Is it just me, or do the holidays get more expensive and exhausting every year?
By now, if you haven’t spent your entire paycheck, come down with the flu, sold a kidney, or lost your mind, I’d say you’re in pretty good shape and coping quite well with your post–holiday meltdown so far.
I really don’t understand how Christmas has become so expensive and exhausting over the years, especially if the purpose of the holiday is supposed to be getting together with loved ones and celebrating Jesus’ birthday.
The other week, I was sitting next to a kid in a waiting room who was coloring a picture of the nativity scene. I complimented him on his artwork and how well he colored the baby Jesus. He looked up at me with a bewildered look and shouted “WHO THE HECK IS BABY JESUS?” I told him that baby Jesus was the little guy in the manger who he was coloring with the dark red crayon. He lit up instantly, grinning from ear to ear, and yelled “NO, THAT’S SANTA!” Now that’s just sad.
Speaking of Santa, I kind of recall kids asking the old man in red for much simpler things back in the day… like Hot Wheels or Barbie dolls. These days, it’s all about iPods, iPads, and other costly gadgets. I feel sorry for all the parents out there, and I wouldn’t be surprised if the fallout from all this is a rise in alcohol consumption and adult tantrums.
I know I’m probably going to sound a bit Kardashian-like here, but being Santa is extremely tiring. It’s incredibly strenuous having to run around shopping for gifts, attending parties, and entertaining out-of-town guests, all the while maintaining a jolly attitude. I justify going around smiling, being kind to others, and spreading Christmas cheer as my annual cardio workout and community service.
Believe me when I say that Santa has a rough gig, but baby Jesus has it made. Baby Jesus gets to spend all day drinking and relaxing in a crib while people visit and adore him. Who in their right mind would rather be Santa than Baby Jesus on Christmas?!
Not me. While other people are out playing Santa every year—caroling and spreading the Christmas spirit—I’ll be kicking back in my crib with some eggnog, watching “Die Hard” marathons on TV, and grunting intermittently from the couch to signal the family I’m still alive.
Despite the usual caroling, shopping, and other Santa-inspired nonsense, I actually do look forward to Christmas dinner each year. There’s just something special about it, a certain je ne se quoi, if you will.
These are a few of the things that I think make Christmas dinner so special every year:
“I was just saying that cranberry is good for a urinary tract infection. That’s it. It’s a perfectly acceptable dinner conversation. I mean, we’re eating cranberries for God’s sake!”
“You brought a Democrat to dinner? Jesus Christ! Have you lost your damn mind?! I need some more scotch!”
I’m happy to report that I accomplished quite a bit over the holidays this year, but I’m sad to report that my post–holiday meltdown so far entails a bad case of the flu. Unfortunately, it’s not how I planned on ringing in the New Year, and not exactly what I had in mind for “out with the old, in with the new,” but oh well.
I wish all of you a healthy and prosperous 2013, and please, let’s all take a moment of silence to give thanks to vodka for getting us through another year! Cheers!
Whenever friends come over to our house, they love to look at our framed pictures and photo albums. Apparently they find something alluring about viewing random moments that don’t include them.
Personally, I’m not a fan of picture frames or albums. They’re just one more thing that has to be dusted when company comes over. Unfortunately, I would feel weird telling everyone who visits my house that I hate pictures, because then I’d have to dodge the bewildered looks of “What? How can you hate pictures? Who are you?” So, I always make sure I have at least some presentable family photos up to make myself seem more normal and less serial killer-y.
The downside to having photos displayed is that when people look at them, many of them can’t just do so in silence and resist the urge to make comments. The entire photo-review process can be awkward, especially when it’s accompanied by mild criticism:
“My God, check out your uncle’s hair! He actually had some!”
“Ah, so that’s how you look with no makeup on!”
“How long ago was this photo taken? You look really young!”
Don’t people know what constitutes bad picture frame etiquette?
Check it out, people… here are ten more things that you should never say (or do) while looking at other people’s photos:
Leave us a comment below if you can think of anymore to add to the list!
One of my most memorable camping experiences occurred about 10 years ago at a popular campground in Northern California. I recall that after my friends and I drove around for miles through a remote redwood forest, we finally found the perfect spot. We parked the car at the campsite and proceeded to unload all of our gear and food.
After a few trips to the car to unload our supplies, I noticed a seatbelt twitching back and forth in the car. When I got closer, I realized that there was a raccoon sitting in the driver’s seat. Luckily, his legs were too short to reach the gas pedal; otherwise, that could have made for quite an interesting 911 call…
Frantic Caller (Me): “Oh my God, our car was just stolen!”
911 Dispatch: “Ma’am, please calm down. Did you get a look at the person who stole it?”
Me: “Yes, but it wasn’t so much a person per se. The culprit was really fluffy and stood about a foot tall. I know this sounds crazy, but it was actually a raccoon.”
911 Dispatch: “Ma’am, let me get this straight: you’re calling to report that a raccoon stole your vehicle?”
Me: “Yes, that’s correct sir. A raccoon just sped out of here with our car and our camping supplies!”
911 Dispatch: “Ma’am, have you been drinking?”
Anyway, so there sat a raccoon in the driver’s seat of our car. My friend rushed over to the car, swung the door open, and out jumped this raccoon, running like a raccoon out of hell into the forest with half a loaf of our bread. The most mind-blowing part was that the raccoon (we’ll call him Mr. Belvedere) seemed to be civilized and have manners. Mr. Belvedere hadn’t just ripped open the bag of bread as I envisioned a savage, rabies-ridden vermin would: he actually took the time to take the twisty tie off the bag and take out individual slices of bread one by one while killing time in the car.
Later that evening, as I struggled through one of the most uncomfortable nights of sleep imaginable amongst rocks, pinecones, and creatures of the dark, I heard a rustling noise outside my tent. Heart racing, I pointed my flashlight in the direction of the noise and laid eyes on what appeared to be rascally little Mr. Belvedere. Only this time, he was sitting on top of my cooler, meticulously unwrapping slices of Kraft singles with his tiny, oddly human-like hands and fingers.
My friend tried to make the best of the situation and get me re-energized about camping, so he started telling me things like:
“You don’t see that in the city.”
“That raccoon was awesome.”
“There’s some amazing wildlife out here.”
“I like how it’s so rustic.”
Riiight. Rustic. A fancy way of saying that we voluntarily gave up wonderful modern conveniences like electricity, hot water, and toilets in order to suffocate each other with our own smells in a tiny microcosm of re-circulated air (commonly referred to as a “tent”). Also a fancy way of saying that if we didn’t slather ourselves in toxic insect repellant and lock up all our food, we would be violated and pillaged in the night by mosquitoes and the aforementioned “amazing wildlife.”
A couple years later, I must have suffered some type of brain injury, because I actually agreed to go camping again. This time, we ended up near a scenic lake infested with mosquitoes. It was so horrible, I couldn’t even pull my pants down to go to the bathroom in peace. As soon as I did, hoards of mosquitoes swarmed my butt cheeks, covering them like sprinkles on a donut. This forced me to have to multi-task (and by “multi-task,” I mean that I had to go to the bathroom and swat mosquitoes on my rear end simultaneously while trying not to pee in my shoe). It was awesome.
If you haven’t already, y’all should try camping sometime. If you are fond of the idea of being homeless and out of your element, it’s definitely a fun way to spend a weekend… for those of you who are clearly insane.