Of course I'm talking about the Cybils. The winner was announced today, making this the most happily anticipated Valentine's Day I've experienced in ages.
My husband and I don't celebrate Valentine's Day -- not in an iconoclastic way, because we're not remotely opposed to the holiday. We just got out of the habit of celebrating it. No, I adore the heart-shaped hopefulness of this day along with the cheery pinks and reds everywhere I go, brightening and warming an otherwise grey and dreary time of year here in Central Ohio. And it's still fun to hear how friends celebrate the day.
My husband and I used to exchange cards, but a few years ago, we both got so absurdly busy that we never got around to it and ended up greeting the cardless day with a shrug. So we shook hands and made that our Standard Valentine's Day greeting. (We have a No Flowers policy in this house since our cat thinks, "Hey! Salad in a vase. All right!")
I should add that we have invented and institutionalized our own holidays which each has traditions that are fun to us:
The Day Tim Proposed
Grandma McCahan Day
Paul Revere/Lexington and Concord Day
and . . .
Piss on a Bastard's Grave Day (No, seriously. No one actually pisses on a bastard's grave on this day, but we, by which I mean I, do pause to remember that famous bastard John Hathorne, who sent 19 innocent people to their deaths in Salem, Massachusetts, in 1692. He was one of the judges at the Witch Trials. I descend from the first Puritan woman accused of witchcraft, who lived through the mania, and the result is I, her progeny, have issues with people wholly committed to their own erroneous opinions for no other reason than that the opinions are theirs, despite masses of evidence of their error. And I work these issues out every May 10th, the day John Hathorne croaked, with a moment of silence for his victims followed by a good long raspberry to his eternal memory.)
So we do celebrate holidays in this house other than Valentine's Day, but the run-up to today was truly thrilling. I have not yet read SPLIT but will because all 6 of the Cybils YA finalists are on this year's reading list, and I'd be happy for any of us who won. There is an attitude, for the most part, I've encountered in the YA author community of collegiality, a spirit of unity, the idea that we're all in this together, and there's room for us all. And in that spirit, I am very excited for Swati Avashti and equally excited that I was on the list of nominees.
So, congratulations, Swati.
Happy Valentine's Day, Friends.
And to John Hathorne -- an early pfffffffffttttttttt!