Tuesday, August 11, 2009

And now, a brief word about self-created holidays

I'm feeling very romantic at the moment, so forgive me. My feelings come at a strange time, seeing as how the boyfriend is away on a vacation without me (all-guy nerding out annual beach retreat).

Tonight those with a clear view of the night sky will be able to participate in seeing the Perseid meteor shower. To quote Wikipedia (because who quotes other encyclopedias while writing a blog?), "Meteor showers occur when Earth moves through a meteor stream. The stream in this case is called the Perseid cloud and it stretches along the orbit of the Comet Swift-Tuttle."

Lots of things are going to hurtle through our atmosphere and be face-meltingly hot. We will see tiny, bright streaks across the sky for brief moments after minutes of searching. People will point, make wishes, talk about Perseus, eat a sandwich, drink cold drinks, talk about Swift-Tuttle, make oohing noises, hold hands, look through telescopes, fart to disrupt the peace of star-gazing, forget there's a meteor shower, ignore the meteor shower, or be mad there's too much ambient light to see the shower properly.

A few years ago, I lay on the ground with aforementioned boyfriend, pre-relationship, and watched in the muted, buzzing dark with some of my closest friends. I lay there completely immobile as I felt every hair on my arm bristle and burn while lying there next to him, so close, but not touching. The earth was still and hot where we were, but debris was whooshing through the sky, making shining gashes. Turmoil and stillness on the terrestrial and celestial planes. The tall, prairie grass made a living, waving window.

But to my real point. Our anniversary (which non-married couples usually count as when they first started dating) is in October. We celebrate it happily and dutifully. But I was considering tonight as I'm awaiting this year's Perseids, why we celebrate it then. It's self-created and rather arbitrary. We have both discussed those infamous Perseids and how we felt about each other at the time (answer: mutual). Why not change it to the Perseids shower every year? Why not reflect on and rejoice the passion in our relationship when it crackled and compressed first so intensely under a romantic, flaring sky?

Whoosh, whoosh... wish, wish... hush, hush...

That was what the Perseids were and that is how and when I would like to celebrate each year.

Rule: Re-examine self-created holidays. Ancillary: Make them real holidays.

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