Archive for the ‘Christmas’ Category

It’s hot here…

And it’s the DAY AFTER CHRISTMAS! And only a week after freezing conditions. It’s official. Either Texas is located in Hades or the world is ending.

Time bandits and promises

time_bandits.jpgFor a while now my parents and I stopped doing the big old gift exchange during the holidays. My father has always said, “Christmas is for kids.” It also doesn’t hurt that they bought me a washer and dryer this year. At that rate my father usually says, “You have Christmas all year anyway.”
So instead we usually do the large dinner and I decorate my own apartment — filling it to the brim with Christmas lights and garland. This year I took my Christmas tree over to their house. And I bought them both two presents. My mother seemed pleased but looked at me disapprovingly — begging to know how much I spent. To that I just said,
“You guys have done so much for me. Just let me do this for you.”
I made dad open his early. I was too eager. So on Christmas Eve I saw his eyes light up to the DVD of Time Bandits I bought him. We watched that movie so much, I grew up saying, “The little one?” If you have seen the movie you know what I’m talking about. There are these six little people and well, nevermind. Just know we quote this movie on a semi-regular.
My parents have the movie on one of those huge laser disk things. Not the sleek ones you see today. But the ones that looked like enormous 8-tracks. You had to inject the disks into this contraption and pull down a little lever. My parents still have a bunch of classics in those crazy things (The Muppet Movie, Star Wars, Richard Pryer’s Raw) but the old player doesn’t work anymore, of course. I spent years in my late teens, early 20s looking for Time Bandits on video cassette and could never find it. And then there it was, among all the other DVDs at Borders. Duh.
On to mom. One of the things I got her was a new cookbook. I bought her Nigella Lawson because I was sure she already had all the others — The Barefoot Contessa, Paula Deen, Tyler Florence …But I was wrong. She didn’t have any of them! Just Rachael Ray who I HATE! Anyway, I offered to exchange it but she wouldn’t have it. She was happy to see a different Food Network star in her hands. Which if you know my mother, you would know that she will just read the book but not use it. She likes to sit and read cookbooks. Her arthritis and feet are so bad now and combined with her extra weight, it is hard for her to stand at long periods of time. In fact this was one year that Christmas dinner was a complete chore and she elected my father and me to help. We didn’t start eating until nearly 3 p.m.! But every year she insists on cooking. And every year she complains more and more.

So I said that I was going to cook next year — at my apartment. I hate cooking in someone else’s kitchen. I told her she has a whole year to train in order to be able to go up my stairs. In return I promised a wonderful meal in a lovely Christmas setting. Dad of course will bring his famous cabbage and greens. As for the turkey, that’s going to be cooked at a local restaurant that does that kind of thing. No need in me taking on EVERYTHING quite yet. A turkey? By myself? Hell no.

merry christmas…

or should i say happy holidays?

i’m agnostic but even i know the reason for the season…

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To Dan…

To me there is no better holiday song than Dan Fogelberg’s “Same Old Lang Syne.” It’s bittersweet. It’s familiar. It’s heartfelt. dan-fogelberg-1-sized.jpgAnd takes place on Christmas Eve.

Dan Fogelberg died yesterday at the age of 56 after battling prostate cancer. Sadly ironic that his death was around the holidays. And so young. I’m a fan of his other tunes as well, “Leader of the Band” of course, like I hope you are too, but I can’t think of one song I didn’t love. And his lyrics will always haunt even though he’s gone…
To me there is no better holiday song than Dan Fogelberg’s “Same Old Lange Syne.” It’s bittersweet. It’s familiar. It’s heartfelt. And takes place on Christmas Eve.

Dan Fogelberg died yesterday at the age of 56 after battling prostate cancer. Sadly ironic that his death was around the holidays. And so young. I’m a fan of his other tunes as well, “Leader of the Band” of course, like I hope you are too, but I can’t think of one song I didn’t love. And his lyrics will always haunt even though he’s gone…

“We drank a toast to innocence,
We drank a toast to now.
And tried to reach beyond the emptiness,
But neither one knew how.
We drank a toast to innocence,
We drank a toast to time.
Reliving in our eloquence,
Another ‘auld lang syne’……”

Did the devil spike my cookie?

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While scrummaging around in my closet yesterday getting ready for the company Christmas party, I found an old fortune from who knows how long ago. It reads:

Be mischievous and you will not be lonesome…

Is it wrong that I took this to mean when it comes to men? I think I’ve been mischievous before and I appear to still be single. Let me check…

Yep. Single.

Anyway as I’ve said before the holidays are not the times many people are keeping up with blogging so I don’t know if anyone is even reading this, but I just had to write about this fortune. Not only is the scripture odd, but it’s not your typical fortune.

Most fortunes, even the really good ones you get from Pei Wei, always say something like being good to get what you want or paying it back or some other kind of funky foretelling. But to be mischievous? That sounds like an evil fortune. Did the devil spike my cookie? I wonder if I did something mischievous when I originally opened that cookie…

Does this mean I need to be all about sex and whatnot? Or does this mean that I’ve just got to kick up the sexy? I don’t know that I need to take cues from a fortune, of course. Especially one found on my floor that was possibly from two years ago that probably fell out of my jewelry box. But the coincidence that I found it just before that party is a strange one.

