My favorite version of this holiday classic, sung by the composer himself, Mel Torme. Indulge me and listen. You’ll understand why his voice was known as the “Velvet Fog.”

As it’s October 1, at least where I sit, and my blogging’s been erratic at best, I thought I’d start ringing in the holiday season now. Why erratic? I don’t know. Fear, I guess. Pain, definitely. Bursitis in my left shoulder makes it impossible at times, at times unappetizing, to write. And there’s so much I’ve wanted to say. Like my engorged “to do” list, however, the stories crammed in my cranium overwhelm and I write nothing.

That’s why I decided to start with this song which popped into my head as I washed my face. Why? I’m shrugging. Maybe ’cause my renewed affection for December sparks a tipsy hope, a warmth, an E.T.-like heart light. G, Mom, and I are taking the train into New York City again for my birthday weekend. Mom wants to see the Rockettes, G’s looking into seeing Shakespeare or a musical, and I just want to walk in Central Park. If I don’t, fine. We’ll walk plenty and nothing’s mundane in NYC during the holidays.

Twinkly lights, decked out store windows, snow falling my birthday night as we hurried to Blossom before the show, and smiling. See? Joy. Maybe it’s my proclivity to melancholy but I’m learning to accept that joy and I couple rarely. Was I always this way? I don’t think so. I used to laugh, pin high hopes on achieving impossible things, knew who I was (I think) and where I was headed. I was young and blinked and thereafter my small world aged to sepia. Like that quote: “Beauty, chased by tragic laughter.”

I survived last December on the beauty of that weekend, a constant smile, love for my traveling companions, and a rare peace. Hearing the “Velvet Fog” sing this “live at the Crescent Club in 1955” sent a heady hint of that joy through me. Enough for me to sit down and write.

Just write.

Lack of communication is unhealthy.

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