The year is drawing to a close, and as usual if you had told me on January 1 that the year would end like this, I'd have about dropped my teeth. Seriously, Iraqi government: Did you have to hang Saddam so tantalizingly close to the new year? He probably had planned a real Swingin' New Year's bash, unaware that he actually would swing before it ever happened. And now all the would-be guests are wondering whether they should still go. Sure, it's probably in bad taste, but the champagne's still there, and it's paid for, so really, what's the diff?
I remember the day three years ago when he was caught, and images of disembodied hands checking his disheveled hair for nits dominated every TV station in the world. I was in Chicago, planning to fly back to New York that day and wondering how gentle the TSA people would be with their full-cavity searches.
As we contemplate 2006, and how much it mostly sucked, we must remember that life is a highway. I am reminded of this fact about 12 times a day, because Robert is now the proud owner of the "Cars" DVD, in which that song features prominently. Not Tom Cochrane's original, but an overpolished update from the country-boyband Rascal Flatts (whose name sounds just a wee bit too focus-groupy). It's got fiddles and sexy backup singing and is officially the catchiest song ever committed to MP3 format. I bought it with one of the iTunes gift cards I got for Christmas, and the boys and I like to crank it up, set it on repeat, and dance ourselves stupid. We start off calmly enough when those first stylin' geetar licks start up, and by the end the boys are mostly naked, chests heaving, and begging for water.
You know that standard movie shot, the one that peers into the window of an apartment from very far away at the boisterosity within? (The only one I can think of now is Tom Hanks and Elizabeth jumping on the trampoline in "Big.") Whenever we dance to that song, I picture the three of us in that shot, hopping up and down and shaking our biscuits without a care in the world.
Here's hoping you can have that same blissful time ringin' and swingin' in the New Year. I'm off to hang out with my family, who will spend the next couple days celebrating my dad's 70th birthday party and hoping our highways are as long and blessed as his. I can't predict the extent of biscuit-shaking there will be at his party, but I'm sure I'll be able to use the pictures to negotiate a nice chunk of the will.