I’m trying to find some Christmas spirit.

I started by trying to put up my tree, a little fiber-optic number I’ve had since my Myrtle Beach days, purchased at Target by my mother, whose old cross-stitched ornaments have adorned its branches for 10-plus years.

That plan was thwarted when I realized the box that plugs the spinny light CD in the stand into the wall apparently wasn’t ready to leave Florida yet.

 I did succeed in getting holiday-themed placemats and the pretty purple-and-gold runner my previous boss gave me on the dining room table.

Then I gave up and decided to have a glass of wine with Dave Pirner at noon.

I opened the three windows in the house that will shut and lock again to let the December air in to keep me company.

Tomorrow I start yet another new thing in a year that has had quite enough of those for my taste. This, I hope and think, is a good one. But more unknown territory. It’s OK. That’s starting to feel familiar.

Seems like I should be getting somewhere/Somehow I’m neither here nor there

I spent a few minutes on Facebook this morning before retreating in abject fear.

I wish all days were filled with wall-to-wall football. I understand football. Well, except for targeting, and exactly what a catch is.

My ESPN app is a safe haven. The news it brings me doesn’t seize my stomach muscles and tighten my throat. Baseball hot stove heating up. College hoops injury updates. A John Saunders article, which is sad, but not in a humanity-is-damned kind of way.

Syracuse and UConn tip off at 7 p.m. Oh, right, that’s kind of an ACC game.  I wonder if I’ll ever get used to that. Probably not, as I still think Seattle is an AFC team and the Brewers are in the AL.

Speaking of Seattle, the Seahawks won big last night, though Earl Thomas was carried off the field and started tweeting about retirement, which kind of sucked. The aerial shots of a city I’ve now seen for myself made me smile, and vow to return for a game next year. I want to take my friend, who showed me that lovely place and to whom the universe owes a bit of peace.

Peace was the subject of yesterday’s sermon at church, though it wasn’t really a sermon – not in a Southern Baptist way. As I sat in the pew, joined by another friend, the minister spoke of God’s peace, which was not to be viewed as snowy white doves and Christmas carols. God’s peace, she said, is division – taking intentional steps to disrupt what is conventional and comfortable and rearranging the pieces of what was familiar into something more powerful for more people.

Now my phone, on shuffle because decisions are difficult, is playing All This Could Have Been Yours. It’s a mournful, reflective tune from a 2010 album called Black Ribbons by Shooter Jennings (Waylon’s son) and band Hierophant. It’s strange and category-defying and post-apocalyptic and sometimes just perfect.

Maybe it’s better not to have a tree. Less work all around. I’ll go to my friend’s annual holiday party – such an event that it has its own Twitter account – and then drive down to the beach to listen to the waves and winds with my mother.

And now we’re back to the Runaway Train that started all this surprise afternoon introspection. Random does nothing to decrease the chances of repeating yourself.

As the music shifts to the well-worn comfort of Lucinda's glorious gravel voice, I remember there's also Monday Night Football. Not what it was, but what is, and it's something.

And I'll leave you with, as I'm so often left to, My Own Devices. Happy holidays. Let your dim light shine indeed.