And I don’t know if I was fueled by it or not but I was up to a bit of mischief last night. The fortune was right. But I am pretty sure I was not alone with a potential suitor. (If that is even what “not being lonesome” meant in this particular case of odd fortune.) More like a fairly amusing night of my laughing too loud, sneaking an ill-gotten tequila shot with a coworker by the pool, talking inappropriately at a late dinner with other coworker friends and their boyfriends, and then a drive home — alone.

I have saved that fortune though. For a later date.

Day 63: The power of a note on the door…

Be gone all you thiefs!I woke up to discover this morning that my tiny Christmas tree equipped with tiny, shiny, glittery little ornaments was swiped from my front porch. I know that it may not have been the best thing — to actually leave something I gave a rip about on the front porch. But combined with the gold bells on my door, the bow I made latched on to the door knocker — everything felt so nice when I came home. Because from inside and out my house was so very pleasantly festive with Christmas cheer. Well, my Christmas cheer faded with my little discovery.

I became enraged. I left a polite note on my neighbor’s door about it after looking around the complex (and glancing the trash) to see if I would find it somewhere. I sat in my house, numb with anger of course. I’ve been robbed several times in my life. Mostly related to my car. This was it. So I kept checking the peep hole every now and then just to see if I saw someone to ask questions. Then I noticed this one young looking guy coming down from upstairs who looked quite guilty when he stopped at my neighbor’s door to read my note which read:

“If you happen to know who stole my tree, please let me know. It wasn’t very nice. Signed (my apartment number).”

Then after he read it, he looked down directly where my Christmas tree WOULD have been. When I saw his face I decided to draft another letter and this time put it on MY door. This one read:

“Merry Christmas Asshole. Whoever stole my fucking Christmas tree doesn’t know who they are fucking with. You will get yours — one way or another. Signed (my apartment number).”

I fumed. Ran errands and came home. Then I heard some really loud walking and looked out the peephole. I saw my “friendly” upstairs neighbor going downstairs. I decided to wait for her to head back up. She would have to pass my door to get to her apartment. I waited because the connection was made. She was surely friends with the guy from earlier in the afternoon. Before I could completely ask her if she had heard anything funny last night she confessed that her friend stole my tree. She said he was “intoxicated” and that she was sorry and was bringing back the tree. Guess what she said next?

“I didn’t appreciate that note. It wasn’t very Christmas-like…”

THE BALLS ON THIS CHICK! I told her I didn’t give a damn, she stole from me and that I’ve been through a lot in my life. And that I didn’t appreciate HER stealing from me. She proceeded to say it wasn’t her. It was her friend. Same damn thing. Long story longer, she brought it back and said that she didn’t want it to affect things with her and I. Hilarious. My punctuation mark was letting her know I’ve been victimized in my life and that stealing from me was wrong. She felt like shit. Her face was if she may have concluded I was once upon a time kidnapped and left for dead.

What does this have to do with the countdown? Nothing. An hour walking in a parade carrying a giant Curious George yesterday and ending my day getting back stolen property counts as a workout for me.

FIN.

Who would let me in a televised Christmas parade?

So there is a very traditional Christmas parade this weekend. Me along with other coworkers are carrying the Curious George balloon. We also have to wear a “uniform” of sorts that they provided — blacks sweatpants, red sweatshirt with the company logo, black gloves, Santa hat with gold bells…

We have also been told to smile at all times because the cameras will be watching. We can’t wear anything else. Can’t have “hi mom” markings on our hands. Can’t have jewelry pretty much. And I suppose we will have to do a pageant wave when we are on the television camera “row” at some point during the route. It will be cold as a witch’s tit and there is a 30 percent chance of rain. Lovely. And we have to meet at our workplace at 6 a.m. for photos and then we are off. But guess when the parade is? 10 a.m.! So we will be playing with George up until then…

On of my co-workers was nice enough to let everyone sleep over at her apartment tonight so we can all be together and not oversleep. And we will probably drink hot chocolate like kids.

Hilarious. I’m sure several people I told about this will be laughing in the comforts of their warm couch as I parade around with a monkey.

Day 36: Give ’em a smile…

In my line of work, a smile is something I have to keep on at all times. Maybe more than my shoes.

Unlike a lot of lucky folks, I had to spend the weekend working. And working…and…smiling…and…

Anyway, while doing so, I was bombarded by the constant questions of when this and that was going to run in the paper. All the while keeping that bright and shiny smile and gleeful attitude only to nearly want to sob by the time I got to my car. Partly from exhaustion — mostly from burnout and sore cheeks from all that teeth-bearing. It just can all make you want to collapse. Even when THIS was what you kind of asked for. When I got home I was welcomed with an angry email from someone. Their story hadn’t run when they expected it to. Therefore I’m suddenly a monster…

That lovely Saturday I passed out even before SNL ended. So Day 36 meant that I walked the lake near my apartment and carried my camera with me. I will probably post some in my Flickr account along with those Dia de los Muertos photos I took a few weekends ago…

Day 36 I decided to push aside my smile. I packed only water and the camera. The smile somehow got left at home. Those who passed me on the trail may have thought I looked serene but definitely not gleeful. It felt nice and I absorbed every breeze, every animal noise and smell. I walked for about two hours and then pumped some iron. Then capped off the night busting a Martha Stewart and decorating way too damn early for Christmas. I think that works for the countdown…