. . . and while you’re at it, why don’t you “Go Fa La La La La Yourself!”
So let me get this straight. . . We wait until the LAST WEEK , OF THE LAST MONTH, of the year to take a look back and realize that our year may not have gone “Quite As We Would Have Liked”?…
…THEN, we are expected to lavish our children with gifts and spread “Cheer” and “Joy” around to everyone we come in contact with (even COMPLETE strangers) like some completely deranged, happy-go-lucky, mental patient who broke out of the asylum – but not before snagging the keys to the medical dispensary and cleaning it out. . . “WEEEEEEEEEE! MERRY CHRISTMAS TO EVERYBODY!!!!!!!!!! Woo HOOOOOO!!!!!!”. . . . . . that about right?. . . . . . . . uhm, no. . . . that’d be a “Big Old Negatory” for this guy. At least answer me this. . . If you are in a LENGTHY line at some “Retail Establishment” after a LENGTHY day of putting up with people wanting to FORCE FEED you “HOLIDAY CHEER” and “MERRIMENT”, while taking EVERY last cent of your hard-earned money to buy a BUNCH of mindless, useless crap for your family that they won’t even appreciate in a week’s time — then is it “so wrong” to envision every single person in line in front of you being spontaneously disemboweled by some sort of totally NON-JOVIAL, 3-Headed, Santa-Hating, Razor-Teethed, Harpoon-Clawed, Supernatural Beast wearing those cute little “elf shoes” with the jingling bells on the toes?
. . . Don’t get me wrong (like that’s even an option) I’m not a “Scrooge” . I don’t have a problem with Christmas. . . sorry. . . the “Holiday Season”. Are we still not saying “Christ” this year? I wouldn’t want to offend anyone by mentioning the “reason for the season”. . . “Heaven Forbid”. . . I’m not going to talk about the history ofChristmas(you should know it) Hanukkah (it was about oil in a lamp or something) , Kwanzaa (The first Kwanzaa stamp was issued by the United States Postal Service on October 22, 1997), Festivus (though from this “gentile’s” perspective, Festivus, to this day, seems like a viable alternative) this year – no, I thought I’d try a little “lighter fare”, as I am just not “up” to the challenge of informing and enlightening (as is customary when I think you folks need to “get a clue”). December 18, 1997, the “Seinfeld-inspired” holiday introduced us to practices like the traditional “Feats of Strength” avocation featured during the celebration. But it was the “Airing of Grievances” during the observation of Festivus, that always struck a chord with me. Mainly because “I” am always complaining. . . AND. . . because so is MOST of the WORLD.
. . . But, because I spend most of the year complaining about “any and every damn thing”, I thought I’d take this opportunity to mention just a few of the HOLIDAY TERMS that have started to really get under my skin. These are a limited few of the Words or phrases that not only annoy me. . . but REALLY annoy me (for no other reason, than I’ve got “issues”) If I cared enough to really sit down and “think” of more, I most assuredly could. But I don’t. . . care enough. . . I wouldn’t mind sitting down more, though.
“Gift Receipt” Pretty much denotes that you are giving up right out of the gate doesn’t it? “I have NO idea what I should get for my newest ‘relative-by-marriage’. So I am going to buy a wall clock and tape the receipt to the side of the box. Hell, I don’t even think I’ll wrap it”.
“Black Friday and Cyber Monday” I used to work retail. I even managed a toy store at the “Mall of America” for a couple of years. The term “Black Friday” perfectly encapsulates the sense of “dread” that should be assigned this day on the calendar. We were FORCED to refer to it as “GREEN Friday” (yeah, because of the money involved for the company – NONE of which was passed on to me by way of a fulfilling career or sizable Christmas bonus). As far as “Cyber Monday”? I tried online shopping this year and was frustrated to find that almost EVERYTHING my kids wanted was “Currently Out of Stock” and wouldn’t be available until December 28th. So they can shove “cyber shopping” up their “cyber butts”.
“Re-gifting” Never actually guilty of this practice “myself”, I have been the unwitting recipient of more than my share of wall clocks that looked oddly familiar. The only thing I find a little more disturbing than this should ALSO be called “regifting”. It is when someone that OBVIOUSLY doesn’t give “two s#$%’s or a giggle” about you gives you a gift one year ONLY to turn around and give you the EXACT same gift the following year. I’ve heard this happens a lot with “former husbands/biological deadbeat dads” that see their kids like twice a year. (that would NOT be me – My kids are in my custody year round)
“Gifts” I don’t really hate the “word”. . . I just hate buying them.
“All the Trimmings” (i.e. Turkey with ‘all the trimmings’) Quickly becoming one of my most hated “Holiday Expressions”. Where and WHY did this phrase come into being? I’m too tired to research it. I just know that I don’t want any “Turkey Trimmings”. It sounds like what’s left over after you’ve sheered the carcass of its meat. “What do you got there Hank?” while finishing up your Holiday Turkey Dinner with family, noticing your brother-in-law heading for the door with a saran-wrapped ball of oozing fat and grissle. “Are those TRIMMINGS?”. . . “Yeah, I was going to give them to the dogs”. . . “No WAY!. . . Back here with that pronto, big guy. . . That’s the best part!”. . . Yuck. When you throw “Trimming a Tree” into the mix, I just get visions of a tree pasted with turkey gizzards and nasty bits. . .
