I’ve been very into ’90s music lately. This is the music of my teenage years; it’s always going to be what I reach for in moments of comfort.

It’s been Hootie & the Blowfish and Matchbox Twenty on repeat. Kate Bush’s Red Shoes. Paul Simon’s Graceland. It’s been albums for me lately, not songs or playlists. Except for that week I was listening to Marc Cohen’s “Walking in Memphis” and Cher’s cover back-to-back.

Once, when I was younger, I was banned from playing August and Everything After on the living room stereo. I’m sure my brother still can't stand the sound of it.

I love putting music on repeat. Eating the same meal for dinner and then the leftovers for breakfast. I will grow tired eventually (recall the last time I tried to rewatch Sports Night; it felt too soon since the time before). But my mind craves familiarity and routine.

When that routine is disrupted, it’s a struggle to return, always, but my brain never stops planning a comeback.

I didn’t quite make it to six months of YouTube videos in 2022 until Covid laid me out, but I’ve been thinking about my comeback ever since. Now, finally, the first video of the year is up. The next one was easier and just needs to be edited.

If you’re also working your way back to a routine, here are some ideas:

It’s like a meditation practice.

Meditation is not about silence. It’s not about nothingness. It’s about returning to your breath. It’s about catching those thoughts and returning to your breath. You cannot fail because your breath is always there, waiting for you.

You just have to come back.

It’s like a blog.

Some years I blog a lot; some years I blog a little. But every time that there’s a gap, there’s this temptation to apologize, to explain where you’ve been and what you’re going to do now, and make big promises about the future. (Those promises are the worst.) It’s normal to miss days—that is the ebb and flow of being a creator.

Don’t apologize. Explain where you’ve been if it’s an interesting story, but just write the next post. People will be happy to see you in their feeds again.

It’s like a hiatus.

I like to take a break every December. I just feel like hibernating when everything is dark and cold. Planning your hiatus is the ideal situation. We explain where we will be, and most importantly, we explain when we will come back. It doesn’t make coming back easier, but it’s nice to have something to look forward to.

December makes a lot of sense to me because then I can come back in January and get that fresh new year start that I love. Doesn’t always work like that, but it wouldn’t it be nice if it did?

Don’t start—continue.

I think a lot about if I had started making YouTube videos the first time that I thought about it. Where would I be today? I didn’t start way back then, but I did start 2 years years ago, and today, I can continue. I don’t have to start again or relaunch. I only have to continue.

I already did the hard part, the starting. Then I took a little break, and now I've come back.

I hope to make another comeback next week.

Remember how I was going to make a zine about Speed? Well, I got sick again—strep throat this time (thanks, Mom, for going on that cruise)—and most of May was a wash.

We missed the June anniversary of the film's release date, but I think we can still do this! I still want your stories! If you have a little something to write about how much you love Speed, I want to read it.

Thanks for sticking with me during these neverending unprecedented times. I'll keep trying if you will.

kick at the darkness