Honor the Old Year, Celebrate the New Year, and Eat Pear and Pine Nut Loaf Cake

I have an owl necklace that I love. I bought it back in June after meeting friends for a brunch of Eggs Benedict with Crab at La Taverna in downtown Austin. Crab does not typically make the order, but the sea was at the fore of my thoughts that morning. I was happy and tired from spending the previous day in an impromptu day trip playing on the Galveston beach.

If it weren’t for Sarah and Linda I would not have eaten brunch or been in downtown Austin on Sunday morning. Nor would I have walked across the street to the clothing store or purchased the necklace. Which might not seem entirely or at all relevant to the story, but is.

The necklace attracts many compliments and comments. The comment most often asked is “Do you like owls?” I am never quite sure how to answer this. Saying “yes” seems to imply a love close to fanaticism for owls — my apartment walls have pictures of owls, my dish cloths are owl prints and I can recite owl facts. Even though I do have one owl story in my repertoire none of these statements are true. Yet, answering “no” isn’t at all accurate.  Sometimes I answer “I don’t dislike owls” which gets me a few laughs and jokes about neutrality. Not that I mind. I laugh along.

Most often I answer “I like the necklace.” Which is true in the basic sense of like and the implied fanaticism sense of like.

Back in December (or maybe as early as November) I became excited about the New Year. Sensing that this was awfully early to start anticipating I asked myself if I liked 2012. Answering “yes” to my own question would logically have to mean disliking 2011. With new years that dislike says good riddance. Thinking back on my year this answer couldn’t be true. To answer “no” put the year on the level of perfection. Which isn’t at all accurate either.

The answer that seemed to best fit was “I like the New Year.” Anticipating, celebrating, drinking champagne at midnight, playing games, laughing, and being with the people that I liked all of that I liked.

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