“Door-Buster” Sales We drove by Best Buy and Walmart on Thanksgiving night. . . It’s becoming a tradition at my house to drive by all those folks camped out in the cold and/or rain. . . then point and laugh. There are usually a couple hundred or so of them every year. It looks like it’s the same group, too. This is usually the “kickoff” to a long string of “Door-buster” sales. The deals are never THAT good. (Just a little hint for those of you dumb enough to waste your time to save $25. . . There are only 5 flat screen TV’s in there for a hundred dollars. There are -on average- 22,345 of YOU. . . you do the math)
“Stocking Stuffers” My disdain for these words being used is purely from a logistical, aesthetic and linguistic standpoint. I just think it SOUNDS stupid. . . I also don’t like the word “packet”. Especially when teamed with the word “condiment”. . . so that’s all I’ve got to say about that.
“Garland” Mainly, because I apparently misunderstood the difference between “tinsel” and “garland” for quite a few years. Now I KNOW the difference, but think there are a lot of people out there that are still confused. Therefore I will not be explaining the difference, because I think there are a lot of people out there that need to figure out things for themselves. I WILL say, that the word “Garland” reminds me of “Judy”. But not the young, pretty one from “Oz”. The old crusty, used up, alcoholic, chain-smoker . . . and that doesn’t make me feel very good. . . in fact, it makes me a little sad inside. . . Oh, well. . .
The LAST thing that gets my butt in a “perpetual unjoyful pucker” isn’t really a word or phrase, it’s just an observation. What the heck is up with ALL the GREEN during Christmas? Mistletoe? (a parasitic plant) . . . Christmas Trees? (needles are a nuisance) . . . Wreaths? (get in the way when you are trying to knock on the door, after placing a flaming “dog-poo casserole” on your neighbor’s front porch, before “high-tailing it out of there” – quite joyfully) . . . Poinsettias? (I’m pretty sure they’re poisonous). . . Garland? (I think I mentioned that Judy let herself go, towards the end) Where along the lines of all of this “horse mess”, did we decide to become a bunch of “botanists”?
Why is shrubbery so instrumental in the celebration? Was someone just sitting around saying, “You know what this party needs? . . . a FOREST!”. . . Nothing says “Happy Birthday Jesus” like a 12 foot spruce in the middle of your living room!
So where does that leave ME AND MINE this fine “Holiday” season? Well, we won’t have anything to eat until the second week of January, but at least the kids will have some “cool crap” to play with. And really. . . isn’t that all that matters?
“I know that Suzie needed a liver transplant, Joey needed braces and little Abigail can’t go another day without a pair of eyeglasses, but did you see the way their eyes lit up when we gave them a NEW PUPPY?!” . . . It’s not crucial that we discuss how we are going to feed the animal, RIGHT NOW. . . I mean, LOOK at the damn thing . . . It’s frickin’ ADORABLE! Besides. . . it’s CHRISTMAS!
. . . Yet it happens EVERY YEAR. . . The “Euphoric Diversion” that Christmas provides. . . All the worries and cares of the everyday seem to melt away. . . FOR ONE DAY, you can forget about your troubles and cares. You can leave the world and all of its accompanying bull crap behind. You can be free to LOVE and BE LOVED without thinking about how you’re EVER going to be able to “make it” to your next pay check. . . until the DAY AFTER. . . then it’s just like a really gnarly hangover. . .
My 6 year old daughter asked me the other day, “How does God help Santa know when we’re good or bad?”
What do I say to that? I made up something meaningful, because I LOVE her. . . but I felt like giving her one of my “standard-issue” responses:
(no…I didn’t traumatize her by doing “this”…that’s cruel…even for “me”)
“I don’t know honey, I guess the way God helps Daddy think he’s talented and smart enough to earn a BUTTLOAD of money someday to provide you a college education.”
“The way he helps Mommy see the refrigerator as Half-Full, when it is always Half-Empty.”
“The way he helps Lenscrafters help people see better. . . One Hour at a Time. Except for you honey. . . at least until February. . . that’s when we get our tax refund money. . . then maybe you can go to school and see the blackboard. . . now, go play with your puppy.”
I would have been better served asking my little girl, “Honey, how does God help you be happy. . . almost ALL OF THE TIME?”
(. . . Just a sec. . .)
. . . She just said, “Because I LOVE YOU Dad”. . .
. . . man, she wants that puppy. . .she’s GOOD
‘Til Then. . . MERRY CHRISTMAS!
From Me and Mine, To You and Yours. . . PEACE
D A N
P.S. The kids’ names mentioned above, were not those of MY kids. Any resemblance to actual children, currently under my ownership or their current medical conditions and/or necessities, though “kinda’ implied, should not be inferred, unless you already did. . . then it’s too late.