On New Year's Eve

New Year's resolution #1: Start writing for my blog.

New Year’s is one of my favourite social phenomena. As the clock strikes midnight, everyone races to wish each other a “Happy New Year!” over their preferred instant messaging platform. Some people only give well wishes after receiving one, while others start blasting out messages the instant the new year begins. These are both valid.

Personally, I enjoy sending out a barrage of messages, first texting a couple of my most frequent and intimate conversation partners before going through my recent contacts. I vary the messages slightly, electing to use a “:)” or “:D” or “!” with those I feel would receive it best. This year, the instant midnight was struck, I received a “happy new year” from someone I had been talking to shortly before. It was delightful to be someone’s first text, even if it was probably due to circumstance. To have crossed someone’s mind as someone worth reach out to. Thank you, R. You were the first I wished as well.

Yet, as I was doing my own texts, I was selective and hesitant, worrying that someone would realize how highly I ranked them if I texted too soon after midnight. It’s such a terrible thing to tell someone how much they mean to you, isn’t it? To tell them unabashedly the hold that they have over your emotional state. So, to prevent that mortifying admittance, we do things like hit up the group chat, getting everyone in one go. Wait until a fair number of minutes have passed so they don’t realize just how highly you rank them. Or not say anything at all, instead waiting for them to make the first move.

One of these people for me is someone I met recently, at my new university. He crossed my mind two or three minutes in (which is to say, not very long at all), but I wouldn’t dare admit he had already been awarded such a high place in my heart, would I? After all, think of what he might conclude. That I don’t have many close friends (though he seems to have about the same amount)? That I consider him a friend (though he’s told me as much)? That I like him (which is obvious)?

I waited until 12:05 to send him the text, thinking it sufficiently late to avoid being vulnerable. I also omitted the “!” at the end of it, not wanting to come off terribly eager. Well, S, if you’re reading this, I do like you, and I do wish you a happy new year! I don’t really expect you to read this, though.

All of this isn’t to say that I like R more than the rest of you, or that my approach to texting on New Year’s Eve is the best or most personal. There are so many ways we have of expressing our affection for each other. But when I receive a “Happy New Year!” from someone I haven’t talked to all year or someone I don’t even recognize on Instagram, I’m almost always delighted and never dismayed.

Is it really so embarrassing to confess our love for someone? To eagerly await their response or seek out their company unabashedly? People get put off — I get put off. But is it worth putting on this intricate mating dance to avoid putting off the occasional potential friend? I’m leaning towards no.

I haven’t set up my comments system yet, and it may be months before I do so. So instead, please just contact me directly with what you think. I would truly love to hear them. If you don’t have my contact, you can use a domain registration lookup system like WHOIS to get a proxy email to contact me by. I look forward to hearing from you!