It’s been kind of quiet around here.
Maybe you’ve noticed (I didn’t even write a post about the 2015 Beaujolais Nouveau!); probably you didn’t. Either way, it’s been because the rest of my life has been pretty loud lately, in a lot of amazing ways.
In short, stuff is taking off at work. Last week we held a swanky launch party on Thursday night and invited the local who’s who to come and check out our beautiful office space and get a sneak peek at our Black Friday live-blog portal.
Said portal is now live — go look at it! — and has been since Wednesday (yesterday) at 3 p.m. We’re answering reader questions, interacting on Twitter, and keeping up-to-date on hot Black Friday deals around the clock.
Thus, I’ve been working the graveyard shift — 6 p.m. to 3 a.m. — which is why it’s 2 p.m. on Thanksgiving Day and I’m sitting here, in my apartment, writing this, rather than being inundated with food, champagne, family drama and political incorrectness around my parents’ dinner table.
Also I missed the Macy’s Day Parade and the dog show (which I am a total, not-at-all-sorry geek about).
It sounds like I’m bitching, but I’m really not: I actually love the adjusted hours (keep all the daylight for myself! Start work as soon as my night owl second wind hits!), and I have a metric fuckton of stuff to be thankful for this year.
I’m thankful for my dog, who’s been in my life for over a year now, as Facebook reminded me about a week ago.
I’m thankful for the truly excessive amount of time I got to spend traveling over the past few years, and all of the stuff I got to see and experience as a result. I’ve done some crazy shit — some dangerous shit — and it’s been the best part of being alive so far.
I’m thankful for my weight loss — not just because I look better, but because I feel awesome, have a better line of communication with my body, and have allowed myself to take advantage of opportunities I wouldn’t have been willing or confident enough to before.
And whatever, I’m totally thankful for my butt. Look at it! It’s pretty great, right?
But this year, I’m definitely most thankful for my job.
I’m still flabbergasted that I get to call myself a writer, but it’s really more than that. I’ve somehow found a place to work whose values correspond directly to my own: a workplace that values personal input and creativity and explicitly asks its team members to be courageous. To ask for forgiveness rather than permission (seriously, that’s in the employee handbook). It’s like the opposite of micro-managing — I’m sometimes a little overwhelmed at the amount of creative freedom I have, how much I’m trusted. It’s a good feeling, especially since this is my very first position in the field, and I don’t even think I’m fucking it up too badly yet.
Plus, you know, it afforded me the opportunity to escape academia, which is a life path that’s meaningful and valid — and totally wrong for me.
It helps, too, that my office is filled with people I’m comfortable with and actually want to be around. The other day, I mentioned that my first published poem (oh hey, another thing to be thankful for!) will be live soon, and recieved genuine congratulations and cheers — like, let’s-throw-a-party-when-it-comes-out level cheers — from talented coworkers of mine who don’t need to have any investment at all in my personal artistic success. I look forward to going into the office and being around them, and I’m genuinely invested in their lives and happiness, too.
“My coworkers are cool people” being a novelty probably makes me sound like an asshole, but I’d be lying if I said I’d had that feeling at previous jobs. To be completely fair, those jobs were a mishmash of retail, food service, and weird hospitality — and carriage driving tends to self-select for the sort of folks who are comfortable urinating outdoors and not very concerned with dental hygiene.
And as much as I love being in the office, I love also that most of my coworkers and superiors come from a work-at-home background, and are thus committed to flexibility — a flexibility that allows me to continue to live my life in a way that’s productive personally as well as professionally, that grants me the ability to keep learning and growing and creating on my own time.
I’m thankful that my parents don’t pay my rent anymore.
Oh, yeah, and I’m thankful that I get to live here, in St. Pete, where it’s been between 60 and 70 degrees for a week with not a cloud in the sky, and running in it actually feels good. Where they have free movies in the park and a young man walked up to my dog and me and gave us free dog treats — to advertise his business, but still. Where I saw a gorgeous woman parading along the waterfront in a long, green, floral-print dress, photoshoot-perfect, carrying, strangely, what I was sure was a golf club at a distance — but soon recognized as a (long) selfie-stick with her cell phone perched at the end of it, glimmering a foot off the ground. Where within a square mile radius of the millioniares on Beach Drive, there are skinny-jeans-and-flannel hipsters, midwestern transplant office workers, and Green Peace workers who camp outside my office and bother me every single day. It’s eclectic and weird and feels like a grown-up version of St. Augustine — and it’s close enough that I can get back up there any weekend I want. I love everything about my city, and I’m so thankful to be back at a sunshinier latitude.
Anyway, my crazy shifts and Black Friday madness continue for another few days, so stay tuned. I will write something about the Beaujolais, I promise.
Oh, right — and I’m thankful for your being here and reading this, too. Happy holidays.