaging. Of the many, many harsh words that I hope to scrub from the archives someday, one particular conversation from 2009 was often on a loop in my head this year: “Now you can go back to your old Jenny life. You can drink beer with your friends, watch the Red Sox, listen to podcasts and like Golden Retrievers.” I realize how insane that sounds and it certainly doesn’t deserve the paragraphs it would take to even attempt to explain it. Suffice to say, in his mind, if it was important to me and did not somehow revolve around him, it was not only trivial, it was bad.
Though the early part of 2010 unfortunately played a bit like an extra special 2009 bonus, there came a point in the spring when I flipped the calendar page. I realized that I missed the old Jenny life and all of its trivial trappings. I began gathering the pieces up and holding them close again, marveling often that I had ever thought it okay to let them go.