Friday, March 07, 2014

Another month brings more reasons to hope

Some might call me happy-go-lucky. Maybe I’m just easily amused. Or I have an uncanny ability to find silver linings and minor miracles. But it seems like every season — no, every month — has something to excite me.

Welcome to March, or “Heritage Month” as I like to call it. As I said, each month has it’s benefits. But March is so aptly named because it begins the march towards awesome. Take a dip in the lake, beware the Ides, be a bit Irish, head towards Easter. Whatever. It’s awesome.

I’ve already had my pancakes for the month, an annual tradition I’ve upheld for the past several years. Every Mardi Gras, Fat Tuesday or Shrove Tuesday — whatever you want to call it — I go to my church and partake in the festivities. Usually I go with family but this year they were all off doing other things so I made it a work outing.

Today it’s time for fish. I like fish. Fish fry in particular. Beer battered fish fry to be even more specific. I like fish all year round. Kind of like I like Christmas music all year round. But much like I compartmentalize my Christmas music, I also mostly restrict my beer battered haddock to Fridays during Lent. I’m relishing the thought of tonight’s dinner.

I often give up something for Lent. It’s usually beer or chicken wings. This year, I’m slacking and giving up neither. You’re supposed to give up the thing that’s most important to you. For me, that’s hope. I considered it. But quickly dashed the thought.

How could one give up hope with Buffalo’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade a mere nine days away. It’s another annual tradition for me and mine. And then St. Patrick’s Day itself. Two events to be oh so hopeful about.

And the second St. Patrick’s Day is over, it’s on to spring. And then Easter. What’s more hopeful than Easter? The resurrection. A new beginning. Really, what’s more hopeful than a new beginning?

I’m sure not everyone has my optimistic view of March. Or anything, for that matter. It’s cold. It’s dreary. It’s blah. Or as I like to say, “meh.” But it leads to such wonderful things.

Next thing you know, we’ll be planning picnics and the Independence Day Parade. Next thing you know, we’ll be off hiking. Or vacationing in wonderful places with wonderful friends and family. Next thing you know the days will be long and the nights will be filled with backyard barbeques and bonfires.

Come April, I’ll surely have new things to be excited about. My girls’ birthdays are in April. My daughters are growing up awesome. Their mother and I are so very proud of them. As well we should be.

But it’s not April yet. It’s still March. And there’s plenty to celebrate right now.

Scott Leffler is an eternal optimist who couldn’t give up hope if he tried. Follow his shenanigans on Twitter @scottleffler